If John McCain came out against the Paulson Plan, effectively killing it, would he not a) likely vault back into the lead vs.Barack Obama by opposing a trillion dollar bailout—maverick style!—that voters hate even if they think it somehow necessary, b) lock up working-class, "Sam's Club" voters in places like Michigan, Pennsylvania and Ohio, and c) send the base into Palinesque waves of ecstasy since Newt Gingrich/Rush Limbaugh/ Conservative Blogosphere have been ripping the bailout to shreds?
We'll see what happens at the big White House summit today, but I do think McCain's behavior in the last 24 hours makes this scenario less likely. His running mate has been talking about a possible depression if Congress does not pass a bill, and McCain himself is trying very, very hard to appear bipartisan (not necessarily something that is synonymous with looking like a maverick). Still, it would certainly makes things interesting.
On an unrelated note: Smart PLANK readers will do the smart thing and immediately rush to Chris' post below.