North Bend, WA – Presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain mistakenly thought everyone attending a town hall meeting here this morning was the actor Robert Downey, Jr. McCain referred to everyone he spoke to as “Robert Downey, Jr.,” though the actor was not in attendance. There is no word as to what may have caused Mr. McCain’s confusion, though he was rushed out of the town hall meeting, held at a local VFW hall, nearly 40 minutes before the event was scheduled to end, ostensibly to attend an “urgent national security meeting.”
The first troubling incident came when a young woman asked a question of the Senator. She began, “My name is Marjorie Addams,” and then continued to ask a question about the solvency of Social Security. Mr. McCain’s reply was, “Thank you, Robert, for that question. And I admired your work in Zodiac very much.” He then went on to answer the question, amid murmurs in the crowd.
The next person to ask a question was a middle-aged man named David Meems. McCain pointed to a standing Meems and said, “Yes, Mr. Downey, Jr. You have a question?”
Meems, assuming the Senator was engaged in some kind of running joke, chuckled and said, “Yes, I do. But my name is David Meems, not Robert Downey, Jr.”
McCain responded, “Right. And my name’s Bugs Bunny. Go ahead and ask your question, Robert.”
And it went on, McCain calling another few questioners by the name Robert Downey, Jr., including one ten-year-old, to whom he said, “You, my friend, have aged extremely well. It’s uncanny.” He mentioned his battle in the fall with “the man I assume to be the Democratic nominee, Robert Downey, Jr.” Mr. McCain was likely referring to Barack Obama.
Finally, McCain’s campaign manager Rick Davis walked over to McCain and whispered in his ear. McCain listened, then took up his microphone and said to the crowd, “Uh, my friends, my campaign manager Robert Downey, Jr. tells me we have to get to an urgent meeting that is vital to national security. I’m so sorry to cut this short, but I have to head back to Washington and meet with Defense Secretary Robert Downey, Jr., and Secretary of State Downey, Jr. So I am sorry. Hopefully we’ll be able to come back here real soon. And I want to thank Robert Downey, Jr. and the VFW for having us. Thanks so much.”
And with that, McCain left the hall to a deafening, confused silence. There is skepticism in many circles, including the Clinton and Obama campaigns, as to whether there was, in fact, an urgent national security meeting in Washington. Nevertheless, Mr. McCain was quickly swept away to a waiting private jet. Witnesses say they heard him yelling to one of his aides over the sound of the airplane’s engines, “I’m very excited to see you in Iron Man, son. It looks like a barrel of fun.”