Strategy ’08

Obama vs. the other guy, 2008

McCain “Seemed Confused”

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:

McCain defended this position again at a press conference after his town hall, but when asked specifically by a reporter from the Detroit News about comments he had made last month in support of a national emission standard that would overrule state standards, he seemed confused.

“I’ll get back to you on that,” McCain said. “It’s a complicated issue. I’ll have my folks get to you.”

He seemed confused. Yup, starting to become the status quo. Of course, if the Obama campaign used the word confused, the press would be all over them for age-ism.

But has anyone noticed that McCain’s response to the myriad of issues of which he doesn’t know much about is always, “I’ll get back to you on that”? I’m very curious to hear how many of these issues he actually does follow-up with to the reporter.

More substantively, there is an inherent contradiction to his arguments. On one hand, he’s supporting an emission standard in order to combat global warming. On the other hand he’s a Federalist. On the other hand it should be “worked out” between the parties.

I know Al Gore said McCain was out in front of the issue of global warming, but is there any wonder that some of us don’t take him remotely seriously when it comes to actually enforcing emission controls? I have zero faith in this guy’s ability to follow-through. At the end of the day, he just wants to focus his attention to foreign affairs and military matters and outsource domestic issues to advisers like Phil Gramm.

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July 18, 2008 - Posted by | Battleground States, Economy | , , ,

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