McCain tears his party apart

evan bakker

The hackneyed issues of Bill Ayers and Jeremiah Wright haven’t stuck, and the power surge of Sarah Palin has receded into a spark of little energy. What can the McCain campaign do? Fellow Republican advisers have traded shots back and forth at each other, and the monolith of the campaign has been broken down into two separate teams, one helping McCain, the other dissenting with Sarah Palin.

Prominent Republicans like Colin Powell have fallen in line with Barack Obama, citing the divisive political atmosphere the Republicans have created, along with a dent in McCain’s judgement in picking Sarah Palin.
But aside from the Republican implosion, Barack Obama has convinced people of his newfangled proposals to change Washington. His steady temperament in the debates, juxtaposed with McCain’s virulent mannerisms and caustic humor, made him a “steady hand at the tiller,” as John McCain so paradoxically described himself in the second debate.

External factors also contributed to McCain’s slip in the polls. Just as the stock markets plummeted in September, so did McCain’s poll numbers in key battleground states. The crash on Wall Street shifted the focus back on the hermits in the Bush Administration, to whom John McCain has been inscrutably compared.

On Election Night, don’t be surprised if Tom Brokaw calls this one for Obama by nine o’clock at night. The weight of the economic crisis, as well as a public exhaustion over wedge issues, has torn the Republican party at the seams. It’ll be a long rebuilding process certainly.