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Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
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By Lauren B. Davis

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Tag: Mccain

Palin and Biden
AP photo / Don Emmert, pool

You’re No Harry Truman, Governor

Gov. Sarah Palin survived Thursday night’s debate, much to the disappointment of Democrats who hoped she would crumble as she did in her interview with Katie Couric. But she ducked tough questions, gave canned answers, tried to smile her way out of tough spots and cheerfully distorted Sen. Barack Obama’s record.

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 READ MORE


Square, Category Page

Homer votes

Homer Simpson Backs Obama

In this apparently leaked clip from the slated Nov. 2 episode of “The Simpsons,” the original “Joe Sixpack,” Homer Simpson, tangles with a voting machine as he attempts to cast his vote for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama. Who will prevail?

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

collage: /

Florida Republicans Hold Secret Meeting

With several new polls showing Florida breaking for Barack Obama, the state’s GOP leadership convened a secret meeting of top party and campaign officials. Florida GOP Chair Jim Greer, who organized the powwow, said, “It was just to ensure the ship is on its proper course. ...”

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 READ MORE

Who Cares

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 ENLARGE

Evangelical Leader Goes All In For McCain

And to think that anyone thought James Dobson would sit out this presidential race. The Christian right leader and his advocacy group, Focus on the Family Action, are planning a multistate strategy to help elect McCain, and to prevent Democratic gains in Congress while they’re at it.

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 READ MORE

The Next President’s Supreme Legacy

The 44th president could replace as many as three of the four moderate and liberal justices of the Supreme Court. You do the math. If Obama is elected, the court will stay pretty much the way it is. If McCain is elected, Katie bar the door.

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 READ MORE

Sarah Palin the Sideshow

There is something about Sarah Palin that gnaws at me, and it isn’t that the Republican vice presidential nominee has wilted under the soft light shone upon her by CBS’ Katie Couric.

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 READ MORE

McCain Steals Another Obama Cliché

First John McCain hopped on the change bandwagon, and now he sounds like he gave the keynote speech at the 2004 Democratic convention. The money quote in this new ad is better in the original Barack Obama.

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

McCain Categorically Rejects Criticism of Palin

During an interview with The Des Moines Register, a miffed John McCain reiterates his fundamental disagreement with and categorical rejection of the idea that Sarah Palin is somehow unqualified to be a heartbeat away from the presidency. Maybe he just hasn’t seen this, this, this or this.

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

Katie Couric Is Ready for Her Close-Up

It’s been a rough couple of years for the anchor of the last-place network newscast, but Katie Couric managed to silence many of her critics this week with an interview series that not only got a lot of attention, but scored points for her tough but fair style.

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 READ MORE


Couric Stumps Palin With Question About Reading

Katie Couric asked Sarah Palin about a number of controversial topics during the latest installment of her interview—evolution, abortion, homosexuality—but the VP nominee appeared to have the hardest time when pressed to say what newspapers and magazines she has read: “Um, all of them, any of them that have been in front of me all these years.”

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

AP photo / Henny Ray Abrams

Boston Tea Party, 2008

How dare you throw that tea into Boston Harbor! Such is the anti-democratic arrogance of the fear-mongering pundits and politicians who tell us if we taxpayers don’t instantly give the Wall Street banking bandits a $700-billion bailout, we are destroying America.

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 READ MORE

Unions Unleash the Troops for Obama

The nation’s most powerful labor unions are ratcheting up their efforts to elect Barack Obama with massive voter outreach campaigns. Both SEIU and the AFL-CIO have said this year’s efforts will be their largest voter mobilization campaigns ever.

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 READ MORE

McCain Campaign Challenged by Economic Crisis

John McCain’s bid to put his campaign on hold in order to wing his way to Washington last week was intended to make him seem ready for action in a crisis but may have resulted in a “political dead end” for the Arizona senator after Monday’s bailout bomb, according to the Associated Press.

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 READ MORE

Flickr /

Politico: Biden Will Go Soft on Palin

A campaign source tells the political rag that Joe Biden will avoid roughing up Sarah Palin during the debate Thursday, focusing his energies instead on John McCain. That might have something to do with a new poll, which suggests that most people think Biden will prove to be much more knowledgeable, but much less likeable.

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 READ MORE

Palin Responds to Controversy, Says She’s Ready, Willing and Able

And if that’s not enough for you, you just have to see John McCain compare Sarah Barracuda to Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton.

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

McCain Is Guilty Enough

Americans are reluctant to make John McCain pay for George W. Bush’s sins, but with so many crises on so many fronts, the country can’t afford to cut him any slack.

