Bill Clinton famously suggested to Charlie Rose last December that to vote for Barack Obama, given what Clinton called his limited experience in national politics, is to “roll the dice” on the presidency.
Time this week suggests that a vote for McCain might actually be more dicey, so to speak.
How so? Well, McCain likes craps while Obama prefers poker (which permits Time to write phrases like “the political battle is both a crapshoot and a poker game,” and “there is no bigger gamble than a presidential run…And as the stakes rise, both [candidates] know they’ll need a little luck.”) And, to answer Time’s question to itself — “What do the candidates’ gambling proclivities tell us about who they are?” — it turns out that McCain’s liking of craps fits handily into the picture the press has already painted for us (“For McCain, jaunts to the craps table helped burnish his image as a political hot dog who relished the thrill of a good fight, even if the risk of failure was high”). Meanwhile, we learn that Obama’s “weekly poker games with lobbyists and fellow state senators helped cement his position as a rising star in Illinois politics” and, that Obama’s “risk-averse, methodical approach to five-card stud gives [one of those state sentaors] confidence in his potential governing style. ‘If he runs his presidency the way he plays poker, I’ll sleep good at night,’ says [the state senator].”
But what if he presidents like he bowls?
Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.