This might just be the perfect companion to John McCain's "the economy is fundamentally strong" gaffe. Sunday morning on Meet The Press, McCain told Tom Brokaw that he and George W. Bush shared a "common philosophy."
Do we share a common philosophy of the Republican Party? Of course.
Now let me just ask you a simple question: at this point in the campaign, is there anything stupider that John McCain could have said about his political philosophy than to admit that he shares it with George W. Bush?
Barack Obama quickly seized on McCain's gaffe, tearing into him in both Denver and Ft. Collins. Here's a quick video montage, along with McCain's original comments:
Unfortunately, there has been very little news coverage of McCain's blunder, nor of Obama's response. At least as of the writing of this blog entry, what little coverage there was had missed the point, reporting that it was Obama who had tied McCain to Bush when in fact it was McCain who had tied McCain to Bush.
Fortunately, yesterday was Sunday, giving Obama another shot to stick McCain with his words. Either he or Biden could say something about it today, or perhaps the campaign could throw together a television ad to highlight McCain's admission. It might not even have to come from the campaign: any reporter lucky enough to get to ask McCain a question ought to ask him about it.
Whatever happens, whether or not McCain's words get the attention they deserve, it underscores once again what we already know: in terms of politics and policy, a McCain presidency would be just like another four years of Bush, except with Sarah Palin in the vice president's office.
Here's the transcript of the video:
OBAMA (Denver, CO): Just this morning, Senator McCain said that actually he and President Bush share a "common philosophy."
McCAIN (Meet The Press): Do we share a common philosophy of the Republican Party? Of course.
OBAMA (Ft. Collins, CO): That's what he said. A "common philosophy."
OBAMA (Denver, CO): I guess that was John McCain finally giving us a little straight talk, owning up to the fact that he and George Bush actually have a whole lot in common. Well, here's the thing though. We know what the Bush-McCain philosophy looks like.
OBAMA (Ft. Collins, CO): It's a philosophy that says we should give more and more to folks at the top, to millionaires and billionaires, to the wealthiest among us, and that somehow it's all going to trickle down on the rest of us.
OBAMA (Denver, CO): It's a philosophy that justifies spending $10 billion a month in Iraq while the Iraqi government sits on a huge surplus and our economy is in crisis.
OBAMA (Ft. Collins, CO): For eight years we've seen this philosophy at work, and it's put our economy on the wrong track, and we can't afford another four years that look like the last eight.
OBAMA (Denver, CO): It is time for change in Washington, and that's why I'm running for President of the United States of America, and that's why you're here today.
This month's American Prospect cover features a package that can boringly be called "institutionalism" and can more interestingly be called "forget the president." It's a package that's pretty dear to my heart, as my main conclusion from studying the[...]
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BY TAYLOR MARSHGUILTY ON ALL COUNTS Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska Heard the news driving in my car. AP has more:The verdict throws the upcoming election into disarray. Stevens is fighting[...]
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It seems to me that the Bush Administration has just declared war on Syria and Pakistan simultaneously, with incursions into the sovereign territory of both countries (classic acts of war).
Dennis Kucinich is the first US Democrat to come forward and question the timing and obvious domestic political purpose of the attacks - to refocus public attention on "national defense", which would presumably help John McCain in the only area in which the public trusts him marginally more than Barack Obama.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (October 27, 2008) -- After learning ofThe US is already at war, first with Afghanistan forces, second in Iraq, and now Syria and Pakistan. Is is really necessary to fight four wars simultaneously to assure the "national defense" of the United States overseas? If so, what does Bush know about the need to attack these countries that he didn't know back in September, when the Election was two months away and John McCain was ahead in some polls?
reports that four U.S. helicopters conducted an attack inside Syrian borders on Sunday, Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) denounced the attack and questioned its timing. The Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) reported on Sunday that four U.S. helicopters conducted an attack on the Syrian side of the border with Iraq in which eight people were killed. SANA reports stated that American helicopters
raided the village of Sukariya, 340 miles northeast of Damascus, and then returned to Iraqi airspace. The Syrian government claims that of the eight people who died, four were children. "Saber rattling and attacks upon sovereign nations who did not attack us are unacceptable. We must question the timing. We are on the eve of national elections and we must be mindful of the Administration's past manipulation of security issues in order to influence public opinion," stated Kucinich. "We cannot stand by and let them use the lives of innocent people as pawns in their wrongful political objectives." Politico
It's bad enough to try to start a color-based civil war on our own soil in order to get whites to support McCain (see e.g. false claims of attack by Black man), but to start two additional international conflicts at a time when the international economy is already reeling with unpredictability is unthinkable - except to the Republicans.
