Monday, May 19, 2008

Hitchens Imagines Parliamentary-Style Grilling for President

Well, actually, McCain suggested he'd adopt the practice in his speech on the 15th. But Christopher Hitchens, being Hitchens and being British, does a pretty fascinating job at examining the implications in a piece posted over at Slate. He posits both what might have been and what could be.

As a C-Span fan myself, this nugget of McCain's speech perked my ear up too.
"I will ask Congress," said the presumptive Republican nominee, "to grant me the privilege of coming before both houses to take questions, and address criticism, much the same as the prime minister of Great Britain appears regularly before the House of Commons."
In Hitchen's views -
There's no script. The handlers can't come in there with you. There's no warning of the real question, because the topic can easily be concealed inside an ostensible or pretext question. There's no defense against a crisply worded follow-up. Nobody can become prime minister, or continue as prime minister, who cannot stand up to it.

Hitchens reviews the historical points in the past when such a practice was considered here.

And it should be noted that this practice would be very un-Bush.

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