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It’s about who seems least risky

John McCain likes to portray himself as somewhat of a maverick. A Republican who thinks out of the box. Most of the media have painted his pick of Sarah Palin as his vice-president as an example of that, er, ‘maverickness’. But it’s not.  On the contrary, this election is slowly but surely (and once again) turning out about that age-old question: “Who would you trust most?” Add to that: “Who, of us two,  poses least risk?”

For many voters, a presidential election is a gamble. Sure, the candidates defined themselves and the media helped, but do you really know enough about the candidate? So you’re in the voting booth, and you gamble. Which of the two candidates is the least risky? What if my choice results in too much change?

Those are the questions Barack Obama must fear most. Because Obama is still the ‘odd-man out’; he literally embodies change. That’s why McCain’s campaign is constantly hammering away at Obama’s liberal Democrat credentials. “He’ll steal your money”, etcetera. It worked many times, so who should it not work now?

Obama must therefore ask voters: “are you willing to risk 4 more years of what we’ve had for the past 8 years? Because, really people: it cannot get worse than the past 8 years.” And as you may have noticed, the McCain campaign never really counters Obama’s assertion that McCain’s policies, as president, would be the same as Bush’s.

There’s a reason for that. If McCain came out now and flatly denied that his presidency would be a mere continuation of the highly unpopular Bush presidency, he’d be pulled into a discussion about the points he agrees and disagrees on with Bush.

And that would be close to policital suicide, since McCain’s on record as saying that he voted with Bush 90% of the time as a Senator. That, and they don’t want to give Obama’s assertion any further weight than it already has.