Over the past couple of days, President Barack Obama and his administration have come to embrace some positions GOP presidential nominee Sen. John McCain made just a few months ago. These positions, predictably, are ones candidate Obama and his team distorted and assailed McCain for taking.
After meeting with Paul A. Volcker, one of his top economic advisers, Mr. Obama said, “There are a lot of individual families who are experiencing incredible pain and hardship right now.”
“But if we are keeping focused on all the fundamentally sound aspects of our economy,” he added, “all the outstanding companies, workers, all the innovation and dynamism in this economy, then we’re going to get through this. And I’m very confident about that.”
The day McCain made his statement, Sept. 15, 2008, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 10,917.51. When Obama made his, the DJI closed at 7,223.98.
The second Obama-reversal was news that White House budget director Peter Orzag suggested that the administration would be open to taxing health care benefits as a way to help finance health care reform plans.
Obama ripped into McCain during the campaign for a similar plan. The difference between McCain's plan then and Obama's plan now? Why, Obama would be sticking it to the middle class. What went unmentioned in Obama's campaign attack ads was that McCain proposed, in addition to taxing health benefits, a tax credit that would more than offset the proposed tax for all Americans except those with the most expensive health care coverage -- mainly the very rich. Obama is open to taxing the health care benefits, but no tax credit appears anywhere in the discussion now.
On several issues, such as cap and trade, there was little difference between McCain and Obama during the campaign. Now we're discovering that the two candidates positions were even more alike than we knew then -- with one exception: McCain was more honest than the guy who ended up beating him.