Saturday, October 25, 2008; 5:16 PM
OBAMA: Nevada, in just 10 days, you'll have the chance to elect your next President. And you'll have the chance to bring the change we need to Washington. That's the good news. But we're going to have to work, and struggle, and fight for every single one of those 10 days to move our country in a new direction. We cannot let up. And we won't.
Because one thing we know is that change never comes without a fight. In the final days of campaigns, the say-anything, do-anything politics too often takes over. We've seen it before. And we're seeing it again today. The ugly phone calls. The misleading mail and TV ads. The careless, outrageous comments. All aimed at keeping us from working together, all aimed at stopping change.
Well, this isn't what we need right now. The American people don't want to hear politicians attack each other - you want to hear about how we're going to attack the challenges facing middle class families each and every day. So what we need now is honest leadership and real change, and that's why I'm running for President of the United States.
This is a moment of great uncertainty for America. The economic crisis we face is the worst since the Great Depression. Businesses large and small are finding it impossible to get loans, which means they can't buy new equipment, or hire new workers, or even make payroll for the workers they have.
We've lost more than 750,000 jobs this year - and unemployment here in Nevada is up 30% this year. Wages are lower than they've been in a decade, at a time when the cost of health care and college have never been higher. It's getting harder and harder to make the mortgage, or fill up your gas tank, or even keep the electricity on at the end of the month. At this rate, the question isn't just "are you better off than you were four years ago?", it's "are you better off than you were four weeks ago?"
So what we need right now is a real debate about how to fix our economy and help middle class families. But that's not what we're getting from the other side. A couple of weeks ago, my opponent's campaign said that "if we keep talking about the economy, we're going to lose", so they said they'd be focusing on attacking me instead.
And that's one campaign promise they've actually kept. Senator McCain has been throwing everything he's got at us, hoping something will stick. He's even called me a socialist for suggesting that we focus on tax cuts, not for corporations and the wealthy, but for the middle class.
Then, the other day, he took it to a whole new level. He said that I was like George W. Bush. You can't make this stuff up, folks. In what may be the strangest twist of all, Senator McCain said that I would somehow continue the Bush economic policies - and that he, John McCain, would change them.
He actually denounced the President for letting things - and I quote - "get completely out of hand."
That's right, John McCain has been really angry about George Bush's economic policies - except during the primaries, when he said we've made "great progress economically" under George Bush. Or just last month, when he said that the "fundamentals of our economy are strong." In fact, John McCain is so opposed to George Bush's policies, that he voted with him 90 percent of the time for the past eight years. That's right, he decided to really stick it to him - 10 percent of the time.
Well, let's be clear: John McCain attacking George Bush for his out-of-hand economic policy is like Dick Cheney attacking George Bush for his go-it-alone foreign policy.
Fortunately, President Bush doesn't seem to be at all offended - because yesterday, he cast his vote - early - for Senator McCain. And that's no surprise, because when it comes to the policies that matter for middle class families, there's not an inch of daylight between George Bush and John McCain.
Like George Bush, John McCain wants to keep giving tax breaks to oil companies and CEOs and companies that ship our jobs overseas. It's the same, failed, Wall Street first/Main Street last economic policy - and we're going to change it.
Like George Bush, John McCain wants to tax your health care benefits for the first time in history, and let insurance companies keep discriminating against people who need health care the most. It's the same, failed, insurance company first/your family last health care policy - and we're going to change it.
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