One day after committing a rather egregious mistake in the form of either failing to know who the leader of Spain was or effectively snubbing him, John McCain had another doozy today, claiming a power he wouldn't have as President. The good folks at ABC News have the story.
At a joint rally in Cedar Rapids, Iowa Thursday, Republican John McCain slammed the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) for being "asleep at the switch" saying that if he were president, he would fire Chris Cox, the chairman of the SEC since 2005 and a former Republican congressman.
But while the president nominates and the Senate confirms the SEC chair, a commissioner of an independent regulatory commission cannot be removed by the president.
From time to time, presidents have attempted to remove commissioners who have proven "uncooperative." However, the courts have general upheld the independence of commissioners. In 1935, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt fired a member of the Federal Trade Commission and the Supreme Court ruled the president acted unconstitutionally.
Just as was the case with the Spain flap yesterday, the McCain campaign resorted to a tortured explanation as to how this did not constitute yet another embarrassing gaffe by the Republican nominee. According to the campaign, at least one SEC Commissioner has resigned when it became clear that he did not enjoy the backing of the incumbent administration. But there is a real difference between an independent commissioner deciding to bite the bullet and the President firing said commissioner -- that's exactly what Humphrey's Executor v. United States, the Supreme Court case alluded to by ABC News, was about. Color me unconvinced. This sure sounds like yet another example of McCain prattling off on a topic he didn't know about and then having to come up with a hasty explanation after the fact. This a successful presidential campaign does not make.
"1892 was the last year a Republican National Convention was held in Minneapolis. That was the first Republican convention to seat two women alternates from Wyoming, which you will remember was one of the first states that allowed women the right to vote."
"But the 1892 convention here was another first for Republicans. Judith Ellen Foster, the first president of the National Women's Republican Association and a leader in the women's suffrage movement became the first woman to speak at a Republican convention with these words, 'we are here to help you and we are here to stay.'"
"Her words were prophetic. Ever since that convention, women have been an integral part of the party. And today 116 years later we are holding a convention that will nominate a Republican woman governor - Sarah Pawlenty, our next vice president!"
Watching surrogates try to justify this choice makes it abundantly clear that the outward enthusiasm the GOP is displaying for Palin is only authentic among the religious right. The GOP is in panic mode, and many republicans are even considering the radical step of selecting a new VP, which means they consider the inevitable damage that would result preferable to dealing with all the controversy she's stirred up so far -- maybe they even know something we don't. Apparently Ms. Davidson is one of them and made a Freudian slip. The contract for Palin being withdrawn over at intrade is already up to 15%.
At their core, elections are very simple. You develop an argument for your candidacy and against that of your opponent's. You then spend your campaign pounding away at that argument.
Barack Obama's central argument is that this moment in our history requires fundamental change, and that John McCain's policies represent an extension of George Bush's. There are all sorts of ancillary debates, but this is the central argument of his general election candidacy.
Here, my friends, is the 54-second clip that reinforces his argument more than $150,000,000 in advertising dollars could possibly do.
From 6/05 on Meet the Press:
This is a gift from the gods. Please send it to everyone you know. :)
If someone asks you why you're continuing a campaign that virtually the entire planet has said is over, or really even if that were not the case, you do not say the word "assassination" in your response. Period.
I don't care what the context was. I don't care what she meant to say. It was either downright stupid or downright disgusting. You do NOT invoke an "assassination" as your reason for staying in the race.
I was at work today when this whole assassination thing started to boil over. I watched helplessly as the firestorm increased to epic proportions; unable to respond from work, and dealing with a fussy baby upon my arrival home. But I've got just one thing to say, to all of you-