Friday, September 26, 2008

McCain beats Obama with a new Economy Fix.

Even if the "new deal," is not finalized by this afternoon, look for McCain to jet to Oxford, Mississippi for tonight’s debate...
There is a new “assistance plan,” emerging from the House Republicans, led by the young Turks, such as Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin. It is much more grounded in solid, free market economics than the plan backed by the President and his Treasury Secretary (both of whom have MBAs from Harvard, not known for its affection for free markets).

The new plan would not buy financial assets at above market prices, thus bailing out shareholders at those institutions who would sell their assets to the government. Instead, the plan entails the government selling insurance for financial institutions’ shaky assets, perhaps at slightly subsidized rates, not unlike the insurance that the FDIC currently provides to banks for their deposits.

Look for McCain to support the House Republican plan and win over the President, the Treasury Secretary, the Federal Reserve Chairman and the majority of House Republicans and Senate Republicans. McCain may also persuade his Republican colleagues to compromise by giving the Democrats their beloved mortgage assistance for those borrowers who knowingly bought more house than they could afford. Notwithstanding the compromise, the Republican base, as with the Palin selection, will be very happy with the “new,” conservative John McCain. Further, the new plan fits with the McCain-Palin maverick, reformer and populist image.

Even if the "new deal," is not finalized by this afternoon, look for McCain to jet to Oxford, Mississippi for tonight’s debate where he will pitch the deal to the country. The McCain plan avoids rewarding wrongdoers and apparently saves the taxpayers about 700 billion dollars. You can’t get more populist than that.

That leaves Senator Obama, facing perhaps one hundred million viewers tonight, with three choices: (a) agree with Senator McCain and thereby give him credit for achieving a bipartisan solution that “saves,” the economy, (b) disagree with McCain and make it look like Obama is putting the economy at risk for political reasons or (c) don’t decide which way to go and look like a waffler. Of course, whatever Obama chooses, the Democrats will have to follow that choice.

Advantage McCain. Won’t Matthews, Maddow, Olbermann and PBS debate moderator Jim Lehrer be sad.

Of course, the above may go astray for McCain, but this reporter puts the odds of McCain pulling this off at about 75%. As we keep seeing, McCain is an old fighter pilot who likes rolling the dice and 75% is well within his tolerance for risk.

If the above happens, please remember where you read it first. If it doesn’t, following in the footsteps of the late Cong. Henry Hyde, please chalk it up to yet another youthful indiscretion of this risk-taking reporter who, on occasion, wanders into opinion journalism.
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