Party loyalty, nostalgia and the allure of a glamorous, slender figure promising a better world to a roaring crowd might mislead us into confusing the magic of Barack Obama with the reality of the two Kennedy brothers we have lost. Denver's theatrical staging enhanced this evocation, presenting a groundbreaking youthful candidacy passing the generational torch and completing the American Dream.RTWT.
But if substance guides us rather than style, if character is more important than audacious ambition, then we should recognize that this time the mantle of genuine American leadership rests on a truly bipartisan figure: John McCain.
Like Jack Kennedy, McCain is grounded by heroic service as a naval officer. His patriotism requires no parsing. Like JFK, McCain understands that you cannot conduct foreign policy without understanding history. No person of that background could suggest a unilateral strike on Pakistan, as Obama did last year, apparently forgetting that this United States ally has nuclear weapons. Calling Obama's threat to Pakistan "misguided" at the time, Sen. Joe Biden also said the freshman Illinois lawmaker was unprepared to lead America. Calling McCain "my hero," Biden has stated that he would be delighted to share a ticket with the Arizona senator, whom he has suddenly begun to denounce.
I was in Berlin in 1961 when the Soviets built the Wall. President Kennedy immediately promised total support to West Germany. A tough foreign policy realist, he would respect McCain's prompt robust denunciation of Russian aggression in Georgia, rather than Obama's over-advised spineless prevarication. "The UN must stand up," said Obama, when he himself failed to do so.
Little wonder that, just two days ago, The New York Times reported that Russia's Vladimir Putin is "deeply concerned about the possibility that Mr. McCain ... could become President."
As McCain does today, in 1960 John Kennedy campaigned on cutting taxes and strengthening America's armed forces. Like Reagan, Kennedy was an eager sprinter in the arms race, saying that we must reverse the "missile gap," the alleged missile superiority of the Soviet Union. President Kennedy established that lower taxes mean more jobs and more revenue, facts ridiculed by Obama and embraced by McCain.
As with McCain, reform was at the heart of Robert Kennedy's early service. He fought the Democratic machine and spent enormous energy rebuilding Bedford-Stuyvesant in Brooklyn by encouraging black economic development rather than government dependency. Working for him nights and weekends to assist black startup businesses in Bed-Stuy, young volunteers like myself learned that Bobby was not the typical far-left ideologue or partisan operative, as Obama was until recently. Like RFK and unlike Obama, McCain sees private enterprise and personal responsibility, not government, as the essential principles of political economy.
CIRCULATE IT TO YOUR DEM FRIENDS WHO SUPPORTED HILLARY OR WHO ARE ON THE FENCE...
AND VOTE ACCORDINGLY.