McCain’s Stunt Level Warning Meter

From FiveThirtyEight:

The McCain campaign is planning on a major “reboot” of its campaign in some point in advance of Wednesday night’s debate. This will take on something of the form that Bill Kristol advocates in his must-read Monday AM piece in the Times, including some combination of (i) pledging to run a positive campaign; (ii) firing/demoting Steve Schmidt and or/Rick Davis; (iii) apologizing for his campaign’s tone. In fact, Kristol’s column may be something of a trial balloon for this strategy.

What the McCain campaign really, really doesn’t want is for this move to be portrayed as desperate stunt. McCain has already developed a reputation for being a bit erratic under pressure — the ABC/Post poll now shows that a 48-45 plurality of voters trust Obama to handle an “unexpected major crisis” — and Bill Burton and Robert Gibbs must be foaming at the mouth waiting to spin something like this.


  1. I’m not expecting McCain to apologize, clean up his campaign or fire the imbeciles responsible. In response to crisis and decline in popularity, he has reliably gotten nastier, less truthful and more erratic.

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