On Tuesday John McCain said, "I think every day that goes by and Congress does not act on a stimulus package, I think is not helpful. If I had written that package, it would've been somewhat different, but we need to send a signal to the markets and the American economy that we're trying to do some things in their behalf."
On Wednesday, John McCain skipped the vote on whether to make 20 million seniors and 250,000 disabled veterans eligible for rebate checks as part of the very economic stimulus package he stressed as important.
McCain saved himself from having to pick a position that was sure to have alienated some group. In the past he has cared little about that, but this time he needs votes. A no vote would have angered millions of Social Security recipients and the disabled veterans. Voting yes, however, would anger Republicans and conservatives already fed up with McCain. Solution? Avoid going on record for either side.
How perfectly, politically diplomatic of the "maverick," a maneuver worthy of a Clinton.