He was on his bus answering a question about whether our government should spend money to provide condoms in Africa. And then the reporter asked him an excruciatingly simple question.
Q: Do you think contraceptives help stop the spread of HIV?ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚?
Mr. McCain: (Long pause) ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œYouÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ve stumped me.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚?
Q: ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œI mean, I think youÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢d probably agree it probably does help stop it?ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚?
Mr. McCain: (Laughs) ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œAre we on the Straight Talk express? IÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢m not informed enough on it. Let me find out. You know, IÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢m sure IÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ve taken a position on it on the past. I have to find out what my position was. Brian, would you find out what my position is on contraception ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ IÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢m sure IÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢m opposed to government spending on it, IÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢m sure I support the presidentÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s policies on it.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚?
Q: ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œBut you would agree that condoms do stop the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. Would you say: ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‹Å“No, weÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢re not going to distribute them,ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ knowing that?ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚?
Mr. McCain: (Twelve-second pause) ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œGet me CoburnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s thing, ask Weaver to get me CoburnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s paper that he just gave me in the last couple of days. IÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ve never gotten into these issues before.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚?
Seriously, if McCain is this out of touch with the most basic and effective prevention methods for one of the worst diseases known to man, how can we reasonably trust him to make decisions on far less important matters?
Very disappointing to see him imploding like this. But what can you do except stand back and watch the train wreck?