Paired with Sarah Palin's absence from Friday night's Presidential debate, this photo-op of the McCain's boarding their campaign plane that afternoon for Mississippi is phenomenally awkward.
Given that the "visual vernacular" in a photo like this tends to reference the presidential and vice-presidential couple combined with the fact John, Cindy, Sarah and First Dude have been stuck together lately like super glue, this shot of Giuliani and Judy Nathan is particularly attention grabbing.
Typically, I would caution anyone from assuming, based on a photo like this, that McCain was even thinking of throwing Palin overboard. Considering how McCain not only trotted out Giuliani this way, but also lined him up against Biden as McCain's main post-debate spinmaster, though, it almost destines the photo to raise such speculation.
But then again, punitive acting out -- in this case, temporarily "elevating" Giuliani in order to publicly humiliate Palin for embarrassing McCain with her dismal interview with Katie Couric -- is also consistent with how McCain flies.
NBC post debate spin: Biden vs. Giuliani (video via YouTube)
(image: Brian Snyder/Reuters Pictures. Arlington, Virginia. September 26, 2008)