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On Wednesday evening, Barack Obama showed an infomercial on primetime television to address the nation about his campaign. It was broadcasted on seven major networks, including CBS and NBC, and required the delay of many TV programs, including the concluding game of the World Series.

While primetime campaigning like this isn’t unprecedented, it is certainly an indication of Obama’s overwhelming financial and political stability in this presidential race.

The most noticeable thing about Obama’s infomercial was its message. It played like a powerful documentary, featuring the stories of average Americans struggling to make ends meet. Each story was interspersed with information about Obama’s personal and professional life, including commentary about his political history by current senators.

Nothing was overly romanticized, either. It was modestly heartbreaking, poignant only in the accuracy of its portrayal of both candidate and constituent.

It was refreshingly modern. Obama refrained from specifically identifying himself as the better choice for president; rather, he allowed his political background and ideology to speak for itself. Obama often addressed the camera directly, identifying specific solutions for America’s greatest problems.

Afterward, in a live broadcast from a Florida stadium of cheering supporters, Obama reinforced his commitment to these problems. “In six days,” Obama said, “we can choose to invest in healthcare for our families, an education for our kids and renewable energy for our future.”

Ultimately, Obama’s infomercial emphasized his commitment to ordinary voters and further cemented the widely-held conviction that Obama is the better candidate for president.

And throughout everything, John McCain’s name was never mentioned.

But McCain’s own response to Obama’s infomercial was a typically smarmy and shameless pander to middle-class voters. In a speech delivered on Tuesday in Hershey, PA, McCain promised “no one will delay the World Series with an infomercial when I'm president.”

Instead of offering financial stability during this economic crisis, McCain offers Americans the freedom of uninterrupted baseball.

What’s more, McCain’s response is somewhat hypocritical. McCain’s speech at the Republican National Convention forced an NFL season opening game to be similarly rescheduled. It seems that McCain’s personal track record on preventing rescheduled sporting events is already besmirched.

Ultimately, McCain’s position in recent weeks has consisted of unfounded personal attacks against Obama’s “nefarious” connection with terrorists, an approach that stands in stark contrast with the infomercial.

William Krystol, a conservative pundit, suggests in a New York Times column that McCain’s only way of resurrecting his chances of becoming president is to “muzzle his campaign.”

He quotes a recent New York Times/CBS poll which shows that 6 out of 10 voters believe McCain has spent more time attacking Obama, than Obama has attacked McCain. “When you’re in a hole, stop digging,” he writes, recommending that his campaign “pull all negative ads, mailers and robocalls.”

McCain is sending a dangerous signal to voters by ignoring their opinions and to Republicans by spurning their well-meant advice.

And the steady deterioration of McCain’s lead in Arizona represents the final nail in his proverbial coffin. According to recent polling, McCain’s home field advantage is crumbling, to use an appropriate World Series analogy. This demonstrates the dangerous and unnecessary turn the McCain’s campaign has taken, one that may ultimately cost him the presidency.

David is a molecular biosciences and biotechnology and creative writing sophomore. He can be reached at

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