Yesterday, Sen. John McCain announced he would be suspending his campaign after speaking at the Clinton Global Initiative in order to return to Washington for negotiations on the bailout:
Tomorrow morning, I will suspend my campaign and return to Washington after speaking at the Clinton Global Initiative. … All we must do to achieve this is temporarily set politics aside, and I am committed to doing so.
The McCain campaign, however, has not “temporarily set politics aside.” In the five hours after McCain’s speech, aides Nancy Pfotenhauer, Tucker Bounds, and Mike Duhaime appeared on Fox News and MSNBC five times, frequently criticizing Obama and Democrats:
— PFOTENHAUER: Well they could always have Joe Biden and if it’s on foreign policy, Obama and Biden can debate each other! Hahaha! [MSNBC]
— BOUNDS: Democrats were trying to pivot and push this issue into John McCain’s lap. [Fox News]
— BOUNDS: Barack Obama is trying to play politics, I think, in many regards on a lot of these issues. [MSNBC]
— BOUNDS: And here we are. I think we’re in a very different situation because of the leadership of John McCain. [MSNBC]
On Fox News, McCain political director Mike Duhaime said McCain “decided to put campaigning and politics aside.” Watch a compilation:
In none of the five appearances, however, did any media anchor ask the aides about the double standard.
Pfotenhauer also was scheduled for a live chat at the Washington Times at 11 a.m., well after McCain’s CGI speech. Greg Sargent writes, “McCain’s suspension of his campaign apparently doesn’t apply to his own advisers.”
Politico reports that according to the Chicago Tribune’s Jill Zuckman, McCain campaign aides Rick Davis and Douglas Holtz-Eakin are meeting with McCain in his Senate office:
Sen. McCain left his lunch in the Capitol at 1:50 pm and returned to his Russell Senate office with Sen. Lieberman and Rick Davis. … As I type, Sen. Graham and Doug Holtz-Eakin have entered the Senate office.
,Senior campaign adviser Mark Salter was also in McCain’s Senate office today.