I’m in an auditorium waiting for José Manuel Barroso to give a talk entitled, “A Letter From Brussels to the Next President of the United States.” Given as John McCain has “suspended” his presidential candidacy to
shore up the high-and-mighty vote put country first (TM), I assume Barroso will speak only of President-by-default Obama.
In all seriousness, I think Beutler nails this: “It’s a bizarre political gambit, and perhaps a sign of desperation, but that doesn’t mean it won’t work.” The key to understanding this is seeing how it affects Obama. If he suspends his campaign in turn, he’s a follower who reinforces the great, bold ideas of McCain. If he calls it a stunt, he looks like he’s playing partisan politics while McCain rises above. Either way, McCain and the press can, and will, attack him on process.
So for now, I’m inclined to count it as a win for McCain. He reclaims the mantle of high Broderism, and if all he accomplishes is an armistice in his war with the press, that’ll be a big win.