Tag Archives: John McCain

This Just In! McCain Consistent! Obama A Little Slick!

5 Mar

As I type there’s a $400 billion spending bill winding its way through Congress that’s telling us a little bit about both John McCain, President Barack Obama and the way business is getting done in DC these days.  The bill includes about 9,000 earmarks (for those who don’t know, earmarks are those little perks for the folks back home that politicians insist on putting in bills in exchange for their support of  someone else’s bill).  Anyway, those 9,000 earmarks, it turns out  add up to approximately $8 billion  out of the total of $400 billion. 

According to one Republican, Rep. Paul Ryan, his party is responsible for about 4,000 of the earmarks.  Whether Ryan’s number is exactly accurate or not is debatable.  Maybe you could find a Democrat who’d say he’s way off and that Republicans are behind 60% rather than 40% of the earmarks.   The point is that when you’re talking 9,000 earmarks it’s pretty clear both parties are still doing business as usual. 

And for that I say HOW DARE THEY!  Here we are in the worst ecomonic situation since the Great Depression and our representatives in Congress are busy padding spending bills with goodies to make sure they get re-elected by the voters back home.  When will both parties get their heads out of their collective ass and realize that we can’t go on wasting money this way?  WHEN?  I say!

Look, I took junior high math and I even passed it.  I know that $8 billion out of a $400 billion spending bill is a small fraction.  But, this isn’t about math.  This is about real lives.

At a time when America is struggling to make ends meet how do our representatives in DC justify blowing $8 billion?  Think of all the good that this small fraction of the gigantic spending bill could have done if actually applied to things we REALLY need.

On the flip-side of all of this is Senator John McCain.  McCain hates earmarks.  And he’s remarkably consistent about talking about it.  I’m sure he’s signed off on some in his past, but he’s done a good job this week railing against them.  I think he did America a favor by taking the president to task for supporting this bill when President Obama has pledged to change the way these things go down in Washington.  So cheers to John McCain.  Let’s hope he keeps on fighting against business as usual.

That all said, I’m still glad Senator McCain didn’t win this past fall.  I think it’s one thing to take positions like his as a senator.  It’s a whole other thing to stay so strong in your positions when you’re the president and the country is counting on you to get things done, which brings us to one Barack Obama…

What does the Obama Administration have to say about their support off a bill laden with pork and clearly against the spirit of what they sold the American people?  It’s interesting.  President Obama and his team are taking a slick approach on this one.  The spin is that this is actually a spending bill that had been hammered out under President Bush and so they’re letting it get through “as is” due to the dire circumstances of our economy requiring swift action.  But, they are promising that moving forward they’ll be fighting earmarks with ever fiber of their being.

Nice spin, but total bull-@@@@! 

The fact is that President Obama has had no trouble turning over his predecessor’s rulings previously.  Why the problem now? 

Furthermore, the president blew an opportunity to really set a tone.  There’s still time.  As someone who thinks the president is doing a good job so far and was happy to see him elected in the first place (I’m no Rush Limbaugh…), I encourage him to think seriously about re-visiting  his support of this spending bill.

Whether he was president or not when the bill was written, it’s his responsibility to make sure it’s a good piece of legislation when he signs it into law.  Obama is clearly trying to have it both ways here.  That move may end up costing him down the line.

It’s good to be a little slick after all, but you’ve got to be careful you don’t end up getting lost on a slippery slope…

Country Second & Here’s The Proof!

16 Dec

The McCain Campaign wanted us all to believe that their guy was putting country first.  Turns out, there’s now indisputable proof he wasn’t!

John McCain had the incredibly important and tough job of picking a running mate this past fall.  No other choice a candidate running for the highest office this land has to offer is more critical for the future well being of the nation.  Certainly, John McCain knew this and he picked Sarah Palin to be a heartbeat away.

McCain being a stand up guy and the kind who puts his nation before his own interests CLEARLY must have picked Palin because she was the most ready to lead the nation should he have been incapitated as President.  Right?

Not so fast, my fellow Americans….  It now turns out that McCain is refusing to sign onto the Palin in 2012 movement.  In fact, he went as far as highlighting other young Republican governors that he thought would be great candidates for the GOP in 2012. 

What gives?

Good question!  And I will tell you.  

John McCain, tireless civil servent, real American hero, and maverick for the masses has seen Sarah Palin up close.  And he’s seen enough.

That should tell you something.  Actually it should tell you two things.

First, Sarah Palin will never be presidential material.  Sorry, Conservative base find yourselves another standard bearer if you want to get back into the White House.

And second, “Country First” was nothing more than a slogan.  Some of us realized that the minute McCain picked the surprisingly unqualified Palin to join his ticket.  Some of you needed more convincing.  Hopefully McCain’s lack of enthusiasm for the woman he chose for the second most powerful job on the planet will be the proof you need. 

Proof that John McCain may be a hero, standup guy and a maverick but he’s also equal parts typical politician.  A typical politician who puts country second when the nation’s best interests interfere with his run to the White House.

After all, why should America stand in the way of Ambition!

