On the stump in Des Moines, Iowa, today, Senator Obama lamented the demise of the honorable and respectable McCain of old, the man who once said he wouldn't "take the low road to the highest office in the land." While promising to respond swiftly and forcefully to anything the Republicans throw his way, he also promised that in this election we have the opportunity to end that type of politics once and for all.
"I expect we're gonna see a lot more of that over the next four days. More of the 'slash and burn' 'say-anything, do-anything' politics; throw everything up at the refrigerator, see if anything sticks. A message that's designed to divide and distract, to tear us apart instead of bringing us together. You know a couple of elections ago there was a presidential candidate who decried this kind of attacks and condemned these kind of tactics. And I admired him for it. He said 'I will not take the low road to the highest office in the land.' Those words were spoken eight years ago by my opponent John McCain. But the high road didn't lead him to the White House then, so he's decided to take a different route. I know campaigns are tough, because we have real differences about big issues. We care passionately about this country's future. Make no mistake, we will respond swiftly and forcefully with the truth to whatever falsehoods they throw our way in these last four days. The stakes are too high to do anything less. But Iowa, at this moment, in this election, we have the chance to do more than just beat back this kind of politics short-term; we have a chance to end it once and for all. We have a chance to prove that one thing more powerful than the politics of anything goes, the one thing the cynics don't count on, is the will of the American people. We have the chance to prove that we are more than a collection of red states and blue states, we are the United States of America. The voters are in a serious mood. they want to talk about the things that make a difference in people lives. That's the type of campaign were gonna run and that's how we're gonna win on November 4th."
When Obama hits the stump, he talks about the urgent need to bring this country together, the urgent need to get beyond the divisive politics of old. John McCain and Sarah Palin, on he other hand, seek only to inflame those divisions, to divide this country into "real America" and "fake America." That alone should tell you how each man will lead.