So John Kerry may have to act coy at the Democratic Convention and just hear that he's nominated and give a big speech about how he's honored to have received the nomination and leave out the big exciting "I accept your nomination" line. This is because, under campaign finance law, upon accepting the nomination, he takes on a $75 million spending cap.
Why did the Democrats schedule their convention 5 weeks before the Republican convention? The Democrats weren't fools. They just assumed their candidate would have submitted to the spending caps that apply to the primary season and would want to get to the $75 million earlier rather than later. But since Kerry opted out of the primary caps, what was predicted to be an advantage became a disadvantage, and now Kerry's looking for a way out. It does seem that Bush and Kerry should both start with the same amount of money at the same point in time. But then does Kerry get an unfair advantage by having his convention at an earlier point? Does the convention do something important to elevate the candidate in the public's eyes? We know there is always a bump in the candidate's popularity rating after the convention. But is it better to have the early bump or the later bump?
It's surprising really that anyone watches the conventions. But then again, I'm surprised people watch commercials. Or read the campaign mail. Yet apparently they do, because look at all that money that is spent on this low quality human communication. It would be better to watch the junkiest reality TV show than to consume this drivel. And we are expected to pay vast sums of tax money to produce this nearly worthless communication, and the candidates have to craft their campaigns to satisfy the law that comes along with the money, and we are expected to take into account whether this crafting is too sleazy as we judge a candidate's worthiness for the Presidency. So now, instead of talking about the substance of issues that Kerry will affect if he becomes President, we need to waste a lot of time talking about what we think about a big nominating convention with a nonacceptance speech.
So I hope Kerry does try to pull this coy maneuver, because it will help teach people to ignore the conventions. It might even make them reconsider their support for campaign funding and the complicated regulation that comes along with it.
UPDATE: Thanks to Instapundit for linking to this. (It produced an Instalanche that jammed the Sitemeter, so I'll have to check my "score" later.) Ideoblog also has linked, and I especially like the line "It depends on what the meaning of 'accept' is," especially since I was just wondering (see post just above this one) how well Kerry is going to do juxtaposed with Clinton.
FURTHER UPDATE: And thanks as well to Lucianne.com. Here I was expecting a quiet little Sunday, and suddenly all the Lucianne fans are here. Welcome, go ahead and look around.