It's possible that it could be some kind of underhanded move by the Bush administration, a desperate attempt to help John McCain, who they fear will look like a doddering old fool after the conventions when all eyes are on him.
If so, though, it could seriously backfire, because:
) neither Bush nor McCain can do anything about the situation
) the crisis will be over before the election (it already is finished, militarily)
) if McCain says, "see, I would have handled that right," he won't have a leg to stand on, people will just say "well, where was your great plan while it was happening." It will look like a failure for Bush and that will rub off on him, even if he tries to distance himself from Bush.
The basic fact is the US has no military leverage in any matter directly involving the Russian military. Russia has nukes and can send them here within minutes, and that's that.
That leaves as the only alternative diplomacy, which is where McCain's "I'm better at foreign policy" shtick falls apart. He knows absolutely nothing about the intricacies of diplomatic double-talk. Any progress would have to be made over the long haul, with negotiations and concessions and Russia hanging its Security Council veto over all US interests. Obama may not be particularly experienced at diplomacy either, but at least he expresses an interest.
If someone in the Bush administration thought they were doing McCain a favor by giving him the opportunity to strong-arm Russia, they were dead wrong. Or their timing was way off. Maybe if they'd said to Saakashvili "ok go invade on November 1." But even then it wouldn't have helped much.