by Kevin Flynn - Friday October 10 2008 08:00:25 AM
From the Wall Stret Journal:
Barack Obama took his economic argument on Thursday to Ohio, a crucial swing state whose new early-voting laws might work in the Democratic candidate's favor.
...Sen. Obama's two-day bus tour through the state began at a minor-league baseball park in the working-class town of Dayton, where he blasted rival John McCain's plan for the government to bail out troubled homeowners with new mortgages as an example of the "erratic behavior" the Arizona senator would display if allowed to govern the country.
Sen. McCain's initial plan called for mortgage companies to absorb at least some of the cost of renegotiating the mortgages. But now, his campaign says the government would pick up the full tab. "Now in the course of 12 hours, he's come up with a plan that punishes taxpayers, rewards banks and won't solve our housing crisis," Sen. Obama said.
The Obama visit comes as the two campaigns make an intense final push for Ohio and its 20 electoral votes, among the largest prizes in November.
...The ground game has been altered by a new voting law: This is the first presidential-election year in which Ohio voters can cast an absentee ballot up to a month early without having an excuse.
...The ramped-up early voting, coupled with a competitive primary season for Sen. Obama, means campaign staff have been working for nearly a year registering voters and polishing turnout plans. Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner said 666,000 new voters have registered this year. That gives Ohio a voter-registration rate of 94%, she said, one of the highest in the country.
...Obama campaign officials say they have done more ground work in Ohio at this point than the Kerry campaign had in 2004. Over the past weekend, Mr. Baker said, Obama volunteers knocked on roughly 250,000 doors in a massive canvassing session. The same weekend in 2004, canvassers visited 100,000 houses, Mr. Baker said.
From the Boston Globe:
"We need to do what we did in the 1990s and create millions of new jobs and not lose them," [Obama] told 6,000 people in Abington, outside Philadelphia, last week. "We need to do what we did in the 1990s and make sure people's incomes are going up and not down. We need to do what a guy named Bill Clinton did in the 1990s and put people first again."
..."America can't take four more years of John McCain's George Bush policies," he said yesterday in Dayton, Ohio.
...The Clintons are scheduled to campaign together on Obama's behalf for the first time on Sunday, joining the Democratic vice-presidential nominee, Senator Joe Biden, in Scranton, Pa., a blue-collar stronghold where Biden was born and where the family of Hillary Clinton's father hails from.
...In recent weeks, Obama has praised Clinton for creating millions more new jobs than Bush, helping boost family incomes, and for running budget surpluses, as opposed to the deficits that have grown under Bush.
"When Bill Clinton was in office, the average family income went up $7,500," Obama said in Green Bay, Wis. last month. "Twenty-two million jobs created. So we just have to be clear about the history." Last week in La Crosse, Wis., Obama said, "It's time to return to the fiscal responsibility and pay-as-you-go budgeting, the kind of budgeting we had in the 1990s. You remember, Bill Clinton left a surplus for George W. Bush?"
From the Associated Press:
Democratic vice presidential candidate Joe Biden said Thursday that Republican John McCain keeps switching responses to the economic crisis and now advocates a plan for troubled mortgages that would "reward banks and lenders for their greedy behavior."
..."Now he's gone to the point of actually wanting to reward banks and lenders for their greedy behavior," Biden said. "Ladies and gentlemen, this is not a steady hand."
McCain has proposed to devote $300 billion — nearly half the recently enacted financial rescue package — to buying troubled mortgages at face value from financial institutions. McCain promotes it as a way to help homeowners.
But Barack Obama's running mate said the real winners would be the banks that made the bad loans.
"He's going to spend $300 billion of your money so the banks don't lose a single penny. I'm not making this up — I know it sounds like fiction — but I'm not making this up," Biden told several hundred supporters at Missouri Western State University. "That's not bailing out the homeowner, you're bailing out the bank."
...Biden's event was the first of four campaign rallies scheduled over two days in the swing state of Missouri, where recent polls have showed the race about even.
...En route to a later event at William Jewell College in Liberty, Biden detoured for some coffee, handshaking and photos at a locally owned bookstore and coffee shop.
At a nighttime rally under a pavilion at a Jefferson City park, Biden denounced McCain for "ugly inferences and unbecoming personal attacks" against Obama, without offering specifics.
From the Washington Post:
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on Thursday said rival John McCain's mortgage rescue plan "punishes" taxpayers and rewards lending institutions that created the crisis...
...On a day when some conservatives also critiqued McCain's proposal, Obama used the "risky idea" as a way to describe McCain as a desperate candidate "lurching" from idea to idea as he tries to find an answer to the economic crisis that has roiled the presidential campaign.
..."His first response to the housing crisis in March was that homeowners shouldn't get any help at all," Obama told a crowd at a minor-league baseball park in Dayton, part of a two-day swing through the battleground state of Ohio.
"Then a few weeks ago, he put out a plan that basically ignored homeowners. Now, in the course of 12 hours, he's ended up with a plan that punishes taxpayers, rewards banks and won't solve our housing crisis."
..."Banks wouldn't take a loss, but taxpayers would take a loss," he [Obama] said. "It's a plan that would guarantee that you, the American taxpayers, would lose by handing over $300 billion to underwrite the kind of greed and irresponsibility on Wall Street that got us into this mess."
...Speaking at an evening rally at Shawnee State University, Obama said: "Today, millions of Americans lost more of their investments and hard-earned retirement savings as the stock market took another significant plunge. Now, it is critical that the Treasury Department move as quickly as possible to implement the rescue plan that passed Congress so we can ease this credit crisis that's preventing businesses large and small from getting the loans they need. It's causing instability in our market. Understand, this is not just an issue for big businesses or banks in New York."
On Thursday, the stock market lost nearly 700 points and dropped below 9,000 for the first time in five years. Neither McCain or Palin mentioned the stock market on the campaign trail, and their campaign did not release a comment on it.