McCain, Obama both urging support for bailout (Update)

In statements released yesterday and today, both the Obama campaign and the McCain campaign are now expressing support for some form of bailout legislation with regard to the banking mess on Wall Street.

First, the report on Obama from Yahoo News:

RENO, Nev. – Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on Tuesday called for Americans to get behind attempts to salvage a $700 billion rescue plan for the financial sector, saying that if Wall Street fails ordinary people will also be hurt.

“This is no longer just a Wall Street crisis. It’s an American crisis, and it’s the American economy that needs this rescue plan,” Obama told supporters at a rally at the University of Nevada at Reno.

Obama said Congress should put aside politics and act on the legislation quickly.

“To the Democrats and Republicans who opposed this plan yesterday, I say: Step up to the plate and do what’s right for this country,” he said. “And to all Americans, I say this: If I am president of the United States, this rescue plan will not be the end of what we do to strengthen this economy. It will only be the beginning.”

The House on Monday balked at approving the Bush administration’s $700 billion proposal, its 228-205 vote sparking the largest sell-off on Wall Street since the day after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. Obama, GOP presidential candidate John McCain and President Bush all indicated support for the plan, but the legislation was highly unpopular with the public, as well as ideological groups on the left and the right.

Obama called for bipartisanship in a time of financial crisis.

“While there is plenty of blame to go around and many in Washington and on Wall Street who deserve it, all of us now have a responsibility to solve this crisis because it affects the financial well-being of every single American,” he said. “There will be time to punish those who set this fire, but now is the moment for us to come together and put the fire out.”

Next, McCain is urging the treasury to limit damage and hopes congress will pass something, from Yahoo News:

DES MOINES, Iowa – Republican presidential nominee John McCain is urging the Treasury Department to intervene aggressively to limit damage from the financial meltdown, action that McCain says President Bush can take with the stroke of a pen.

Opening a business round-table Tuesday in Des Moines, Iowa, McCain said he has urged the Treasury to use its exchange stabilization fund “as creatively as possible” to backstop the market crisis. He says officials also should use the authority granted in a housing bill to purchase up to a trillion dollars in mortgages.

McCain decried the defeat of the financial bailout measure in the House, and he warned that the nation’s political leaders will have to take risks even though solutions to the crisis may be unpopular.

Video of McCain discussing the bailout this morning on CNN:

Report from the NBC Today Show on McCain and Obama’s reaction to the failed bill:

They’re both trying to lead on this issue but I assume they’re watching that the American people don’t support the proposed $700 billion bailout as it was proposed. If Obama or McCain can champion some kind of compromise the American people agree with, they will score some major points.

More to come later as this story develops…


Video of Obama interview with ABC News:

McCain also interviewed with ABC News:

This is such a convoluted mess at this point. I’m hoping next week the dust will settle and we’ll get some clarity in hindsight regarding which candidate came off showing the most leadership on this issue.