So McCain has finally(!) seen the light on letting Obama and the Democrats off the hook for their enabling of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. I sincerely hope he fired whoever it was that told him it was a good idea to cower behind "Bipartisanship" and hope the issue goes away (sure does sound familiar, don't it?).
The only issue now is whether he would go the distance with it. Just one Press Release/Conference is not going to be enough. This is only a good start, no more. This is the number one issue in the headlines and voters are paying attention - he needs to follow through or this is all just a waste of time.
- Bring it up repeatedly (don't wait for someone else to bring it up) and hit him (and his fellow Democrats) hard during tomorrow's debate and the debate afterward. Tell of the contributions, of his work for ACORN suing Citibank for rightfully not giving loans to people who could not pay them back. Attach his name to Fannie Mae CEOs Jim Johnson (who he gave the task of picking his VP) and Franklin Raines (his self-admitted adviser on housing issues - ha!). Tell the whole world about the accounting scandals at Fannie and Freddie. About the $122000 hush money he got from Fannie Mae executives, second only to Chris Dodd. Rinse and repeat. It will never get old.
IMPORTANT NOTE: If Obama tomorrow tries the "same as Bush" canard at any point in time, pointedly remind him that the Bush Administration issued warnings on the need to deal with the risks posed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac every year from 2001 to 2007, and tried to bring Fannie and Freddie under control under a new Agency in the HUD in 2003 but Senate Democrats blocked it.
- Not one single McCain/Palin surrogate should fail to mention this on the talk shows and on the stump from now until Election Day. Democrats are as close to a 100% responsible for this mess as it gets. The talking point to counter their "deregulation" nonsense is that, strangely enough, they actively prevented Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from being regulated even after it was revealed that they were cooking the books in multiple investigations. Why? Because they were essentially being paid off i.e Chris Dodd, Barney "Roll the Dice" Frank et al.
PS: Unleash Sarah Palin on this - at rallies, Press Conferences and any further interviews. Make up for not letting her injure Joe Biden with this issue during the debate.
- Ads. The McCain campaign and the RNC (what's all that money for, anyway?) should blanket the air waves with them - that's the only way to beat back the conventional wisdom blaming Republicans for this mess. You need not have multiple Congressional Democrats in one ad. You can have one for each (just to draw it out), with the money he/she got and his/her 'D' highlighted and enlarged for all to see. Jim Johnson proudly calling the Democrats/Obama Campaign "family" appearing in each ad would be great - call the series "Family Business - You're Paying For It."
Intersperse all this with the Bush Administration's 2003 effort to rein the GSEs in and the McCain-Sununu 2005 effort to bring Fannie and Freddie to order. Run these all through to Election Day - this will do wonders for down-ticket races.
- Make sure to pound out a daily message of how a McCain Administration will never allow anything like this to happen again. Announce plans to reform and even shut down the GSEs. Announce modifications a McCain Administration would push going forward to make the rescue bill less of a burden on the taxpayer. Announce that win or lose, Senator McCain will push for the appointment of Special Counsel to investigate into what happened and how come Dodd and co. could always be counted on to shield Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from necessary scrutiny.
This is no time for half-measures, Senator McCain.