McCain Grandstands On The Bailout
Give me a break, McCain. This afternoon, McCain said he was suspending his campaign and flying back to Washington to save America's spiraling economy. He also said he wanted to suspend Friday night's first presidential debate in Oxford, Mississippi. Obama, smartly, said the debate should go on as planned. "It's my belief that this is exactly the time when the American people need to hear from the person will be the next president. It is going to be part of the president's job to deal with more than one thing at once. It's more important than ever to present ourselves to the American people."
Obama is exactly right. A two-hour debate is not going to make or break the bailout situation and America is hungry to hear these candidate's ideas and solutions. McCain's numbers are dropping like rocks and this desperate move to delay the debate smacks of desperation. Obama called McCain this morning and asked for a bipartisan statement on the bailout, reaching out the olive branch, and McCain's camp goes for grandstand photo-op. It's a gimmick to prop up a failing campaign. McCain has shown no leadership on the economy and has no ideas.
And here's a few more thoughts on the campaign:
While my vote for Obama is unshakable, I am not above admitting he's made some serious errors in judgement. He -- and Biden -- could have stopped the Alaska "bridge to nowhere," and moved the money toward rebuilding the bridge across Lake Pontchartrain destroyed in New Orleans. Both decided to let the money go to Alaska. Of course, McCain isn't completely off the hook here. He didn't vote on the bridge or on the amendment to divert the money to New Orleans, so he basically punted.
On the other hand Sarah Palin, was a fervent supporter of the bridge -- which would have linked the city of Ketchikan to its municipal airport across an inlet of water on Gravina Island -- before she became governor and realized just how unpopular it was. She then made a massive mistake by allowing the road leading to the bridge to be built at a cost of $26 million taxpayer dollars. The road literally dead-ends and is unused. Her camp is trying to spin the idea that it was too late for her to stop the road, but that's a load of malarkey. She could have cancelled the contract and given the money back, but she built the dead-end road anyway. Palin has now dropped the "thanks, but no thanks" line from her stump speech because she realizes no one is buying that story anymore.
McCain has been peddling this line about Obama in his stump speeches, most notably this one on Sept. 19 in Green Bay: "He said he won't raise taxes for most people, but he's voted 94 times in his short Senate career for tax increases and against tax cuts." Non-partisan Factcheck.org looked into this statement and found that McCain was -- surprise -- misleading the public. Factcheck.org, pieced through records to determine just what these 94 votes were and these were the key findings:
- 23 were against proposed tax cuts
- 7 were "for measures that would have lowered taxes for many, while raising them on a relative few, either corporations or affluent individuals"
- 11 were to increase taxes on people making more than $1 million a year, to help fund programs such as Head Start, school nutrition, or veterans' health care
- 53 were votes on budget resolutions or amendments that "could not have resulted by themselves in raising taxes," though many "were clear statements of approval for increased taxes"
- The total includes multiple votes on the same measures
CNN's Campbell Brown went on a rant about how McCain was being sexist against Palin yesterday by not allowing her to have press conferences with reporters and limiting media access to her "foreign policy boot camp" at the UN yesterday. Is anyone else disturbed by the fact that Palin's foreign policy experience can now be summed up to one day of hugging and talking about her kids with a handful of foreign leaders? I shudder at the thought. But back to Campbell Brown, who totally missed the point. The McCain camp is reining her in because when she's off the teleprompter, her inexperience shows through and her wisecracks fall with a thud. She has the potential to be a very loose cannon on the stump speeches.
Obama, take note and tell Joe Biden to shut the hell up. The political wonks in both parties have got one thing right -- this election is not about Palin and Biden, it's about Obama and McCain and both have given their running mates too much leash.
P.S. I just had to use that photo of McCain loving up on Dubya. Sometimes a photo does speak louder than words.