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Play Pundit: Does Georgia Conflict Help Obama or McCain?

During the presidential campaign season, it seems like almost everything could have an impact on the election. While leaders assess the long-term impact of the conflict in Georgia, pundits want to know right now how the complex event will impact the election in November. So far, the media has chalked up Russia's aggression as an advantage for John McCain.

McCain has stressed his perceived edge in foreign policy experience, using stronger language against Russia than President Bush, and maintaining that the US must reevaluate relations with Russia. While Obama fully condemned Russia's actions, he also called for restraint from both Russia and Georgia.

As shown in the video above, the media thinks McCain's stiff approach to diplomacy will come out looking better thanks to the conflict in Georgia. Do you agree?


Join The Conversation
Michaelrcks Michaelrcks 8 years
stephley stephley 8 years
In the interviews of McCain that I've watched, he has always suggested that he is the one who will tell the truth, while everyone else has an agenda. To say you're the straight talker is to say others are not.
True-Song True-Song 8 years
>I certainly wouldn't want to vote for anyone whose press cast him/her as a demi-deity, like Obama's cover photo for the Rolling Stone. I disagree. I think Obama is an inspiring figure, and his campaign tries to play that up, tries to get people to think of him as being like Martin Luther King or Abraham Lincoln, but just because a magazine put him on a cover with clouds behind him doesn't mean he thinks he's god. He and the campaign probably didn't even have a say in it. >McCain's "Straight Talk Express" is a perfect example of someone setting himself up as above the rest. Not really following that one, either.
stephley stephley 8 years
I'm not sure I agree that McCain has never cast himself as perfect nor would I agree with the implication that Obama has cast himself as such. McCain's "Straight Talk Express" is a perfect example of someone setting himself up as above the rest.
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 8 years
I'd love to have Hypno replace Tony VillainousRegime as mayor of Los Angeles! I certainly wouldn't want to vote for anyone whose press cast him/her as a demi-deity, like Obama's cover photo for the Rolling Stone. One of the things mat made me vaguely uneasy about Romney was his plastic persona. That, and his hair. Yes, I can be petty. And I was frustrated with Hillary's tolerance while she was First Lady. (If I were married to Bill, I think I would have put one of those chemical castration drugs in his orange juice.) Actually, McCain--and I'm sure Democrats would agree--has never cast himself as Mr. Perfect. I like slightly flawed characters, in books and movies and in real life. They are more interesting, and they have learned hard lessons from life experience.
stephley stephley 8 years
Then who will you be voting for in November?
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 8 years
Hypno, who knows, that might be a "plus" in your campaign persona! Personally, I'd much rather vote for a "real" person who doesn't try to hide anything they think might be embarrassing, than a "Mr./Ms. Perfect" type.
True-Song True-Song 8 years
So, i read all the comments, and first of all, dang! Who knew there were smart people on teh intarwebz. Two, going way back to the original post, I know the media is indicating this will be good for McCain, but it seems like the perfect opportunity for Obama to remind us all that even if we wanted to intervene militarily, we can't! Because our resources are stretched too thin in Afghanistan and in Iraq. We are less safe with our military so depleted.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 8 years
Yeah, but that's like telling a Tiger that being a vegan is good for them. The public has to want it just enough to be open to it and I don't think they are right now. Besides my stint as a cashier in a place of unmentionables has totally squashed any political aspirations I ever had. The press would have a field day even if I ran for city council.
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 8 years
Hypno: Telling everyone what they *should* hear is exactly what needs to be done!
Jillness Jillness 8 years
If the people of S.O. don't want to be a part of Georgia, I don't agree with forcing them to. Sending the military to prevent a region from seceding doesn't sit well with me. But I do need more details.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 8 years
Oh nooo, LOL! I would make a horrible President. I'd be telling every one what they should hear and don't want to.
amybdk amybdk 8 years
Hyno for President! Hip Hip, Hooray!
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 8 years
I should probably have framed my previous comment more carefully. My intended meaning was, if Putin perceives us as weak or unwilling to address their aggressive actions by some substantive means, *he* will consider us "gutless" and our minimal protests ineffective and irrelevant. I chose the strong word specifically because I believe that's how he would see it, not because I'm trying to be provocative.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 8 years
