Looking to November

What we know now, after yesterday’s primary swarm, is that McCain will probably be the Republican nominee and that Obama and Clinton are tied. Obama’s better set to win the next handful of primaries–Virginina, D.C., Maryland, and Wisconsin–then Clinton’s well placed to win Texas and Ohio. Which means the nomination might be settled at the convention by superdelegates, which tend to be establishment figures and trend toward Clinton unless something changes between now and then.

In other words, we’re in for a long summer. Conceivably, so’s John McCain because, even though he’s winning primaries, he’s losing conservatives, and, even if he pulls from the center, he needs conservatives to win. He may even face a revolt in his party, though no one’s talking about that yet; so we could see both parties in a donnybrook before this is over. And it’s…just…going…to…get…unrealHere’s what’s interesting to me. McCain’s winning in largely Democratic states, pulling from independents and moderate Republicans, but the advantage in those states still goes to the Democrats. McCain’s going to need to do something to bring conservatives on board, else they stay home on election day and he loses, but to do so risks alienating moderates. If Clinton is nominated, hatred for her is so strong among conservatives that she might rally the base, but Obama, tacking toward center, has been winning traditionally Republican states, which actually puts him in a stronger position to win in November because he’ll get the traditional Democratic vote and pull from the center. I think. Unless I’m wrong. Or something else happens.
Oh hell. We’ll get down to the last week or so of campaigning, when everyone’s so exhausted that they’re stepping all over themselves, and McCain is looking older than God, and he’ll start snapping and snarling at people and having Hanoi Hilton flashbacks, and reporters waving microphones will all start to look like they’re wearing black pajamas and aiming AK-47s, and at some point someone will hand him a baby to kiss, and he’ll bite its head off on camera, and they’ll run pictures over and over of McCain with blood running down his chin, and the Democrat will beat him like a gong because McCain not only hates children but eats them, and, on a dark, moonless night, McCain will take that long walk out into the Arizona desert and chock a round into his good old reliable Vietnam-era service weapon, and a lonely, hollow shot will ring out amid the saguaros, followed by silence.Or something like that.

About Steve Patterson

Steve Patterson has written over 50 plays, with works staged in Portland, Los Angeles, Chicago, Detroit, Austin, Tampa, and other U.S. cities as well as in Canada and New Zealand. His works include: Waiting on Sean Flynn, Next of Kin, Farmhouse, Malaria, Shelter, Altered States of America, The Continuing Adventures of Mr. Grandamnus, Bluer Than Midnight, Bombardment, Dead of Winter, and Delusion of Darkness. In 2006, his bittersweet Lost Wavelengths was a mainstage selection at Portland Center Stage's JAW/West festival, and, in 2008, won the Oregon Book Award (he also was an OBA finalist in 1992 and 2002). In 1997, he won the inaugural Portland Civic Theatre Guild Fellowship for his play Turquoise and Obsidian. View all posts by Steve Patterson

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