If a picture is worth a thousand words, how many votes is a sentence worth?
As I noted in my last post, several new Michigan polls have come out over that last day or so, usually showing a close race, many giving Romney a slight edge. At this point, I am not going to predict who will win Michigan, but if McCain loses, I think that one statement – that he has since defended – could be responsible. After arriving in Michigan following his New Hampshire win, John McCain said “Michiganians have to realize the old jobs are gone for good.” What McCain is referring to is the thousands of auto-industry jobs that have been lost in the past few years.
One of the things you have to understand about Michigan – and many Michigan residents – is that the auto-industry is their lifeblood. Its how they put food on the table, its how they keep the heat running, and its how they buy their give their kids birthday and Christmas gifts. Many of these people have worked in the auto industry for years – and, in some cases, decades. Many also lack higher education or job skills that would allow them to easily transition to other areas of employment. McCain can say what he wants about training these people for new jobs, but that does little to ease their fears about the loss of their livelihood – or their concerns about making ends meet a month or two from now. Regardless of whether or not McCain is right (I personally do not believe he is), do we really want a President who will concede a fight before it starts? Do we really want a President who, just because something is tough, will say “all hope is lost”? McCain wants to concede an entire sector of our economy to the Chinese. Today, its manufacturing jobs, tomorrow, it’ll be high-tech jobs. If there is anything that McCain should have learned from his military experience, its that continual retreat gets you nowhere. McCain’s willingness to give up on a major part of our economy is extremely disturbing, and as our economy goes, so goes the nation. McCain claims that he won’t run from a fight, and, on military matters, that may be true, but on economic matters, clearly, it is anything but.
Clearly, training for the future is important, but so is protecting what you have, as is remaining a major competitor on all fronts. There has never been an area where American resources, ideas, and innovation has failed to make us a major competitor, nor is their a reason why that trend should not continue well into the future. Clearly, McCain has yet to recognize that, and, until he does, he has no business in the White House.