Monday, September 29, 2008

Gingrey (R-GA) Votes Against Bailout; Calls for Market-Driven Response

U.S. Congressman Phil Gingrey today voted against the Wall Street bailout proposal but called on Congress to immediately return to DC after Rosh Hashanah to work on the issue.

“Thanks to the efforts of Senator McCain, John Boehner and other conservative Members of Congress, the bill we voted on today is vastly better for the taxpayer than the bill that was originally proposed,” said Gingrey. “Senator McCain and Leader Boehner were resolute in their opposition to Democratic proposals that would steer revenues from this program into the coffers of liberal groups like ACORN. Thanks to their leadership, the final text of this bill rejected this provision as well as giveaways to union bosses.”

“Despite these improvements, I still do not believe this bill goes far enough to protect Main Street. Once the government steps in and puts these troubled institutions back in business, we must ensure that they cannot make the same greedy and irresponsible decisions that got us into this mess.”

“We simply cannot preserve our free market economy by sacrificing the very principles that underlie it. I have heard loud and clear from my constituents throughout Northwest Georgia, and they do not want to gamble hundreds of billions of their hard-earned tax dollars on Wall Street’s poor choices. They want to preserve our financial system, but demand that we think more about the taxpayer in developing the solution to this mess than Washington and Wall Street did when they got us into it.”

“Along with a number of my colleagues, I have cosponsored a free-market alternative to tackle this economic crisis while protecting the taxpayer. To date, however, the Democratic Leadership has refused to even consider this alternative. I understand the need for swift action, but I cannot understand leaving options off the table that could provide market liquidity and restore confidence in our financial system with far less risk to the taxpayer.”

“Make no mistake, inaction is NOT an option. I think everyone can agree that something must be done to stem the economic crisis facing our nation – and I hope we move as quickly as possible to work on and approve that plan. However, while the bill we voted on today aims to be an answer to this economic turmoil, I do not believe it is the best one. A commitment to our core Democratic values isn’t something that changes with the weather. It is in our most difficult crises that the true measure of our principles shines through. During times such as the financial crisis we currently face, we must stand firm in these principles for the good of the American people.”

*The centerpiece of the alternative introduced by Rep. Gingrey and other conservative colleagues is the creation of a fee-based insurance protection program for these mortgage-backed securities that would stabilize our financial markets without making the Federal government the nation’s mortgage company. This alternative would also draw private capital into the market by bringing profits from U.S. companies operating overseas back into the United States to be invested. Further, our alternate proposal would enact a two-year suspension of the capital gains tax to encourage businesses to spur investment and create new jobs. Last but certainly not least, this alternative would require real reform to address the root causes of this crisis. Our alternative holds Freddie and Fannie’s feet to the fire to stop unsound mortgages from the start, imposes new commonsense regulatory rules to ensure the true economic value of these assets, and establishes a policy to strengthen the value of the American dollar.

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John McCain On Today's House Vote

"I speak to you at an hour of crisis for our nation's economy.

"I believe the crisis facing our economy could have a grave impact on every American worker, small business owner, and family if our leaders fail to act.

"I share the anger and frustration that many Americans feel toward reckless and corrupt mismanagement on Wall Street and in Washington.

"I returned to Washington last week to work on a bipartisan rescue plan. It was the only plan at that time on the table but lacked enough support to pass. It also lacked sufficient accountability and transparency to justify expenditure of the taxpayers' money.

"At the time, the concerns of all members were not being heard. My colleagues were worried about the size of the plan and the risk it posed to taxpayers. I shared those concerns and I laid out principles that I thought must be adhered to. Those principles included responsible oversight, effective transparency, added protections for the taxpayers, and a cap on excessive salaries for executives.

"I also believe that the legislation should have no earmarks. I worked hard to play a constructive role in bringing everyone to the table. The plan is now significantly improved. We strengthened taxpayers' protections and oversight, and the taxpayers were on the hook for less money up front. Don't get me wrong - it isn't perfect. And the fact that taxpayers could have to spend a single dollar to create stability in our economy is a decision that I do not take lightly.

"I was hopeful that the improved rescue plan would have had the votes needed to pass because addressing a credit crisis is of vital importance to families, small businesses, and every working American who must be assured that their assets are safe and protected and that our economy will continue to function.

"Today, I've spoken to the Federal Chairman Bernanke, Secretary Paulson, Congressional leaders and now it's time for all members of Congress to go back to the drawing board.

"I call on Congress to get back obviously immediately to address this crisis. Our leaders are expected to leave partisanship at the door and come to the table to solve our problems. Senator Obama and his allies in Congress infused unnecessary partisanship into the process. Now is not the time to fix the blame. It's time to fix the problem.

"I would hope that all our leaders, all of them, can put aside short-term political goals and do what's in the best interest of the American people. Thank you."
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McCain-Palin Campaign Conference Call On Democrats' Failure To Pass The Economic Recovery Bill

"So there was a genuine failure that was facing America and Senator McCain accepted the challenge, suspended his campaign and returned to Washington with the intent of delivering to the American people the relief that they certainly need and in doing so was hoping to build a bipartisan effort to provide that relief." -- Doug Holtz-Eakin, McCain-Palin Senior Policy Adviser

Today, the McCain-Palin campaign held a press conference call with Doug Holtz-Eakin, McCain-Palin senior policy adviser, on the Democrats failure to pass the economic bailout bill:

Doug Holtz Eakin: "Today is obviously a very, very sad day for American families, for businesses, for the everyday life of the economy's ability to function, and a day that we hope to put behind us as quickly as possible. As the Senator said, in the end, it is time for the House and the Senate to regroup, to go forward in a bipartisan fashion, and to find a way to stabilize the financial markets and stop this great rift in the American economy. Before I open it up to questions, I do want to take this opportunity to dial the clock back a little bit and explain exactly what John McCain has done for the past week, and in the process hopefully lay to rest some of the charges that I don't think are exactly merited.

"Beginning a little less than a week ago, John McCain recognized that we had three great problems. Number one, we had an economic problem, a financial market which was both destabilized in and of itself and threatening to get to the point, that sadly we are very close to, where ordinary businesses cannot borrow simply to hold their inventory, to bridge the gap to make their payroll, and indeed the things that are conventional in a large modern economy.

"He also recognized that the solution that was on the table to address this issue was not adequate in its content for the protection of taxpayers, the oversight of the conduct of the stabilization efforts and a variety of other factors, and it did not have votes to pass, and in the end, it did not pass. This failure to have the votes is recognized by the other side as well. Senator Reid called upon Senator McCain to bring Republicans on board and Speaker Pelosi said quite clearly that Democrats in the House were not going to pass without Republicans and Republicans were not in fact engaged in the process in the House. So there was a genuine failure that was facing America and Senator McCain accepted the challenge, suspended his campaign and returned to Washington with the intent of delivering to the American people the relief that they certainly need and in doing so was hoping to build a bipartisan effort to provide that relief.

"He encountered partisanship almost immediately. Senator Reid criticized him, having called upon him to do this. He was criticized for doing it. He went to a White House meeting which was sadly lacking in a spirit of bipartisan problem-solving. Instead, it devolved into figure pointing partisanship. At the meeting, he held his tongue and chose not to engage in that very kind of spirited partisan debate -- instead defending only the House Republicans' right to be involved in this process, and picking up the pieces on Friday morning by visiting with the Senate, visiting with the House, explaining at every step of the way that all parties have a seat at the table and explained to House Republicans as well that they needed to take that seat and provide a negotiator. He engaged in the process and contributed constructively to that and what ensued was exactly that.

"House Republicans took the opportunity to choose Minority Whip Blunt as their negotiator. It appeared over the next several hours on Friday that the process was moving forward. There were reports of staff meetings that were productive and helpful. Senator McCain went to the debate, showed the American people that he was prepared to be the next President, came back to Washington that night, arriving about 4 a.m., and got up the next morning and continued to monitor the process. And at all points in this, I think it is essential to emphasize that he did his job knowing number one that it was important for him to be involved in pushing the process.

"He was never advocating for particular parties. He was not advocating for particular ideas in the bill. He wanted a process where all parties were engaged, all parties were in good faith negotiating that would lead to a kind of legislation that would alleviate this problem. He also made the conscious decision to not attract attention to John McCain knowing that he was the target of partisan attacks, knowing that he would be accused if he did raise his profile of injecting presidential politics into this important process. In response, he's criticized but he did the right thing. John McCain takes criticism knowing that a national need is being addressed, and he continued to both engage with the members who needed to be comforted with the difficult votes, encouraged to understand the issues, checking with the facts on the ground, with Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke, Secretary Paulson, other members of the process.

"Today, that process broke down and it broke down quite frankly with partisan attacks from Speaker Pelosi on the floor in the midst of what should have been the final moment of bipartisanship."

Listen To The Conference Call

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Senator McCain's Speech at Ohio Rally Today

I'm happy to be introduced by Governor Sarah Palin from the Great State of Alaska. She is a bit of a maverick herself. She will be my partner in reforming everything that's broken in Washington, and she is a leader who knows what it means to put her country first.

Sarah has a debate this week against my friend and colleague Joe Biden. He is a good man. But his is not the heart of a reformer, and if there's one thing every voter I've met this year agrees on, it's the need for big, tough reforms. We need the kind of reforms that require us to ruffle feathers and take on the entrenched special interests. And that's Governor Palin's specialty! Whether it's taking on big oil, or members of her own party, Governor Palin knows who she works for. She works for you!

