September 19th, 2008
12:00 PM ET
13 years ago

Wall Street Journal editorial board skewers McCain

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/09/19/art.mccain.gi.jpg caption="McCain said he would fire SEC chairman Cox."](CNN) - John McCain's recent comments on the economy aren't just coming under fire from Barack Obama's campaign: arguably the country's most conservative editorial board said Friday the Arizona senator's recent "populist rifting" was downright "un-presidential."

A Friday Wall Street Journal editorial sharply criticized McCain for his recent condemnation of Christopher Cox, the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Committee. The Republican presidential nominee told an Iowa crowd Thursday Cox had "betrayed the public trust" and should be fired.

"Mismanagement and greed became the operating standard while regulators were asleep at the switch. The primary regulator of Wall Street, the Securities and Exchange Commission kept in place trading rules that let speculators and hedge funds turn our markets into a casino," McCain said.

Fact check: Does McCain oppose financial regulation

In the bruising editorial, the Journal said those comments an "assault on Mr. Cox is both false and deeply unfair."

"It's also un-Presidential," the Journal said.

Specifically the editorial says many of McCain's allegations against the SEC were misleading - particularly his claim the SEC allowed "naked short selling" and eliminated the "uptick rule that has protected investors for 70 years.

According to the editorial, the SEC never condoned the practice of "naked" shorting, and has sought to eliminate the practice during Cox's tenure. The Journal also supports the SEC's decision to eliminate the uptick rule, calling it a "Depression-era chestnut" that "protected no one."

"In a crisis, voters want steady, calm leadership, not easy, misleading answers that will do nothing to help. Mr. McCain is sounding like a candidate searching for a political foil rather than a genuine solution," the editorial also said. "He'll never beat Mr. Obama by running as an angry populist like Al Gore, circa 2000."


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (339 Responses)
  1. J from DC

    We already know that Palin has nothing to offer. We watched that sad ABC and even sadder Fox interview this week.
    Obama made a real quality pick, when he selected Biden and everyone has forgotten that. Biden may not have gotten a lot of primary votes, but Palin didn’t ever run. She knew she wasn’t ready then. Biden may very well be the most qualified of all the candidates.
    The story that is missing in this whole news cycle is: Why Biden makes McCain so uncomfortable? I am in DC, and I still have not figured it out. I know there is something there, but I can’t put my finger on it. Even still, if you watch McCain closely, the signs are there.

    September 19, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  2. VIRGINIA will be blue

    Everyone knows McCain is going to lose this election.

    September 19, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  3. GARY

    GO GET'M MCCAIN AND PALIN

    September 19, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  4. Obama Supporter from FL

    Ouch!! That hurts coming from the WSJ. Nice to see that they allow various viewpoints in their editorials, as opposed to being a completely partisan news source like Faux News.

    September 19, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  5. David, Silver Spring, MD

    So much for "straight talk." Thanks, John. Now go take a seat and let someone who has a clue take over.

    September 19, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  6. Open Your 3rd Eye

    THIS IS EASY:

    BETWEEN MCSAME AND COX,

    THEY SHOULD BOTH BE FIRED.

    September 19, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  7. Don

    I didn't realize until today there are so many republican socialists out there.

    One day they scream, "Deregulate."

    The next, it's, "Bailout."

    Real leadership there.

    Obama '08

    September 19, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  8. JO-ANN

    OOPS!!! MCCAIN WOULD RATHER WIN AN ELECTION THEN PUTTING COUNTRY FIRST!!!!

    PANDERING...PANDERING...PANDERING....

    JOHN MCCAIN & PALIN....AMERICANS ARE NOT STUPID!!!

    September 19, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  9. Bulldog

    "I'm John McCain and I approve this lie"

    September 19, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  10. jfs Memhis, Tn

    Now the true McCain will start to surface. Thank Goodness this is all coming out before the Nov. Election. I know of several people at my place of work who have not only moved to Obama....but with great vigor and anticipaion of the future. TRUE CHANGE IS COMING !!!

    GO OBAMA

    September 19, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  11. Anonymous

    Ouch.

    September 19, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  12. Jayden

    Another comment spoken before he really thought it thru.
    Face it, this ticket is an absolute mess.

    September 19, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  13. SAY NO to wall street thievery!

    WRITE AND CALL your CONGRESSMEN AND SANATORS,

    and MAKE THEM AWARE YOU DO NOT WANT THEM TO COMMIT YOUR AND YOUR CHILDREN'S TAX DOLLARS TO ENSURE THE NEO-CON THIEVERY ON WALL STREET!!!

    THEY ARE TRYING TO HOLD YOU HOSTAGE,

    lying "everyone's interest is served by this bailout"

    NOT UNTIL THE PROFIT AND PROPERTY IS ALSO SOCIALIZED,

    NOT UNTIL THE SAME GROUP WHO OWN AND RUN WALL STREET AND WASHINGTON GET THROWN OUT OF POWER AND INTO PRISON!

    September 19, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  14. AVERAGE JOE

    !!!!
    TO THE PEOPLE SUPPORTING MCCAIN

    you all are kidding right?

    September 19, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  15. No Way No How

    B..but...but...but...He was a POW????

    September 19, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  16. Women for Obama/Biden

    Tell that shameless liar he his lying! Everyone needs to be calling him out on his lies. That is the GOP blame someone else for mistake.

    September 19, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  17. Dwayne - Florida

    Take it easy on McShame! For heaven sakes he must know what he's talking about....Isn't he responsible for Blueberry technology or something like that!! LOL

    McCain = Out of Touch

    September 19, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  18. Ben Newhouse

    Canada, Europe, Australia... It's never looked so good.

    September 19, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  19. Anonymous

    Well, what do you expect from a liberal Commie rag like the Wall Str....

    What?

    Oh.

    Never mind.

    September 19, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  20. Transparency please

    And that's coming from a Rupert Murdoch publication!!!
    All of you Fox News fans need to understand that.
    Bad week, John-boy,,,bad week.
    McCain wrong on the economy AGAIN.

    Palin – you are NOT above the law.

    September 19, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  21. Tone

    McCain suffers from dementia, apparently he is so used to slinging mud at Obama, he used the same tactic on the SEC while forgetting his at a town hall meeting where his speech can be seen by more than just the invited guests. John McCain, the world IS watching and listening to the parade of misleads and outright lies.

    September 19, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  22. Polly

    McCain thinks way out of the box...way out. No, further out.

    September 19, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  23. Walt

    OK, let's see how many McPalin supporters are going to say Obama's people are behind this.

    And, let's see how many McPalin supporters are going to say they are going to boycott the WSJ.

    I am not smart enough to know or understand the role the SEC played in this country's current mess. But, I am smart enough to know that one man is not responsible. And, if I am wrong and one man is responsible, then his name is Bush.

    McPalin please join him on the ranch next year.

    September 19, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  24. KC

    Now how did I see this coming. We don't need any shoot from the hip mavericks running the country!

    September 19, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  25. GC from Virginia

    This is one of my biggest problems with John McCainversion08. His gut instinct reaction to everything is to wave his fist and start pointing fingers. It's an attitude that he and Bush/Cheney (and Palin) certainly share. Blaming people is not a solution.

    September 19, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14