"There’s a slippery slope in politics on the racial divide, and Senator McCain made it very clear early on that he did not want to get into that area," a top Republican official said. "I don’t want to be known as a racist, and McCain doesn’t want to be known as a racist candidate."Palin said (to Bill Kristol):
“To tell you the truth, Bill, I don’t know why that association isn’t discussed more, because those were appalling things that that pastor had said about our great country, and to have sat in the pews for 20 years and listened to that — with, I don’t know, a sense of condoning it, I guess, because he didn’t get up and leave — to me, that does say something about character. But, you know, I guess that would be a John McCain call on whether he wants to bring that up.”Well, clearly she does know why it's not discussed more, but presumably she means she doesn't know why McCain thinks about the issue the way he does.
The McCain campaign’s decision to cordon off the use of Wright from ads and debates has provoked simmering consternation among many leading Republicans and conservatives, who believe the pastor’s fulminations might be the single most effective weapon McCain has left against Obama.Whether McCain made the right call initially could be questioned, but to go back to this issue now would open McCain to the most vicious attacks: He cared about being racially sensitive when he thought the appearance of lofty principle would win him votes, but now that he fears it hasn't won him enough votes, he's ready to try something else. So principle was never principle, just principle as a pose, useful to the extent that it was useful. What else in McCain's much-touted "honor" profile is there only because he thinks it works?
“McCain felt it would be sensed as racially insensitive,” the official said. “But more important is that McCain thinks that the bringing of racial religious preaching in black churches into the campaign would potentially have grave consequences for civil society in the United States.”
Are you thinking, yes, but the attack on Obama would hurt more than that?