Bill Murchison

On the other hand, somewhere near the center -- assuming the Democratic left will permit this man to migrate in that direction -- he will meet John McCain. Neither desires to stand right there on the exact center, as best it can be plotted. Yet from just to the right of that center McCain hopes to lasso Independents and liberal Republicans who for some odd reason regard George W. Bush as a dogmatic, hard-lining philosophical critic of Attila the Hun.

Already, on global warming (so-called or not), McCain is reaching out with a proposal for the capping and trading of emissions. He has a plan for health insurance -- using tax credits, a conservative device. He isn't precisely splitting the difference with liberals. He situates his philosophy, as I say, right of center: just not so far right as to make anyone think Karl Rove is calling his shots.

In response Obama will...? Beam more? Lead the crowd in chanting, "Yes, we can!!!" ? Claim superior experience and wisdom in public life? Over John McCain, ex-POW, ex-Navy pilot, longtime congressman and senator?

Obama has the white liberals in his pocket. So, too, the black vote. Others he has to move, to sway. Can he? With what? That's the problem when you've just come flying out of the political chute with neither experience nor anything more to offer than the impression of wisdom and discernment as argument for preference.

Things could fall his way. There's all the same an excellent possibility that they won't. I can envision, actually, a certain woman beaming with utter satisfaction come November -- a woman in a pants suit, with blonde hair.

Bill Murchison

Bill Murchison is the former senior columns writer for The Dallas Morning News and author of There's More to Life Than Politics.
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