Well, um… I gotta admit that Mike?™ McGavick has finally come up with a plausible explanation for the disparities between his own account of his 1993 DUI and the official police report. Apparently, Mike?™ blacked out.
Appearing on the Dori Monson Show this afternoon, Mike?™ insisted that he reported the details of his DUI as he remembered them — he just didn’t remember all that much. When asked why he told a reporter that he had merely received a citation, when in fact he was arrested, Mike?™ said that he did not remember being arrested. When Dori pressed on, pointing out that it’s hard to forget being driven to the station and handcuffed to a desk, Mike?™ insisted that he did not remember being handcuffed. The truth is, Mike?™ professed…
“I don’t remember much of what happened after I was pulled over.”
Um… that’s called blacking out, and it’s one of the loudest and clearest warning signs of problem drinking. And it’s not like this episode happened during his irresponsible teens; Mike?™ was 35-years-old at the time, so without evidence to the contrary, it’s pretty hard to imagine his drinking habits have changed all that much over the past 13 years.
Indeed, when Dori asked him if he still drinks, Mike?™ unhesitatingly replied yes. But when asked if he still drinks and drives, Mike?™ qualified his answer: “Drink too much and drive? No.”
Mike?™ made it clear he’s no believer in zero tolerance, and has no qualms about getting behind the wheel of a car as long as he thinks he’s within the legal limit. And that’s fine. Neither do most Americans. But then, most Americans aren’t blackout drunks who are running for the US Senate, and even a conflicted but sympathetic Dori was forced to ponder whether being “so drunk that you don’t remember being put in handcuffs” might raise a question about one’s qualifications for high office.
I never believed that it was the DUI or the drinking itself that was the big issue here, but rather, Mike?™’s lack of candor along with the cynical use of his running-on-the-issues meme to intentionally run away from them. Once again Mike?™ harped on how he’s “so sick of the way we conduct politics these days,” insisting that “issues are too darn important not to talk about.” And yet it was he who raised his own DUI as a campaign issue in the first place.
But now, with his own admission that he drank to the point of blacking out, and that he apparently hasn’t changed his drinking habits in any way, I’m not so sure that the DUI on its own isn’t a relevant talking point in this campaign.
Do we really want to elect a US Senator who occasionally goes on a bender, whether or not he climbs behind the wheel of a car afterwards? I think that those of us who have grown up as children of alcoholics, or who have married into that sort of unstable family life would likely say no. And I think that accounts for a far larger percentage of the voting public than McGavick and his advisors might imagine.
There was one other McGavick quote that really stuck in my craw, when he reiterated his regret that he “didn’t get to participate on a regular basis” in his son’s life.
I dunno, maybe I put too much weight in, you know, words… but “didn’t get to” doesn’t sound to me like an admission of responsibility. It wasn’t that McGavick “didn’t get to” participate in his son’s life. He chose not to.
Far be it from me to criticize how another man conducts his family life, but it was McGavick after all who raised this issue in the first place, in the middle of a Senate campaign, in an effort to publicly wring from his personal regret whatever political advantage it might provide.
I’m just saying.