June 20, 2008

McCain's Media begins its march against Obama. I've been saying they will support McCain in the general all along. Listen to the tone of Gibson's voice as he makes a strong statement against Obama's money advantage over the uninspiring John McCain. Something that never seemed to bother the Villagers before. Heck, Bush 41 and the Saudis look really cool as friends... He feels oh so awful about the fact that McCain is getting trounced in the fundraising department by Obama. The poor little guy who makes sure the media has plenty of doughnuts on his campaign bus. I'm sure that if McCain had the online support that Obama has---the story would be something like. "Will John McCain's excellent fundraising advantage lead him straight to the oval office?" They would be amazed at his fundraising prowess. John McCain: The Internet Maverick!

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"Let me ask you a question about basic fairness: People in this country like to believe that people play on a level playing field and that a campaign will be about ideas and personality; if you start with that much more money, is it basically fair?"

As Jeff Cohen notes:

There was real emotion in his voice when ABC News anchor Charles Gibson used Friday night's newscast to stand up for little-guy McCain against online-fundraising powerhouse Barack Obama.

To me, the good news is that a network anchor was giving prominence to the plight of underfinanced candidates.

The bad news is that it's taken years to see an anchor make such a stand. And that Gibson (like other media voices in recent days) is making his stand for "fairness" against a candidate who has attracted 3 million contributions from 1.5 million donors giving an average donation of $91. In other words, against a candidate who is arguably less beholden to big-moneyed interests than McCain.

Thanks to Silent Patriot for the video and screen cap. Full transcript below the fold with a little added tasty treat:

CHARLES GIBSON: Barack Obama announced today that he and Hillary Clinton will campaign together next Friday, their first joint appearance since he secured the nomination. The announcement comes a day after Obama said he is not going to take public campaign financing, a decision which has drawn a great deal of criticism, and our chief Washington correspondent, George Stephanopoulos, is joining us again to talk about this.

By opting out of the public financing system, George, he could have, depending on how much he raises, two times, three times, four times as much money as John McCain. What's he going to do with all that money?

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: Well, we're already starting to see what he intends to do with this kind of money. Just today, just yesterday in fact, Barack Obama bought his first general election ads. I'm going to put up a map showing the states in which he's bought those ads: 18 states overall, Charlie 14 of those 18 states are states won by George Bush in 2004. If he's able to continue to raise money over the Internet, as he expects to over these next several months, it is conceivable that Senator Obama will be able to campaign and advertise in Republican states right up to election day.

GIBSON: George, I've heard a lot of political analysis today about his decision, but let me ask you a question about basic fairness. People in this country like to believe that people play on a level playing field and that a campaign will be about ideas and personality. If you start with that much more money, is it basically fair?

STEPHANOPOULOS: Well, I guess we're going to find out in this election whether people believe that or not, Charlie. You know, this public financing system where each candidate, presidential candidate, has the same amount of money has only been in place since 1976. So for a little over 30 years right now. This will be the first time ever that a presidential candidate in the general election will not be taking that public money, but we've seen the system erode over the last several years. Americans are checking off that contribution to the public financing system by fewer and fewer numbers every single year, and in the primaries, over the last three election cycles, we've seen candidates in both parties opt out of the system as well.

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