Over the weekend, Dick Cheney, the most unpopular Vice-President in modern history, endorsed John McCain and became the star of an Obama ad twisting the McCain-is-Bush/Cheney knife into John McCain one more time.
Over at The Moderate Voice, Mark Daniels wonders just what the Vice-President was thinking:
[W]hy on earth did Dick Cheney go public on the Saturday before the biggest election in our lifetimes?
One thought crossed my mind, which may be a bit Machiavellian.
The fact is that Dick Cheney loathes John McCain. McCain went after the Bush Administration for what he saw as its incompetent conduct of the war in Iraq. Maybe even more unforgivable from Cheney’s viewpoint was McCain’s criticisms of the Bush Administration’s incarceration and interrogation techniques at Guantanamo. These are not minor differences of opinion. By many reports, Cheney holds McCain in utter contempt for his positions on these matters.
Is it too far-fetched to consider the possibility that Dick Cheney, convinced that his old nemesis is going to lose anyway and knowing that he himself is political Kryptonite, decided to administer whatever hurt he might inflict on John McCain, kicking him down the stairs at the eleventh hour of a tough campaign? Don’t you think he knew that his endorsement would do a lot more harm to John McCain than it would help him?
It doesn’t seem outrageous to consider that Cheney decided to share his bad reputation with the US electorate to give John McCain an even more miserable November 4, than he’s otherwise likely to have.
As Mark says, it is Machiavellian, but when you think about there really is no political benefit for McCain in an endorsement from Dick Cheney, so why would he do it ?