Years from now, people will look back on the 2008 presidential election and say, "Wasn't that the one in which the candidates spent all time debating important issues of foreign policy and the finer points of economic stimuli?"
And then other people will say, "No. I don't know which election you're talking about. 2008 was the one with all the wacky preachers."
In the face of mounting controversy over headline-grabbing statements from Pastor John Hagee, CNN has learned presumptive Republican nominee John McCain has decided to reject his endorsement…
"Obviously, I find these remarks and others deeply offensive and indefensible, and I repudiate them. I did not know of them before Reverend Hagee's endorsement, and I feel I must reject his endorsement as well," McCain said in a statement to CNN Thursday.
Repudiate and reject. Check? But does he renounce, deny, disacknowledge, disavow, disclaim and disown them?
Okay, this is actually kind of nice. Now McCain and Barack Obama have some common ground on which they can build a mutually respectful, intelligent and nuanced conversation about valid issues like–
He added that his relationship with Hagee did not compare with Obama's lengthy association with Rev. Jeremiah Wright. "I have said I do not believe Senator Obama shares Reverend Wright's extreme views. But let me also be clear, Reverend Hagee was not and is not my pastor or spiritual advisor, and I did not attend his church for twenty years. I have denounced statements he made immediately upon learning of them, as I do again today," said McCain.
What was I saying? Nevermind.
Say, what's that wacky preacher have to say about all this?
In a statement released before McCain rejected his endorsement, Hagee said his words had been taken out of context. "The intentional mischaracterization of my statements by an Internet journalist seeking to use me as a political football in the upcoming presidential race is a gross example of bias at its worst. I will not stand idly by while my character is assassinated and my views on the Holocaust are grossly distorted."
Yes! God damn America! God damn America for doing that to such a fine man.
Update: McCain decided to go ahead and rejects the endorsement of that "Islam is an anti-Christ religion" wacky preacher guy, for good measure.
Maybe this is all a good thing. Maybe this is all helping to finally separate church and state; it's just becoming a hazard for politicians to accept endorsements from religious leaders. And I don't see religious leaders stopping saying idiotic things that offend somebody or other anytime soon. If they did, they wouldn't be religious leaders.
Tags: Barack Obama, Jeremiah Wright, John Hagee, John McCain