During President Obama's fiscal summit, he graciously called on John McCain first and gave him a really nice introduction. In response, McCain acted like a spiteful loser who showed no class, only disdain at not standing where Obama was. He attacks President Obama over the cost of a fleet of helicopters:
"I'm going to start with John McCain, because,...you know, he and I had some good debates about these issues," President Obama said in the final session of the Fiscal Responsibility Summit. "But -- and I mean what I say here -- I think John has also been extraordinarily consistent and sincere about these issues. And I want to see if you've -- John, you've got some thoughts about where we need to go and some priority areas. I know you were in procurement, for example, which is an area I know we would like to work on together with you."
"Well, thank you, Mr. President. And thank you for doing this...Just one area that I wanted to mention that I think consumed a lot of our conversation on procurement, it was the issue of cost overruns in the Defense Department. We all know how large the defense budget is."
And, McCain noted, "your helicopter is now going to cost as much as Air Force One. I don't think that there's any more graphic demonstration of how good ideas have -- have cost taxpayers an enormous amount of money."
Obama said the helicopter he has now seems adequate, adding that he never had a helicopter before and "maybe I've been deprived and I didn't know it."
President Obama's humorous answer made McCain look foolish for asking about the helicopter fleet.
This is Obama at his most appealing. He makes a gracious introduction of his rival, who in turn tries to stick in the knife by painting him as wasting taxpayer dollars on needless luxuries. Obama, rather than sniping back, turns around and agrees with McCain while making the point that he's hardly accustomed to extravagence. The man is just a very, very skilled politician.
I was watching MSNBC at the time and Chris Matthews was on this morning and said that he thought McCain sandbagged President Obama with the question. In their next block, Andrea Mitchell was just amazed at how well McCain was doing to be re-integrated back into the Senate. And Eric Cantor, the new Newt Gingrich of the konservatives, the guy who is trying to become the new face of Republican obstructionism, looked star-struck when he was picked by President Obama to ask a question.