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 READ MORE

Dept. of Education

Banking Collapse Lands on America’s Schools

One of the worst casualties of the Iraq war and the Wall Street failures is the U.S. public school system, which is central to the nation’s economic, intellectual and social health. With financial resources being consumed, education cuts are on the way. Thank you, John McCain and President George W. Bush.

Posted on Sep 29, 2008 READ MORE

Bush Favors Bankers Over Soldiers

By grotesque mischance, $700 billion—the cost of George Bush’s Wall Street rescue plan—is about the same figure the president has squandered on his preposterous war in Iraq, the war we have now apparently “won” thanks to the “surge.”

Posted on Sep 29, 2008 READ MORE

AP Photo / Alex Brandon

Obama Has the Edge After First Debate

Even though the American mainstream media pronounced Friday’s presidential debate between Barack Obama and John McCain a draw, the UK’s Guardian newspaper tallied up some poll results and found that Obama has gained an edge over McCain as the candidates head into their final month of campaigning.

Posted on Sep 29, 2008 READ MORE

CBS Has More Palin Gold in the Vault

There was so much excitement last week between the bailout showdown and the debate that many people didn’t get a chance to see Sarah Palin’s tailspin interview with Katie Couric. CBS, it turns out, has even more in store. The network will air at least two more embarrassing clips before Thursday’s VP debate.

Posted on Sep 29, 2008 READ MORE

McCain’s Debate Implosion Bodes Ill for His Campaign

September began as John McCain’s month and ended as Barack Obama’s. McCain’s high-risk wagers aimed at shaking up the campaign turned into very bad investments. And Friday’s debate eliminated McCain’s best chance to deliver a knockout blow.

Posted on Sep 29, 2008 READ MORE

Debate Rules

Posted on Sep 29, 2008 ENLARGE    

Country First

Posted on Sep 28, 2008 ENLARGE

Master's Commission trailer

‘God Is Invading Alaska’

You might think you’re watching a movie trailer when the voice-over kicks in on this promo spot for the Wasilla Assembly of God’s “Master’s Commission,” which a member of Sarah Palin’s former church describes as an “intense discipleship training program.” Although darkness sets in and seems to never let up in America’s northernmost state, the booming voice proclaims, “God has a destiny for the state of Alaska” ... and the world!

Posted on Sep 28, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

Obama and McCain debate in Mississippi

Obama and McCain Face Off in First Presidential Debate

Thankfully, Jim Lehrer wasn’t left at the moderator’s podium on Friday, as both Barack Obama and John McCain showed up for their scheduled presidential debate at the University of Mississippi to field questions about the economy and foreign policy.

Posted on Sep 28, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

AP photo / Chip Somodevilla, pool

A Calm Obama Weathers a Storm of Sarcasm

Was he too calm? Did he pull his punches in an effort to look presidential? Not really. The viewers got a clear choice: a reasoned and reasonable Obama versus an old-fashioned Cold Warrior who would keep us in Iraq endlessly and extend the boundaries we must defend to Georgia and Ukraine.

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE

Flickr / bobster1985

Palin Revelations Raising Opposition on the Right

So much for Sarah Palin the reformer: The Alaska governor took home more than $25,000 in gifts during her less than two years in office, including “honorific tributes, expensive artwork and free travel for a family member.” Bombshells like that are rocking the right wing, along with Palin’s embarrassing interviews, which have prompted conservative columnist Kathleen Parker to declare, “My cringe reflex is exhausted.”

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE

Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: Bailout Bluster and Debate Mania

Is Obama looking at a landslide? Did McCain’s campaign suspension shake up the odds? Who’s to blame for our economic woes? Answers to these questions and more on this week’s show.

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

Pelosi Claims ‘Great Progress’ on Bailout Deal

Just a day after negotiations seemed to break down, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi struck a confident tone. So did Rep. Barney Frank, who threw in some of his patented sass: “Now that Sen. McCain is safely in Mississippi, we can get to serious work.”

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE

Obama Ads Also Aim to Deceive

John McCain has taken a lot of heat for his dishonest campaign ads, but it seems Barack Obama has gotten in on the game. The New York Times scolds the Democratic nominee for running commercials “that have matched the dubious nature of Mr. McCain’s more questionable spots.”

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE

McCain Blinks, Claims Debate Victory

John McCain has caved as expected and will debate Barack Obama in Mississippi. But rather than give his opponent a chance to win, McCain is already claiming victory. The whole saga has left a bad taste in Mike Huckabee’s mouth.

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE

Sarah Palin Talks Foreign Policy With Katie Couric

With a performance like this one now on tape and on YouTube, it is understandable (though inexcusable) that the McCain campaign has been so determined to keep Sarah Palin away from the media.

