Oh dear. The Republican party wheeled out Sarah Palin again in front of CBS’s Katie Couric, to explain – inter alia – her comment that “the U.S. should absolutely launch cross-border attacks from Afghanistan into Pakistan to stop a terrorist attack.” That’s directly counter to McCain’s stance and actually very close to what Barack Obama said in the first debate.
In the interview Sarah Palin comes across as a total lightweight (no comment) and McCain even interrupts to answer questions for her! Incredible!
I think there is now no doubt (if there ever was any) that she is utterly unprepared to be Vice-President, and the second-most powerful person in the USA. The fact that McCain selected her is a testament to his terrible judgment and lack of respect for the high office he seeks.
You can watch a clip here (scroll down a bit).
In the wake of yesterday’s congressional meltdown over the bailout bill, President Bush gave a speech this morning meant to reassure the public and the volatile financial markets. Just four minutes long, the address expressed disappointment in Congress and warned that “the consequences will grow worse each day if we do not act.” But Bush’s speech is unlikely to have much of an effect. Immediately following the address, MSNBC turned to New York Magazine’s John Heilemann, who commented that Bush “was the picture of a beaten dog. That was the picture of presidential impotence right there.” The Washington Post writes today that yesterday’s failed bailout vote “marked the biggest legislative defeat of Bush’s tenure and underscored the vanishing influence of a Republican president who could once bend a pliant Congress to his will on wars, taxes, surveillance and a host of other high-profile initiatives.” Coinciding with these developments, Gallup has released a new poll today showing that Bush’s approval rating has dropped to the lowest point in his tenure, 27 percent.
“John didn’t phone this one in. … You can’t phone something like this in. Thank God John came back.”
— Sen. Lindsey Graham, 9/28/08, on Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) return to Washington for bailout negotiations
“By mid-afternoon [on Saturday], Mr. McCain’s closest adviser, Mark Salter, told reporters that Mr. McCain would not go to Capitol Hill on Saturday but would make phone calls to try to push the deal along.”
— New York Times, 9/27/08
Do they think we are stupid?
The reviews are in and there seems to be a concensus that Barack Obama won the first debate. As the New York Times says:
“Mr. McCain fumbled his way through the economic portion of the debate, while Mr. Obama seemed clear and confident. Mr. McCain was more fluent on foreign affairs, and scored points by repeatedly calling Mr. Obama naïve and inexperienced.
But Mr. McCain’s talk of experience too often made him sound like a tinny echo of the 20th century. At one point, he talked about how Ronald Reagan’s “S.D.I.” helped end the cold war. We suspect that few people under the age of 50 caught the reference. If he was reaching for Reagan’s affable style, he missed by a mile, clenching his teeth and sounding crotchety where Reagan was sunny and avuncular.”
WTF? How are we supposed to take this guy seriously? His disastrous campaign is lurching from one crisis to another. Now apparently he is headed to Mississippi after all.
He suspended his campaign (except he didn’t really) turned up at the White House and said NOTHING … achieved NOTHING. Seriously folks …
At the University of Mississippi on Friday, Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) and Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) are scheduled to engage in their first presidential debate. But that plan was thrown into doubt yesterday when McCain abruptly announced “that he would temporarily stop campaigning” in order to “return to Washington to help forge an agreement on a proposed $700 billion bailout of financial institutions before Congress.” Obama, who will meet at the White House today with McCain, President Bush, and congressional leaders, responded to McCain’s call for him to join him in suspending his campaign by arguing the debate should go on as planned because “it is going to be part of the president’s job to deal with more than one thing at once.” The McCain campaign, however, is insisting that “if there’s no deal before the debate, McCain is staying in Washington, period.” Both the University of Mississippi and the Commission on Presidential Debates plan to “move forward as though the debate is still going to happen.” But Friday’s debate might not be the only thing derailed by McCain’s surprise decision to interject himself into the bailout negotiations. As the New York Times notes today, “McCain’s actions not only cast doubt on whether the highly anticipated debate would come off, but also thrust an unpredictable new element into the negotiations for the bailout.”
I think this photo says it well…
Bottom line: This isn’t presidential behavior. It’s a desperate, reckless move that actually threatens to make it harder to resolve this crisis. And of course, presidents have to be able to handle lots of important issues at once—they can’t panic and take their eyes off of one urgent priority when another one pops up.
That’s the thing about the new digitally enabled world we live in … there’s nowhere to hide. This video compilation of John McCain’s self-contradictory pronouncements show him to be disingenuous in the extreme