Sarah and I have news for the big-spending, smooth-talking, me-first, country-second crowd in Washington and on Wall Street:

Change is coming!

We need reform in Washington and on Wall Street. When the financial crisis threatened the economic security of all Americans, I laid out principles to protect hardworking Americans. I believed that inaction was not an option.

I put my campaign on hold for a couple days last week to fight for a rescue plan that put you and your economic security first. I fought for a plan that protected taxpayers, homeowners, consumers and small business owners.

I went to Washington last week to make sure that the taxpayers of Ohio and across this great country were not left footing the bill for mistakes made on Wall Street and in Washington.
Some people have criticized my decision, but I will never, ever be a president who sits on the sidelines when this country faces a crisis. Some of you may have noticed, but it's not my style to simply "phone it in."

I am a Teddy Roosevelt Republican. I believe our leaders belong "in the Arena" when our country faces a challenge. I've never been afraid of stepping in to solve problems for the American people, and I'm not going to stop now.

Senator Obama took a very different approach to the crisis our country faced. At first he didn't want to get involved. Then he was "monitoring the situation." That's not leadership, that's watching from the sidelines.

And watching from the sidelines is exactly what got us into this mess. It was the lack of accountability and oversight that put your tax dollars on the line. But it shouldn't be surprising that Senator Obama isn't interested in protecting your tax dollars.

Senator Obama has proposed more than 860 billion dollars in new spending. He was asked in our debate Friday to name a single program he would consider cutting to help our country through this crisis, and he struggled to name a single program!

Senator Obama is a fan of all that spending because he's always cheering for higher taxes or against tax relief. He's voted that way 94 different times.

Two times, on March 14, 2008 and June 4, 2008, in the Democratic budget resolution, he voted to raise taxes on people making just 42,000 dollars per year. He even said at the time that this vote for higher taxes on the middle class was "getting our nation's priorities back on track." Then something amazing happened: on Friday night, he looked the American people in the eye and said it never happened. My friends, we need a President who will always tell the American people the truth.

Senator Obama's record of higher taxes and more spending isn't going to help "95 percent" of Americans, as he likes to say: it's going to hurt 100 percent of us by growing government, slowing growth, and destroying jobs.

Times are tough for our economy, but I am confident America and Americans will emerge stronger than before. I will do my part. My commitment to the American people is this: I will clean up the Wall Street mess, reform Washington, and focus the entire federal government on a pro-growth agenda that creates jobs and gets this country back to work and back on track.

Now, let me give you some straight talk about this election:

In 36 days your vote will determine the next president of this great country we all love. I think the differences between Senator Obama and myself are pretty clear.

A vote for me will guarantee immediate pro growth action: tax cuts for America's hard working families, strong support for small businesses which are the back bone of our economy, and an end to pork barrel spending in Washington.

A vote for Barrack Obama will guarantee higher taxes, fewer jobs and an even bigger federal government. These policies will deepen our recession.

A vote for me will guarantee that the forces that have brought down our economy will be out of business. I will end the corrupt practices on Wall Street and the back room deals in Washington DC. I will hold accountable those responsible for the oversight and protection of consumers, taxpayers and homeowners.

A vote for Barack Obama will leave this country at risk during one of the most severe challenges to America's economy since the Great Depression.

You see, when it comes to growing the economy and protecting you from the corruption of Wall Street and Washington, Senator Obama just doesn't get it.

Americans have had enough of business as usual. Americans have had enough of the cozy relationships between politicians and power brokers. The status quo will end on November 4 with a vote for me and Sarah Palin.

You see, we've made the tough choices that make us unpopular in our own party. We have pushed for difficult reforms that leave special interests on the sidelines and give "the little guy" a seat at the table.

We will never forget who we work for -- we work for you.

So, that's how we see this election: Country First or Obama First, and I have a feeling I know which side you're all on.

When it came to cutting taxes for seniors, for working families, for small businesses -- my opponent did not put the hard working people of this country first.

When it came time to support our troops fighting to protect our freedoms and way of life, my opponent said he'd never deprive them of the funds they needed to fight -- and then he did just that. Barack Obama voted against funding the equipment our troops rely on as they fight to protect us. That is not putting the men and women of our military first.

When it comes time to reach across the aisle and work with members of both parties to get things done for the American people -- my opponent can't name a single occasion in which he fought against his party's leadership to get something done for the country. That is not putting the interests of the country first.

The country is looking for leadership. The country is hungry for change. They want a leader who will stand up to entrenched special interests -- in Washington, and on Wall Street. They deserve a president who knows when to put politics aside and act in the best interest of the nation. The choice is clear. You have my word. I will always put this country first.

Westmoreland Opposes Bailout

U.S. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland today voted against the $700 billion bailout plan, but pledged his support for returning to work on the issue immediately after Rosh Hashanah.

“As the financial crisis has unfolded over the past year, we’ve slowly watched the dominos drop one after another and we’ve seen one bailout after another,” Westmoreland said. “Each time we were told: ‘This bailout is going to fix the problem.’ We’ve already spent hundreds of billions of dollars that our government does not have and yet the problems continue to deepen. I’ve read all the documents and listened to the experts and no one can say – not even with nearly $1 trillion on the line – that this will work.

“Undoubtedly, this is one of the toughest votes that I’ve taken in Congress. When faced with a tough decision, I rely on my principles – that smaller government is better and that markets work better bureaucratic decisions. While this bailout may work in the short term, I’m concerned greatly about the long-term consequences. When government willingly steps in to rescue people from risky behavior, government creates an incentive for future risky behavior. When businesses accept greater regulation in order to receive a bailout, we enlarge government, distort markets and render capitalism less efficient.

“I do believe that our nation faces great financial challenges right now, and I believe that Congress should act. But the House should not appropriate up to $700 billion for a bill that didn’t exist until a few days ago and that never went through one committee hearing. This legislation costs way too much to pass through Congress with so little scrutiny. If the process is broken, the product is flawed. Combined with war costs, other bailouts and the stimulus packages, we can’t afford to be wrong with a price tag this high.

“I have supported an alternative plan that would lower taxes and regulations to create an incentive for private money, foreign and domestic, to flow back into the credit markets. Unfortunately, alternative versions were shut out of this closed process.”

Chambliss, Isakson Statement on Status of Financial Rescue Plan

U.S. Senators Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., and Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today made the following statements regarding the House’s rejection of the financial rescue plan.

“Obviously the House vote today puts everything in a state of uncertainty and complicates the issue of whether or not the Senate will vote on a financial rescue plan, and I am certainly concerned about the way the markets have responded to today’s vote,” said Chambliss. “I believe failure by Congress to take action on the current financial crisis in the right way will have serious repercussions on Main Street. Something must be done, but any proposed legislation must protect our citizens and taxpayers and their economic well being first and foremost.”

“This is the most important issue we’ve faced in a half-century. Our country is struggling. Doing nothing is unacceptable,” Isakson said. “I hope cooler heads will come to the table so we can move forward with a proposal that is in the best interests of the American people, their savings and their future.”

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Volunteer in a Battleground State

Dear Friend,

The McCain-Palin campaign needs your help to win. We need volunteers in Florida and North Carolina from now until Election Day. Can you come to Florida or North Carolina for a day, a weekend, a week, or the final 72 hours of the campaign?

If you are interested in deploying to Florida or North Carolina at your own expense, please send an email to either or based on your preference. We ask that you provide the following information in your email.

Town and County of Residence
Phone Number
Email Address
Dates You are Interested in Volunteering
Preferred Location in FL or NC
Our campaign is deeply grateful for your support and we appreciate all you are doing to help elect John McCain.

Thank you,
Buzz Jacobs
Southeast Regional Campaign Manager
McCain-Palin 2008

McCain-Palin 2008 Launches New TV Ad: "Promise"

Saturday McCain-Palin 2008 released its latest television ad, entitled "Promise." The ad highlights Barack Obama breaking his promise to support the troops on the ground in Afghanistan and Iraq. While Barack Obama dismisses this, Joe Biden said that his running-mate was making "a political point" and was "cutting off support that will save the lives of thousands of American troops." The ad will be televised nationally.


Script For "Promise" (TV :30)
ANNCR: In the midst of war, Senator Obama voted to cut off funding for our troops.
What did Biden say?
JOE BIDEN: "They said they voted against the money to make a political point."
ANNCR: He added
JOE BIDEN: "This is cutting off support that will save the lives of thousands of American troops."
ANNCR: Barack Obama.
Playing politics. Risking lives.
Not ready to lead.
JOHN MCCAIN: I'm John McCain and I approve this message.
AD FACTS: Script For "Promise" (TV :30)
ANNCR: In the midst of war, Senator Obama voted to cut off funding for our troops. What did Biden say?

