‘A whack job’***

‘A WHACK JOB’…. The internal fight among McCain and Palin staffers got a little more intense over the weekend, when a McCain adviser told CNN, “She is a diva. She takes no advice from anyone…. Also, she is playing for her own future and sees herself as the next leader of the party. Remember: Divas trust only unto themselves as they see themselves as the beginning and end of all wisdom.”

Today, the blame game got even uglier. The Politico‘s Mike Allen reports:

In convo with Playbook, a top McCain adviser one-ups the priceless “diva” description, calling her “a whack job.”

I suppose we’ll be hearing even more of this in the coming days, with McCain/Bush loyalists holding Palin responsible for practically all of the campaign’s difficulties. The argument may even have some merit.

But there’s still a limit to all of this. Indeed, no matter how hard they try, it’s McCain who ends up holding the bag. It’s not complicated: if Sarah Palin is “a whack job,” why did McCain pick her to be one 72-year-old heartbeat from the presidency?

I suppose the obvious response is that neither McCain nor his aides realized when they chose her that she was “a whack job,” but whose fault is it that McCain and his team decided to skip the vetting phase of the process?

To blame Palin is to blame McCain. If the campaign is her fault, then the campaign is his fault.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.