Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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September 25, 2008

MCCAIN BEHIND ON HIS READING.... On Sunday, Sept. 14, the news was downright frightening -- Lehman Bros. would file for bankruptcy, Merrill Lynch would be bought on deep discount, and AIG was in very deep trouble. On Monday, Sept. 15, the markets tanked and the crisis gripped Wall Street. On Friday, Sept. 19, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson unveiled a $700 billion bailout proposal.

And on Tuesday, Sept. 22, John McCain couldn't commit to the proposal, because he hadn't read it. Seriously.

I'd heard something about this yesterday, but watching the video helps drive the point home. Asked by the NBC affiliate in Cleveland about whether he was prepared to support Paulson's plan, McCain said, "I have not had a chance to see it in writing. I have to examine it."

We are, just to clarify, talking about a three-page document. It would have taken McCain a few minutes to read. But despite the seriousness of the situation, McCain hadn't bothered.

Taking this one step further, on Tuesday, Sept. 22, McCain hadn't read the Paulson plan, but on Thursday, Sept. 24, McCain announced that he's dropping everything to work on a bailout plan on the Hill.

I initially thought McCain's comment may have been in reference to the Dodd plan -- which was released Tuesday, and which McCain might have reasonably missed -- but the campaign told the Politico that McCain was actually talking about the text of the Paulson plan.

It's almost as if McCain doesn't want to be taken seriously.

Steve Benen 12:28 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (34)

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Comments

2 and half pages actually. McCain is lazier than the Condescending Jerk with the MBA (a/k/a Mr. 14%) who doesn't know that Mortgage-holders are the lenders

Borrowers with adjustable-rate mortgages, who had been planning to sell or refinance their homes at a higher price, were stuck with homes worth less than expected, along with mortgage payments they could not afford. As a result, many mortgage-holders began to default.

Posted by: molly bloom on September 25, 2008 at 12:32 PM | PERMALINK

Give him a break, he's still working through Greenspan's book.

Posted by: RollaMO on September 25, 2008 at 12:38 PM | PERMALINK

Wow, really plays into the "can't do two things at once" line, doesn't it?

Posted by: Leo on September 25, 2008 at 12:39 PM | PERMALINK

I consider this a very serious and important post. I will comment on it when I find the time to read it.

Vote for me.

Posted by: Cheney's Third Nipple on September 25, 2008 at 12:40 PM | PERMALINK

This, alone, should disqualify him. He wants to put the campaign, and apparently the world, on pause until he's ready to debate. He claims that his presence will help in the Senate. Really? It's 3 pages. Three. He's a Senator, running for President. He can get a copy. An aide could have had it faxed, e-mailed, or even, maybe, hand transcribed from any of the plethora of other sources for the paper. Who could vote for someone so lazy?

Posted by: Diogenes on September 25, 2008 at 12:47 PM | PERMALINK

To paraphrase Sarah Palin, "What exactly does John McCain do all day?"

Posted by: Bob Loblaw on September 25, 2008 at 12:48 PM | PERMALINK

As Obama said back in July, "it's Like These Guys Take Pride in Being Ignorant."

Posted by: Lukeness on September 25, 2008 at 12:50 PM | PERMALINK

And out of curiosity, has any kept a list of all things that McCain and Palin have promised to "get back to us" about? I think that'd be pretty funny to see.

Posted by: Bob Loblaw on September 25, 2008 at 12:51 PM | PERMALINK

I am really starting to wonder if anybody wants to win this election. Everyone seems to be positioning themselves for 2012. Maybe they should just give the job to the last person to say "not it."

Posted by: sophronia on September 25, 2008 at 12:53 PM | PERMALINK

I just read it. Took me less than ten minutes. I was watching an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer at the same time, too. Look at me, reading and multitasking!

Also, did the Bush administration really think this was going to fly? It pretty much says that the Treasury Secretary can do what he wants, when he wants, and nobody can tell him different. Granted, they're used to getting whatever massive expansion of powers they're trying for, whether by fair means or foul. But "hi, we'll just buy crap with lots of money and no you can't ask us any questions about what we're doing with the money?" Oh, wait, I guess that's how the whole Iraq contracting mess played out.

Posted by: Wally on September 25, 2008 at 12:54 PM | PERMALINK

McCain is still running ads in at least two markets.

McCain's campaign issued talking points.

McCain's surrogates still attacking Obama.

McCain giving speeches and interviews.

McCain hasn't suspended jack shit.
.

Posted by: Grand Moff Texan on September 25, 2008 at 12:54 PM | PERMALINK

Bob Loblaw.

I finally read your poster name all the way through (out loud to myself) and got the joke. Outstanding!

I really should take more time reading long things like that all the way through.

Posted by: colonpowwow on September 25, 2008 at 12:55 PM | PERMALINK

I'll bet he read the poll numbers, though. It reminds me of how he had a home where the taxes weren't paid. Or how Huckabee didn't know what an NIE was. Or Bush requiring PDB's to be reduced to a page or so and then presented orally. I guess they wouldn't want their "common sense" crowd to think they're overachievers.

Posted by: Danp on September 25, 2008 at 12:55 PM | PERMALINK

Taking this one step further, on Tuesday, Sept. 22, McCain hadn't read the Paulson plan, but on Thursday, Sept. 24, McCain announced that he's dropping everything to work on a bailout plan on the Hill.

