Archive for the ‘gentleman’ Category

Bush handing over power to Obama with grace

November 11, 2008

No matter how people remember President Bush’s time in office, let there be no doubt about how he wants to end it: gracefully.

By BEN FELLER, Associated Press Writer

Never mind that Democrat Barack Obama spent all that time deriding Bush for “failed policies,” or mocking him for hiding in an “undisclosed location” because he was too unpopular to show up with his party’s own candidate, John McCain. This is transition time. Outgoing presidents support the new guy.

And on that front, Bush is going well beyond the minimum. He has embraced the role of statesman with such gusto that it has been hard to miss.

The result is that Bush’s last image at the White House will be one of a magnanimous leader. Whether it will improve his legacy is another matter.

“This has been a very good moment late in his presidency, and, I think it’s fair to say, much appreciated by the nation,” said Cal Jillson, a political science professor at Southern Methodist University, the home of Bush’s planned presidential library.

On Monday at the White House, Bush warmly welcomed Obama, whose dominant win last week was largely seen as a referendum on the Bush years.

The two leaders spent more than an hour discussing domestic and foreign policy in the Oval Office. And then Bush gave Obama a personal tour all around.

The world saw video images that were replayed all day and night: Bush and first lady Laura Bush greeting Obama and his wife, Michelle, as if they were old friends; Bush strolling with the president-elect along the famous Colonnade adjacent to the Rose Garden, both men waving and smiling.

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President Elect Obama and “Survivor” McCain: A Personal Reflection

November 5, 2008

I needed a taxi in Virgina’s election night darkness and rain, and was delighted to meet an Ethiopian-American driver.  He told me his name, translated from Amarigna, meant “Strength.”  His Christian or baptismal name is John — the same as my name.

I told the driver that I had been in meetings all afternoon and well past dark and that I didn’t know anything about the election returns.  He said his car radio was dead — and then fished an old transister radio from his pocket and gleefully showed me how he was keeping involved in the historic election.

“Strength” said he had voted for the first time yesterday and that “America is such a wonderful place….”  He said in Ethiopia, Russia, China and many other lands there are all sorts of elections but that “ruling leaders know the outcome before the vote….”

I also heard from many John McCain supporters, including my friends who lived with him inside the Hanoi Hilton and some of McCain’s Naval Academy classmates.  One congratulated me and said, “John has always served with grace and aplomb and courage — and conducted himself as a gentleman.  You saw this and reported it when all other media treated him badly….”

I call McCain “Survivor” because of his near-death experience during the great fire that killed 134 aboard USS Forrestal and for his strength and determination inside the Hanoi Hilton.  My own wife suffered some of the same torture that McCain endured so we count him as a brother and fellow “Survivor.”

The campaign was exciting and now the real work begins.  We wish President Elect Obama and all who will assit him the best….We seek now unity and the national good….

John McCain's capture

Above: This Oct. 26, 1967, photo from the Library of Congress shows Navy fighter pilot John McCain, center, being captured by Vietnamese civilians in Truc Bach Lake near Hanoi.

‘Survivor’ McCain, Ever the Gentleman, Concedes and Congratulates Obama

November 5, 2008

If there is one word that has encapsulated the life and career of Sen. John McCain, it is “survivor.”

Three times as a Navy pilot, he crashed planes he was flying; three times he walked away without a scratch. Once, when sitting in his jet on the deck of the USS Forester,[sic] (the ship was USS Forrestal) a rocket from another plane hit his plane, which exploded. Mr. McCain scurried through the flames; 134 other men died.

And when he ejected from his jet over Hanoi, breaking both arms and a leg, he fell into a lake but was pulled out by Vietnamese, who beat him unconscious. Given up for dead – he weighed less than 100 pounds at one point during 5 1/2 years of imprisonment in the “Hanoi Hilton” – he survived once more.

By Joseph Curl
The Washington Times

“This guy is literally unkillable,” a top aide said the night in January when the senator from Arizona pulled off a stunning upset in New Hampshire, propelling him on a path that would end with the Republican nomination for president.