Would This Ad Have Changed The Election?

9 Dec

For those of you like me who can’t be bothered to watch the network morning new shows, here’s a link to a Good Morning America report which airs the Reverend Wright ad that John McCain refused to run:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YK5ueV-dqsc

Would this ad have changed things?  We’ll never know.

For my money the right man won (no pun intended) and I think he likely would have even if this ad had run.

Hillary Clinton, in retrospect, did Barack Obama a huge favor by bringing up Reverend Wright in the primaries.  If McCain had gone with this ad, it would have just been old news and another expected move coming from the GOP.  I don’t think it would have turned the tide.

Still, I give John McCain props for (as the kids used to say) not going there.

The Jury Is Still Out, But It’s Not Looking Too Bi-Partisan Just Yet!

26 Nov

Soooooo…. When I started writing about politics on this here blog, I made the case that our current mess has a lot to with both major parties.  I stand by that.  And I stand by my statements where I’ve argued that being locked in partisan struggles and a blue versus red mentality has keep us from achieving much of anything on the most important issues facing us over the last 20 or so years.

Throughout the primaries and much of the general election campaign, I did my best to stay neutral looking for which candidate would be most in line with my views.  And, hopefully, most inclined to reach across the aisle to work with his or her opponents on ways to move us all forward.  In the end both Barack Obama and John McCain talked the talk.  I ended up supporting Barack Obama earlier than I thought I would simply because of John McCain’s horrendous decision on a running mate.  Ultimately, I’m satisfied that America (and me) made the right choice.

That said, my personal plan is to stay skeptical.  Let’s see (and hope) what President Elect Obama can deliver on.  I wish him well, but will not hesitate to criticize him when I disagree with his decisions and policies.

So let’s start right now!

Bi-Partisanship.  It’s a big word.  Lots of syllables.  It’s an even tougher concept to deliver on in DC.  And so far, Obama is not delivering.  I know it’s early, but I was expecting bigger things on this issue.  Where’s Lugar or Hagel?  Not in the Obama Administration.  So far, I think the only Republicans are Robert Gates staying on as Defense Secretary and a retired Marine general who barely admits to being a GOPer who’s in line for the gig as national security adviser.  Neither of those two situations makes me feel that Obama is up to much out of the ordinary.  Seems like the same old same old so far.  After all many administrations have had a person or two from the other side in their ranks.

Bi-partisanship of course is more than about who is in your cabinet.  Despite the Democratic majorities in the House & Senate, Obama may best demonstrate his new way of doing things by actually working with congressional Republicans where possible.

When it gets right down to it, the question is will Obama decide to rule from the center-Left or simply the left?  Given his political capital and the collapse of the GOP, Barack Obama can do either.  My suggestion and hope is that he will decide on ruling from the center-left as a uniter so that America can actually move forward on solving some of our greatest challenges.

America and Americans still can achieve great things.  Here’s hoping Barack Obama will prove to be the kind of leader who can bring out that greatness.  Naming a few more Republicans to his administration would be a good first step…

OBAMA WINS! Why We Are Safer Tonight, How I Was Right & Other Observations!

5 Nov

Like the true political junkie I am, I spent the entire night watching the results come in by channel surfing the broadcast & cable news outlets and checking my Blackberry for online updates during commercial breaks. 

Maybe I just drank the Kool-aid, but what a great night for America.  I am proud of both candidates tonight.  I am proud of my fellow Americans tonight.  Turnout levels were high and old myths have been shattered.  I’m glad the guy I voted for won, but I’m more glad that I live in a nation like America where we can peacefully chose our leaders.  And i’m glad the outcome was decisive and pray it will help us move on together as a nation.

Months and months ago, I wrote on this blog that America was ready for a woman or an African American to be president.  I heard many women and African Americans say that was not the case.  My point was that it had to be the right woman or African American.  I went on record saying that Hillary Clinton was not the right woman.  I left the door open to Barack Obama’s becoming the first African American President.  Tonight, I’m so happy to say to America “I TOLD YOU SO…”

Now a few observations from all my TV watching & Blackberry checking:

America IS safer tonight.  Sarah Palin is not a heartbeat away.  Yes, technically, Barack Obama doesn’t have her executive experience in government, although he did spend the last two years running the most complex and successful political campaign in history.  But, whether that counts or not, I think what is obvious to most fair minded individuals is that Sarah Palin is not up to leading this country.  A few weeks of cram session simply didn’t get her sufficiently prepped.  And to be fair to her, a few weeks of prep was never going to be enough.  Barack Obama has intensively prepared for this moment.  He may or may not become an effective president, but I completely believe we are better off with him leading us than having a 72 year old John McCain lead us with Sarah Palin as his emergency replacement.  Imagine THAT 3AM call?  I don’t want to.  And now America doesn’t have to.

