Posted by: Bob McAlister | October 13, 2008

What McCain should do in the debate

Wednesday night is the last debate. McCain, while winning the first two debates on substance, has been too nice. He let Obama off the hook in the last debate by not wrapping Bill Ayers and the Rev. Jeremiah Wright around his neck. Obama has been skillful in ducking and weaving, often lying about his record. 

The debate format encourages such stuff: One candidate makes a charge, the other candidate refutes it, and the viewers don’t have any evidence to confirm which one’s telling the truth. Most don’t have the time or skill to follow up with their own research.

It can be different Wednesday.

Here’s a letter McCain wrote to the Senate leadership May 5, 2006. Nineteen other senators, including Lindsey Graham and Jim DeMint, signed it. The letter lays out in stark terms their concerns about Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. No action was taken, and McCain’s warnings have come true.

At the Wednesday debate, he should pull the letter out of his coat pocket and read the first paragraph. He then says: “I knew Freddie and Fannie were in trouble. I knew their failure could bring down the nation’s financial systems. I proposed specific reform to prevent it. The reform did not happen. Senator Obama, your name was not on this letter. You did not sign it. You never, not once, expressed concern and you never offered reform. If my recommendations had been passed, we could have prevented the collapse that has crippled retirement accounts, savings and the future of working people. I specifically blame you and your Democrat colleagues for this outrage and the American people should, too.”

The McCain campaign should have an ad with video of the confrontation ready to air the next day.

That’s the best shot McCain has at breaking the race wide open.

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