But even he could not rise above what faced him this election – a toxic environment for Republicans, with an unpopular, even despised, President Bush, a late-campaign economic meltdown that favored Democrats, and a man who seemed from the outset destined to be president, the first black nominee, who also had more money to spend that any other candidate in history.

“It is highly doubtful that anyone will ever have to run in a worse political climate than the one John McCain had to run in this year,” Steve Schmidt, Mr. McCain’s top strategist, said aboard the Straight Talk Express as his boss flew back Tuesday from his final campaign rally.

Republican presidential candidate John McCain concedes defeat ...
 Republican presidential candidate John McCain concedes defeat to Democrat Barack Obama during his election night rally at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa in Phoenix, Arizona.(AFP/Mandel Ngan)

“The president’s approval numbers, you know, were not helpful in the race, but the party as a whole is unpopular with the American people and that was a big albatross,” Mr. Schmidt said.

He said Mr. McCain is not to blame for the loss. “I don’t think there’s another Republican the party could have nominated that could have made this a competitive race the way that John McCain did.”

Mr. McCain had said repeatedly that whatever the outcome Tuesday, he is “the luckiest man in the world.”

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http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2008/nov/04
/mccain-concedes-congratulates-obama/

See video of John Mccain concession:
http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=10538690&ch=4226716&src=news

Tease? Team Obama Gives Debate “Talking Points” To Media; What Will McCain Do?

October 15, 2008

Final preparations are made at the presidential debate site ... 
Final preparations are made at the presidential debate site at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. John McCain, needing a dramatic turnaround to his waning White House hopes, vowed to unmask his rival Barack Obama as a radical sympathizer at their third and final debate in New York Wednesday.(AFP/Getty Images/Win Mcnamee)

Politico

The Obama campaign is trying to raise the stakes for McCain by stressing that the debate may be his last chance to turn the race around, and to raise the expectation that he’ll attack.

“This is John McCain’s last chance to turn this race around and somehow convince the American people that his erratic response to this economic crisis doesn’t disqualify him from being President,” say the talking points.

And they’re continuing to drive the “erratic” message.

“John McCain has been erratic and unsteady since this crisis began — staggering from position to position and trying to change the subject away from the economy by launching false character attacks,” says the document, which is essentially a more deadpan version of Bill Burton’s pre-debate memo.

Full talking points after the jump.

Talking Points

· This is John McCain’s last chance to turn this race around and somehow convince the American people that his erratic response to this economic crisis doesn’t disqualify him from being President.

· Just this weekend the weekend, John McCain vowed to “whip Obama’s you-know-what” at the debate, and he’s indicated that he’ll be bringing up Bill Ayers to try to distract voters.

· So we know that Senator McCain will come ready to attack

Barack Obama….
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http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/20081015/pl_politico/23794_1
Related:
Obama Says He Really Does Believe In “Income and Wealth Redistribution”
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Just one troubling quandry for John McCain….

 

Mike Allen
Politico

John McCain is at odds with many of his top advisers over launching a renewed attack on Barack Obama‘s ties to his long-time pastor and mentor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, according to campaign sources.
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and several top campaign officials see a sharp attack on Wright as the best — and perhaps last — chance to rattle Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill. ) and force voters to rethink their support of him. But McCain continues to overrule them, fearing a Wright attack would smack of desperation and racism, the officials said.

With McCain unlikely to budge, GOP officials are hoping groups outside of the campaign will finance an ad attack on Obama-Wright ties. It is unclear if any conservative group has the cash to bankroll a serious effort, however.

Republican presidential candidate, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., ...
Republican presidential candidate, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., makes a campaign stop at Montgomery County Community College in Blue Bell, Pa., Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2008.(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

“Wright is off the table,” said one top campaign official. “It’s all McCain. He won’t go there. His advisers would have gone there.”

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Related:
Barack Obama’s Famous Friends, Associates: Hate Speech, Crimes, Fraud Incorporated
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WASHINGTON (CNN) — GOP Sen. John McCain must clearly differentiate his plan to fix the ailing economy from that of his rival Sen. Barack Obama at Wednesday night’s presidential debate if he is to shake up the race, political analysts said.

