It Ain't Necessarily So
The Washington Times
Campaign doublespeak can sometimes be so perfectly inverse to the truth that it should not pass without marvel from at least somebody. This week we got doublespeak twice, once from John Edwards, a Democrat, and from John McCain, a Republican. Both want to be president.
Mr. Edwards goes first because his is the more spectacularly false statement. The onetime Democratic senator from North Carolina with the $400 haircut announced to fanfare that he is "suspending his campaign" to conduct a poverty tour of rural America, with a stated aim of examining and calling attention to poverty in the Mississippi Delta, Appalachia and the Rust Belt.
Mr. Edwards is not actually "suspending" anything. It turns out that the "suspension" is to last a mere three days, in which period Mr. Edwards will cover eight states and 12 cities in this purported "Road to One America." If it's Tuesday, this must be Grinders Switch. That sounds to us just like the torrid pace of a presidential campaign. Mr. Edwards won't have much time to listen to the voices of poverty, that much is for sure. Also sure are the echoes of Robert F. Kennedy's celebrated tour of earlier poverty. But no, there's nothing here about a "campaign."
The only thing suspended is Mr. Edwards' willingness to answer questions about his personal wealth, given his fiery affection for populism. Surely it's only coincidental that the tour sounds and smells like the leg of a campaign, that "tours" work wonders for some campaigns and that Mr. Edwards now seeks something to cure a sincerity deficit. Mr. Edwards will be lucky if this tour doesn't make that deficit worse.
Thank you, Arnold, for bringing us this one!