Reid: McCain, Obama "would not be helpful" in negotiations

Democratic leader Harry Reid releases a statement saying that John McCain's move to suspend his campaign won't help.

Published September 24, 2008 8:21PM (EDT)

Via Politico's Ben Smith, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid -- who, you'd think, might know a little bit about this -- has put out a statement saying that John McCain's plan to suspend his campaign and return to Washington to participate in negotiations on a bailout plan won't be helpful. Reid says Barack Obama's presence wouldn't help, either. As Smith notes, there's basically no chance Reid would put this statement out without the Obama camp's approval, so this is likely a sign of what their message will be as they continue to respond to McCain's announcement.

Here's the full statement:

This is a critical time for our country. While I appreciate that both candidates have signaled their willingness to help, Congress and the Administration have a process in place to reach a solution to this unprecedented financial crisis.

I understand that the candidates are putting together a joint statement at Senator Obama’s suggestion. But it would not be helpful at this time to have them come back during these negotiations and risk injecting presidential politics into this process or distract important talks about the future of our nation’s economy. If that changes, we will call upon them. We need leadership; not a campaign photo op.

If there were ever a time for both candidates to hold a debate before the American people about this serious challenge, it is now.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

MORE FROM Alex Koppelman

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

2008 Elections Barack Obama Harry Reid John Mccain R-ariz.