Worse than that. He announced the suspension the next day, Wednesday, Sept. 23.

Has he read the plan yet? Or will he read it on the flight between New York and Washington, once he finally finishes with Lady de Rothschild, Katie Couric and Bill Clinton?

Posted by: shortstop on September 25, 2008 at 12:58 PM | PERMALINK

It seems that any Republican candidate for office must be categorized as ignorant, crooked, or they were forced into a position they did not want to seek and are very likely still somewhat ignorant and somewhat crooked. Please convince us you are not really trying to throw this election because the reasons you would do that scare me.

Posted by: SteveA on September 25, 2008 at 1:03 PM | PERMALINK

McCain HAS to go back to Washington and fix things. After all, he's the McSiah.

Posted by: Cap'n Chucky on September 25, 2008 at 1:03 PM | PERMALINK

Is McCain in DC yet?

Posted by: Luther on September 25, 2008 at 1:04 PM | PERMALINK

McCain is living in a fog of vague ideas and grandiose visions. One might call Sarah Palin the Tinkerbell to his Peter Pan except he's so damned old he's more like the ancient crocodile with the clock in his tummy.

It's really sad that he thinks nobody is noticing all of this, because more and more people are. And the media is finally "growing a pair" so he can't even hide behind their protective screen anymore.

Posted by: Curmudgeon on September 25, 2008 at 1:05 PM | PERMALINK

I gotta share this--

Barney Frank: "We're going to have to interrupt a negotiating session tomorrow between the Democrats and Republicans on a bill where I think we are getting pretty close, and troop down to the White House for their photo op. I wish they'd checked with us."

Classic.

Posted by: CJ on September 25, 2008 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

But for 5 1/2 years I didn't have anything to read

Posted by: John McCain and I approved this message on September 25, 2008 at 1:10 PM | PERMALINK

It strikes me that if a significant number of Republicans don't support the bailout bill, Democrats would be well advised to walk away at least until the Republicans come around.

Pelosi and Reid should say that to work the bill must represent a bipartisan consensus.

Posted by: Ron Byers on September 25, 2008 at 1:13 PM | PERMALINK

"McCain hasn't suspended jack shit."

Except the debates.

Isn't this the kind of move you would expect from someone who graduated at the bottom of their class?

Posted by: John Henry on September 25, 2008 at 1:15 PM | PERMALINK

They have to do an ad on this.

"It took over a week for John McCain to read the Paulson bailout proposal during the biggest financial crisis since the Depression. How long will it take him to read a brief on future crises were he elected President?"

Posted by: bdop4 on September 25, 2008 at 1:17 PM | PERMALINK

Bob Loblaw.

I finally read your poster name all the way through (out loud to myself) and got the joke. Outstanding!

As Bob would surely like to note, the joke is from "Arrested Development". Loblaw was a lawyer played by 'Chachi' replacing the lawyer played by 'Fonzie', who in one episode had to jump over a caught shark on a dock ... oh never mind - just buy the dvds

Posted by: apm on September 25, 2008 at 1:21 PM | PERMALINK

It's all part of the new rally the base strategy. For them, being ignorant is a plus. Just look how much they love Sarah Palin.

Posted by: ibid on September 25, 2008 at 1:30 PM | PERMALINK

Can someone please email John McCain about this new (for him) speed reading technique. Oh wait, he doesn't email either.

http://www.evelynwood.com.au/

Posted by: on September 25, 2008 at 1:50 PM | PERMALINK

It's almost as if McCain doesn't want to be taken seriously.

That strategy worked pretty well for Shrub, didn't it?

-Z

Posted by: Zorro on September 25, 2008 at 1:55 PM | PERMALINK

I guess he suspended his campaign so that he could sit down and read it, all three pages.

Posted by: Algernon on September 25, 2008 at 1:56 PM | PERMALINK

I have to believe he'd read it by then. My guess is he just didn't want to talk about it at the time as he'd be forced to discuss the embarrassment of his own positions against himself. "I haven't read it," is just what he came up with to blow off the question. Political figures say that all the time.

Posted by: ORelse on September 25, 2008 at 2:05 PM | PERMALINK

John McCain says, "My friends" and expects us to take him seriously. Then he says he hasn't had time to read two pages of text.

My friends, we can't take John McCain seriously. Seriously, we can't take John McCain.

------

If Republicans sign onto a bill calling for the nonsensical fantasy of $700,000,000,000 of deficit creating, unregulated, unspecified, undefined spending, then Democrats will pound them with it like a baseball bat for the next hundred years.

Bank on it!

Posted by: MarkH on September 25, 2008 at 2:15 PM | PERMALINK

I have a Friday night replacement for McCain.

Cynthia McKinney is ready to go!

Posted by: SocraticGadfly on September 25, 2008 at 2:19 PM | PERMALINK

I firmly believe that they are trying to cover up a cognitive medical crisis of some sort, concealing something like a stroke in the confusion of the moment.

Posted by: Cookie on September 25, 2008 at 3:31 PM | PERMALINK

Hey give the man a break, he's probably not a speed reader. I'm sure he'll have made his way through it in a day or so. Having extra time on his hands from canceling the debate will help!

Posted by: LaPopessa on September 25, 2008 at 3:49 PM | PERMALINK

How about giving the open debate slot on Friday to Bob Barr?

Posted by: colonpowwow on September 25, 2008 at 5:00 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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