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Ballot Box

The latest political buzz from around the web



    For presidential candidates, it's hard to stay on message about the economy when you're not sure what the message should be in the first place.

    It's hard to stay on message when you're not sure what exactly your message should be. Thus explains the challenge ahead for Barack Obama and John McCain, who have been zeroing in on the economy all week but -- both with little experience in the dismal science -- have little idea where to go from here.

    • The NY Daily News' Michael Saul writes that McCain's fluid position on government bail outs (read: one day he's against it, the next he supports it) and Obama's equivocation on the issue (his spokesman refuses to say whether Obama is for or against the AIG bailout) is isn't helping their respective election bids. Take-away: "[B]oth major party contenders [are] scrambling to hit the right note with anxious voters."
    • Does McCain have any excuse for his gaffe about the economy? It's possible. Daniel Gross of Newsweek explains.
    • Karl Rove writes in today's Wall Street Journal that McCain has cut into the Democrats lead on both the economy and the deficit. Rove steered the discussion away from McCain's gaffe and toward Obama's negative campaigning. Take-away: "It is a mistake for Mr. Obama to spend a lot of time attacking Mr. McCain."
    • Obama and the Democrats are demonizing the business world and exacerbating citizens' fears by aligning the current financial crisis with the Great Depression, writes Mark Davis of the Dallas Morning News. Take-away: "Class warfare is their stock in trade, and the said thing is that it works."
    • Why isn't Obama panicking? John Dickerson wonders why the presidential candidate is acting cool as a cucumber and thinks it may have something to do with the economy.