Sometimes the dumbest thing you can say in a situation is the truth. An advisor to John McCain found that out recently when he said that another terrorist attack would be a “big advantage” to McCain’s presidential aspirations.
Obviously (and all the polls bear this out), terrorism and national security are two issues that Republicans win on a regular basis (recently they are the only issues). If those issues are at the forefront of voters minds in November, then it would be beneficial to Republicans politically.
So the logical extent of that would be that another terrorist attack on US soil would benefit the GOP politically. But it is stupid, irresponsible and horrible politics to say so out loud.
The Democrats are in the same situation with Iraq. Clearly if Iraq falls back into chaos, that issue will become much more beneficial to the party in November. That doesn’t mean an advisor to Obama comes out and says it.
You can be honest as a politician and a campaign without being idiotic. Charlie Black, McCain’s strategist, was a moron to explicit say that it would be an “advantage” to see another terrorist attack. It sounds as if you are wishing for that to happen or that you place your political goals ahead of the nation’s safety. That’s not a good place to be politically.
McCain handled the mess well, denouncing the comments and reminding voters that he has worked to prevent any further attacks. However, McCain is already starting in a hole to Obama. He can’t afford to run a stupid campaign. If so, the general election will be over before the Summer Olympics.