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McCain Wins Debate Before It Happens!!

McCain Wins Debate Before It Happens!!

We certainly know what he was planning!

After days of saying that John McCain would not attend Friday’s presidential debate unless an agreement on a bailout package for the markets was “locked-down,” the McCain campaign has gone back on its word.

On Friday, it announced that the Senator would head down to Mississippi even though, as they readily admit, much work remained needed on the bailout agreement.

The whole episode left even conservatives admitting that the McCain campaign looked erratic and a bit foolish with no apparent direction or guiding principle.

“It just proves his campaign is governed by tactics and not ideology,” said Republican consultant Craig Shirley, who advised McCain earlier in this cycle. “In the end, he blinked and Obama did not. The ‘steady hand in a storm’ argument looks now to more favor Obama, not McCain.”

Shirley added, “My guess is that plasma units are rushing to the McCain campaign as we speak to replace the blood flowing there from the fights among the staff.”

Adding to the rocky perception was a McCain campaign web ad released this morning declaring “McCain Wins Debate!” — put out even before the candidate had announced he was planning to debate.

Aides to Barack Obama were not, generally, surprised by the announcement, though nonetheless pleased. One called the Arizona Republican’s gambit – of leaving the trail to supposedly forge a compromise on the bailout – a “failure.” Other Democrats were equally biting in describing the moment.

“It means that people think he went back on his word,” said Howard Wolfson, formerly the communications director for Hillary Clinton. “John McCain’s presidential campaign has been in a death spiral since the Wall Street collapse and this summit gambit was an attempt to pull out of it. But it hasn’t succeeded because McCain hasn’t done anything to move the ball forward.”

Allies of McCain tried to put the best spin on the announcement, saying that while the bailout legislation was not yet completed, McCain thought it best to address the nation.

“What’s more important than anything that when we go to Mississippi tonight, both candidates can say that the Congress is working,” said Sen. Lindsay Graham

But others couldn’t help but admit that the Arizona Republican had mismanaged the whole scenario, basically walking himself into a corner, stuck with the choice of looking either scared or unprincipled.

“He will been seen as blinking first,” Shirley declared, “since it was he who said he wasn’t going until the crisis is averted. Hobson’s choice, painted in a corner, bollixed — pick your poison, or pick your cliche.”

Source: HP

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Obama Will Make Debate A Townhall If McCain Doesn't Show

Obama Will Make Debate A Townhall If McCain Doesn't Show

UPDATE: An adviser Barack Obama says he expects John McCain to attend:

“I actually think he’s going to come to the debate,” the adviser, Robert Gibbs, told reporters in Washington on Thursday.

And echoing a talking point that Senator Obama used in his press conference on Thursday, Mr. Gibbs added: “I think he will decide that a president is capable of doing more than one thing at a time.”

Barack Obama is committed to hosting a public, televised event Friday night in Mississippi even if John McCain does not show up, an official close to the Obama campaign tells the Huffington Post.

In McCain’s absence, the Senator is willing to make the scheduled debate a townhall meeting, a one-on-one interview with NewsHour’s Jim Lehrer, or the combination of the two, the official said.

Such a course of action could make life incredibly difficult for McCain, who has called for the suspension of the debate in light of the current economic crisis. Should he stay in Washington D.C. — if a bailout is not completed by then — and let Obama alone reach tens of millions of television viewers?

A lot, of course, depends upon what the debate commission decides to do. At this point in time, there is no indication that they are going to postpone the affair, as the McCain campaign has asked.

Separately, on Thursday, Obama himself said he was intending to go to Oxford, Miss for the scheduled debate and called on McCain to be there with him.

“The American people deserve to hear directly from myself and Sen. McCain about how we intend to lead our country,” Obama said. “The times are too serious to put our campaign on hold, or to ignore the full range of issues that the next president will face.”

Meanwhile, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour said on Thursday that he expected the debate to go forward as planned.

Source: HP

As McCain tries to keep up the appearance of the in control commander and chief ~ over the mess that his 26 years in Washington allowed him to be in a position to create ~ he abandons the campaign trail and rushes back to Washington to advise on the Fixin’ of the economy. Perhaps this is a little too Maverick ~ for what both America and the world needs at this time.