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN


Posted on Sep 25, 2008 ENLARGE

How McCain’s Grandstanding Sidelined the Bailout Deal

John McCain’s sudden intervention in Washington’s deliberations over the Wall Street bailout could not have been more out of sync with what was actually happening.

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE

McCain Has a Meltdown of His Own

John McCain is rapidly making his temperament an inescapable issue in the presidential campaign. Does the nation really want so much drama in the White House?

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE

Back in the USSR

In the late 1990s, Washington was in the throes of a deregulatory orgy. Many lampooned Rep. Bernie Sanders’ opposition to the grotesquerie, and his notoriety as the only self-described socialist in Congress. Nobody guessed that in a few years our country would become the United States’ Socialist Republic.

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE

Collage: /

Bailout Plan Misses Out on Photo Op

“This meeting is an attempt to move the process forward,” President Bush declared Thursday, but it seems the White House gathering of congressional leaders and presidential candidates might have achieved the opposite effect. Lawmakers had agreed to a bailout outline earlier in the day, but the afternoon’s “political theater,” as Christopher Dodd put it, has raised doubts about the deal.

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE

Campbell Brown

Campbell Brown: Free Sarah Palin

The CNN anchor has had enough of the McCain campaign “treating Sarah Palin like she is a delicate flower that will wilt at any moment.”

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

The Debate Camera’s Deep Vision

The candidates heading into Friday’s scheduled debate should heed the politician who first conquered the format, John F. Kennedy, who believed that the images portrayed via TV were “likely to be uncannily correct.”

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE

Letterman Catches McCain Two-Timing With Couric

David Letterman was already giving John McCain a hard time for his suspended campaign when he spotted the GOP nominee with fellow CBS personality Katie Couric on the network feed. McCain had canceled his “Late Show” appearance, telling Letterman he had to fly back to Washington, but instead flew into Couric’s studio.

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

Now McCain Wants to Cancel the VP Debate

Was this the plan all along? CNN reports that Team McCain wants the first presidential debate to “take the place of the VP debate, currently scheduled for next Thursday” if there’s no bailout deal by Friday.

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE


Posted on Sep 24, 2008 ENLARGE

Bill Clinton on Obamamania and the Economy

The former president gets a little hot under the collar in giving Jon Stewart his take on the financial collapse (without any mention of the deregulatory zeal of his own administration). He also explains why he thinks Obama will win, and why it’s not about whether people love Barack Obama but whether people think Barack Obama loves them.

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 WATCH & LISTEN

Flickr / soggydan

McCain Wants to Cancel First Debate

Citing the financial crisis, John McCain announced Wednesday that he’d like to skip Friday’s debate so he can put on his senator hat and get back to work in Washington. Unimpressed, Rep. Barney Frank called the idea “the longest Hail Mary pass in the history of either football or Marys.” Update

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE

Palin y Uribe
AP photo / Henny Ray Abrams

Palin Enrolls in International Relations 101

After weeks of embarrassing displays of political incompetence and general ignorance of current events, Sarah Palin participated in a daylong tour de force of international relations at the United Nations. Henry Kissinger, Hamid Karzai and Alvaro Uribe were among the officials she encountered on a day during which she “largely listened.”

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE

Flickr / dsearis

R.I.P. Offshore Drilling Ban

Congressional Democrats seemed to have turned in their spine—yet again—Tuesday when they announced they would allow the 26-year-old ban on offshore drilling to expire, a resounding sellout to the rhetoric of the McCain campaign and a reactionary move aimed at accommodating the crisis-ridden financial markets.

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE

In Defense of Elitism

When it comes to politics, there is a mad love of mediocrity in this country. “They think they’re better than you!” is the refrain that (highly competent and cynical) Republican strategists have set loose among the crowd, and the crowd has grown drunk on it once again. “Sarah Palin is an ordinary person!” Yes, all too ordinary.

Posted on Sep 23, 2008 READ MORE

Scan of the "Obsession" mailer obtained by Truthdig

Who Is Behind the ‘Radical Islam’ DVD?

The blogosphere is alive with the sound of buzz—all about an inflammatory DVD on radical Islam being distributed to millions of households at the peak of election season. Critics are calling the DVD, “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West,” anti-Muslim hate, or politicking, or both. The obvious question: Who is behind it?

Posted on Sep 23, 2008 READ MORE

Collage: Flickr / transplanted mountaineer / buddhakiwi

Poll: Palin Helps Obama Pull Ahead in Colorado

Barack Obama is depending more and more on a Rocky Mountain victory and, according to a new poll, Sarah Palin may have just given him a boost there. It seems the Alaska governor’s growing unpopularity among independent voters has helped Obama to a seven-point lead in the Centennial State.

Posted on Sep 23, 2008 READ MORE

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