Perhaps the dual purpose is to drive the price of oil back up during the winter and protect the outrageous profits of the oils companies?
Bush is reminding Americans that the Republicans are the party of war and that American won't be deprived of wars if a Republican is elected. On the other hand, electing a Democrat could lead to peace - something many Independent, Republican and even Democratic voters are not willing to risk. Do readers doubt this proposition? Well let's see if two more wars doesn't help John McCain's polling, at least marginally.
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Sarah Palin tells Israeli Ambassador "we look forward to .. working with your Jewish agency." Via MJ Rosenberg. Late Update: Okay, this may not be as bad as first advertised. The original AP quote was garbled. And the Ambassador used to head up the[...]
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Rasmussen: Arizona: McCain 51%, Obama 46%. At the end of September it was McCain 59%, Obama 38%.[...]
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Now that Ted Stevens has been convicted, it's time to re-run the Senate guess-a-thon.
When we last ran this poll, "58" was the number most chosen by DCW readers as the number of Democratic Senators that would be in place in January 2009, your choice on Joe.
Want to change your mind?
And when you use the comments to discuss whether or not you are still including Joe in the count, remember this: so long as Joe caucuses with the Democrats, he keeps his committee chairmanship. That allows him subpoena power, the right to hold hearings, and hold sway. Is that something that changes his value in a Democratic Senate, or is holding the number at "60", if we win 59 seats, be more important?
Also consider that IF Ted is re-elected, it will be up to the Senate to expel him. Further, remember that Baby Bush can still pardon Ted. He pardoned Scooter.... We'll have more up tonight and tomorrow on Senate reaction, including how sitting Senators feel about a felon in their midst, and whether monies donated to their campaigns by Stevens will be kept or returned.
Online Surveys & Market Research
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One thing we probably should have learned from this campaign season is the importance of demographics in gauging this political campaign. I have not engaged in much poll analysis because, frankly, I do not think the Presidential election is in doubt. But Salon runs a silly and truly useless pseudo analysis from a GOP operative trying to convince (perhaps himself as well) that McCain has a real shot. the GOP operative relies on supposed examples of the Bradley Effect in 2006. Poblano debunks the pseudo analysis but it is worthwhile to review the demographics. More . . .
One important point before we move on to the demographics - Obama rarely if ever underperformed his polling going into a primary. He did very much underperform early exit polling. Thus, if we are looking for a Bradley Effect, it will show up in raw early exit polling, not in underperfomance of pre-election polls. And the reluctant respondent phenomenon is very much about white Democrats, not white Republicans. Indeed, if anything, the Bradley Effect would have been something we would see in the primaries, not in the general election. Whites just vote less for Democrats period.
Remember how in the primaries we could pretty much peg the result based on educated guesses on the demographic turnout?
We were able to do this based on the assurance that Obama would take 92-95% of the African American vote, about 35-38% of the white vote (this number would vary based on region - i.e in the South Obama would rarely exceed 30% of the white vote, and age - younger white voters would vote for Obama heavily) and about 38-40% of the Latino vote. At that point, we just needed to feel confident on the projected turnout.
For the general election, you can feel quite confident that Obama's low among African American voters will be 95% of the vote and you can also expect a significant uptick in African American turnout. Thus, while John Kerry only won 88% of the A-A vote and A-As only comprised 11% of the electorate; by contrast Obama will win at least 95% of the A-A vote and A-As are likely to comprise at least 13% of the electorate. That alone gives Obama a 2.5% increase over John Kerry's total in 2004.
But of course there is more favoring Obama. He is winning Latinos by 2-1, while John Kerry only won Latinos by 53-44. Further, Latinos only comprised 8% of the electorate in 2004. It is fair to project that Latinos will be 10% of the electorate in 2008. These shifts provide Obama with another 2.2% over Kerry's total.