· Barack Obama Voted Against Providing $94.4 Billion In Critical Funding For The Troops In Iraq And Afghanistan. (H.R. 2206, CQ Vote #181: Passed 80-14: R 42-3; D 37-10; I 1-1, 5/24/07, Obama Voted Nay)

· Barack Obama Voted Against The Emergency War Spending "After Pledging To Support Troop Funding." "After pledging to support troop funding, Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama in May voted against $124 billion in emergency war spending, following the lead of Democratic presidential candidate and war opponent Sen. Christopher J. Dodd of Connecticut. The bill nevertheless passed in a lopsided 80-14 vote. Mr. Biden, the only Democratic presidential contender in the Senate to vote for the bill, criticized his primary rivals for allowing liberal bloggers to dictate the war debate." (S.A. Miller, "GOP To Play Card Of Strong Defense," The Washington Times, 7/9/07)

JOE BIDEN: "They said they voted against the money to make a political point."

· Joe Biden: "They said they voted against the money to make a political point." (Joe Biden, Remarks At The Iowa State Fair, 8/15/07)

ANNCR: He added... JOE BIDEN: "This is cutting off support that will save the lives of thousands of American troops."
ANNCR: Barack Obama. Playing politics. Risking lives. Not ready to lead.
JOHN MCCAIN: I'm John McCain and I approve this message.

· Joe Biden Criticized Barack Obama And Fellow Democrats For Voting Against Funding U.S. Troops In Iraq And Afghanistan, Accusing Them Of "Cutting Off Support That Will Save The Lives Of Thousands Of American Troops." BIDEN: "Hundreds of lives are being saved and will be saved by us sending these vehicles over which we are funding with this supplemental legislation. And I want to ask any of my other colleagues, would they, in fact, vote to cut off the money for those troops to protect them? That's the right question. This isn't cutting off the war. This is cutting off support that will save the lives of thousands of American troops." (NBC's, "Meet The Press," 9/9/07)
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Friday, September 26, 2008

McCain-Palin 2008 Statement re: Debate

McCain-Palin 2008 Communications Director Jill Hazelbaker issued the following statement on tonight's Presidential Debate:

"There was one man who was presidential tonight, that man was John McCain. There was another who was political, that was Barack Obama. John McCain won this debate and controlled the dialogue throughout, whether it was the economy, taxes, spending, Iraq or Iran. There was a leadership gap, a judgment gap, and a boldness gap on display tonight, a fact Barack Obama acknowledged when he said John McCain was right at least five times. Tonight's debate showed John McCain in command of the issues and presenting a clear agenda for America's future."

Georgia: Members of GA's Rural Water Association Asked to Support U.S. Senator Chambliss (R-GA)

Members of Georgia’s Rural Water Association this week received a letter encouraging them to support the re-election of U.S. Senator Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.).

The letter, signed by Jimmy Matthews, Executive Director of the Georgia Rural Water Association, was mailed on September 18th to 1,000 Association members around the state. The letter highlights Saxby’s accomplishments including his commitment to Georgia’s rural communities, efforts to lower gas prices and increase domestic oil drilling and lower taxes for Georgia families.

“ Saxby has been instrumental in maintaining funding for the Rural Water and Waste Disposal program which you know is vital to all our rural communities and their immediate needs and future growth,” said Matthews. He continues, “Saxby has also supported and worked with us to fund the Circuit Riders who work with our communities to provide safe and clean water supplies and to help them comply with the Environmental Protection Administration regulations.”

Also last week, Atlanta’s Thomas Barber Shop owner Tommy Thompson sent a similar letter to 2,000 barbers all over Georgia urging their support of Saxby’s re-election. Over 1,700 Funeral Directors also received a letter signed by Lauren W. McDonald III, owner of L.W. McDonald and Son Funeral Home in Cumming, and David W. Roach, Funeral Director at West Cobb Funeral Home, Inc. in Cobb County, encouraging them to also support Saxby this November.

Saxby is seeking re-election for his second term in the United States Senate. His re-election has been endorsed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 180 Georgia County Commissioners, 190 city officials, 239 law enforcement officers, over 100 Georgia Democrats, veterans from all over Georgia and Vets for Freedom, the nation’s largest Iraq and Afghanistan veterans’ organization. He is the Ranking Republican Member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry and a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and the Senate Rules Committee. Senator Chambliss previously represented Georgia’s 8th congressional district for four terms in the U.S. House of Representatives where he served as the Chairman of the House Intelligence Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security.
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300 Retired Generals and Admirals Endorse John McCain for President!

Wow, this one must have taken a bit of organizing! I'm impressed! - jmd

U.S. Senator John McCain's presidential campaign today announced that 300 retired generals and admirals from around the country are endorsing John McCain for president. The retired generals and admirals announced their support with the following letter:

"We have had the honor and privilege of serving as career officers in the United States Armed Forces, and of serving shoulder to shoulder with so many of the fine young men and women who are the backbone of America's Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. It is that experience that informs our judgment that John McCain is the presidential candidate best suited to serve as America's Commander-in Chief from the day of his inauguration.

"Our next president will confront national security challenges as significant as those faced by any administration in at least a generation. Success will require a leader with proven tenacity, judgment and courage. It will also require a leader with detailed knowledge of our military and other instruments of national power, and with years of experience dealing seriously with foreign leaders.

"John McCain's entire life has been devoted to the service of America. Throughout a long and distinguished career in the military and in Congress, he has repeatedly displayed the courage and integrity to place America's interests first -- regardless of personal cost. And he has demonstrated the experience and wisdom to lead America -- and, importantly, our allies -- in effectively dealing with complex and vitally important national security challenges around the world.

"We unequivocally endorse him to continue his service to the country as the next President of the United States."

