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By Jeremy Schiffres, Daily and Sunday Freeman, Kingston, N.Y.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

McCain's mistakes

John McCain might have made a good president.
We'll never know.
But we do know this:
He was one of the worst presidential candidates in the history of American politics.

Some time during the early fall, McCain and his campaign advisers decided the only way to beat Barack Obama was to attack the Democrat. All negative, all the time. Problem was, that wasn't what the American people wanted. They wanted each candidate to make clear his vision for the future, not simply tear down his opponent.

Obama understood this. McCain didn't. And even when McCain saw evidence that his strategy wasn't working, he just kept hammering away. But things just kept getting worse for him.

And by the time this race entered the home stretch, there was nothing McCain could do to repair the damage. He was destined for an epic loss, and an epic loss was what he suffered - not only getting clobbered in the election, but, in the process, giving away such long-reliable "red" states as Virginia, Ohio, Florida, Indiana, Colorado, New Mexico and, at this writing, possibly North Carolina.

Who knows if those states will revert to voting Republican at any time in the near future. The damage done in these past few months may be too great to repair in one election cycle - especially if Obama turns out to be a popular president.

But this much we do know:
John McCain was a lousy presidential candidate.



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