On background, which campaign, looking to the fall, said this:
“McCain will be able to call out Obama on the public financing issue, and has a leg up in terms of making the reformer/ethics leader argument.”
Yes, it’s a little bit of a trick question because, of course, I’ve heard — almost word for word — the same argument from both Clinton and McCain staffers. It seems as though it’s not enough to make McCain’s argument about Obama and foreign policy, HRC must also make it about domestic policy as well. Next: McCain better at Scrabble, does not fall asleep during church!
The evidence as to whether McCain actually has a better record on reform and ethics is a bit lopsided: McCain has been around for so long, one can cherry pick all day examples of when he erred, some more significant than others. Obama simply doesn’t have a resume that allows for an equivalent examination. This isn’t to say he’s been lax in ethics or reform, it’s just that, if Obama had been in the Senate for decades, I’m sure we could find plenty of examples of when — as they’re always saying about McCain — he didn’t “live up to his own standards.”
Happily, voters distrustful of higher standards and the inability of candidates to meet them have a Third Way in Clinton herself, whose campaign always lets it be known that in 35 years of experience, she has done little to raise her own standards — but has consistently met them.