Rear Admiral John W. Adams, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Patrick O. Adams, USAF (Ret.)
Major General Albert B. Akers, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Paul Albritton, USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Richard Allen, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral James F. Amerault, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Vincent J. Anzilotti, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Charlie Bagnal, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General John "Doc" Bahnsen, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Kenneth P. Barausky, USN (Ret.)
Major General Barry D. Bates, USA (Ret.)
Major General Ron Beckwith, USMC (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Martin R. Berndt, USMC (Ret.)
Brigadier General Charles L. Bishop, USAF (Ret.)
Major General John Blatsos, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Ben Blaz, USMC (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Harry Blot, USMC (Ret.)
Brigadier General William A. "Art" Bloomer, USMC (Ret.)
Major General John L. Borling, USAF (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Mike Bowman, III, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Roger Box, USN (Ret.)
Major General Patrick Brady, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jerry Breast, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Bruce Bremner, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Jeremiah Brophy, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Thomas Brown, III, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Richard A. Browning, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General Tom Bruner, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Lyle Bull, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral E.A. Burkhalter, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jay Campbell, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jim Carey, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Jimmy Cash, USAF (Ret.)
Major General George Cates, USMC (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Steve Chadwick, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Steve Clarey, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Albert P. Clark, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General Clifton "Tip" Clark, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General Wes Clark, USAF (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Edward Clexton, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Richard A. Coleman, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Leroy Collins, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General John B. Conaway, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Ralph Cook, USN (Ret.)
Major General Richard M. Cooke, USMC (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Matthew T. "Terry" Cooper, USMC (Ret.)
Major General Mike Coyne, USMC (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Robert C. Crates, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Howard, Jr. Crowell, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Robert Dastin, USAF (Ret.)
General James B. Davis, USAF (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Walter J. Davis, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral James P. Davidson, USN (Ret.)
Major General Hollis Davidson, USMC (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Kevin Delaney, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jerry Denton, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Chip Diehl, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Richard F. Donnelly, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Frank Donovan, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Bill Dougherty, USN (Ret.)
Major General George Douglas, USAF (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Walter D. Druen, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Phillip J. Duffy, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Richard M. Dunleavy, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Robert F. Dunn, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral James W. Eastwood, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral James E. Eckelberger, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Russ Eggers, USAF (Ret.)
Major General James N. Ellis, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Paul Engel, USN (Ret.)
Major General Bill Eshelman, USMC (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Marsha Johnson Evans, USN (Ret.)
Major General Merrill Evans, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral James H. Flatley, III, USN (Ret.)
Admiral S. Robert Foley, USN (Ret.)
General John W. Foss, USA (Ret.)
Major General Stuart French, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Ronne Froman, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Vance H. Fry, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Robert Byron Fuller, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Skip Furlong, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Barton Gilbert, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Wendell Gilbert, USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Hank Giffin, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Andrew Giordano, USN (Ret.)
Major General Rick Goddard, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Ted Gordon, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Russell W. Gorman, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral H.E. "Rick" Grant, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Thomas N. Griffin, USA (Ret.)
Major General Jeffery R. Grime, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General Tom Hall, USAF (Ret.)
Admiral Ronald J. Hays, USN (Ret.)
Admiral Thomas B. Hayward, USN (Ret.)
Major General Guy Hecker, USAF (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Rolland Heiser, USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Dick Herr, USCG (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Robert P. Hickey, USN (Ret.)
Major General Geoffrey Higginbotham, USMC (Ret.)
Major General Don Hilbert, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Virgil Hill, USN (Ret.)
Major General Kent Hillhouse, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Edward J. "Ned" Hogan, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral A. Byron Holderby, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Grant T. Hollett, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Admiral James L. Holloway, USN (Ret.)
Major General William Hoover, USAF (Ret.)
General Charles A. "Chuck" Horner, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General James Hourin, USAF (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Jefferson D. Howell, Jr., USMC (Ret.)
Lieutenant General John I. Hudson, USMC (Ret.)
Vice Admiral James D. Hull, USN (Ret.)
Major General Evan Hultman, USA (Ret.)
Major General Charles A. Ingram, USA (Ret.)
Admiral Bobby R. Inman, USN (Ret.)
Major General Harry Jenkins, USMC (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Ronald H. Jesberg, USN (Ret.)
Admiral Gregory G. "Grog" Johnson, USN (Ret.)
Admiral Jerome Johnson, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral J. Michael "Carlos" Johnson, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Steve Kantrowitz, USNR (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Douglas Katz, USN (Ret.)
General P.X. Kelley, USMC (Ret.)
Admiral Robert J. "Barney" Kelly, USN (Ret.)
Admiral Frank B. Kelso II, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral John Kerr, USNR (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Claude M. "Mick" Kicklighter, USA (Ret.)
Major General Phillip G. Killey, USAF (Ret.)
Admiral George E.R. "Gus" Kinnear II, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Jack W. Klimp, USMC (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Hal Koenig, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Alexander J. Krekich, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Ed Kristensen, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Derald Lary, USAF (Ret.)
Admiral Charles R. "Chuck" Larson, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Rufus C. Lazzell, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Ward M. LeHardy, USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Tony Less, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Frederick L. Lewis, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Frank Libutti, USMC (Ret.)
Brigadier General William Lindaman, USAF (Ret.)
General James J. Lindsay, USA (Ret.)
Lieutenant General James E. Livingston, USMC (Ret.)
Rear Admiral James W. Lisanby, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Dan Locker, USAF (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Stephen Loftus, USN (Ret.)
General John Michael Loh, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Noah H. Long, USNR (Ret.)
Admiral Joseph Lopez, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Mike Luecke, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Thomas C. Lynch, USN (Ret.)
Admiral James A. "Ace" Lyons, Jr., USN (Ret.)
General Robert Magnus, USMC (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Michael D. Malone, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Daniel P. March, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Edward H. Martin, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral John J. Mazach, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Dan McCarthy, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral William "Scot" McCauley, USN (Ret.)
Major General James C. McCombs, USAF (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Fred McCorkle, USMC (Ret.)
Major General Billy McCoy, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Bill McDaniel, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Craig O. McDonald, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral E.S. "Skip" McGinley, II, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Denny McGinn, USN (Ret.)
Admiral Kinnard R. McKee, USN (Ret.)
Major General Ed Mechenbier, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral George Meinig, USN (Ret.)
Major General Robert L. Menist, USA (Ret.)
Major General Stuart D. Menist, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral William F. Merlin, USCG (Ret.)
Admiral Paul David Miller, USN (Ret.)
Major General Robert W. Mixon, Jr., USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Joseph Mobley, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Patrick D. Moneymaker, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Benjamin Montoya, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Charles J. Moore, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Douglas Moore, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Major General W. Bruce Moore, USA (Ret.)
Major General Warren Moore, USAF (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Joseph P. Moorer, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Paul Moses, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Paul Mulloy, USN (Ret.)
Major General William L. Mundie, USA (Ret.)
General Carl E. Mundy, Jr., USMC (Ret.)
Major General Terry Murray, USMC (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Hank Mustin, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Carol Mutter, USMC (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jack Natter, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Jerry Neff, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Mike Neil, USMCR (Ret.)
Brigadier General Robert Henry Neitz, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General Ben Nelson, Jr., USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Ed Nelson, USCG (Ret.)
Brigadier General Warren "Bud" Nelson, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General Eddie Newman, USA (Ret.)
Major General George W. Norwood, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jacqueline "Jackie" O'Meara, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Ira C. "Chuck" Owens, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Robert S. "Rupe" Owens, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Dave Palmer, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Robert V. Paschon, USAF (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Ellis D. "Don" Parker, USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Ted Parker, USN (Ret.)
Major General Earl G. Peck, USAF (Ret.)
Major General John Peppers, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Maurice Phillips, USA (Ret.)
Major General Paul A. Pochara, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral David Polatty, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Thomas J. Porter, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Noel G. Preston, USN (Ret.)
Admiral Joseph W. Prueher, USN (Ret.)
Major General Bill Raines, USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral William E. Ramsey, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral William Retz, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Jon A. Reynolds, USAF (Ret.)
Vice Admiral David C. Richardson, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Thomas M. Rienzi, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Stewart Andrew Ring, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Steve Ritchie, USAF (Ret.)
Major General James Milnor Roberts, Jr., USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral David B. Robinson, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Bill Roll, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Wayne Rosenthal, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Pete Rots, USCG (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Ed Rowny, USA (Ret.)
Major General Michael D. Ryan, USMC (Ret.)
Vice Admiral John R. Ryan, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Luciano C. Salamone, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jim Schear, USNR (Ret.)
Major General Carl G. Schneider, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General Dennis Schulstad, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Hugh Scott, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral James E. Service, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Bill Shawcross, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Edward D. "Ted" Sheafer, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Mike Sheridan, USMC (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Robert F. "Dutch" Shoultz, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Robert H. Shumaker, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Bruce Smith, USN (Ret.)
Admiral Leighton "Snuffy" Smith, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Norman Smith, USMC (Ret.)
Major General Richard D. Smith, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Robert (Bob) Smith, III, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Stan Smith, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Roy D. Snyder, USN (Ret.)
Major General J.R. Spalding, USAF (Ret.)
Major General Stanhope S. Spears, Adjutant General, South Carolina
Major General Ralph Spraker, USAF (Ret.)
Brigadier General Bill Spruance, USAF (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Hank Stackpole, USMC (Ret.)
Rear Admiral James Stark, USN (Ret.)
General Carl Stiner, USA (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Edward M. Straw, USN (Ret.)
Major General Ansel M. Stroud, USA (Ret.)
Major General Willam A. Studder, USAF (Ret.)
Major General Leroy N. Suddath, USA (Ret.)
Lieutenant General Gordon Sumner, Jr., USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Paul E. Sutherland, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Bob Sutton, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jeremy Taylor, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Jimmie Taylor, USN (Ret.)
Major General Robert C. Taylor, USAF (Ret.)
Rear Admiral William E. Terry, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Deese Thompson, USCG (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Howie Thorsen, USCG (Ret.)
Major General Harold Timboe, M.D., USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Ernest E. Tissot, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Robert F. Titus, USAF (Ret.)
Vice Admiral John B. Totushek, USN (Ret.)
Major General Rockly Triantafellu, USAF (Ret.)
Admiral Carlyle A. H. Trost, USN (Ret.)
Vice Admiral Jerry Unruh, USN (Ret.)
Major General Alfred A. Valenzuela, USA (Ret.)
Major General Paul Vallely, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Lloyd "Joe" Vasey, USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General John Vines, USA (Ret.)
Major General John G. "Jack" Waggener, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Edward K. Walker, Jr., USN (Ret.)
Lieutenant General John F. Wall, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General W.L. "Bill" Wallace, USA (Ret.)
Admiral James D. Watkins, USN (Ret.)
Major General Gary Wattnem, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Donald Weatherson, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Hugh Webster, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Arvid E. West, USA (Ret.)
Major General Drax Williams, USMC (Ret.)
Lieutenant General James A. Williams, USA (Ret.)
Brigadier General Mitchell M. Willoughby, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Dennis Wisely, USN (Ret.)
Major General Herbert E. Wolff, USA (Ret.)
Major General John J. Womack, USA (Ret.)
Major General Dan Wood, USA (Ret.)
Lieutenant General John W. Woodmansee, USA (Ret.)
Rear Admiral George Worthington, USN (Ret.)
Rear Admiral Earl P. Yates, USN (Ret.)
Brigadier General Allan R. Zenotwitz, USA (Ret.)

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Statement by John McCain on Washington Mutual

U.S. Senator John McCain today issued the following statement on Washington Mutual:

"Today's financial crisis threatens all Americans and the sale of Washington Mutual is just the latest indicator of the stresses in our financial markets that threaten to cut off the credit needed by our families, businesses, and state and local governments. I am committed to working with all parties of good faith in both houses of Congress, the Administration, and among Democrats and Republicans to reach an agreement to stabilize our financial markets. We can do so in a timely and effective fashion while protecting the taxpayer from excessive demands on their strained checkbooks. It is our obligation to restore the confidence of Americans in these valuable institutions, and demonstrate to taxpayers that Washington will be capable of addressing great national problems."

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Chambliss Statement on Financial Package

U.S. Senator Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., today made the following statement:

As the conversations in Washington continue over how to address our nation’s financial crisis, and as the details of the problems in our financial sector are revealed daily, I am convinced that something must be done and done soon.

But I want to be clear about congressional action: we must act because inaction will do serious harm to American families, farms, and small businesses as well as community banks and other lenders, and we must do our dead level best to make the right decisions, because action for the sake of expediency could put our nation at further risk.

Since last Thursday I have talked to numerous bankers, economists, academicians, as well as business leaders and owners who have told me that doing nothing would lead to irreparable harm to our economy. And I have heard from and talked to hundreds of Georgia taxpayers. Everyone is concerned about doing the right thing. Georgians are furious at the current situation and for good reason.

I am angry and upset that the oversight supposed to be afforded by the regulatory bodies was not provided the way it should have been. The American taxpayers should never find themselves in this situation again, and that is why there must be confidence that what Congress passes will work – not for Wall Street but for Main Street.

