In a July 11 entry on The Page, Mark Halperin declared "Republicans" the "winner of the week" over Democrats without noting any of the admitted falsehoods by or controversies involving the McCain campaign over the previous week.
In a July 11 entry on his website, The Page, Time magazine senior political analyst Mark Halperin declared "Republicans" the "winner of the week" over Democrats without noting any of the admitted falsehoods by or controversies involving the McCain campaign over the previous week, as Steve Benen pointed out on his blog The Carpetbagger Report. Halperin asserted: "Despite Obama's splashy news that he'll deliver his nomination acceptance speech in a 76,000-seat stadium, his campaign is still proceeding with caution -- leaving Obama open to aggressive GOP attacks." In addition to naming Republicans the overall winners, Halperin named the Republicans winners of three categories: "Public Image," "Iraq," and "Arrival of the Calvary." He pronounced there to be a "tie" on the remaining issue, "Economy."
From Halperin's July 11 entry:
The admitted falsehoods by and controversies involving the McCain campaign that Halperin did not mention in his weekly campaign assessment include the following:
- As Benen noted, during a July 7 town hall meeting in Denver, McCain said: "Americans have got to understand that we are paying present-day retirees with the taxes paid by young workers in America today. And that's a disgrace. It's an absolute disgrace, and it's got to be fixed." On the July 8 edition of CNN's American Morning, McCain said during a discussion of Social Security that young people "pay their taxes and right now their taxes are going to pay the retirement of present-day retirees. That's why it's broken, that's why we can fix it." As The Washington Post reported on July 9, "If that payment system is a disgrace, it has been one since Social Security was created during the Great Depression. For as long as the popular program has existed, today's workers have paid the benefits of today's retirees." The Post added: "Reaction to McCain's statement has been slow to burble, but it is beginning to burst."
- On July 7, Sen. John McCain's falsely asserted: "If you are one of the 23 million small business owners in America who files as an individual rate payer, Senator Obama is going to raise your tax rates." In fact, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center's table of 2007 tax returns that reported small-business income, 481,000, not 23 million, of those returns are in the top two income tax brackets -- which include all filers with taxable incomes of more than $250,000. The San Francisco Chronicle reported on July 10 that "McCain's camp acknowledges that only individual business owners making more than $250,000 would pay higher taxes under Obama's plan -- but it insists those businesses will be hurt by the Democrat's proposals."
- In the wake of Iran's test of long-range missiles, McCain asserted: "It's my understanding is that this missile test was conducted by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. This is the same organization that I voted to condemn as a terrorist organization when an amendment was on the floor of the United States Senate. Senator Obama refused to vote. He called it provocative, a provocative step. The fact is, this is a terrorist organization and it should have been branded as such." As CNN.com's Political Ticker blog reported on July 11, "McCain also missed that vote" on designating the Revolutionary Guard a terrorist organization. Political Ticker reported that "[t]he McCain campaign admits the error." Additionally, as Political Ticker noted, Obama also sponsored legislation that "would have designated the Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization."
- The McCain campaign issued a press release on July 7 stating: "McCain's presidential campaign today released a statement signed by over 300 professional economists in support of John McCain's Jobs for America economic plan." However, a Politico article reported:
Upon closer inspection, it seems a good many of those economists don't actually support the whole of McCain's economic agenda. And at least one doesn't even support McCain for president.
In interviews with more than a dozen of the signatories, Politico found that, far from embracing McCain's economic plan, many were unfamiliar with -- or downright opposed to -- key details. While most of those contacted by Politico had warm feelings about McCain, many did not want to associate themselves too closely with his campaign and its policy prescriptions.
- As Benen noted, in an interview with The Washington Times, former Sen. Phil Gramm (R-TX) said, "You've heard of mental depression; this is a mental recession." He also stated: "We have sort of become a nation of whiners. You just hear this constant whining, complaining about a loss of competitiveness, America in decline. We've never been more dominant; we've never had more natural advantages than we have today." McCain subsequently said, "Phil Gramm does not speak for me. I speak for me." However, Gramm is McCain's National Campaign General co-chair and an economic policy adviser.