Much talk these days about John McCain's latest cancer scare. It's on all of the news shows. With the constant, minute-by-minute monitoring the press applies to each of the two presidential candidates, the news of McCain's procedure to surgically remove a melanoma growth from his right cheek caught the press corps by surprise, setting off alarms and 'alarming' reports focusing on McCain's history of skin cancer.
In an effort to quiet the storm, McCain appeared on the Larry King Show (CNN) last night and attempted to address these concerns. In typical, bungling McCain fashion he only made matters worse. Here's the exchange that concerned me the most (emphasis mine):
Larry King: "Is it fair that voters should be concerned about your health though? I mean, you've had.... you've had four melanomas surgically removed. If not an issue, it's certainly a concern isn't it?"
John McCain: "I don't think so Larry, I mean... as I say, melanoma is something... if you look at it and you be careful it's fine. I had one (laughs)... I had one serious bout with it, and that was (laughs) frankly due to my own neglect, because I let it... I let it go and go and go. In fact (laughs), I was running for President at the time. I'm not making that mistake again."
Making that mistake once almost cost John McCain his life, and I wish him much success in controlling his current cancer going forward, but think about what McCain revealed in this interview.
His serious bout with cancer came about because of his own neglect. It was something that he "let it go and go and go..."
And it came at a time he was running or President. Here's a man who was so obsessed with gaining the Presidency that he ignored important, life-threatening issues that could have cost him the life and brought an abrupt end to his term in office.
Is this kind of neglectful, obsessive behavior what we expect from a President -- someone who's ambition blinds them to life-threatening matters? Someone who is so eager to serve that he puts himself in a dangerous position that could threaten his very ability to serve and succeed?
Not in my book. McCain risked failure and death, and he's demonstrated neglect in letting vitally important matters go when he knew he should have taken care of it.
Is this a mindful, thoughtful, careful approach towards this most important matter? No, absolutely not. It's a careless, stupid way of dealing with a life-threatening issue, and strongly suggests McCain is unsuitable for the office of President.
McCain assures that he won't make that mistake again. Once was enough, thanks to his good luck. America shouldn't roll the dice with John McCain again.
Everyone's asking "should we be concerned" over his current cancer? We should be concerned because this is John McCain, who in the past has demonstrated poor judgment in this area. He admits to his mistake, but confessing his past poor judgment doesn't absolve him of that poor judgment.
Update: Given the poor judgment indicated by McCain's willingness to let his previous cancerous growth run unchecked, his past efforts to highlight his judgment as a distinguishing characteristic indicating his fitness for office seems even more laughable.
- John McCain Counters Questions About His Age By Stressing Judgment - January, 28,2008
"Seriously, can I say, right now, we need judgment," McCain said. "We need judgment. We live in a very, very dangerous and challenging world."
McCain's neglect in ignoring his cancer in 2000 was a sign of poor judgment, and John Kerry questions McCain's judgment today.
Sen. John Kerry believes that the presumptive Republican nominee for president is adhering to the Bush Administration orthodoxy in ways that call into question his carefully-nurtured image as a political maverick.
"John McCain has changed in profound and fundamental ways that I find personally really surprising, and frankly upsetting," the Democratic Senator from Massachusetts said on CBS' Face The Nation.
"This is a different John McCain. This is not the Senator John McCain; this is want-to-be president John McCain.
"And the result is that John McCain has flip-flopped on more issues than I was even ever accused possibly of thinking about! I mean, this is extraordinary what he's done: He's changed on taxes; he's now in favor of the Bush tax cut. If you like the Bush economy, if you like the Bush tax cut and what it's done to our economy, making wealthier people wealthier and the average middle class struggle harder, then John McCain is going to give you a third term of George Bush and Karl Rove.
McCain's latest flip-flop is on Affirmative Action, but let's not focus on the flip flops per se, let's look at the motives behind the flip flops in what Kerry describes as 'poor judgment."
What we're seeing today is precisely the same poor judgment over ambitious plans to become President that are evident in McCain's run for the presidency that resulted in the poor judgment and poor choices made in 2000.
McCain claims he's learned form his past mistakes, but that appears to be more lip service. McCain has shown that he's a man who is "dying to become President", literally.
Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!