Thank God for David Letterman

Posted: October 24th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Politics | Tags: , | 3 Comments »

I am a cliche. I’m a New York liberal who spent years regarding John McCain as a Republican I could swallow. He was a compromise-maker and a man of principle (this was before the word “maverick” came into vogue). He accepted the reality of climate-change, believed in granting paths to citizenship for illegal immigrants and opposed some of the worst Bush administration policies, like the first of the top-bracket tax cuts. Like most New York liberals, then, I have been appalled and disappointed to see that McCain squashed by the robotic knee-jerk conservative the GOP has engineered in the the last three months of this campaign.

Though I support Obama, I have not been able to forget the old McCain, because I still think he was the real thing. The new McCain reminds me of a character in a sci-fi novel who is being controlled by machines but occasionally, when the power goes out, is able to force his true self through. One such moment was his long-overdue interview with David Letterman last week.

This McCain is personable, relaxed, and rational, hardly the angry old man we’ve been seeing in debates. Thank God for David Letterman for bringing him out, because if (as predicted) he loses this election, the country will need McCain-the-Senator back in Washington to produce the kind of compromises I used to love him for.