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Tuesday, October 7, 2008

John McCain and the Keating savings and loan fraud

Some Obama supporters are debating the wisdom of "dragging out" the 1990s Keating Five scandal at this point in the campaign, in the form of a 13 minute video released this week (see below.) The basic argument is that McCain has acknowledged his errors and the story is old news. I can see their point, but on balance I think this is a good idea. For one thing, it is not really old news, and McCain has never apologized for his central error: The political basis of McCain's support for Keating was his passion for deregulation, which he is desperately trying to get voters to forget during the current financial crisis. And I see no reason why the Obama campaign should refrain from using any ammunition it can against McCain at a time when he is mounting a despicable, dishonest, dirty and desperate attempt to lie his way into office. Given his now commanding lead in the polls, Obama has nothing to lose and everything to gain by taking every opportunity to remind voters how fully implicated McCain is in the policies that are now plunging the entire world into a recession or possibly even a depression.

Afterthoughts: News commentators are pretty much unanimous in pronouncing that McCain's new attack mode against Obama is an attempt to "change the subject" from the economy. If so, that's a pretty tall order at the moment, and one that will almost certainly fail. If anything, it just calls more attention to the fact that McCain has no answers; indeed, he is part of the problem, not the solution.

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