OUTSIDE REPORT 
Thursday, October 2, 2008
For those who don’t know what an “October Surprise” is, its basically something that happens or is revealed on the eve of an election which has the *potential* to win or lose the race for a candidate. So the question now becomes: What October Surprise awaits? Here are my thoughts on the top ten likely October Surprises that may cost either candidate the election.
October Surprise Against Obama
(1) Adultery or Baby daddy in Illinois State Senate: I know that Obama has had girlfriends before his marriage and I certainly hope he didn’t have any during his marriage. But its the oddest thing. You’d think that Obama has only been with one woman his entire life. Even former girlfriends of Kerry, Bush, and Gore stepped forward. Yet with Obama, you’d think he was a virgin before he married Michelle. That kind of thinking could kill Obama if its proven he was unfaithful to Michelle but particularly if he was unfaithful with a white woman. That’d be the end of him.
(2) North Korea-Iran-Iraq Craziness: One missile launch from North Korea or Iran. One attack. One false move by one of these countries the weekend before the election could be enough to defeat Obama.
(3) Bin Laden Speaks: Bin Laden has been awfully quiet. Where is he? Got any more tapes planned for release prior to the election? Kerry to this day is convinced that Bin Laden cost him the election. Any terorrist tape really would count under this.
(4) Obama convincely loses the first debate: If McCain wipes the floor with Obama next Friday or in any of the debates, it might be the game changer that ends it all.
(5) McCain pledges one-term: I assume this is the last card in McCain’s bag of tricks. If Palin doesn’t put him over the line, then I fully expect McCain to do something bold and pledge one-term. Of course this could go either way for McCain, but it is likely to help him by (at least) shifting the news back to him and having people think he’s doing this for governance not bluster.
(6) Assassination Attempt on McCain: An assassination attempt on McCain by some leftwing kook or terrorist organization would cripple Obama’s candidacy.
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October Surprises Against McCain
(1) Joe Biden Dropped From the Ticket/Replaced by Hillary: If Joe Biden had to drop out for any reason and Obama had to put Hillary on the ticket, they’d win in a landslide.
(2) Sarah Palin Dropped From the Ticket: If one of Sarah Palin’s many scandals actually gains traction and she had to be taken off the ticket, the furor surrounding that would mean the end of McCain’s campaign.
(3) McCain’s Marriage and Affairs: We still haven’t heard from McCain’s first wife and how she was treated during her marriage. A Barbara Walters special with her in which they discuss her disability and how she felt when McCain left her (along with McCain’s many affairs during that time period) would serve as a bad blow to McCain. And whatever Happened to Vicki Iseman?: Didn’t the New York Times suggest that McCain was having an affair in 1999? Whatever happened to that story?
(4) Another Major Bank Collapses: If another major credit industry collapses on the eve of the election in similiar fashion to AIG or Lehman Brothers, McCain will be toast.
(5) McCain’s Temper Does Him In: There is a reason Republican Senator Thad Cochran said the idea of a President McCain sends chills down his spine. Maybe the thing about him pushing an old lady in a wheelchair? Maybe calling his wife a dirty word? But Obama or someone may get on McCain’s bad side in a debate or one of these incidents could come up.
(6) An Assassination Attempt on Obama: Especially by a white supremacist or Republican would signal the end of McCain’s campaign. It’d be like France in 2002 when rightwinger and sometimes racist Le Pen won the nomination to face Chirac. People came out in droves to send “a message” that France wasn’t racist. I’d expect the same in America.
Could Cut Either Way
(1) Joint Hagel-Colin Powell Endorsement: I could see Chuck Hagel and/or Colin Powell endorsing one of the candidates. Which one is the question though. Powell hints he won’t endorse until after the debates. Depending on where the polls stand, such an endorsement and the surrounding news coverage could signal the end for one of the campaigns.