Today, John McCain took his “straight talk” to Michigan for a discussion about the auto industry. He was asked specifically about California’s attempt to regulate auto emissions even though the industry is mostly based in Michigan. His response?
“I’m torn on the issue because I am at heart a federalist that believes that the states should make decisions as to what happens within their states,” McCain said. He then added, “but it also is complicated because every state doesn’t manufacture automobiles and they don’t stay within their states. …So I have to say I guess at the end of the day I support the states being able to do that, but I also think there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be able to sit down and work this out.”
Unsurprisingly, passing the buck and refusing to give an answer other than: we can “work it out” (although, being in Motown, it is appropriate to quote Stevie Wonder). But then things got more interesting:
Mike Allen’s Playbook on Politico had this tidbit from Prince of Darkness Novak today:
“After Sen. John McCain publicly repudiated his close friend and adviser Phil Gramm’s comments about a ‘nation of whiners’ and a ‘mental recession,’ the two old political comrades patched up their relationship. Gramm apologized to McCain for his remarks … McCain told Gramm not to worry about the expected pitfalls of a campaign surrogate. Gramm will continue as an adviser and surrogate.”
Catch that, mainstream media? Phil Gramm of “mental recession” and “nation of whiners” fame is STILL advising John McCain.
Following the just-announced news that Obama will be speaking at the Victory Column in Berlin (rather than the Brandenburg Gate), I thought it’s worth addressing the latest CW pundit talking point: “Obama’s big trip to Europe carries risks!” We hear it over and over again on air, online, and in print.
My favorite guilty pleasure/bane of my existence “Morning Joe” again today featured the cast of conventional-wisdom crack addicts pushing the meme: “Sure there may be some upside for Obama, but aren’t there big risks too? Chuck Todd, let’s forget about the rewards, tell us about the dangers!” (in their defense, they did shoot down Pawlenty who expressed his “concern” about Obama speaking abroad).
The CW goes something like this: Obama can draw out adoring crowds in Europe, but is there a danger that will backlash back home? How will that play in Kentucky? Will Americans recoil at the sight of Europeans cheering on Obama?
The Chairperson Emeritus of Fake Concern and “Obama Has a Problem” punditocracy, Andrea Mitchell, went so far as to say:
“in some parts of the country, seeing Obama celebrated in Europe might be an implicit criticism of America.”
I was doing a little research on John McCain’s woeful ignorance of the Middle East when I came across a stunning transcript from 2000 in the aftermath of the USS Cole bombing. John McCain – weeks before what would become Bush’s “election”, used the bombing of the USS Cole – performed by what we came to learn were Al Qaeda – to push what would become, word for word, the Iraq War causus belli later used by the Bush administration.
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