June 29, 2004


Aware that his polling improves in inverse proportion to his public appearances, John Kerry -- as Mark Steyn wrote, "such a terrible candidate people like him more the less they see of him" -- is laying the groundwork for a political masterstroke:

Senator John F. Kerry last night canceled a planned speech today to the US Conference of Mayors in Boston, saying that he would not cross picket lines erected by workers engaged in a contract dispute with the city.

"I don't cross picket lines," Kerry said last night, shortly after attending Mass at St. Vincent's Waterfront Chapel. "I never have."

The statement leaves open the question of what he will do if the contracts are not settled before next month's Democratic National Convention.

He’ll refuse to cross the line and he won’t appear! A relieved electorate thereafter sweeps the silent, unseen horse-American to power.

UPDATE. Jim Geraghty provides a form guide to John Kerry’s potential VPs. Who may have to speak in Kerry’s absence.

UPDATE II. Bush is ahead in the polls for the first time in months. Kerry will have to start doing nothing if he wants to catch up.

Posted by Tim Blair at June 29, 2004 01:56 AM


I think my girlfriend broke up with me, but I'm not sure. And I'm afraid to ask, because if she hasn't, I don't want to give her any ideas.

Posted by: Bill in Boston at June 29, 2004 at 02:09 AM

A few weeks ago the NY Times had a "less is better" article on Kerry. As a former consituent of his, I can't disagree witht he strategy.

Posted by: Zach at June 29, 2004 at 02:13 AM

For those of you not in Boston, I can guarantee that this mess will NOT be fixed by next month's convention. Kerry is going to be in quite a conundrum at that point, but I'm confident that he will find some way to take both sides of the issue. The local press, especially the Boston Globe, will applaud him for his "nuanced" approach to the issue. "Nuanced" being the French word for "retarded", I believe.

Posted by: Bill in Boston at June 29, 2004 at 02:18 AM

I hear he's going to appear in drag!

Posted by: The Happy Dyslectic at June 29, 2004 at 02:20 AM

He crossed a picket line at the sanctuary of St Vincent's if he fronted for communion. Many of the bishops, after all, are 'working to rule' and advocating Senator Kerry's exclusion from the sacrament. These ecclesiastics include the Most Reverend Sean Patrick O'Malley, Archbishop of Boston.

"Boston Archbishop Says Pro-Abortion Politicians 'Shouldn't Dare Come to Communion'".

Posted by: CurrencyLad at June 29, 2004 at 02:27 AM

John-boy will tunnel underneath the picket line to get into the convention. He'd dig the tunnel with a popscicle stick if he had to, in order to claim the nomination.

Posted by: mojo at June 29, 2004 at 02:52 AM

I figure he'll be winched down from a hovering helicopter onto the roof of the convention center. He was in Vietnam, y'know!

Posted by: The Real JeffS at June 29, 2004 at 03:19 AM

He was in Vietnam? Why doesn't his campaign ever mention this? I would. I imagine he served at least two or three full tours of duty. My breath smells like cat food.

Posted by: hen at June 29, 2004 at 03:23 AM

He'll cross the picket line. After all, he's changed every other position he ever took.

Posted by: Rebecca at June 29, 2004 at 03:43 AM

There was a time when Massachusets elected officials knew how to answer striking policemen. Calvin Coolidge is spinning in his grave.

Posted by: Jason Johnson at June 29, 2004 at 03:46 AM

Even if Kerry were to tunnel or helicopter into the Convention Center, wouldn't he be alone in the hall? How would all of his French mime supporters get in without crossing over?

Posted by: logistical quagmire at June 29, 2004 at 04:10 AM

Jim Geraghty provides a form guide to John Kerry’s potential VPs. Who may have to speak in Kerry’s absence.

That assumes that Kerry will have picked one by the time of the convention. If he hasn't, and he doesn't appear...hmm, Battle Royal for the veep slot as the convention main event?

Posted by: PW at June 29, 2004 at 05:01 AM

The secret plan is to make Comical Ali spokesman for Kerry, then when he crosses the line, Ali will pop up and say what line? There's no picket line here. You Americans don't know what a picket line looks like. Wait until Uday and Qusay are back from vacation.

Posted by: EddieP at June 29, 2004 at 05:07 AM

One day while at the county fair,
I didn't hear a candidate who wasn't there,
He wasn't there again today,
He'll get my vote if it stays that way.

-The American electorate-

Posted by: Dave S. at June 29, 2004 at 05:46 AM

Mark Latham seems to have a bit of Kerryitis. He gets a boost in the polls when he says nothing and reveals no policies.

but when he starts yapping about anything important...

Posted by: Quentin George at June 29, 2004 at 08:29 AM

Jim Geraghty provides a form guide to John Kerry’s potential VPs. Who may have to speak in Kerry’s absence.

Geraghty forgot Wilbur Post.

Posted by: Craig Mc at June 29, 2004 at 10:00 AM

You have all missed the point. Surely everyones memory is clear on the Kerry gambit over not accepting the nomination at the Convention. In that way he could continue to spend his war chest money vice the gov. funds.

If he refuses to cross a picket line in Boston it gives him an easy out. He can say he stood up for his ideals and will accept the nomintion at a later date. All the while continuing to spend his own funds and closeing the gap with the Bush war chest.

Simple and VERY DEVIOUS, just as Kerry likes it.

Posted by: Marc at June 29, 2004 at 11:54 AM

Well, in that vein I enjoyed Mickey Kaus's idea a few weeks ago that Kerry should simply never accept the nomination and (if elected anyway) become a figurehead president who doesn't actually do anything besides jet around and "represent".

Or perhaps the Dems could put a "Generic Democrat" on the ballot against Bush - which would be just as well, since Generic Democrat has pulled better head-to-head numbers against Bush than Kerry has in almost all polls since Iowa and New Hampshire...

Posted by: PW at June 29, 2004 at 12:32 PM