After the disgraceful performances of Congressional Democrats - both houses - today on Capital Hill over the financial rescue package, it is good to have a debate to take our minds off it all.
Today, Harry Reid, the Majority Leader of the Senate, revealed again why the polling numbers of the House and Senate are at all time lows. Reid blamed John McCain for the failure of the leaders to produce agreement all around. Reid was lying, of course, but that doesn't matter to most in the press. They reported Reid's statements as though they were truth. Before McCain even arrived on Capital Hill yesterday, the deal was a no-go. The House Republicans were not having it. That is the very reason Secretary Paulson asked McCain to come and help. Bringing everyone together was the idea of McCain in the first place, even by accounts coming from the White House. Paulson sent word to McCain that he needed him and coming was a good idea.
From accounts of those in the room, McCain did the heavy lifting of listening to all present. Obama went on and on like a college professor, lecturing. He blamed the House Republicans and that is when the lid blew off. Nice try by Reid.
Just a few days ago, Reid said publicly that "no one knows what to do", therefore laying the foundation of doubt on his abilities. Then he said, Tuesday, that McCain was needed to bring along the House Republicans for the proposals on the table - not a deal. There was no deal. There was nothing written on paper, other than proposal ideas. McCain said Wednesday that he would be there and all of a sudden he was injecting politics into the fray and not needed.
The dashing duo of Reid and Pelosi is a miserable failure.
Harry Reid criticized a sitting senator, still on the taxpayer's dime, for answering the call of the administration to help solve a devastating financial mess. And, Obama, also a sitting senator on the taxpayer's dime, decided to vote 'present' and issue a joint statement. He thought he looked in control by doing nothing but being updated. Funny, he's one of the first to criticize the president when he chooses that mode of action in a tough situation.
Why is Christopher Dodd still the chairman of the banking committee and leading the negotiations when he is in the thick of things with his own bad personal behavior? He was given a couple of sweet deals by Countrywide Financial Services. Why is Barney Frank still the chair of the financial services committee when he is one of the elected officials who consistently voted for no reforms to Fannie and Freddie? He has chosen to neglect oversight duties for years. John McCain has been calling for reform for years.
The Obama campaign sent out text messages telling everyone to watch the debate on CNN tonight.
I read an op-ed written by Karl Rove about the importance of the debate. He said, first, do no harm. I think both candidates achieved that objective. He said that humor is a powerful weapon. What strikes me is what a humorless human Obama is. He only smiles at these times to hide his aggravation. I think McCain was able to get under Obama's skin a bit. Obama tried to interrupt McCain at times and spoke over him.
Obama did ok on the economic questions, but so did McCain. The myth that McCain can't hold his own on economic issues it just that. A myth put out by the Obama camp when McCain was honest enough to admit it isn't his favorite subject. That didn't mean he doesn't know the issues.
Obama resorted to his usual riff about taxes. Old school class warfare. That's not change. He continues to say he'll reduce taxes for 95% of the people. That's a lie. 95% of the people don't pay federal income taxes. The poor don't pay federal income taxes. They pay state and local taxes but the President doesn't set that tax policy.
And, for infrastructure and the need for more money for that. Sure, more money is always needed. But remember that both Obama and Biden voted for the Bridge to Nowhere in Alaska by "voting to kill a Senate amendment that would have diverted federal funding for the bridge to repair a Louisiana span badly damaged by Hurricane Katrina." That's from a CNN report put up on NewsBusters.
McCain hit it out of the park on foreign policy, as was predicted. Obama was ok but not particularly good. The people of Poland may be surprised to hear Obama say they are a fledgling democracy. Also, Obama referred to President Bush as "your" (McCain) president. I thought Bush is the president of all Americans. Will Obama only consider himself president to his party members?