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Political News Summary: Week of 09/17/08 – 09/24/08

Compiled by: Nisha 

1.)   In light of the financial crisis that swept across America last week, several reporters and bloggers began evaluating the stance McCain took (and now takes) on the state of the U.S. economy. Many sources reported the 36-hour turnaround McCain took on his economic platform, shifting his perspective from “strong” to “total crisis” following the news of the government bailouts and the plummeting stocks on Wall Street.

2.)   The finalized format for the first debate between Obama and McCain was announced. The debate will focus on foreign policy, national security, the economy and domestic policy. The expectations are high – some say the match up is even, and Nielsen has already declared that this face-off will be the most-watched presidential debate in television history.

3.)   Several blogs have researched and recognized the differences in McCain and Obama’s economic platforms and, with all of the media attention on the economic crisis, the pressure is now on the candidates to clearly define how they plan to regulate the financial system.   

4.)   McCain has been under scrutiny after the Democratic National Committee discovered through public records that 177 Wall Street lobbyists work for the Republican campaign as aides, policy advisers, or fundraisers. The media is questioning whether McCain’s promises to regulate the U.S. financial system will actually be fulfilled. Of the 177 lobbyists who support McCain, at least 83 have lobbied for the financial industry.

5.)   On a press conference call with several reporters and bloggers, Steve Schmidt, the operational manager for McCain’s campaign openly criticized the New York Times for making the decision “cast aside it’s journalistic integrity to advocate for the defeat of John McCain.” The blasted comments were a response to questions on a recent NYT article that detailed the funds McCain’s campaign manager received for advocacy work he did for a group set up by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

6.)   Obama recently released a Spanish-language ad to sway Latino voters. He claims that McCain has “dos caras” (two faces) and runs anti-immigrant claims made by Rush Limbaugh throughout the ad. Several bloggers are calling attention to the inaccurate information released in Obama’s advertisement for unfairly building a perception that McCain’s views on immigration are similar to the anti-immigration opinions of Rush Limbaugh.

7.)   An Associated Press-Yahoo News poll conducted with Stanford University suggests that race could play a major role in the election. The poll found that one third of white Democrats has negative views towards blacks. Some say this surprising revelation could cost Obama the election.

8.)   FBI agents searched the home of David Kernell, as he is the primary suspect in the investigation to identify the hacker of Palin’s Yahoo email account. He is the son of Mike Kernell, a prominent Democratic state representative in Tennessee.

9.)   On an ABC roundtable on This Week, participants including Sam Donaldson and conservative columnist George Will criticized McCain’s age when he unexpectedly advocated the termination of SEC Chairman Chris Cox. The panel blamed McCain’s age for his “mixed up talking points.”

10.)While the United Nations holds its General Assembly meetings, Palin is in New York to meet with nine international leaders including leaders from Afghanistan, Iraq and Colombia. The meetings are a Republican initiative to prove that Palin is prepared to handle foreign policy. 



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