Sunday, June 01, 2008

Opinion: What's your opinion of this article?

Energized McCain wins over one teen
Posted: May 31, 2008
Mike NicholsE-MAIL

Greendale - Odd men in cow suits and rubber masks, or holding handwritten signs alluding to "Adolf Bush," usually provide the only unscripted moments at big campaign events.

So I didn't show up too early for an appearance by John McCain at Martin Luther High School - and was relegated to the "remote" room where we Wisconsinites often seem to end up.

Watched him along with a couple hundred others on two television screens that could, as easily, have been transmitting from Tuscaloosa.

Sometimes, though - lo and behold - the world comes to you.

No sooner did the man walk off the screen at the end of his event, than he came through the door. Right there in the scarred and wrinkled flesh.

This is Wisconsin in 2008, baby. We're all in the front row now.

"Wisconsin," as Congressman Paul Ryan was quoted as saying, "is going to be the center of the political universe."

At least for John McCain.

And the first impression?

"Very pale," said Morgan Johnson, a senior at Muskego High School who just turned 18 and was there with her aunt. "That was the first thing I noticed about him."

Yep. There's been a lot of speculation about Barack Obama becoming the blackest president ever. John McCain might just become the whitest.

But, allowed Morgan, "he looked good for his age."

The truth is that McCain, who is 71, gets younger when he walks right up and starts talking.
This is no somnambulant Reagan. You don't worry about him being under-engaged. You worry about him being over-engaged.

With all due respect to the "McSame" crowd, this is not George W. Bush either. I mean, with our current president, you cringe every time you hear him try to pronounce Ahmadinejad.

With McCain, you worry a little he is pronouncing it with extreme fluidity, over and over, in his sleep.

Obama, then again, is apt to add a "Sir" at the end and say it in person - without preconditions.
Morgan's aunt, Lisa Klug, asked the best question of the day.

She asked McCain what he "would say to Morgan to get her to vote for you instead of Obama."

Morgan is a self-described moderate who would have voted for Hillary in the primary, had she been 18. And she lives in Wisconsin, where John Kerry beat George Bush by fewer than 12,000 votes - which means she could well be a president-maker.

Many of her peers like Obama.

"He is young," she said. "I am not going to lie. I think his race has a lot to do with it."

She, personally, is basing her vote on other things.

"Base it on issues," Morgan said.

McCain walked spryly over and responded to Lisa's question by making light of his years. What America really needs now is a president who is "very, very, very, very , very old," he said, repeating a joke from "Saturday Night Live."

Then he told Lisa, in a more serious vein, that he will "try to make sure (Morgan) can believe she will inherit a safer and more prosperous world."

Therein lies the rub, of course. Elections are about the future, and to a lot of young eyes, McCain looks like the past.

Not to Morgan, though. She likes his experience and his fiscal conservatism. Likes him on a personal basis. Thought he looked good. Is inclined to vote for him.

All you wonder now is if he can repeat the feat.
About 12,000 or so times.



MorganJ said...

I enjoyed this article, but I did have some mixed feelings. But after discussing it with a few people I am content. I think some things were taken out of context, like my first impression. He did ask me my first opinion of his physical appearance.

My first impressions of McCain were that he was very well spoken, very personable, and highly intelligent on issues and watching what he said so that he would not upset either extreme demographic (rep. or dem).

I'm glad that Mr. Nichols put in what I said about the issues because I did stress that point.

All in all, I talked to the man for 20-25 minutes. He took many, many notes and this is what he decided to write about. The man had little space and this was the "spin" he put on the story and overall, I can appreciate it.

P.S. I also think it's awesome that I was in the paper. It shows that I am actively participating in the 2008 elections, which is more than I can say for most voters my age.

Vlad said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Vlad said...

The article was entertaining. Even more entertaining is Morgan's behind the scenes commentary.