Before I give my support and work to pass legislation, it will have to have strong safeguards, accountable oversight, provisions that those who abused the system and the public trust will be punished, salary controls for the managers of the companies the taxpayers assist, and a commitment that any revenue earned by the treasury on this effort will be used 100% to retire the debt and not one penny used to expand government. I will fight any legislation that proposes to use one cent of these funds for pork barrel projects. Furthermore, I want to make sure that if fraud or other illegal acts took place that the people responsible are tried and punished. And while much of the focus has been on assisting larger banks and lenders, I am working to make sure that neighborhood banks and lenders are protected too. I intend to see that every single American has access to his or her money right now and forever and that Americans who need credit have it available to them.

As the Senate debate unfolds, any proposed legislation must protect the citizens and taxpayers of Main Street, their savings, their retirement funds, their small businesses, their careers, their homes, and economic well being. This financial debacle on Wall Street must not be allowed to infect Main Street anymore than it already has.

We have to clean up this mess and keep America on track. We must be certain that those responsible do not profit from this legislation and, where appropriate, necessary compensation policy be instituted. There will be no Golden Parachutes for executives in any plan I support. And civil and criminal penalties should be levied and pursued when and where appropriate.

During these next critical hours and days, I will carefully review the details of whatever package emerges, and I will fight for Georgians in this process. I will have my say. I am prepared to work through the weekend and into October and beyond – I will not vote for just any proposal – I will work for and vote for the proposal that I truly believe is in the best interest of Georgians and Americans, and I pledge to work on this as long as it takes to get the job done right.
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John McCain's Remarks to Clinton Global Initiative This Morning

I listened to Senator McCain make the remarks (on TV) and thought he looked very somber, in-charge and concerned. I have been impressed with his handling of the situation and applaud his decision to hold off on campaigning. This situation is extremely serious and deserves the full attention of all who can have an impact on attempting to mitigate it to any degree. -jmd

Thank you, Mr. President. It's always good to see you, and I appreciate your hospitality to me and Governor Sarah Palin.

Let me also congratulate you, Mr. President, on the great work of the Clinton Global Initiative. It says a lot about a man that after 12 years as a governor, and another eight years at the Resolute desk, he is still working hard in service to others. Bill Clinton is a man who has achieved enough in public service, by any measure except his own. This man's drive, and determination, and compassion for those in need are still a force for good in the world, and I am proud to call him a friend.

Your kind invitation brought me here to discuss some of the great concerns of the Clinton Global Initiative, and especially climate change, extreme poverty, and epidemic diseases. But I know you will understand if I begin by addressing a crisis of our own right here in America -- a crisis that began not far from here in the financial district of this city.

We know this is a crisis with serious implications and consequences for our nation and others. History must not record that when our nation faced such a moment, its leadership was unable to put aside politics and to focus in a unified way to solve this problem.

It's time for everyone to recall that the political process is not an end in itself, nor is it intended to serve those of us who are in the middle of it. In the Senate of the United States, our duty is to serve the people of this country, and we can serve them best now by putting politics aside and dealing in a focused, straightforward, bi-partisan way with the problem at hand.

For the Congress, this is one of those moments in history when poor decisions, made in haste, could turn a crisis into a far-reaching disaster. If we do not act, credit will dry up, with grave consequences for workers and business across the American economy and beyond. People will no longer be able to buy homes and their life savings will be at stake. Businesses will not have enough money to pay their employees. And, as ever, the greatest burden is borne by the American people. Seven hundred billion dollars is a staggering and unprecedented figure, and there should be no misunderstanding about the dimensions of this proposal. Seven hundred billion dollars, for example, could rebuild the crumbling infrastructure in every town, county, and state in this country. A great deal is being asked of the American people. And great care must be taken to ensure their protection.

I'm an old Navy pilot, and I know when a crisis calls for all hands on deck. That's the situation in Washington at this very hour, when the whole future of the American economy is in danger. I cannot carry on a campaign as though this dangerous situation had not occurred, or as though a solution were at hand, which it clearly is not. As of this morning I suspended my political campaign. With so much on the line, for America and the world, the debate that matters most right now is taking place in the United States Capitol -- and I intend to join it. Senator Obama is doing the same. America should be proud of the bipartisanship we are seeing.

It has become clear that no consensus has developed to support the Administration's proposal to meet the crisis. I do not believe that the plan on the table will pass as it currently stands, and we are running out of time. So I am returning to Washington to seek five fundamental improvements to this critical legislation. I have laid out these principles over the past week:
First, there must be greater accountability included in the bill. I have suggested a bipartisan board to provide oversight for the rescue. We will not solve a problem caused by poor oversight with a plan that has no oversight. Never before in the history of our nation has so much power and money been concentrated in the hands of one person, and there must be protections and oversight in place.

Second, as a part of that oversight, there must be a path for taxpayers to recover the money that is put into this fund. When we're talking about 700 billion taxpayer dollars, that money cannot simply go into a black hole of bad debt with no means of recovering any of the funds.
Third, there must be complete transparency in the review of this legislation and in the implementation of any legislation. This cannot be thrown together behind closed doors. The American people have the right to know which businesses will be helped, what that selection will be based on and how much that help will cost. All the details should all be made available online and elsewhere for open public scrutiny.

Fourth, it is completely unacceptable for any kind of earmarks to be included in this bill. It would be outrageous for legislators and lobbyists to pack this rescue plan with even more taxpayer money for favored companies. And frankly, members of Congress who would attempt such a thing are scarcely better than the most reckless operators on Wall Street.

Fifth and finally, no Wall Street executives should profit from taxpayer dollars. Let me put it this way: I would rather build a bridge to nowhere -- and put it square in the middle of Sedona, Arizona -- than take money from teachers and farmers and small business owners to line the pockets of the Wall Street crowd that got us here in the first place. And I can assure you: if I have anything to say about the matter, it's not going to happen.

It is difficult to act both quickly and wisely, but that is what is required of us right now. Time is short, and doing nothing is not an option. I am confident that before the markets open on Monday we can achieve consensus on legislation that will stabilize our financial markets, protect taxpayers and homeowners, and earn the confidence of the American people.

I have seen Republicans and Democrats achieve great things together. When the stakes were high and it mattered most, I've seen them work together in common purpose, as we did in the weeks after September 11th. This kind of cooperation has made all the difference at crucial turns in our history. It has given us hope in difficult times. It has moved America forward, through all adversity. And now, in this crisis, we must work together again and put our country first.
All of this comes on top of other hardships that Americans have been dealing with, especially the rising cost of energy. And these, too -- as you well understand at the Clinton Global Initiative -- are problems that require us to call upon the best ideas of both parties.

For the future of our economy, nothing is more essential than a secure and affordable supply of energy. As you well know, people are hurting because the cost of gasoline is out of control. Small farmers, truckers, and taxi drivers in this city and elsewhere are unable to cover their costs. Small business owners are struggling to meet payroll. For American workers, the cost of living is rising and the value of paychecks falling. All of this, in large part, because the price of oil is too high, and the supply of oil too uncertain. These citizens believe their government has a duty to finally assure the energy security of this country, and they are right.

Every form of economic activity requires the use of energy. And that is why we need to draw on the best ideas of both parties on energy policy, and work together for the common good. Among our challenges is one that we hardly even understood back when America first learned to associate the word "energy" with "crisis." We now know that fossil fuel emissions, by retaining heat within the atmosphere, threaten disastrous changes in climate. No challenge of energy is to be taken lightly, and least of all the need to avoid the consequences of global warming.

Over time, we must shift our entire energy economy toward a sustainable mix of new and cleaner power sources. This will include some we use already, such as wind, solar, biofuels, and other sources yet to be invented. It will include a variety of new automotive and fuel technologies, clean-burning coal and nuclear energy, and a new system of incentives, under a cap-and-trade policy, to put the power of the market on the side of environmental protection. To make the great turn away from carbon-emitting fuels, we will need all the inventive genius of which America is capable. We will need as well an economy strong enough to support our nation's great shift toward clean energy.

Global warming presents a test of foresight, of political courage, and of the unselfish concern that one generation owes to the next. We need to think straight about the dangers ahead, and meet the problem with all the resources of human ingenuity at our disposal. We Americans like to say that there is no problem we can't solve, however complicated, and no obstacle we cannot overcome if we meet it together. I believe this about our country. And now it is time for us to show those qualities once again.

As we deal with this challenge, we must also address the others that imperil our global security. Today too many around the world are excluded from the benefits of globalization. Disconnected from the prosperity that has lifted millions out of poverty, too many societies are plagued by violence, disease, and scarcity.

It need not be this way. And in places where scarcity can breed resentment, despair, and extremism -- where problems cannot be contained by borders -- it must not be this way. We can never guarantee our security through military means alone. True security requires a far broader approach, using non-military means to reduce threats before they gather strength. And this is especially true of our strategic interest in fighting disease and extreme poverty across the globe.

Promoting development, creating opportunities, and eliminating disease do not only serve our national interests; they also accord with our deepest American values. We are a great and generous country, and we believe that all men and women, everywhere, are created equal and endowed by God with certain rights. In fighting disease, and sparing unnumbered lives across the world, we serve not only strategic interests. We serve our moral interests, and we show the good heart of America.

