Saturday, July 19, 2008

Gramm Ouits McCain Campaign

This 2008 file photo shows Sen. John McCain with former Sen. Phil Gramm in March . (Photo credit: TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

This Phil Gramm development plus the one of John McCain's fellow POW's in Vietnam, Colonel Bud Day, defending the war in Iraq, saying, "The Muslims have said either we kneel or they're going to kill us,'' shows just how good McCain's judgement is in the company he keeps! In a phone call with reporters arranged by Republican Party of Florida, Colonel Bud Day added: "I don't intend to kneel and I don't advocate to anybody that we kneel, and John doesn't advocate to anybody that we kneel.''

I suppose McCain will have to issue another statement saying that Colonel Bud Day doesn't speak for him, either. If you remember, Day, who lives in Pensacola, was part of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth that smeared former Democratic nominee John Kerry's war record in 2004.

The following is an article from "The Fix" blog in the Washington Post by Chris Cillizza.

Add former Texas Sen. Phil Gramm's name to an ignominious list -- Samantha Power, Billy Shaheen, Geraldine Ferraro to name just a few -- of campaign surrogates forced to step aside after making an impolitic comment.
John McCain's campaign just released the following statement from Gramm:
"It is clear to me that Democrats want to attack me rather than debate Senator McCain on important economic issues facing the country. That kind of distraction hurts not only Senator McCain's ability to present concrete programs to deal with the country's problems, it hurts the country. To end this distraction and get on with the real debate, I hereby step down as Co-Chair of the McCain Campaign and join the growing number of rank-and-file McCain supporters."
Gramm's resignation as co-chair comes nine days
after Gramm told the Washington Times that the country was in a "mental recession" and went on to describe the United States as a "nation of whiners."
Democrats immediately seized on the comments as evidence that McCain and his campaign were out of touch with the average voter and weren't likely to let the issue go any time soon.
A few quick thoughts:
* Gramm's resignation is the inevitable byproduct of the modern political game best described by John Harris and Mark Halperin in "The Way to Win" as the "freak show." Once Gramm's comments made the cable television rounds for a few days, it was something close to inevitable that he would resign.
* It's a near-certainty that Democrats won't give up on the issue. The reality is that Gramm was one of McCain's closest confidantes when it came to the economy and simply because the former Texas Senator is no longer affiliated with the campaign does not mean Democrats won't remind voters of his comments in the fall.
* The position of Treasury Secretary in a McCain Administration is now WIDE open.

By Chris Cillizza July 18, 2008; 8:07 PM ET Category:
Eye on 2008

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