The final piece of the puzzle is the increase in young voters. John Kerry captured 41% of the white vote in 2004. If for no other reason than the larger share of younger voters, Obama seems assured of exceeding that total. In 2004, 17% of the electorate was voters 18-29 and Kerry won that group 54-45. This group will likely top 20% of the electorate in 2008 and Obama will capture close to 2/3 of this group. This should be worth at least a couple of points for Obama.
Thus even if Obama does not improve on Kerry's performance among voters older than 30 (which seems highly unlikely in my opinion), Obama should win the election by more than 4 points. Since he is likely to improve on Kerry's performance among all groups - the margin is likely to be more than that. Personally , I am picking a margin of 6 points.
By Big Tent Democrat, speaking for me only
A lot has been written about Sarah Palin's and John McCain's disturbing ties to anti-semites. And today, even more problems for John McCain and Sarah Palin, now from the ADL. The Anti-Defamation League, probably the lead organization in charge of fighting anti-Semitism, hatred, prejudice and bigotry, today condemned pro-McCain Republicans in Pennsylvania for trivializing the Holocaust (via email):
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today condemned an e-mail message sent to Jewish voters in Pennsylvania, reportedly paid for by the ?Republican Federal Committee of PA ? Victory 2008.?Much more on McCain's and Palin's anti-semitic ties here (the entire page is devoted to posts about anti-Semitism in this campaign).
The e-mail suggested that a vote for Barack Obama would be a ?tragic mistake,? and ?Jewish Americans cannot afford to make the wrong decision,? adding that ?many of our ancestors ignored similar warning signs in the 1930s and 1940s.?
Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director and a Holocaust survivor, issued the following statement from Poland, where he is traveling with an Israel Defense Force delegation visiting Auschwitz and other historical sites associated with the Holocaust:Ugly, divisive personal attacks against a candidate for any political office should never be acceptable, and using Holocaust analogies is completely beyond the pale.
Regardless of which candidate one supports, it is shocking and profoundly distressing that anyone would see fit to make such an odious, false and repugnant analogy. Not only does it further debase the level of our political discourse, but it also diminishes and trivializes the virulent anti-Semitism and Nazi aggression that led to the slaughter of six million Jews and millions of others.
We hope that the signatories of this letter and those responsible for its dissemination will repudiate its message and apologize to both the candidate and the Jewish community.
Yesterday we published our R2K poll pegging this race as a dead heat, with Lincoln Diaz-Balart leading Democratic challenger Raul Martinez 45-44. Even more telling was the early voting numbers -- 55-42 -- showing that the early ground game was heavily favoring the Democrat.
So, being one of the highest-profile members of the corrupt South Florida Republican hardline Cuban-American community, Diaz-Balart decided to steal the election.
Three Hialeah voters say they had an unusual visitor at their homes last week: a man who called himself Juan, offering to help them fill out their absentee ballots and deliver them to the elections office.
The voters, all supporters of Democratic congressional candidate Raul Martinez, said they gave their ballots to the man after he told them he worked for Martinez. But the Martinez campaign said he doesn't work for them.
Juan ''told me not to worry, that they normally collected all the ballots and waited until they had a stack big enough to hand-deliver to the elections department,'' said voter Jesus Hernandez, 73. 'He said, `Don't worry. This is not going to pass through the mail to get lost.'''
Hernandez said he worries his ballot was stolen or destroyed. He and two other voters told The Miami Herald that the man was dispatched by a woman caller who also said she worked for Martinez. But the phone number cited by the voters traces back to a consultant working for Martinez's rival, Republican congressman Lincoln Diaz-Balart.
Martinez's campaign manager, Jeff Garcia, has asked the Miami-Dade state attorney's office to investigate.
This is the kind of crap that has kept the GOP Cuban hardliners in power for so long, and what we're up against as we try to wrestle away these three House seats (including FL-18 with Annette Taddeo and FL-25 with Joe Garcia) from this corrupt machine.
The Martinez campaign has additional evidence of this fraud they intend to present at a 2 p.m. ET press conference this afternoon.
On the web:
Raul Martinez for Congress