Malaria alone kills more than a million people a year, mostly in Africa. Nearly three thousand children are lost every day just to this one affliction -- a disease well within our ability to eradicate. To its lasting credit, the federal government in recent years has led the way in this fight. But, of course, America is more than its government. Some of the greatest advances have been the work of the Gates Foundation and other private, charitable groups. And you have my pledge that, should I be elected, I will build on these and other initiatives to ensure that malaria kills no more.

I will also make it a priority to improve maternal and child health. Millions around the world -- and especially pregnant women and children -- suffer from easily preventable nutritional deficiencies. As a result, a million children under age five die every year, millions more are born mentally impaired, and entire economies are left to stagnate. An international effort is needed to prevent disease and developmental disabilities among children by providing nutrients and food security. And if I am elected president, America will lead that effort.

As we have done with the scourge of HIV and AIDS, we should embark on a more concerted effort to fight tuberculosis, which accounts for nearly two million deaths each year. We should work to dramatically raise agricultural productivity in Africa: America helped to spark the Green Revolution in Asia, and they should be at the forefront of an African Green Revolution. We should reform our aid programs, to make sure they are serving the interests of people in need, and not just serving special interests in Washington.

Aid is not the whole answer. We need to promote economic growth and opportunities, especially for women, where they do not currently exist. Too often, trade restrictions -- combined with costly agricultural subsidies for the special interests -- choke off the opportunities for poor farmers and workers abroad to help themselves. That has to change. And by promoting free trade, and ending unfair subsides, I intend to be the agent of change.

You know something about great change at the Clinton Global Initiative, because you are striving every day to bring it about. I thank each one of you for the good work you have done to relieve suffering across the earth, and to spread hope. I thank you for the even greater works that you seek to accomplish in the years to come, under the leadership of the man from Hope. And I thank you all for your kind attention here today.
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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Chambliss, Isakson: Lifting of Drilling Moratorium is Victory for Georgians, Giant Step Forward

U.S. Senators Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., and Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today said during a press conference on Capitol Hill that Congressional leadership’s decision to allow the moratorium on oil and gas drilling off the Atlantic and Pacific shores to expire is a victory for Georgians. The moratorium was imposed in 1982 and has been renewed in annual spending bills each year since. It is set to expire on September 30, 2008.

For months, Chambliss and Isakson have been calling on Republicans and Democrats to put aside their differences on energy and come together with a comprehensive solution. The lifting of the moratorium is a huge step in that direction and shows how far the debate has shifted in the months since Chambliss and Isakson have been working with a small group of Republicans and Democrats on making the nation more energy independent.

“This is certainly a day of celebration in the world of energy,” said Chambliss. “We have one goal in mind, and that is for the United States to become energy independent. Removing the congressional moratorium on drilling is a giant step in the right direction, but it’s only the first step. Congress needs to develop a plan to move forward with leasing areas in the Outer Continental Shelf for oil and gas exploration and development. We should also try to further open the Gulf of Mexico where we know there is oil, but which is covered by a separate moratorium. Finally, a legislative plan will give the American people and industry the confidence necessary to proceed with developing our domestic sources of energy. Unfortunately, because of the way in which this moratorium was lifted, it can be reinstated just as easily as it was lifted.”

“We have dramatically advanced the energy debate in Congress. When we started this process, there was absolutely no desire on the Democrats part to explore for oil domestically. Now, Democrats have heard from the American people and are more willing to explore domestic production,” Isakson said. “We have raised the consciousness of Congress and shifted the national debate. However, we still have work to do. We must ensure that this move to repeal the moratorium is not temporary. We also need to enact comprehensive legislation to decrease our dependence on foreign oil in the long term through measures such as increasing nuclear power generation, expanding renewable sources of energy and promoting conservation and efficiency.”

Chambliss and Isakson both signed a letter to Senate leadership expressing their opposition to any attempt to extend the ban on offshore drilling and oil shale beyond their expiration at the end of September.
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Monday, September 22, 2008

Georgia's Perry McGuire, Court of Appeals Candidate

Dear Fellow Georgians –
Great news! Georgia Right to Life PAC has endorsed our campaign for Georgia Court of Appeals!

Georgia Right to Life PAC has more than 200,000 Georgia voters active in the defense of life issues. I am honored that they have chosen to endorse me in this 7-candidate race. We expect to share more important endorsements in the coming weeks. Thank you to Georgia Right to Life PAC and to the hundreds of Georgians who have stepped forward to endorse this campaign so far . . . take a look at the endorsement press release at

Let me share with you a few thoughts about this endorsement. Georgia Right to Life PAC president, Dan Becker, said some very strong words on my behalf in his letter to me:
The GRTL PAC is honored to endorse [Perry McGuire] for the office of Georgia Court of Appeals in the November 4, 2008 General Election . . . our endorsements are based on responses to our candidate survey, voting history, and our evaluation of the candidates and their commitment to the cause of life . . . As a Georgia Senator, you showed leadership in the Georgia General Assembly on the life issues. Thank you for your dedication in protecting and preserving the rights for all life . . . the years ahead will bring us new opportunities to defend the civil rights of the unborn, those with disabilities and the elderly . . . the GRTL PAC is honored to support you in this election.
With all this good news and widespread support, I need to raise the funds necessary to get the word out to the maximum number of Georgia voters. The Court of Appeals is critical for Georgia – both for the thousands of individuals and companies who come before this court as a “court of last resort,” and for the millions of Georgians directly affected by the decisions that come from the court.

Can I count on you to make a new contribution today? Please visit to make an investment in this race. We are the front-runners in this race, and in order to ensure victory in November, I need to tell our story to Georgia voters. With high-profile Presidential and Senate races going on, it’s tough to break through the political discourse! We will win this race if you can help us get there – and I am committed to bringing my no-nonsense, proven judgment to the Court of Appeals for all Georgia!
Can You Help?
Please have your friends added to our e-mail list:
Please add your name to our endorsements:
Can you volunteer?
Can you contribute? To get our message out, we need your financial support. Any amount great or small will be greatly appreciated and wisely used: that Perry McGuire will be fifth on ballot in the race for Court of Appeals – so, “plead the Fifth!”Thank you again for your time and support – we’ll keep you updated on campaign developments – and please visit regularly at!Perry McGuire

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Pueblo Chieftain Endorses John McCain

"This is a critical election. Sen. McCain and Gov. Palin are proven reformers, and they offer the better choice for the nation. That's why we wholeheartedly endorse John McCain and Sarah Palin."-- The Pueblo Chieftain

"The Presidency"
The Pueblo [CO] Chieftain
September 21, 2008

Two months ago political pundits of all stripes were conceding this year's presidential election to Democrat Barack Obama. His Republican rival, John McCain, was behind in fundraising and seemed to lack the "buzz" enjoyed by his opponent.

But things have changed, and now it seems that the race is too close to call. It's being called "the most interesting election" or "one of the most interesting elections" people can recall. We'll attribute that hyperbole to our short national attention spans.

What matters most are the real differences between Sen. Obama and Sen. McCain. The differences in policy and in political philosophy are chasmic - so much so that there is a clear choice: Sen. John McCain.

Sen. Obama promises all things to many people - albeit he is short on specifics - and the only way we as a nation could pay for the goodies would be substantially higher taxes. But history has shown that higher taxes are a systemic drag on the economy, while lower tax rates help grow the economy, increasing government revenues in the bargain.

Sen. McCain, on the other hand, has been steady in his call to not only maintain the most recent tax cuts but to further cut the tax burden so many Americans bear. In doing so, he's holding true to the policies of both John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan to allow the American economy to flourish.

The differences between the two candidates on national security are stark. Sen. Obama says he opposed going to war in Iraq, although it began before he was elected to the Senate, and he talks about bringing the troops home and spending a so-called peace dividend on domestic social programs.

That begs the question about the war: Are we in it to win or not?

Sen. McCain says we should win the war, and he has been an avowed supporter of the U.S. troop surge which has proved so successful. The war is not won yet, but it's turned diametrically in that direction.

To turn tail and run would give confidence to those who would try to destroy us. Sen. McCain would not do that, for he knows the primary responsibility of the national government is the defense of its citizenry.

One issue that has not received much attention in the national media but should is that of the federal judiciary. Over the past five decades, that judiciary has attempted, unfortunately with some success, to create laws that otherwise could not be passed by the elected representatives of the people.

Sen. Obama says he would nominate more such activist judges - judges who can serve their terms throughout the remainder of their lives. We're talking about the potential to take this country hard to the left, without general consensus of the governed.

Sen. McCain says he would nominate judicial candidates who hew to the concept that Congress makes the laws and the judiciary rules on their constitutionality. After all, that division of powers is what the Constitution says in black and white.

We've had some differences with Sen. McCain, notably the campaign finance "reform" legislation he co-sponsored with Sen. Russ Feingold. That law has led to unintended consequences of spreading campaign cash to organizations that face no accountability.

But at the core, John McCain holds to the conviction that Americans must not be shackled with high taxes, that this country and its personal freedoms are worth defending to the hilt, and that our courts should not be the playgrounds of those of a mind to experiment with their own notions of law and policy.

A few words about the vice presidential nominees. Sen. Obama and his running mate, Sen. Joe Biden, share in common two of the most liberal, often left-leaning, records in the Senate. They are, to borrow a phrase used by Democrats in previous elections, out of the American mainstream.