“Who do YOU want in the White House? Someone who will stand firm or someone who will melt under pressure? The choice is yours. And the USofA will either continue to be a force for good or will be destroyed by your choice.” To be honest I want neither and that should go for the lot of you. We don’t want someone who will run in circles talking about what do I do, what should I do, which thank goodness both candidates are neither. We also don’t want some one who is so firm in their position that they stand in the way of progress and good reason. We should want some one who is pliable yet strong, soft spoken with the confidence of strength not the arrogance of position. Someone who recognizes the moments when to yield and when to push to get the desired end result with out sacrificing American principles. If you’re going to dance as a supper power you’ve got to be strong enough to dip, bend & lift with the rest of the world. This is not weakness. This is strength guided by the hand of wisdom and this is what we need in the White House.
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 8 years
Jill: I don't profess to be an expert on the region, but Georgia is trying to prevent South Ossetia from seceding and rejoining Russia. There's a natural (mountain) barrier between South and North Ossetia. South Ossetia is the heart of Georgian territory, just check a map. Allowing them to rejoin Russia would be like accepting a massive Russian presence down the middle of their country. It's not an easy situation, but I understand why it's important to Georgia. I'm not sure I agree with their refusal to let a province secede, but it's probably critical to their continued existence.
guiltypleasure31 guiltypleasure31 8 years
mccain's approach to dealing with russia has been nothing short of belligerent, even preceding the most recent conflict with georgia. it's reckless to jump at the opportunity to relive the cold war in the way he has, talking about russia trying to bring back the russian empire etc. and it's certainly irresponsible on the part of a mere candidate for president. not to mention presumptuous, what with sending over his own delegation to georgia.
stephley stephley 8 years
I remember the Soviet Union very well, and I remember how often American politicians have used words like 'gutless' against anyone who cautioned against rushing to war. I find both repugnant.
kastarte2 kastarte2 8 years
Hypno, your comments are always so wise and well worded. I agree with you on this 100%.
jenintx jenintx 8 years
I'm still reading posts, but I have to reply to this: "Global isolationism is what got us into trouble during WWII." Global isolationism wasn't what got us into trouble in WWII. Lend-lease got us into trouble in WWII. We may have claimed "isolationism" but we weren't living by it. And I don't believe Japan attacked us because of lend-lease either. The Japanese attack was more about resources and the US disapproval of Japan's overzealous expansionism (trying to overtake China and other parts of SE Asia).
jenintx jenintx 8 years
I have an idea: maybe we should take a page out of Charlie Wilson's book and have Congress and the CIA covertly fund Afghanistan to beat Russia out of Georgia. It ended one Cold War, why not two? :p
Jillness Jillness 8 years
Lainetm, I agree that Russia is a very devious government. However, I don't understand why Georgia would make the first military move on a region that, on their own accord, has been pushing to remove itself from Georgian rule. If we all knew that Russia was waiting for an excuse to use its power against Georgia, why provoke them?
yesteryear yesteryear 8 years
we are saying we wont take military action or "use force" in this situation, but i can't help thinking that things might change. as has been said before, the wars of the future (now) will be fought for resources. georgia has the oil pipeline, we've had troops there since 2002 (we used the war on terror as an excuse) - we even help them set up their government! take a look at this article from FOUR years ago:
juju4 juju4 8 years
Hypno - you hit the nail on the head. I agree with the post that said the USA has been tough talking for years, and it hasn't done any good. I feel like Bush and McCain are definitely the same in this regard...they like to puff up their chest and say "You'd better behave, OR ELSE!". But that isn't a threat anymore. Our country is broke, our military is entangled in an unneccessary war, and our enemies are stronger than ever. And all this tough talk means that they see things as very black and white, good guys vs. bad guys, and in actuality politics and foreign affairs are much more subtle than that.
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 8 years
One reason it seems many people don't want to get involved is that they consider it entirely an internal matter--someone else's business, not ours. (Remember, we *do* have a treaty with Georgia. No one seems to remember that. (As an aside, this is the attitude that led to World War II getting out of hand instead of being addressed early.) We need to recognize that the major pipelines carrying oil and gas to western Europe run through Georgia. Russia has had this prize in its sights for some time, now. No one seems to be addressing this major concern. I suspect this is an even more important motivation for Russia than the territorial issues. From the Christian Science Monitor: Russia's invasion of Georgian territory last week, in addition to reasserting Moscow's military strength, has complicated Europe's effort to diversify its oil and gas supplies away from the growing dominance of Kremlin-controlled energy giant Gazprom. In the post-Soviet era, and particularly since 9/11, Central Asia has become a central focus for Western countries looking for more secure energy sources. We all need to examine these situations more thoroughly. The only effect Obama's "nice talk" will have on a hard-core, old-school soviet like Putin is to reaffirm how gutless we really are, and encourage him to plow forward with abandon.
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