McCain says any suppoter of Roe v Wade is unqualified?

There’s some ambiguity in McCain’s reply during the last debate on litmus tests for Supreme Court nominees. Here’s what was said:

McCain: I would consider anyone in their qualifications. I do not believe that someone who has supported Roe v. Wade that would be part of those qualifications. But I certainly would not impose any litmus test.

Was he clumsily trying to say that one’s view of Roe v Wade wouldn’t be considered in his review of a nominee’s qualifications (the mashed potato answer), or did he mean to say that someone who supported Roe v Wade would not be qualified (the red meat answer)?

If the former, I would consider it typical politicianspeak. If the latter, that’s a huge deal that’s mostly going unchallenged for some reason.

My question: What, exactly, did he mean? And what makes you think that?

I tend to think it’s the latter, which is why he prefaced his third sentence with the word “but”, which I view as doubletalk to mean that eliminating someone for supporting Roe v Wade wouldn’t be a litmus test (hey, the RightWorld is a very odd place, not particularly known for it’s intellectual rigor, which is typically considered “elitist”). I think he was throwing red meat to his base, and only the agreement on behalf of the audience not to cheer kept them quiet.

On the other hand, he is not exactly known for his verbal fluency, so I could be wrong.

What do you think?

He was saying that he doesn’t have a single litmus test for the job. What I heard him say was that there was a range of things he’d choose a person on, Roe v Wade would be part of the mix. But his thought that anyone who supported R v W would probably fail his criteria on any number of things.

It could be that the ambiguity was deliberate. McCain and his team had to suspect that a question like that would come up, and may have taken the time to carefully craft a response that could be interpreted either way. Then you just have to make sure that your spin machine is targeted well enough that people on both sides of the issue interpret it the “right” way.

I’ve also been confused by that exact statement. I finally concluded he was talking gibberish, out of both sides of his mouth, trying to disguise his true feelings. If he really wants the job of POTUS he certainly should be able to competently convey in clear language what his true feelings and thoughts are. Is he really unable to speak clearly on that matter? Or is he still confused about what he really believes? If you read the other things McCain said, just after Schieffer first asked the question, McCain rambled around quite a lot. In fact Schieffer asked him two more times, (or tried to pin him down), to get McCain to clarify his comments. That’s when McCain offered that final but still ambiguous statement quoted in the OP. I think McCain was intentionally being cloudy and vague in his comments.

Again, I tend to agree. So why isn’t the left and others opposed to what I call the forced birth movement making any noise about this, do you think?

After all, saying that anyone who supports Roe v Wade isn’t qualified (in McCain’s opinion) would mean that McCain thinks Sandra Day O’Connor – a fellow Arizona Republican – wasn’t qualified for the Supreme Court!

President Delphic Oracle!

That makes a lot of sense to me, and I think that such deliberate Machiavellian ambiguity is likely the right answer.

I wonder how anything that clever came from the McCain campaign, the clumsiest I’ve ever seen?

In any event, I’m surprised that I’ve heard almost nothing about this, even on the left.