DNC - Senator McCain Watch: Playing the Blame Game

Washington, DC--This week the McCain campaign is spinning furiously, trying to place the blame for rising gas prices anywhere but where it belongs - on Washington insiders like McCain. But McCain can't distract from the fact that he's offering more of the same failed Bush-McCain policies responsible for the economic crisis Americans face today.

In Pennsylvania today, McCain will be hard-pressed to explain away his same-as-Bush economic policies. Since Bush took office, Pennsylvania has lost nearly 70,000 jobs and incomes have stagnated. Now McCain's hitting the trail with more of Bush's failed and flawed policies. McCain is putting tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans and big corporations - $4 billion for the top five Big Oil companies and $2 billion for the top ten health insurance companies - ahead of economic relief for working Americans. 

Today McCain will also have to face the consequences of resurrecting Bush's risky scheme to privatize Social Security. McCain campaigned with Bush to sell the plan in 2005, and now he's back at it. As Americans struggle economically, McCain wants to turn Social Security from a guarantee into a gamble at a cost of $1 trillion -- and that's just for transition costs.

Americans can't afford another term of McCain-Bush economic policies.


McCain Claimed Americans Were "Better Off Because We Have Had A Pretty Good Prosperous Time."
In the January 2008 Republican debate, McCain commented, "I think you could argue that Americans overall are better off, because we have had a pretty good prosperous time, with low unemployment and low inflation and a lot of good things have happened. A lot of jobs have been created." [CNN GOP Debate, 1/30/08, video]  

McCain Said A Lot of Americans' Economic Problems Are "Psychological." When discussing the gas tax holiday, McCain said, "I think, psychologically - and a lot of our problems today, as you know, are psychological - confidence, trust, uncertainty about our economic future, ability to keep our own home."  McCain said that his gas holiday will give people a psychological boost and that solving the mortgage crisis would be a major psychological step forward.  [FOX News, "Your World With Neil Cavuto," 4/16/08, video]

McCain's "Economic Plans Really Are An Extension of the Bush Administration Policies." "McCain doesn't like to hear it, but his economic plans really are an extension of Bush administration policies…When all the economic mumbo-jumbo is removed, that fact remains." [Boston Globe, Editorial, 7/9/08, boston.com ]

John McCain Promises Help For Working Americans, But His Proposals Reveal More Aid For Corporations.  According to the Washington Post, revealing his economic agenda, McCain "offered sweeping rhetoric about the economic plight of working-class Americans, promising immediate assistance even as he spelled out a tax and spending agenda whose benefits are aimed squarely at spurring corporate growth." [Washington Post, 4/16/2008]


Unemployed Up 26% in Pennsylvania. The number of unemployed workers in Pennsylvania has increased by 26% under President Bush. The number of unemployed has gone up from 262,572 in January of 2001 and preliminary figures for June of 2008 are 332,113, an increase of 69,541 workers, or 26%. [Local Area Unemployed Statistics, (Seasonally Adjusted), Bureau of Labor Statistics, accessed 7/20/08, data.bls.gov ]

Income Stagnant.
Median household income in Pennsylvania has increased only slightly from $47,524 in 2000 to $ 48,148 in 2006, an increase of $624 per household--a 1.3% increase that is not statistically different from zero. [Joint Economic Committee Fact Sheet, 8/29/07, (Bureau of the Census, U.S. Department of Commerce), jec.senate.gov ]

Pennsylvania Has Over 1.2 Million People Uninsured. 1,216,260 people have no health insurance.  That's 10 percent of Pennsylvanians living without any insurance.  [statehealthfacts.org, accessed 7/20/08, available here: http://www.statehealthfacts.org/profileind.jsp?ind=125&cat=3&rgn=40 ]

More than 217,000 kids in Pennsylvania have NO health insurance. 217,171 kids in Pennsylvania have no health insurance.  [statehealthfacts.org, accessed 7/20/08, available here: http://www.statehealthfacts.org/profileind.jsp?ind=127&cat=3&rgn=40 ]

In the First Quarter of 2008, Over 5,900 Homes in Pennsylvania Received a Foreclosure Filing.

  • 5,901 homes received a foreclosure filing in the first quarter.  [Realty Trac Press Release, 4/29/08]
  • That's 1 out of every 924 homes.  [Realty Trac Press Release, 4/29/08]