Wednesday, September 17, 2008

McQueeg watch

The Washington Independent points to 3 pork barrel projects that McQueeg supported. To be sure, it was 17 years ago, but he's out on the stump saying he's never done that. Snippet:
On the campaign trail, Sen. John McCain frequently decries earmarks and pork-barrel legislation, proudly bragging that he has never requested a single earmark for his home state of Arizona. However, a news article and a scathing editorial from The Arizona Republic during his first-term as the state’s junior senator reveal that McCain did, in fact, go outside the normal legislative process to secure funding for at least one pet project for Arizona. He also supported appropriations for at least two more — three projects that, much to his embarrassment, he later railed against as “pork.”
McQueeg is also trying to tell people, now, that he's for regulation for the financial industry. This is a lie in an attempt to convince voters that he's got a plan and will be in charge if he is elected (Question for McQueeg's folks - why not get their man, W, to implement such a plan now?). It's a lie because, as WaPo points out, he's favored deregulation practically his entire career. Snippet:

A decade ago, Sen. John McCain embraced legislation to broadly deregulate the banking and insurance industries, helping to sweep aside a thicket of rules established over decades in favor of a less restricted financial marketplace that proponents said would result in greater economic growth.

Now, as the Bush administration scrambles to prevent the collapse of the American International Group (AIG), the nation's largest insurance company, and stabilize a tumultuous Wall Street, the Republican presidential nominee is scrambling to recast himself as a champion of regulation to end "reckless conduct, corruption and unbridled greed" on Wall Street.

Ezra points out that McQueeg now says that Wall Street has betrayed America, but just 3 years ago he signed on to putting our social security funds into Wall Street via privatization of that program. He should be asked if he still supports that plan.

Why none of this matters. Snippet:
Yes, the McCain campaign is replete with exaggerations, evasions, and outright fabrications. It’s your responsibility to defeat them, not complain about them. If this means listening to advice you don’t want to hear, and getting out of the "comfort zone," so be it. Three months ago, when you were riding high, the McCain campaign was flat on its back. But give McCain credit: when he was told that to win he had to change, he did. He focused, and he accepted a kind of discipline that he had previously resisted. Now it’s your turn.
As I stated earlier in the week, campaigns are not about talking points or political details. Obama's advertising to date has been the same tired sort of advertising that Gore and Kerry used. He needs hit harder, try humor, be concise. He also needs to understand that what wins campaigns are emotions. Americans will decide over the next month who they are voting for and it will be based on gut reactions formed from a variety of sources. They will also consider the fact that they are likely to be voting in a Democratic Congress and Americans like divided government as a check to each branch (plus, they have in recent memory an example of how horrible a undivided government can truly be). Expect McQueeg to hammer that point home without any sense of irony that his party was that undivided government.

At this point, given Obama's charisma, he should be pounding this one home. The fact that he isn't is example one of how his advisors are failing him. Like Bush in 2000, this should be a slam dunk for Obama. Instead, he's listening to the same old Democratic stylists who have a penchant for losing elections and it is to his, and our, great disservice.

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