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Falling Dominoes: Kenneth Adelman Defects to Obama

George Packer:

Interesting Times: George Packer: Online Only: The New Yorker: Ken Adelman intends to vote for Barack Obama. He can hardly believe it himself. Adelman and I exchanged e-mails today about his decision. He asked rhetorically:

Why so, since my views align a lot more with McCain’s than with Obama’s? And since I truly dread the notion of a Democratic president, Democratic House, and hugely Democratic Senate?

Primarily for two reasons, those of temperament and of judgment.

When the economic crisis broke, I found John McCain bouncing all over the place. In those first few crisis days, he was impetuous, inconsistent, and imprudent; ending up just plain weird. Having worked with Ronald Reagan for seven years, and been with him in his critical three summits with Gorbachev, I’ve concluded that that’s no way a president can act under pressure.

.Second is judgment. The most important decision John McCain made in his long campaign was deciding on a running mate.

That decision showed appalling lack of judgment. Not only is Sarah Palin not close to being acceptable in high office—I would not have hired her for even a mid-level post in the arms-control agency. But that selection contradicted McCain’s main two, and best two, themes for his campaign—Country First, and experience counts. Neither can he credibly claim, post-Palin pick.

I sure hope Obama is more open, centrist, sensible—dare I say, Clintonesque—than his liberal record indicates, than his cooperation with Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid portends. If not, I will be even more startled by my vote than I am now.

If Colin Powell and Kenneth Adelman can come out for Obama, why can't Allan Meltzer, Anna Schwartz, Anne Krueger, Bill Niskanen, Burton Malkiel, Charles Calomiris, Dan Feenberg, George Shultz, Glenn Hubbard, Harvey Rosen, Jim Miller, John Cogan, John Taylor, Kenneth Rogoff, Greg Mankiw, Kevin Murphy, Kristin Forbes, Larry Lindsey, Martin Feldstein, Michael Bordo, Michael Boskin, Steven Kaplan, and William Poole? McCain's economic policies are even wingnuttier than his foreign policies. You would expect patriotism to have an influence here.

Of course, Dan Crippen, Diana Furchtgott-Roth, Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Edward Prescott, Gary Becker, June O'Neill, and Kevin Hassett fall into a very different category...