Washington, DC - After a weekend of watching John McCain's campaign try to distance itself from campaign co-chair and top economic advisor Phil Gramm, the Democratic National Committee today released a new video highlighting the inseparable link between McCain and Gramm. Called "John McCain & Phil Gramm: It's All In Your Head," the new video shows McCain repeatedly praising Gramm's judgment on the economy and echoing Gramm's claim that the economic challenges facing America's working families are "psychological."
The video also shows that, despite Carly Fiorina's claim on Meet the Press that Phil Gramm doesn't speak for John McCain, Gramm was in fact speaking for McCain at the Wall Street Journal editorial page on the same day McCain was saying otherwise. In reality, Phil Gramm was a key architect of the economic agenda John McCain is trying to sell on the campaign trail and a key component of his effort to win over skeptical conservatives. McCain even cites the advice he gets from Gramm as an example of why voters shouldn't be worried about McCain's admission that the economy is something he doesn't understand as well as he should.
Despite Fiorina's battle with the facts, the weekend wasn't a complete loss for the McCain campaign's credibility, with one surrogate managing to give some long overdue straight talk. Asked on CNN's Late Edition to come up with a single economic difference between President Bush and John McCain, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford stumbled around for more than a minute before settling on the correct answer: there are none. [Huffington Post, 7/13/08: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/07/13/mark-sanford-draws-a-blan_n_112391.htmlMark]
"John McCain's campaign may be scrambling to throw Gramm under the straight talk express bus, but they can't change the fact that Phil Gramm, John McCain and George Bush all offer the same failed, out of touch economic agenda that has left America's working families struggling to deal with a real economic crisis," said DNC spokeswoman Karen Finney. "John McCain doesn't understand that American families struggling to keep their homes and jobs while paying more for everything from gas to groceries don't need a 'psychological' boost. They need real plans for getting our economy back on track, not four more years of the failed McCain-Gramm-Bush policies that created this mess in the first place."
To see the DNC's latest video, "John McCain & Phil Gramm: It's All In Your Head," click here: http://youtube.com/watch?v=1mHsuL6FfY4
"John McCain & Phil Gramm: It's All In Your Head"
TEXT: John McCain on Advisor Phil Gramm (Before)
MCCAIN: "A person I've had the honor and pleasure of knowing as a friend and a great economist... my dear friend and comrade, Senator Phil Gramm." [McCain Town Hall, CNN Live Feed, (Waco, TX ), 3/3/08]
MCCAIN: "There is no one in America that is more respected on the issue of economics than Senator Phil Gramm. So I'm honored that you are here, Phil. Thank you for your great service." [Speech at Dell Headquarters, Round Rock, TX, 2/29/08]
MCCAIN: "A lot of the people that I respect that are advising me, like Phil Gramm and Jack Kemp..." [ABC This Week, 2/17/08]
TEXT: ...But Then:
PHIL GRAMM: "You've heard of mental depression; this is a mental recession... You just hear this constant whining, complaining... We've sort of become a nation of whiners."
[Washington Times, 7/9/08]
MCCAIN: "Phil Gramm does not speak for me. I speak for me." [Media Availability, Belleville, MI, 07/10/08]
GERSH: "Is Senator Gramm still giving advice to Senator McCain?"
HOLTZ-EAKIN: "At -- I haven't spoken to Senator Gramm since the comments took place, and I'm not expecting to." [PBS Nightly Business Report, 7/11/08, http://www.pbs.org/nbr/site/onair/transcripts/080711b/]
CARL CAMERON: "While McCain was saying Gramm doesn't speak for him today, Gramm was in fact speaking for him to the Wall Street Journal editorial board and saying that he's not going to retract anything he said and that every word is true." [Fox News, 7/10/08]
TEXT: The John McCain-Phil Gramm Economic Plan: It's All In Your Head
MCCAIN: "I think, psychologically - and a lot of our problems today, as you know, are psychological ...A little psychological boost. Lets have some straight talk. Its not a huge amount of money... a little psychological boost, that's what I think it would help." [Your World with Neil Cavuto, 4/16/08, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cvCpFWzmP1Y]
MCCAIN: "Now, as far as putting additional money in American taxpayers' pocket, that's fine, because a lot of this is psychological, a lot of it is psychological." [McCain Town Hall, (West Palm Beach, FL) 1/24/08]
MCCAIN: "Even though it would take some years, the fact that we are exploiting those reserves would have psychological impact that I think is beneficial." [McCain Town Hall, (Fresno, CA), 6/23/08, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_dHbzkXFcK4]
MCCAIN: "And finally, could I just mention on the issue of rebates, fine, because part of this is psychological. Part of the problem we have of course in any recession is psychological." [CNN Debate, 1/30/08]
AUDIO: "You just hear this constant whining, complaining... We've sort of become a nation of whiners."
TEXT: John McCain: The Wrong Choice on the Economy