McCain: Obama's fix for economy is "talk and taxes"

In a new ad, John McCain says he'll "reform Wall Street and fix Washington" -- though he doesn't say how he'll do that.

Published September 17, 2008 3:40PM (EDT)

Like Barack Obama, John McCain has a new ad in which he speaks directly to the camera about the country's economic problems. That's where the similarities end.

McCain's ad -- a standard 30-second spot, compared with the two minutes Obama's runs for -- is more negative than Obama's, and less substantive. Plus, he delivers a few lines that might leave you scratching your head.

"You, the American workers, are the best in the world. But your economic security has been put at risk by the greed of Wall Street. That's unacceptable," McCain says. It's a funny thing for him to say, since that's, well ... sort of the way capitalism works. And Republicans are still pretty solidly in favor of capitalism, at least the last time I checked. (Democrats, too, obviously.)

Then, McCain says, "My opponent's only solutions are talk and taxes. I'll reform Wall Street and fix Washington. I've taken on tougher guys than this before." Again, an odd thing to say, since the only thing McCain offered in this spot was talk. (And, really, he hasn't committed to any substantive reform yet.) And it's not even plausible to claim that Obama's solution to the economic problems caused by Wall Street involves taxation.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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2008 Elections John Mccain R-ariz.