John McCain - Stunt ManObama did the right thing -- showed leadership. At 8:30 AM, Obama reached out to his rival to propose they come up with a bipartisan statement. By making this effort, Obama gave up the opportunity to show just how much better he and his team are responding to this issue, how much more the public blames the GOP for this mess, and instead prioritized finding a solution that would work.
McCain received that offer. And he sat on it. For six hours. What happened in those 6 hours? A call to the White House perhaps? Finally, at 2:30 PM, McCain accepted the offer. It seems that, during those six long hours when McCain was mulling Obama's proposal, McCain was inventing a way to turn this into yet another political gimmick. Twenty minutes after accepting Obama's proposal, McCain pulled this stunt of calling for a suspension of the campaign and postponement of the debate.
Who is gullible enough to actually believe John McCain will be going to DC to "work across the aisle to strike a deal that will save the economy?" You know, McCain - the guy who said 10 days ago - "the fundamentals of the economy are strong." Maybe the same people who thank Bush for a wonderful presidency? Maybe the same people who think "drill baby drill" will help our gas prices?
Chris Dodd is the chair of the Senate Banking Committee. He OWNS this issue. Dodd says:
Maybe you smart people can tell me what exactly McCain is going to do in Washington besides a photo op with Bush? He doesn't sit on any of the relevant committees, the committees are already deep in negotiations for days, pretty much finished with their work. It doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
"I'm beginning to think this is more about a rescue plan for John McCain than a rescue plan for the economy...Candidly, a lot of us have been working for 5 straight days around the clock and I haven't heard a word from John McCain."
What are others saying?
Immediately after John McCain’s announcement 3 pm ET today, Wednesday 09/24/08, that he was suspending his campaign and seeking to postpone Friday’s schedule presidential debate, SurveyUSA interviewed 1,000 adults nationwide. Key findings:WashPost: A Transparent Ploy
A majority of Americans say the debate should be held. Just 10% say the debate should be postponed.
Salon: Stunt Man
The only way to understand it is politically: In a presidential campaign, the surest sign that a candidate is playing politics on an issue is when he claims not to be playing politics on an issue... It's hard to believe that McCain's actions would pass his own laugh test.Boston Globe: McCain's Debate Stunt
altering the debate schedule would hardly serve voters. If anything, debates are most valuable at times of national crisis, because voters need to hear candidates highlight their policy differences.
That's what Obama said.