First, Obama <3s ethanol:
Jason Furman, the Obama campaign’s economic policy director, said Mr. Obama’s stance on ethanol was based on its merits. “That is what has always motivated him on this issue, and will continue to determine his policy going forward,” Mr. Furman said.
Asked if Mr. Obama brought any predisposition or bias to the ethanol debate because he represents a corn-growing state that stands to benefit from a boom, Mr. Furman said, “He wants to represent the United States of America, and his policies are based on what’s best for the country.”
John McCain, however, is stalking the plains of the Midwest, boldly standing up to ethanol:
Ethanol is one area in which Mr. Obama strongly disagrees with his Republican opponent, Senator John McCain of Arizona. While both presidential candidates emphasize the need for the United States to achieve “energy security” while also slowing down the carbon emissions that are believed to contribute to global warming, they offer sharply different visions of the role that ethanol, which can be made from a variety of organic materials, should play in those efforts.
Mr. McCain advocates eliminating the multibillion-dollar annual government subsidies that domestic ethanol has long enjoyed. As a free trade advocate, he also opposes the 54-cent-a-gallon tariff that the United States slaps on imports of ethanol made from sugar cane, which packs more of an energy punch than corn-based ethanol and is cheaper to produce.
Unfortunately (and there’s always an unfortunately), he doesn’t actually oppose ethanol anymore:
You can easily argue that McCain supports corn ethanol, just not subsidies for it. Much like someone supporting bullets, just not guns, it makes total sense as long as you refuse to attempt to marry the two positions together. Ethanol is only a viable energy source so long as it’s subsidized, meaning that McCain doesn’t support one of the two positions he’s taken. If only we had someone who could have asked him in the course of an article on the candidates’ positions on ethanol which one it was…
Then, we’ve got public financing. Obama:
Democrat Barack Obama’s decision to bypass taxpayer money for his presidential campaign endangers the public-financing system, Delaware Sen. Joseph Biden, a Democrat and Obama supporter, said Sunday.
“In terms of undermining the public financing idea for everyone, it doesn’t help,” Biden said on NBC’s Meet the Press. “It’s going to be harder to make the case” for taxpayer funding.
Incidentally, thanks for that, Joe. That’s just awesome.
Supporters of Republican presumptive nominee John McCain criticized the Illinois senator’s announcement Thursday that he would forgo public money for the general election. In doing so, he reversed an earlier pledge to accept public money if his GOP counterpart did the same.
McCain, who initially applied for public money in the primary but did not take it, said he will use taxpayer funds for the general election. His surrogates said Obama has flip-flopped.
Again, it might behoove our arbiters of public information to acutally fucking remember things that John McCain has done besides look pretty and mumble sweet things in their ears.
Under the agreement, McCain promised that if his campaign began to falter, he would commit to keeping his campaign alive and to entering the federal financing system so the money he had raised could be used to gain an infusion of matching funds. Had that happened, he would have been forced to abide by strict federal spending caps before the Republican National Convention in September.
Under FEC rules, a candidate who uses a certification for federal funds as collateral for a loan is obligated to remain within the public financing system. “We very carefully did not do that,” Potter said.
Cleta Mitchell, a veteran campaign finance lawyer and a McCain critic, said she has never encountered a similar agreement.
“They’ve clearly got a sweetheart deal with this bank,” Mitchell said. “This bank is just a cash register for them.”
Again, we’ve entered the official narrative of 2008: is Obama trustworthy, and can he break the trust that the American people have placed inviolate in the vice-like hug of John McCain? Everything will be told through this lens, because going back and checking McCain’s positions requires an actual Google. And he’s just not comfortable with that.