Sen. McCain's running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, brings a fresh voice to the table. Despite the liberal attempts to demean her, she's tough and up to any challenge that might come her way.

This is a critical election. Sen. McCain and Gov. Palin are proven reformers, and they offer the better choice for the nation. That's why we wholeheartedly endorse John McCain and Sarah Palin.

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Senator John McCain Speaking to National Guard Association Today

Thank you, Major General Marty Umbarger, for that kind introduction. Colonel Al Faber, Major General Poythress, Brigadier Generals Arflack, Taylor, and Ross -- I thank you gentlemen as well. And let me add a warm hello to my good friend Major General Stan Spears of South Carolina, and to Brigadier General Steve Koper, and Lieutenant General John Conaway. It's an honor to join with all of you again for this 130th General Conference. And I bring greetings from the Governor of the Great State of Alaska, Sarah Palin.

Every day in this country and across the world, the men and women of the National Guard are giving brave and faithful service. Everyone who wears the uniform of the United States has accepted the calling of service to a cause greater than self. This hard calling is what defines the citizen soldiers of the National Guard, and America is in your debt.

As we meet, Guard members are serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, while still others have just returned from a training mission in the nation of Georgia. Other guardsmen are still working to bring order and safety to the victims of Hurricane Ike along the Texas coast, just as they did after Katrina.

Our nation faces many challenges. We have all watched the crisis on Wall Street this past week, and I would like to address that for just a moment. Last Friday, I proposed a plan for comprehensive reform of the broken institutions that allowed this crisis to become a grave threat to our economy. At the center of the plan is the principle that we must keep people in their homes and safe guard the life savings of all Americans by protecting our financial system and capital markets. Senator Obama has declined to put forth a plan of his own. At a time of crisis, when leadership is needed, Senator Obama has not provided it.

We saw this same lack of leadership on Iraq. Because of the sacrifices and perseverance of all the troops -- active-duty, Guard, and Reserve -- victory in Iraq is finally in sight. My opponent, Senator Obama, likes to say that the surge in Iraq was more successful that anyone could have predicted at the time. He said that the surge succeeded, "beyond our wildest dreams." That's his way of saying that it took him by surprise.

And to this day Senator Obama still cannot bring himself to admit his own failure in judgment. For a guy who talks so much about hope, he didn't hold out much hope for victory in Iraq. Instead, he commits the greater error of insisting that even in hindsight, he would oppose the surge. Even in retrospect, he would choose the path of retreat and failure for America over the path of success and victory. Behind all of these claims and positions by Senator Obama lies the ambition to be president. What's missing is the judgment to be commander in chief. In short, both candidates in this election pledge to end this war and bring our troops home. The great difference is that I intend to win it first.

The achievement of our troops in Iraq is even greater because they had to press on even as some politicians back home were telling America and the world that our cause was too hard, and all was lost, and retreat was our only option. Those politicians panicked when things got tough, which seems to be a pattern with my opponent. Whether it's a reversal in war, or an economic emergency, he reacts as a politician and not as a leader, seeking an advantage for himself instead of a solution for his country. Among the many lessons of Iraq were the words of General David Petraeus. Upon arrival in Iraq, he told his troops to remember that "hard is not hopeless." And that is a lesson that applies to other great challenges that America now faces: Hard is not hopeless.

Unlike Senator Obama, I believed the surge would succeed because I knew the capabilities and culture of the United States military. I was blessed to have been born into a family that made its living at sea in defense of our security and ideals. My grandfather was a naval aviator; my father a submariner. Earning their respect was one of the great ambitions of my life. And so it was nearly pre-ordained that I would find a place in my family's profession, and that occupation would one day take me to war.

Such was not the case for many of you. Your ambitions might not have led you to war; the honors you sought were not kept hidden on battlefields. You answered the call when it came; took up arms and served for your country's sake. You were citizen-soldiers. And yet today, the National Guard's role resembles, in many respects, the role it performed in World War II, when Guard units fought in every theater and every major campaign. Units such as Company A of the 116th Infantry Regiment -- the famed "Bedford Boys" of the Virginia National Guard -- that spearheaded the allied assault on Omaha Beach, June 6, 1944.

Before 9/11, a lot of us didn't always fully appreciate the power and potential of the Guard, and what it might one day be called upon to do. But my friends, we understand it now. Times have changed -- we all understand that now.

Today, thousands of National Guard soldiers and airmen once again fight alongside their active component comrades on every battlefield in the war against militant Islam. From the mountains of Afghanistan to the back alleys of Iraq, Guard and Reserve personnel are engaged in every aspect of this conflict.

The men and women of the National Guard represent the very best of what it means to be an American and what our country is truly all about -- free people of every race, creed, color, and ethnic background, who regard it as their sacred duty not simply to indulge in the rights and privileges of citizenship, but to answer its obligations. No matter the danger to our security or safety -- at home or abroad -- the National Guard has answered the call. You have always been ready. You have always been there.

For everyone in the military today -- whether you are Guard, Active, or Reserve -- these are difficult times. We are a nation at war, and we have asked of our men and women of the armed forces an almost unprecedented level of commitment and sacrifice. Extended deployments and back-to-back combat tours have become the standard rather than the exception.

The new security environment in which we live will continue to pose great challenges, and require that we use all elements of national power to defeat radicalism. The National Guard will play a vital role in this multi-dimensional effort, precisely because its citizen-soldiers and airmen bring such a wide range of skills and capacities to the force.

We place great demands on the National Guard. At times, the Guard's responsibilities exceed even the demands we put on our active-duty forces. And our government has certain obligations that it has not always kept.

As we go forward, America must make a new and lasting commitment to our National Guard. This commitment must begin with our political leadership recognizing the sheer magnitude of what we ask Guard units to accomplish -- abroad and here at home -- with a force comprised primarily of part-time soldiers and airmen.

This means a national leadership that respects and treats our governors and adjutant generals as partners in national and homeland security policymaking, rather than as impediments and intruders. Part of that essential effort was to grant the Chief of the National Guard Bureau the fourth star that the position merits -- and I'm pleased to congratulate General-Select Craig McKinley on being the first Guardsman to wear that fourth star.

This means getting rid of policies, practices, and customs that fail to promote a seamless Total Force based on cooperation, jointness, and the mutual respect that all components, including the Guard and Reserve, have earned with their blood and bravery. We cannot afford -- and I will not tolerate -- an environment in which parochialism stands in the way of building an integrated Total Force.

This means giving the National Guard all the manpower it needs -- including a sufficient complement of full-time positions -- so that every unit is ready to mobilize for any contingency. This means providing all the training the Guard requires, so that no one is asked to take on a mission unprepared. And it means ensuring that our Guard is well supplied, so that no unit will ever go into harm's way without the best equipment that America can provide.

A serious commitment to supporting the Guard also means that service to country should come at the cost of a civilian career. When employers exceed the requirements of the law in supporting the Guard commitments of their workers, we should encourage and honor that. And when employers fall short of those legal requirements, the sanctions should be serious, and they must be enforced.

Finally, our commitment to the Guard and Reserve means establishing a new compact with our Guard and Reserve personnel to ensure that they and their families are given appropriate care, during and after their time of service.

PTSD and Traumatic Brain Injury affect Guard members just as they do active-duty personnel. In the Senate, I co-authored the Wounded Warrior Act, which was the first major legislative initiative to address these injuries. And I pledge to you that, if I am president, I will build on this legislation to improve screening and treatment for these severe injuries suffered by many in Iraq and Afghanistan. And I will ensure that we take into account the special challenges of identifying and caring for our traditional Guard members -- and their families -- who need assistance.

We made a great step forward when the president signed the GI Bill for the 21st Century this summer. I am proud to have supported that legislation in its final form, once it included the number one request of career service members -- that they be given the freedom to transfer their benefits to a spouse or child. I expect that many eligible Guard members and their families will want to take advantage of that benefit.

As with anyone who has served in uniform, veterans of the Guard deserve the best of medical care and other benefits. As president, I will do all that is in my power to ensure that those who serve today, and those who have served in the past, have access to the highest quality health, mental health and rehabilitative care in the world. And I will not accept a situation in which veterans are denied access to care on account of travel distances, backlogs of appointments, and years of pending disability evaluation and claims. We should no longer tolerate requiring veterans to make an appointment to stand in one line for a ticket to stand in another.
We must also modernize our disability system to make sure that eligible service members receive benefits quickly, based on clear, predictable, and fair standards. And we must address the problems of capacity and access within our VA health care system.

While this will involve a wide range of initiatives, I believe there is a simple and direct reform we should make right away. My administration will create a Veterans' Care Access Card to be used by veterans with illness or injury incurred during their military service, and by those with lower incomes. This card will provide those without timely access to VA facilities the option of using high-quality health-care providers near their homes. For many veterans, the closest VA facility isn't close enough. And many of their local providers are already familiar with the most common needs of veterans. Often, all that prevents them from receiving local care is a system for sharing medical records among VA, DOD, and civilian hospitals and doctors. My reform will improve care, reduce risks, and broaden access all at the same time.

The VA must also broaden its care for the women who are entering the armed forces in greater numbers than ever, and who are suffering from the same war wounds -- visible and invisible -- suffered by other veterans. As rapidly as possible, we must improve the VA system so that it can fully assess and treat conditions that predominantly or exclusively affect women. And here the Veterans Care Access Card will prove especially valuable, affording women medical options while the VA improves capacity and expands services.

