Who is fit to lead now? McCain Reinventing Obama

Posted on October 6, 2008


By Larry Rohter, New York Times

Speaking in Albuquerque on Monday, Senator John McCain attacked Senator Barack Obama on several fronts that by now have become familiar. But many of his charges relating to the economic meltdown, taxation and health care contained inaccuracies or exaggerations of his own position or Mr. Obama’s.

For instance, Mr. McCain claimed that “as recently as September of last year,” Mr. Obama “said that subprime loans had been, quote ‘a good idea.’” But that quote is taken out of context and reverses the intent of Mr. Obama’s remarks, which were clearly meant primarily as a criticism of practices on Wall Street.

“Subprime lending started off as a good idea helping Americans buy homes who couldn’t previously afford to,” Mr. Obama said in a speech to NASDAQ in September 2007. But, he added, “as certain lenders and brokers began to see how much money could be made, they began to lower their standards. Some appraisers began inflating their estimates to get the deals done. Some borrowers started claiming income they didn’t have just to qualify for the loans, and some were engaging in irresponsible speculation. But many borrowers were tricked into glossing over the fine print.”
Mr. McCain also said that Mr. Obama “was silent on the regulation of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and his Democratic allies in Congress opposed every effort to rein them in.” That oversimplifies a complicated situation that was the subject of partisan wrangling dating back to the 1990s, long before Mr. Obama arrived in the Senate in 2005.