Obama and McCain Need to Get Back to Substance

By  | 

Writing for The Wall Street Journal, Laura Meckler and Amy Chozick have words of caution for both presidential candidates. To John McCain: don’t look so whiny. To Barack Obama: don’t look so arrogant.

Meckler and Chozick point out that although it’s not even August and although polls are still relatively close, the candidates have assumed positions of presumptive winner (Obama) and scrappy underdog (McCain). The problem is: thinking yourself assured of victory can breed overconfidence and turn off voters while thinking yourself an underdog can breed desperation and turn off voters. Both still need every vote they can get and have no business assuming anything at this stage.

I agree. After Obama’s overly stage-managed trip abroad and McCain’s grumpy-old-man routine in response to Obama’s popularity, I’d like both candidates to get back to selling themselves on substantive issues. Obama can’t win on photo-ops alone and McCain can’t win on complaining about those photo-ops. Hopefully we’ll get a more mature campaign out of these two gentlemen who, I still believe, could give us the most serious presidential race in many years.