McCain bringing campaign advisor to White House meeting

Barack Obama was reportedly told not to bring any campaign staffers to the Thursday afternoon meeting, but John McCain will be accompanied by one of his campaign's economic advisors.

Published September 25, 2008 7:15PM (EDT)

John McCain suspended his campaign to go back to Washington and work on the bailout, but it sure seems as if he's there as a candidate, not as a senator just working to get a bailout deal done.

As Politico's Jonathan Martin noted, based on a pool report that had McCain conferring with Rick Davis, his campaign manager, and Sen. Joe Lieberman, a top surrogate, "it's increasingly implausible to think that what [McCain is] doing is anything different than he'd be doing on the campaign trail, except he's in person now instead of on his cell phone."

And when it comes time for the big bipartisan meeting that will be happening at the White House less than an hour after this post goes up, McCain will be accompanied not by one of his Senate staffers but by Douglas Holtz-Eakin, his campaign's top economic policy advisor. That's especially interesting because Barack Obama is bringing his legislative assistant. In fact, ABC News' Jake Tapper reports, Obama was told not to bring a campaign aide. An Obama spokesman confirmed that report to Salon.

Update: As readers pointed out in letters here, Tapper has updated his post to say that he has heard from the McCain camp, and Holtz-Eakin did not attend the meeting. The McCain team was, like its counterparts, told the candidate should not bring anyone from his campaign.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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2008 Elections Barack Obama George W. Bush John Mccain R-ariz.