McCain's Keystone Caper - Rolling Stone
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McCain’s Keystone Caper

I’m still of the opinion that this Pennsylvania thing is a giant head fake.

It’s bizarre enough a proposal — go all in in the Keystone state that hasn’t gone Republican since ’88 — that it’s got all us media folk talking. But as it currently stands Obama’s got as good a chance of flipping Mississippi or Arkansas or even Arizona as McCain does flipping Pennsylvania.

But here’s what the fiction of flipping PA does for McCain — it changes the narrative of a campaign backed into a corner to a campaign mounting one last surge into enemy territory. It appeals to a part of the McCain myth that happens to be true: that he’s a scrapper and a fighter and a survivor.

The reality is that if McCain goes all in in Pennsylvania, Obama is likely to rout him everywhere else — Florida, Missouri, Virginia, North Carolina, Nevada, North Dakota, Indiana, maybe even Georgia.

But McCain if can create the appearance that he’s still playing offense, it postpones the self-fulfilling pre-mortems. Don’t write off McCain yet, that sunofagun still thinks he can win in Pennsylvania. And it gives him a final window for a miracle.


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