The Substance Gap

The political class can't stop talking about the 2008 campaign. But that doesn't make it real news

Samantha Appleton / Aurora for TIME

Rudolph Giuliani spoke at a $2500 per plate fundraiser for his presidential exploratory committee in New York City.

Are we through talking about John McCain's pleasant stroll through downtown Baghdad? Have we plumbed every angle of Mitt Romney's hunting experience? What effect will Fred Thompson have on Tommy Thompson, and vice versa? Where again does John Edwards get his haircuts?

Let's face it: this political campaign is suffering from a grist shortage. There just isn't enough good material for the media mills to process. That's why legitimate stories like McCain's Baghdad gaffe and Romney's hunting fib get pored over like the Kennedy assassination. It's why even the most implausible self-declared presidential candidate is not laughed offstage. It's why the...

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