Times Online talks up the rumor that McCain would make the pledge, so let’s discuss it.
Personally, I’m not in favor of a one term pledge because, as even McCain himself has stated, you’re a lame duck the moment you entire office. The opposing party could easily ignore your agenda, and with so many long term energy programs on the table in 2009, whoever rules the roost in the House and Senate would must likely make sure to be extra picky about what they pass and what they don’t.
Also, the reality of this year’s election is if McCain does win, it’ll most likely be by the skin of his teeth. And he’d need a mandate to push his full energy policy through in a short amount of time. That won’t happen.
Another thought, wouldn’t he open himself up to criticism from the other side about not being serious about taking responsibility for implementing the long term goals?
And then there’s the big looming age issue. Dems would hit him hard on this.
Of course, just because you win a second term doesn’t mean you can implement your agenda. For an example of that we need look no further than today. Simply put, to characterize Bush’s second term as a disaster would be generous. And this is a guy who won an extremely tough election since he was so unpopular in the first place. Maybe it was the war. Maybe it was his intellectually dishonest claim of having a mandate after such a close election. Whatever it may be, having a second term doesn’t ensure anything except more time in “power.” And we’ve seen what being in power has done to the Republican brand.
So aside from the appeal to those voters who simply don’t like politicians being in office for very long, I don’t see how the one term pledge would be a good move.
What do you think?