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Even if you didn’t catch “Late Night with David Letterman” last (Wednesday) night, chances are you’ve probably already heard that Dave is fuming over McCain’s last-second cancellation just prior to his scheduled up-teenth appearance on his late night talkshow (what would this of been, his fifth appearance since the campaign started?) Letterman told the audience that McCain had canceled at the last minute to (reportedly) “fly back to Washington” to follow up on that pledge of his to “suspend his campaign” to focus on the current economic crisis, and Congresses’ promise to hammer out a “bailout” bill by the end of the week.

In his (justifiable) tirade, Letterman points out that “you don’t suspend your (entire) campaign” just to focus on one thing! And if you (McCain) can’t make it, “why not just send your VP to take your place?” She isn’t a Senator and doesn’t need to be in Washington. “That’s what a VP is for!” lashed out Letterman. “She’s supposed to be ready at a moments notice” to step in should anything happen to the President. How can she be expected to step in and run the country if she can’t even step in to take his place on a late night talk show???

Excellent point, Dave… that you kinda sorta made, but didn’t actually say,

Letterman called in his “emergency relief pitcher”, Keith Olberman from down the hall. I was hoping KO would also point out that very important observation that if Palin can’t even fill in for McCain while he goes back to Washington, how can anyone argue she’s ready to take his place and run the whole freakin’ country???

While talking to KO, Letterman was suddenly informed that… despite what the McCain campaign told him… McCain was NOT in fact “getting on a plane immediately and racing back to Washington”, but in fact sitting down for an interview with Katie Couric (also of CBS and *in* NYC… possibly even the same building). So clearly, the McCain campaign lied to Letterman to appear on a different program.

Second important point: While McCain tells everyone in a press conference he is “suspending his campaign immediately” and flying back to Washington to concentrate on the bailout crisis, he in fact HASN’T “suspended his campaign”. Instead he stops first to do an interview with CBS News to be aired at a later date because Couric is already running a series of interviews with Governor Palin this week. So once the Palin interviews end, then the McCain interviews begin for several more days of non-stop campaign coverage.

Olberman did make one interesting prediction: that if any one of the debates is canceled, due to limited time between now and November, the McCain camp is more likely to ask that the VP Debate be canceled so that the Presidential nominees get their full three debates. Right! No one’s going to see through THAT!

If you can’t walk & chew gum at the same time… that is, concentrate on the campaign and events in Washington at the same time… and your VP can’t even fill in for you on a talkshow… how do you make the case that either of you are “ready to be President”?