No one who has worn the uniform of his or her country can ever take these matters lightly. We all learned an ethic in the service of looking after one another, of leaving no one behind, and this commitment did not end when we left the service. As a matter of duty and of honor, whatever our commitments to veterans cost, if I am president those commitments will be kept.

The next president will have many responsibilities to the American people, and I take them all seriously. But if I am elected, I will have one responsibility that outweighs all the others. And that is to use whatever talents I possess, and every resource God has granted me to protect the security of this great and good nation from all enemies foreign and domestic.

It is every veteran's hope that should their children be called upon to answer a call to arms, the battle will be necessary and the field well chosen. But that is not their responsibility. It belongs to the government that called them. As it once was for us, their honor will be in their answer not their summons. Whatever we think about how and why we went to war in Iraq, we are all humbled by and grateful for their example. They now deserve the distinction of the best Americans, and we owe them a debt we can never fully repay. We can only offer the small tribute of our humility and our commitment to do all that we can do, in less trying and costly circumstances, to help keep this nation worthy of their sacrifice.

Many of them -- especially our Guardsmen -- have served multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. Many had their tours extended. Many returned to combat sooner than they had been led to expect. It was a sad and hard thing to ask so much more of Americans who have already given more than their fair share to the defense of our country. Few of them and their families will have received the news about additional and longer deployments without aiming a few appropriate complaints in the general direction of people like me, who helped make the decision to send them there. And then they shouldered a rifle or climbed in a cockpit and risked everything -- everything -- to accomplish their mission, to protect another people's freedom and our own country from harm.

It is a privilege beyond measure to live in a country served by them. I have had the good fortune to know personally a great many brave and selfless patriots who sacrificed and shed blood to defend America. But I have known none braver or better than those who do so today.

To the National Guardsmen who today will walk combat patrols in Iraq and Afghanistan, to those who will fly missions in support of our deployed forces, to those engaged back home in humanitarian efforts to relieve suffering, and to all of you who know what it means to stand the long night watches -- thank you. You understand both the value -- and the price -- of freedom. You are the best among us, and I pledge to you my undying fidelity to the cause of protecting America -- and to a National Guard that will always be ready, and always be there. Thank you.

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Obama Adviser Fact Checked On Air

On CNN's "Late Edition," Obama Senior Economic Adviser Austan Goolsbee Was Fact Checked Live On What Joe Biden Actually Said:

CNN's Wolf Blitzer: "He [Joe Biden] was on the Today Show. He opposed the bailout of AIG and then the Obama campaign the next day said there was no choice. Did Joe Biden make the same mistake that John McCain made?"

Austan Goolsbee: "Well, I would -- we don't have the transcript here, but I have read it and I would disagree a little bit. It was clear from the entire paragraph that Joe Biden was not saying he was opposing a bailout. What he was saying was that it's not their first choice along the lines of where John McCain ended up and where Senator Obama was all along."

Blitzer: "It was a pretty clear. I watched it that morning. It was pretty clear. He opposed the bailout, too, although, as you say, the position of the Obama campaign seemed to change based -- assuming that Joe Biden speaks for the Obama campaign -- it changed the next day, as well."
Watch The CNN On-Air Fact Check

What Biden Said: "No, I Don't Think They Should Be Bailed Out By The Federal Government."

NBC'S MEREDITH VIEIRA: "But now we have this mess, Senator. Do you think that AIG should be bailed out by the federal government?"

BIDEN: "No, I don't think they should be bailed out by the federal government. I'll tell you what we should do. We should try to correct the problems that caused this. And what's caused this is the profligate tax cuts to the very, very wealthy that John wants to continue." (NBC's "Today," 9/16/08)

Other Fact Checks Of Barack Obama's Remarks This Weekend:

New Hampshire Union Leader: "Obama In The Mud: So Much For Honesty." "In the past few weeks, Obama has thrown so many false accusations against John McCain that just keeping track of them has become difficult. And these aren't innocent errors. They are deliberate distortions of the sort Obama has always said he reviles. On Thursday, Obama said of McCain, 'He has consistently opposed the sorts of common-sense regulations that might have lessened the current crisis.' That's entirely untrue. As The Washington Post pointed out in an editorial on Friday, McCain in fact has supported many new regulations of financial institutions, including some that Obama opposed. ... Obama attacked McCain for having a top financial advisor who supported a deregulation bill a few years ago. Yet two top Obama financial advisors, with whom he met on Friday to help him form his response to the current troubles on Wall Street, supported the sa me bill, which was signed by President Clinton. ... This is not the Barack Obama so many voters in New Hampshire and elsewhere thought they knew. But it is the real Barack Obama. For despite his rhetoric, he is in fact campaigning so dishonestly that even The Washington Post and The New York Times have called him on it. Which means that he is in practice no different from those regular politicians against whom his entire campaign has been built." (Editorial, "Obama In The Mud: So Much For Honesty," New Hampshire Union Leader, 9/21/08) "Obama's Social Security Whopper."

"He tells Social Security recipients their money would now be in the stock market under McCain's plan. False. In Daytona Beach, Obama said that 'if my opponent had his way, the millions of Floridians who rely on it would've had their Social Security tied up in the stock market this week.' He referred to 'elderly women' at risk of poverty, and said families would be scrambling to support 'grandmothers and grandfathers.' That's not true." (Brooks Jackson, "Obama's Social Security Whopper,", 9/20/08)

The Washington Post: Barack Obama "Statement Appeared To Be A Substantial Exaggeration."

"'If my opponent had his way, the millions of Floridians who rely on it would've had their Social Security tied up in the stock market this week,' he said. 'Millions would've watched as the market tumbled and their nest egg disappeared before their eyes. Millions of families would've been scrambling to figure out how to give their mothers and fathers, their grandmothers and grandfathers, the secure retirement that every American deserves.' The statement appeared to be a substantial exaggeration, and the McCain campaign quickly fired back." (Dan Balz, "McCain Health-Care Article Fuels New Clash Over Economy," The Washington Post, 9/21/08)
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"Obama In The Mud: So Much For Honesty"

"In the past few weeks, Obama has thrown so many false accusations against John McCain that just keeping track of them has become difficult. And these aren't innocent errors. They are deliberate distortions of the sort Obama has always said he reviles." -- New Hampshire Union Leader

"Obama In The Mud: So Much For Honesty"
New Hampshire Union Leader
September 21, 2008

When Barack Obama first began campaigning in New Hampshire in early 2007, many voters swooned. We watched him speak to retirees in Claremont one snowy February day that year. Not a single voter we talked with before he spoke planned to vote for him. Afterwards, many said they would. The word that spontaneously came from the lips of multiple attendees: sincere. They couldn't remember a politician who spoke with such sincerity, they said. And many of them had been voting since World War II.

We wonder what those same voters think of Obama's sincerity now. In the past few weeks, Obama has thrown so many false accusations against John McCain that just keeping track of them has become difficult. And these aren't innocent errors. They are deliberate distortions of the sort Obama has always said he reviles.

On Thursday, Obama said of McCain, "He has consistently opposed the sorts of common-sense regulations that might have lessened the current crisis." That's entirely untrue.

As The Washington Post pointed out in an editorial on Friday, McCain in fact has supported many new regulations of financial institutions, including some that Obama opposed. "In 2006, he pushed for stronger regulation of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- while Mr. Obama was notably silent," The Post wrote.

Obama attacked McCain for having a top financial advisor who supported a deregulation bill a few years ago. Yet two top Obama financial advisors, with whom he met on Friday to help him form his response to the current troubles on Wall Street, supported the same bill, which was signed by President Clinton.

Also last week, Obama released a Spanish-language ad that portrayed McCain as anti-immigrant and anti-Hispanic and tried to link him to immigration policies that were not his own as well as some choice Rush Limbaugh quotes that appeared to insult Mexicans.

Anyone who has followed the immigration debate knows that McCain is the most pro-immigration Republican on the national stage and that he is not in the least anti-Hispanic. To pull quotes from Rush Limbaugh, who has completely different immigration views than McCain and who opposed him on that issue for years (and still does) is completely disingenuous. The ad is so bad that even The New York Times called it "misleading."

Obama's campaign also accused McCain of lying when McCain's campaign ran an ad saying that Obama supported sex education for kindergarteners. But the bill in question, which Obama supported in the Illinois state Senate, did indeed change state law to allow sex education for kindergarteners.

Obama has said that he won't attack John McCain's motives, only his policies. But he has repeatedly attacked McCain's motives, suggesting that he has been bought off by oil companies and lobbyists.

Obama's greatest strength as a candidate, aside from his oratorical skill, has long been his apparent sincerity and decency. Voters attracted to him think of him as that rarest of things: an honest politician. He has claimed himself that he would never engage in the sort of deceptive politicking that he says has tainted Washington for so long.

Yet here he is violating his own professed standards. This is not the Barack Obama so many voters in New Hampshire and elsewhere thought they knew. But it is the real Barack Obama. For despite his rhetoric, he is in fact campaigning so dishonestly that even The Washington Post and The New York Times have called him on it. Which means that he is in practice no different from those regular politicians against whom his entire campaign has been built.

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