Leadership 101

The fourth column is at it again, campaigning for Obama. The latest is John McCain’s “bailout” of the debate. First off, he has not bailed out of the debate, he said that if the issue of our country’s financial crisis are not solved by the time of the debate, then he will not participate, at that time, as he will be working to come to a bi-partisan agreement that Congress and the White House will approve. He has requested to push the debate off until our nation has a solution working, that is not cancelling and therefore not a bail out, it is a delay.

Secondly, we are now a week into this problem and nothing has been definitively been accomplished, this is something that affects every American and needs immediate attention of Congress and the White House.

Third, the Democrats in Congress have already said their vote to pass this bailout is dependant on John McCain’s vote. Therefore John McCain’s presence in the Capital is needed and until Congress can agree on what terms need to be outlined and what addons they want nothing is going to get accomplished.

Lastly, John McCain has shown what Presidential leadership is. Obama has shown what a senatoral action is. Omaba is willing to help when asked, John McCain is helping without being asked.

As for the fourth column, look at the bullshit in their articles, this one for example, is trying to paint that Bush bailed McCain out of bailing out by inviting Obama… What Bush did is say, one of you two is going to be the next President of the United State and therefore should be involved in the solution which they will have to work to ensure is enforced. Since we do not know who is going to be President, he has invited both to work on the issue. That is leadership. Obama is following the call step up, when he should have already stepped up.

Talk about bail-outs.

John McCain had just made one of the riskiest, and perhaps costliest, moves of his presidential campaign, in attempting to bail out of the first televised debate of the candidates so that he could return to Washington, rise “above politics” and concentrate on the federal bail-out of the nation’s bad mortgage debt underway.

Barack Obama, for his part, had no intention of forgoing the first debate, and voiced some dismay in allowing that, yes, McCain had talked to him about skipping the debate when the two spoke by telephone yesterday but then the next thing Obama heard, McCain was announcing that he had decided to skip Friday night’s debate and he was calling on the president to summon a meeting of congressional leaders and both of the presidential candidates, senators, of course..

But the debate was on, Obama maintained later, ultimately accepting the president’s invitation to that meeting today but leaving McCain looking like something less than the statesman which he was attempting to play with this call for putting “country first.”

McCain, in turn, was looking somewhat desperate in the odd, campaign-suspending transaction. For many long months now, McCain and Obama have waged a close contest for the White House, if the polls are any judge – and they are.

They went into their summer nominating conventions in a dead heat nationally, and they came out of their conventions – after the “bounces” of their own unique events, Obama’s appearance before 80,000 people filling a football stadium in Denver, and McCain’s selection of a suddenly popular Sarah Palin for a running mate – in another virtual tie.

And then something happened: An economic crisis of proportions unseen since the Great Depression started unfolding. And Obama’s numbers started climbing, with voters telling the pollsters – by double-digit margins – that they view Obama as better-suited than McCain to handle the economic crisis.

After months of staring one another down, and with Obama’s political fortunes suddenly ramping up with a crisis that even President Bush was now willing to characterize as the start of a “long and painful recession” if the government does not act, the senior senator from Arizona blinked. He pulled what Democrat Barney Frank called a “Hail Mary pass,” MSNBC commentator Chris Matthews dismissing it as more McCain “razzle dazzle.”

“We’re ‘suspending’ the campaign,” late night comedy host David Letterman said last night, stood up by slated-guest McCain — with Letterman derisively suggesting that this is not the “hero” McCain whom he knows. “Are we suspending the campiagn because there’s an economic crisis, or because the poll number are sliding?”

“What John McCain was thinking was, this was a close race,” said Doug Schoen, a pollster who served President Clinton – someone who knows about running on the economy, and perhaps running one as well. “He was slightly ahead and then the economy became the issue and all of a sudden he is nine points behind.”


That 9-point gap is the result of the newest ABC News and Washington Post measure this week, coming from a survey that found the two candidates virtually tied two weeks before – now a Democrat was topping 50 percent for the first time in an ABC/Post poll. It found voters, by a 14-point margin, more confident in Obama’s ability to handle the economy than McCain’s.

McCain somberly stepped to a podium on Wednesday and declared that he was “suspending” his campaign, starting today, returning to Washington and giving full attention to the resolution of the financial bail-out that the Bush administration is pressuring Congress to enact before adjournment for the fall elections.

“His comments were a tacit indication that he sees the economy as literally taking over the campaign and the country,” Schoen told the Tribune. “It has become all-pervasive.”

And why shouldn’t it be oervasive in this campaign, judging from the president’s own dramatic comments televised to the nation last night: “We’re in the midst of a serious financial crisis… Without immediate action by Congress, America could slip into a financial panic, and a distressing scenario would unfold… More banks could fail, including some in your community. The stock market would drop even more, which would reduce the value of your retirement account. The value of your home could plummet… And ultimately, our country could experience a long and painful recession.”

So what is Bush doing to push his $700 billion bail-out through Congress? Not only going on national television, prime-time, but also summoning that meeting of congressional leadership today, leaders from both houses and from both parties – and also two senators who have been out on the road a lot lately, Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Barack Obama of Illinois.

At 4 pm EDT, the leaders and candidates will join the president in the Cabinet Room of the White House for a closed-door session starting with, of course, a photo opportunity at the top.

The meeting may not be all that necessary, however. It seems that congressional leaders are close to an agreement already, and the president signaled his own willingness to compromise on the question of limiting the profits that financial executives extract from this buyout. Basically, they’re nearly ready to deal.

But what better cover for the Republican presidential nominee’s bail-out from the campaign and sudden return to Washington than a presidential pardon of sorts, an invitation from the president to both of the presidential candidates to join them all in resolving this crisis together: Bush’s personal bail-out

The question, then, is who’s meeting is it? McCain asked for it. Bush called it.. And Obama is going to it. Clearly, it’s the Republicans’ meeting, and the Democrats are ready to do business — so, effectively, McCain has claimed the higher ground that he was seeking: Attending to the affairs of state in front of the affairs of the campaign.

Effectively, the ground campaign of these two will be suspended for the day – though there are precious photos to be gained from their appearances in the Cabinet Room.

With this hastily summoned meeting, Bush has bailed McCain out of a jam, for a day. Suddenly, this is the senator who can organize a pow-wow at the White House.

Yet the debate remains another question. McCain already has suggested that, if Congress can reach a deal by Friday he will be prepared to go through with the debate. Of course he will. McCain is the one who has demanded more debates all along.

Should McCain really bail out, imagine the Commission on Presidential Debates plowing ahead with a solo appearance by Obama on stage at the University of Mississippi in Oxford. At that point, the campaign would effectively be suspended for good. Should Obama concede to the postponement, it ultimately will become McCain’s responsibility for scuttling the first, long-awaited debate of a contest that Americans are getting ready to settle on their own. They will settle it on their specific terms, not on McCain’s or Obama’s.


One Response

  1. “His comments were a tacit indication that he sees the economy as literally taking over the campaign and the country,” Schoen told the Tribune. “It has become all-pervasive.”

    We agree here!!!!

    The S.M.F.S. Crew


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