Some (non-partisan operatives, no doubt) are commending Sen. McCain for suspending his campaign and going to Washington instead, to help Congress reach an agreement on the financial bailout bill. Some are even calling it a show of leadership on McCain's part. I do agree with them: it was a show indeed. One might even say all show, no substance.
Perhaps before they got so excited about McCain's leadership they could have read McCain's Financial Crisis Timeline, and McCain has not sponsored a banking bill this Congress.
Particularly distressing is the fact that, as of Tuesday, Sen. McCain admitted the following about the bailout package proposal: "I have not had a chance to see it in writing. I have to examine it." (see "Undecided on Wall Street Bailout Package.") By comparison, I blogged about it on Sunday, and I am not running for the highest political office in the country. That is the type of leadership that Bush displayed when he ignored the August PDB that preceded the September 11 attacks, entitled: "Bin Laden Determined to Strike U.S."
Let me sign off with this video from last night's Colbert Report, where--as customary--Colbert flattens the spin dead.
It bears repeating these two charts from Colbert's video: might this be the real reason why McCain decided to suspend his campaign?
(DISCLAIMER: Obviously the charts are not real, but they do make the larger point that McCain might be fleeing Friday's debate because it comes at a very inauspicious point in time for him, since most voters have begun to make a link between the current state of affairs and the responsibility that Republicans--McCain included--bear for it.)