Republicans and some analysts sawJohn McCain's suspension of his campaign as a savvy way to gain the upper hand on the issue that now dominates political discourse — the economy and the $700 billion bailout package now under scrutiny on Capitol Hill.
Others weren't so sure.
"Nothing short of brilliant," said Bill Lacy, key strategist in Bob Dole’s 1996 campaign.
"A very thin line between bold and bizarre," was the take of Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri. "And I think Senator McCain may have crossed it."
The move came on the same day as a new ABC News/Washington Post survey chronicled McCain's sinking fortunes on the economy. It showed Sen. Barack Obama had opened a 53-39 percent gap over McCain on whom voters trusted most to handle the economy. On the whom-would-you-vote-for question, Obama was up nine points, although other polls found the race closer.
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