More on Sarah Palin.  In his concession speech, Senator McCain hailed his running mate’s future in American politics and as a leader in his party.  Here’s the truth.  She has crested.  This is as far as she will ever rise and now she’s done.  It was nice of McCain to say, but the truth is that Palin dragged him only down.  While she initially energized the base, it quickly became obvious that she was oblivious and turned off Clinton supporters, independents and other non-committed voters in drove.  But that’s not the only reason I say she is done.  Palin has cold hard history against her.  Almost no person in her expensive shoes (a losing VP candidate on a non-incumbent campaign ticket) has ever come back to capture the White House or for that matter the top spot on their party’s ticket.  Want proof?  Take a look at people like John Edwards, Sargeant Shriver, Lloyd Benson, etc.  If you’re asking “who’s that” then you get my point.  Bye bye Sarah…

On CNN, commentator Bill Bennett made the point that he doesn’t think this election means that America has shifted from center-right to center-left.  He’s still clinging to the idea that America is center-right. Give Bennett this much, he’s right it’s not this election.  It’s actually the last two elections that have shown us that America is shifting politically.  In these last two elections, the GOP has lost a ton of seats in both house of Congress and now the presidency.  What more proof does Bennett need??

That all said, let’s talk about the center.  My firm hope is that President-Elect Obama keeps the emphasis on the center.  Yes, he’ll have the power to rule from the center-left.  I hope he will have the wisdom not to.  The best thing Obama can do is keep his campaign pledge of trying to unite this country together.  As Obama has said, I truly believe that we have much more in common than the things that divide us.  It’s too important a time in our history not to focus on working together and getting things done.  Let’s hope Obama backs up his words.  From his stirring speech tonight, I for one am feeling hopeful.

So happy to write this.  GOODBYE Joe the plumber.  Your 15 minutes is officially at 15:01. 

I like John McCain again tonight.  His concession speech was class all the way.  This is the John McCain so many of us admire.  Sadly, he seemed to lose his way a bit during the campaign and attacked his opponent in personal ways not to be admired while often stretching the truth beyond its breaking point.  Yet, McCain may have saved his soul and the soul of the GOP in the bargain.  McCain resisted the temptation to play the race card in a major way.  His decision to not bring Reverend Wright back into the campaign debate will be questioned by pundits for a long time.  But, it seems to me that McCain simply was uncomfortable going there because in addition to being old news, it risked a major backfire.  McCain put country first by not inflaming racial tensions needlessly and setting back the GOP in the process.  Clearly the demographics of our nation have changed and along with it racial attitudes.  If the Republican Party is to continue to compete, it will have to widen its base beyond the wealthy and the Joe The Plumber (semi-angry white guy) types.  McCain saw that clearly.

Speaking of race.  What an important night.  Perhaps now African Americans and other minorities believe the American Dream is truly possible for everyone.  Perhaps it’s chrystal clear now that not all or perhaps even most whites are racists.  What a chance for our country to heal and come together.  I have never been the hugest Jesse Jackson fan, but I have to admit seeing him on TV in the Obama crowd with a tear rolling down his cheek was moving sight.

Finally, one last note and it’s a Bush bash.  Watching Barack Obama speak it was so refreshing to hear the future leader of our nation demonstrate his understanding of what America truly stands for.  Both here and across the world, America’s greatest gift to this planet has been her ideals.  During his eight years, the current president has often failed to demonstrate a deep understanding of America’s ideals and focused more on rigid political agendas.  Finally, we will again have a president who gets the big picture.

Ok, I lied, here’s the final point.  Not sure if it was this campaign or the Wall Street mess, but I’m thrilled that Americans are coming around to the idea that government is not always the problem.  Reagan sold on us that false idea.  Yes, the government can mess things up.  YOu only need to take a look at the current administration to see that.  And no, I don’t want higher taxes.  What I do want is a government that gives a damn about all its people.  What I do want is a government that plays a role where needed rather than starting needless wars.  Here’s hoping that’s what we got tonight.

May God Bless America and all of us.  And please allow Senators Obama & McCain some much needed rest.  They’ve both earned it.

Sarah Palin Doesn’t Know Where The U.S. Is At War!

2 Nov

Either she’s easily confused, simply misspoke because she’s so tired, or is projecting the future with a war against Iran as a key part of the McCain/Palin Plan…

If McCain pulls out a win on Tuesday, I’m hoping for the middle option.

When Spokespeople Choke! Like McCain Needs This Embarrassment!

31 Oct

As the election gets closer and the polls remain tilted in Barack Obama’s favor, John McCain’s campaign seems to be grasping at anything that has a shot of sticking.  Desperate times of course call for desperate measures.  Recently, they hit Obama for his association with a fellow the McCain campaign labels anti-Israel and anti-Semitic.

Of course, the problem with that charge is that John McCain himself was the head of a committee that sent just under one million dollars to the organization headed by Barack Obama’s allegedly anti-Israel friend.  Woops!

Undaunted, catch this clip of a McCain spokesman doing his best to spread the Barack Obama is anti-Semitic message (AKA lie) and failing miserably.  Where I come from this is called a choke.

Lesson to all you future political operatives.  If you’re gonna lie, make sure to have your story straight before busting it out.  That’s just good common sense.