Here's the lightning-quick response from the Obama campaign on the incendiary comments by Phil Gramm, the top McCain economic advisor, calling Americans a bunch of "whiners" on the economy:
The Obama campaign is pushing the issue now: "One of Senator McCain’s top economic advisors may think that when people are struggling with lost jobs, stagnant wages, and the rising costs of everything from gas to groceries, it’s merely a ‘mental recession’. And Senator McCain may think it’s sufficient to offer energy proposals that he admits will have mainly ‘psychological’ benefits. But the American people know that our economic problems aren’t just in their heads. They don’t need psychological relief -- they need real relief -- and that’s what Barack Obama will provide as President," Obama spokesman Bill Burton writes.
Ouch, and the McCain's response was rather weak to the Phil Gramm comments:
Campaign statement says economics adviser Phil Gramm’s comments about the economy are "not representative of McCain’s views."
Jake Tapper at Political Punch has even more on this rapidly developing imbroglio of a story, and how John McCain has similar echoed Gramm's comments on the economic ills facing Americans:
- This comes on the heels of McCain himself saying of economic distress, "a lot of this is psychological. Because I agree the fundamentals of our economy is still strong." (Video HERE).
- McCain repeated that notion in an idea with Fox News' Neil Cavuto, saying "a lot of our problems today, as you know, are psychological — the confidence, trust, the uncertainty about our economic future, ability to keep our own home." He said his proposed gas tax holiday "might give them a little psychological boost. Let’s have some straight talk, it’s not a huge amount of money." (Video HERE).
I do think that Phil Gramm's comments are rather representative of what John McCain has said several times on the economy.
UPDATE: Barack Obama Speaks!
"We don't need another Dr. Phil! We need solutions! It's not just a figment of your imagination. It's not all in your head. When people are struggling to buy gas and groceries....When people are losing their homes...It's not a figment of your imagination. And it's not too much to ask for the government to step in and give you some relief. It's time to have a president who doesn't deny our problems or pretend they don't exist. It's time we had a president who takes responsibility."
UPDATE #2: I just noticed on The Page that McCain pledges to stop imports from China if harmful products continue to be exported:
"The next time a toy comes in from China that hurts a child’s health, that’ll be the last toy that comes in from China."
Uh, John McCain. There was a vote in the Senate on an amendment to the Consumer Product Safety Commission Reform Act on March 6, 2008. You missed that vote, John McCain, on the amendment that would have banned the importation of toys made by companies that have a persistent pattern of violating consumer product safety standards.