Press Release

FROM THE WONK ROOM: This Week In Wonk World

Friends –

You already know this was the week when a consensus formed behind a timeline for redeploying troops from Iraq, and when the wheels came off the McCain campaign.

But here are some developments you might have missed.

On the economy…

· The Tax Policy Center pointed out a $2.8 trillion discrepancy between the tax plan McCain talks about on the stump and the one his advisors describe in private.

· Trying to clear up the $2.8 trillion gap, McCain’s senior policy advisor Douglas Holtz-Eakin explained that the policy statements McCain makes on the stump and his actual policy are two very different things.

· Earlier in the week, Holtz-Eakin claimed that McCain’s tax cut plan containsNo tax cuts anywhere for the wealthy” – when in fact, the Wonk Room, the Tax Policy Center, and even the National Review all agree that McCain’s tax plan is dramatically tilted towards the wealthy.

· And McCain’s tax plan still contains a massive corporate tax shelter, despite his campaign’s attempts to revise it.

On health care…

· James Kvaal pointed out that, depending on which McCain campaign statements you go by, McCain’s health care plan is either a budget-buster or a tax increase for millions of middle-class Americans.

· McCain spoke at Lance Armstrong’s LiveStrong Summit – despite the fact that his health care plan will make it difficult, even impossible, for millions of people with cancer to get health care.

· The Center for American Progress Action Fund released a paper showing that conservative health reform proposals, including McCain’s, could put millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions at risk of losing the care they need.

On energy…

· John McCain passed the $1 million mark in contributions from oil and gas interests.

· Jimmy Hoffa of the Teamsters declared that “we are not going to drill our way out of the energy problems we are facing,” and threw his union’s support behind a plan that “breaks our dependence on foreign oil by investing in the development of alternate energy sources like solar, wind and geothermal power.”

· A right-wing front group continued to push the false claim that Cuba is drilling off our coasts.

· Conservatives in Congress released a memo revealing their plans to push for Big Oil’s agenda while paying lip service to energy efficiency and renewable energy.

· Legendary oilman T. Boone Pickens issued a wake-up call to drilling advocates, telling the members of the Homeland Security Committee, “I think you’re going to get a rude awakening as to the value of the East and West coasts when it’s opened up and when it’s put up for sale. When it’s put up for sale, I think you’ll be surprised at the price you get for the tracts.” [Video at link.]

· McCain released an ad on gas prices that directly contradicted his own statements on gas prices.

On national security…

· Matt Duss pointed out that McCain’s confusion over the Anbar Awakening reveals a deeper misunderstanding of counterinsurgency tactics and how they have been applied in Iraq.

· Duss also pointed out that McCain’s hyper-aggressive stance towards Russia would be bad for Israel and the United States’ other allies in the Middle East.

· John Podesta saw both pain and hope in Rwanda during his trip there with the ONE campaign.

As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions or suggestions.