“I think what he has to to do is talk about the issues. … He’s got to talk about his economic plan,” CNN senior political analyst Gloria Borger said. “Yes, he’s got to convince voters that he’s got the judgment to be president, but he’s also got to convince voters to like him.”

Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain sparred about domestic policy during their second presidential debate.

Above: Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain sparred about domestic
policy during their second presidential debate.

The third and final debate, taking place at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York, at 9 p.m. ET, may be the last time the Republican presidential candidate may be able turn the race to his favor before Election Day, now less than three weeks away.

The 90-minute face-off, which will air on CNN and CNN.com, will undoubtedly focus on the economic crisis plaguing the country.

CNN political editor Mark Preston said the debate will likely be McCain’s “last chance to reach tens of millions of people with his vision for America.”

“He needs a game-changer,” Preston said.

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http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/10/15/presidential.debate/index.html?section=cnn_latest
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By CHRISTOPHER WILLS, Associated Press Writer

TOLEDO, Ohio – Republican John McCain is looking to turnaround his fortunes in the final presidential debate with Democrat Barack Obama, a forum focused on pocketbook issues and domestic policy Wednesday night.

Both candidates released proposals this week designed to boost the economy as financial institutions wobble and voters feel the pinch of a faltering economy. The debate is at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y., with the candidates seated at a table with moderator Bob Schieffer of CBS.

With the economic crisis fueling public unease, Obama has built leads nationally and in key states as the turmoil has returned the nation’s focus to the policies of the unpopular President Bush. The burden now is on McCain to try to reverse his slide.

To that end, the Arizona senator took a new approach this week, positioning himself as a fighter for the American middle class and easing off his most direct attacks on Obama, an Illinois senator. McCain also took pains to separate himself from Bush.

“We cannot spend the next four years as we have spent much of the last eight: waiting for our luck to change. … As president I intend to act, quickly and decisively,” McCain said Tuesday in battleground Pennsylvania.

He announced a $52.5 billion economic plan Tuesday that calls for halving the tax rate on capital gains and reducing the tax on withdrawals from retirement accounts, among other measures. A day earlier, Obama unveiled a $60 billion proposal that includes an extension of unemployment benefits, a 90-day freeze on home foreclosures, penalty-free withdrawals from retirement funds and a $3,000 tax credit for each new job.

Both candidates call for doing away with the tax on unemployment benefits.
McCain has suggested that he is likely to bring up Obama’s links to William Ayers, a radical during the Vietnam War era. Ayers was a member of the violent Weather Underground group but later became a university professor in Chicago and an expert on education. He and Obama both worked with some of the same charity foundations in Chicago, and Ayers hosted a reception for Obama when he first ran for the Illinois state Senate.

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Obama, McCain seek leader’s image in final debate

October 14, 2008

By LIZ SIDOTI, Associated Press Writer 

WASHINGTON – Barack Obama and John McCain will both pursue the image of a strong leader in troublesome economic times as they meet Wednesday night for their third and final presidential debate.

US Democratic presidential nominee Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) ... 
US Democratic presidential nominee Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) (L) greets US Republican presidential nominee Senator John McCain (R-AZ) at the end of their second presidential debate with at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee October 7, 2008. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

Their face-off comes as Obama widens his lead in typically Democratic states and campaigns with an air of optimism about his prospects, while McCain seeks a way to gain ground and finds himself defending traditionally Republican states with less than three weeks left in the race.

“We cannot spend the next four years as we have spent much of the last eight: waiting for our luck to change. … As president I intend to act, quickly and decisively,” McCain said Tuesday in battleground Pennsylvania. There, he unveiled new economic proposals and previewed a possible debate strategy: argue that he would be different from Bush and better than Obama.

One day earlier in swing state Ohio, Obama outlined his own economic plan and showed off his own pitch. He suggested that McCain was more of the same and that putting a Democrat in charge was the only way to fix the economy’s woes: “It will take a new direction. It will take new leadership in Washington. It will take a real change in the policies and politics of the last eight years.”
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