Why has John McCain been made irrelevant? First his message was "I have more experience than Obama does." It was a valid argument and I understood where he was coming from. I wasn't excited about him, but I agreed with him. He DOES have more experience than Obama does. Then he hired Palin to be his VP nominee. His first, REAL judgment call and he picks someone like Palin who has NO experience and NO knowledge or understanding of the facts. Her foreign policy experienced is summed up to being able to "see" Russia from Alaska. Ok, but I understand why he picked her. She energized the conservative base by being ultra-conservative. NRA member, hockey mom, PTA, etc. So then we have McCain's argument that he's going to cut wasteful spending. The centerpiece of his speech at the RNC was: "I've fought the big spenders in both parties, who waste your money on things you neither need nor want, and the first big-spending pork-barrel earmark bill that comes across my desk, I will veto it. I will make them famous, and you will know their names." This bailout bill that everyone has been talking about, that everyone has been passionately for or against... this $700 billion bill that when rejected sent Wall Street into the biggest crash of all time? It had more pork in it than Porky Pig himself. According to the New York Post, this bill's pork includes: The special provisions are: Manufacturers of kids' wooden arrows - $6 million. Puerto Rican and Virgin Is- lands rum producers - $192 million. Wool research. Auto-racing tracks - $128 million. Corporations operating in American Samoa - $33 million. Small- to medium-budget film and television productions - $10 million. Another measure inserted into the bill appears to be a bald-faced bid aimed at winning the support of Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska), who voted against the original version when it went down in flames in the House on Monday. That provision - a $223 million package of tax benefits for fishermen and others whose livelihoods suffered as a result of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill - has been the subject of fervent lobbying by Alaska's congressional delegation. Some of the pork-barrel measures buried in the financial rescue package had been contained in a bill that previously passed the Senate, but died in the House. The Congressional Budget Office said the package of breaks - including obvious pork and some more defensible tax-relief measures - will add about $112 billion to budget deficits over the next five years because the bill doesn't contain enough offsetting revenue hikes to keep the budget balanced. Some of the other measures added to win approval include a $3.8 billion health-care provision that forces insurance companies to provide coverage for mental-health treatment equivalent to the coverage they provide for physical illness. Other add-ons will increase individual tax credits and help shield more than 20 million Americans from the painful alternative minimum tax, and offer breaks for businesses that invest in alternative fuels. Also, several federal income-tax breaks due to expire will now be extended through 2009. McCain, whose new centerpiece to his campaign was "I will veto pork" just voted FOR hundreds of millions of dollars worth of pork. The bill passed 75-24, the only one not voting was Senator Kennedy - MA because of his condition. McCain could've voted AGAINST this bill, prove to us that he's AGAINST pork and he's PRO FISCAL CONSERVATIVISM. He could've voted against this bill, and he would've drawn a line in the sand showing us what he really stands for and how he's different than Obama. He could've been a maverick, could've shown us his maverick ways, and voted AGAINST this bill. Every single news station, every single newspaper, all internet blogs, everyone would be talking about how McCain voted against this bill. It would've given him INCREDIBLE news coverage. There are so many people who are against this bill it would've increased his poll numbers and probably would've made the race this November a contest. Hell, it's possible he could've beaten Obama. The bill would've still passed, but at least he would've voted AGAINST Bush. But he didn't. In effect, John McCain is now irrelevant. Not only is he irrelevant, he is now a liar. How can he say he will veto any bill that has pork barrel projects and then vote FOR a bill with hundreds of millions of dollars of pork that most Americans don't support?