NOTE: This was written before the 2008 elections and never published. I re-read my thoughts and decided that they're still worth publishing.
I am trying to stay very upbeat about this election.
I have come to the conclusion that Sen. McCain doesn't know the difference between autism and Down Syndrome based on his remarks about Gov. Palin's role in his (imagined) future presidency, where he appears to have decided that it doesn't matter. I assume that he is past educating, based on his age, but I remain open-minded and would encourage Madeline and George Will to call on him, and set him straight about this misapprehension.
I also can see how there could be a plank in Sen. Obama's platform that addresses the funding of research for autism, but neglects to pay any attention to other disabilities, although I'd encourage him to extend his friendships to include families of children with a broader range of (dis)abilities.