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Thursday, September 25, 2008

McCain's Master Stroke (UPDATE)

When I first heard the news earlier today that there was an agreement in place for bipartisan support of the massive Wall Street bailout, I initially thought that John McCain had overreached in suspending his campaign. After all, he comes back to D.C. and yet the bill is largely hammered out without him. Then comes word from Richard Shelby and House Republicans that they aren't on board with this agreement. Now, I think that McCain read the situation correctly when he proclaimed that the bill wouldn't pass in its current form.

Here is the latest from both candidate. Both candidates have met with the President. Here is what Obama briefly said.

I'm going to tell him we're going to have to get something done," Obama said. "And that it has to include something for Main Street, not just Wall Street."

Here is the score. Obama will do a press conference and then his entire contribution to this process will be over. He will go back to prepping for the debate and he will watch the rest from the sidelines. Meanwhile, despite what some have reported, the legislature is nowhere near reaching an agreement. In fact, many Republicans are diametrically opposed to the bailout entirely.

On the other hand, there will be a deal in place by Monday morning. There has to be a deal because there will literally be a financial meltdown if there isn't. These financial services companies deeply leveraged in these Mortgage Backed Securities. Without a deal, there will soon be a meltdown.

What will happen now is down and dirty politicking, horse trading and legislating. John McCain will be in the middle of all of it and Barack Obama will be watching all of it. Because he is the Presidential candidate, he is the de facto leader of the Republican party. That means that he is in a leadership position in all of these negotiations. As lawmakers update the media, his name will be mentioned in most every important meeting that is taking place all around the Capitol.

It's unlikely a deal will be reached tonight, and if it is, it won't be until much later this evening. It may not even be reached tomorrow. It may take until the weekend for a deal to be reached. Meanwhile, as updates come in, McCain's name will be prominently mentioned in each and every meeting.

If Obama insists on going forward with the debate, then McCain should insist on another master stroke. He should send Sarah Palin to debate Obama. She can make it clear that John McCain is involved in serious negotiations trying to hammer out an agreement to save our financial system. If Obama insists on debating, it will have to be with her. In that case, either way Obama loses.

Finally, once an agreement is reached it will be John McCain that will figure prominently in ironing it out. Keep in mind that most every single important piece of legislative business over the last decade has had McCain's fingerprints on it. He will look like the dutiful statesman while Obama looks like the talker. Furthermore, since he will be working nearly non stop for several days it will even put to rest any fears that he is too old to serve. McCain took a big gamble in suspending his campaign. It's not his first big political gamble. He gambled on the surge and won. He gambled on comprehensive immigration reform and lost. McCain is not afraid to put his political career on the line for a bold move, and this time it, in my opinion, will lead him right into the White House.


McCain will attend the debate.

While I would have found the political theater of having Palin show up in his place just too delicious, the larger point of this move remains the same. The Republicans, I believe, will offer an alternative. It will be an alternative that the public will take to much more than the bailout, and it will pass. This will give McCain a huge victory.


Anonymous said...

Yeah, a master "stroke" alright. Which wiped out his left frontal lobe. He banked on a reckless and extreme gimmick, just like when he put politics before national security in picking Sarah Palin for VP, to try to recover the edge in the race from Obama. It looks like it's blowing up on him now. Senators were closing in on a deal last night before Don Quixote--excuse me, John Mccain-- came riding in his shiny armor on his high horse to "save the day" (if by "save" one means "wreck). Name one thing *constructive* that he's accomplished in facilitating, rather than derailing, bill passage by this stunt.

mike volpe said...

Are you serious? The ones that are balking at this deal are Republicans. You think that members of his own party are balking at this deal because he showed up. They are balking because they don't like this bailout plan.

This isn't the sort of thing that a Conservative would likely support. Tomorrow, Republicans will present a counter plan. Democrats will likely balk at that, but at some point they will blink because they will be seen as the ones that are obstructing.

Anonymous said...

The Republicans are the ones that are obstructing. They want a radically different plan, cutting back oversight and regulations, and they want to attach corporate tax cuts to the bill. As long as the Democrats do their job and don't back down, the Republicans will be seen as sabotaging the deal, since that's the truth of the situation.

mike volpe said...

Of course, except this is a deal NOT supported by the country at large. It should be obstructed. Of course, if you obstruct one proposal, you had better have your own proposal. They do.

Now, once the country sees an alternative that doesn't socialize the securitization of mortgages that is a plan they will get behind, and then the Democrats, after they invariably obstruct the plan, will be seen as the obstructionists.

Anonymous said...

I think you're right.

Something had to be done, and McCain is doing what he is being paid for.


Anonymous said...

The problem with the proposed deal is that it gives any profits to ACORN. Good Grief. Haven't they done enough damage?

Anonymous said...

Here's McCain's decision:

He is going to debate and then go back to Washington. For more information, read his statement.


mike volpe said...

You read far too many right wing blogs. That maybe a problem, but that isn't the problem I would focus on. This is the largest expansion of government power in the history of our nation, and you are concerned over $80 million that some group gets. That's what happens when your mind is warped by blogs. While I am happy that Michelle Malkin is so dutiful in getting the real story of ACORN, her obsession with the group is not helpful. She really doesn't understand these financial things as much as she thinks she does, and if you blindly follow what she says, you will be as warped as she is.

Jason Gillman said...

Actually Mike, not warped. While many might put a little more emphasis on particular areas of interest, there must be SOME attention paid to the small details, or frankly those small details wind up creating the next big one in aggregate.

And as for the expansion however. let them burn in he** for all I care. Private enterprise, even those mandated by government went too far.

we should allow free markets fail as needed.

mike volpe said...

The reason I say it is warped is because this bailout is $700 billion and there are those raising a stink over a $70 million ear mark. Big picture.