Sunday, October 19, 2008

Colin Powell Endorses Obama on Meet The Press: Transcript (10-19-08)

Read the complete transcript.

MR. BROKAW: General Powell, actually you gave a campaign contribution to Senator McCain. You have met twice at least with Barack Obama. Are you prepared to make a public declaration of which of these two candidates that you're prepared to support?

GEN. POWELL: Yes, but let me lead into it this way. I know both of these individuals very well now. I've known John for 25 years as your setup said. And I've gotten to know Mr. Obama quite well over the past two years. Both of them are distinguished Americans who are patriotic, who are dedicated to the welfare of our country. Either one of them, I think, would be a good president. I have said to Mr. McCain that I admire all he has done. I have some concerns about the direction that the party has taken in recent years. It has moved more to the right than I would like to see it, but that's a choice the party makes. And I've said to Mr. Obama, "You have to pass a test of do you have enough experience, and do you bring the judgment to the table that would give us confidence that you would be a good president."

And I've watched him over the past two years, frankly, and I've had this conversation with him. I have especially watched over the last six of seven weeks as both of them have really taken a final exam with respect to this economic crisis that we are in and coming out of the conventions. And I must say that I've gotten a good measure of both. In the case of Mr. McCain, I found that he was a little unsure as to deal with the economic problems that we were having and almost every day there was a different approach to the problem. And that concerned me, sensing that he didn't have a complete grasp of the economic problems that we had. And I was also concerned at the selection of Governor Palin. She's a very distinguished woman, and she's to be admired; but at the same time, now that we have had a chance to watch her for some seven weeks, I don't believe she's ready to be president of the United States, which is the job of the vice president. And so that raised some question in my mind as to the judgment that Senator McCain made.

On the Obama side, I watched Mr. Obama and I watched him during this seven-week period. And he displayed a steadiness, an intellectual curiosity, a depth of knowledge and an approach to looking at problems like this and picking a vice president that, I think, is ready to be president on day one. And also, in not just jumping in and changing every day, but showing intellectual vigor. I think that he has a, a definitive way of doing business that would serve us well. I also believe that on the Republican side over the last seven weeks, the approach of the Republican Party and Mr. McCain has become narrower and narrower. Mr. Obama, at the same time, has given us a more inclusive, broader reach into the needs and aspirations of our people. He's crossing lines--ethnic lines, racial lines, generational lines. He's thinking about all villages have values, all towns have values, not just small towns have values.

And I've also been disappointed, frankly, by some of the approaches that Senator McCain has taken recently, or his campaign ads, on issues that are not really central to the problems that the American people are worried about. This Bill Ayers situation that's been going on for weeks became something of a central point of the campaign. But Mr. McCain says that he's a washed-out terrorist. Well, then, why do we keep talking about him? And why do we have these robocalls going on around the country trying to suggest that, because of this very, very limited relationship that Senator Obama has had with Mr. Ayers, somehow, Mr. Obama is tainted. What they're trying to connect him to is some kind of terrorist feelings. And I think that's inappropriate.

Now, I understand what politics is all about. I know how you can go after one another, and that's good. But I think this goes too far. And I think it has made the McCain campaign look a little narrow. It's not what the American people are looking for. And I look at these kinds of approaches to the campaign and they trouble me. And the party has moved even further to the right, and Governor Palin has indicated a further rightward shift. I would have difficulty with two more conservative appointments to the Supreme Court, but that's what we'd be looking at in a McCain administration. I'm also troubled by, not what Senator McCain says, but what members of the party say. And it is permitted to be said such things as, "Well, you know that Mr. Obama is a Muslim." Well, the correct answer is, he is not a Muslim, he's a Christian. He's always been a Christian. But the really right answer is, what if he is? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country? The answer's no, that's not America. Is there something wrong with some seven-year-old Muslim-American kid believing that he or she could be president? Yet, I have heard senior members of my own party drop the suggestion, "He's a Muslim and he might be associated terrorists." This is not the way we should be doing it in America.

McCain Interviewed on 'FOX News Sunday': Transcript (10-19-08)

Read the complete transcript of John McCain's interview with Chris Wallace.

WALLACE: Let's start with where this race stands now, 16 days before the election. According to the latest RealClearPolitics average of national polls, you trail Obama by seven points, 50-43.

And take a look at the latest electoral map from Karl Rove based on public state polls. He has Obama leading in states with 313 electoral votes, 43 more than he needs to win the presidency. You lead in states with 171 electoral votes.

Senator McCain, aren't you in a world of trouble?

MCCAIN: All right, look. First of all, there are polls this morning — reliable — Zogby, Rasmussen, Gallup — all those that show us in the margin of error or somewhat behind. Are we behind? Sure. I'm the underdog.

I've always — I've been the underdog in a number of races, and we're very happy with the way the campaign is going. I'm very happy with the debate — went there the other night.

And look, I've been on enough campaigns, my friend, to sense enthusiasm and momentum, and we've got it, and I — again, I don't have to look at polls, but the polling numbers have closed dramatically in the last few days.

We're going to be in a tight race and we're going to be up late on election night. That's just — I'm confident of that. I've been in too many campaigns, my friend, not to — not to sense that things are headed our way.

It's going to be tough. Sure, it's tough. I mean, Senator Obama raised $150 million in — I understand, during the month of September, completely breaking whatever idea we had after Watergate to keep the costs and spending on campaigns under control — first time, first time since the Watergate scandal.

And I can tell you this, that has unleashed now in presidential campaigns a new flood of spending that will then cause a scandal, and then we will fix it again.

But Senator Obama has broken it, and he broke his word to me and the American people when he signed a piece of paper when he was a longshot candidate that he would take public financing if I would. He signed a piece of paper.

Then, twice on national television he looked into the camera with Senator Clinton sitting there and said, "I'll sit down and talk to John McCain before I make a decision on public financing or not." He didn't tell the truth.

And finally, there's $200 million of those campaign contributions — there's no record. They're not reported. You can report online now — $200 million that — that we don't know where the money came from — a lot of strange things going on in this campaign.

The American people should know where every penny came from. They know where every penny of my campaign contributions came from.

WALLACE: Well, let me ask you about the money, because, as...


WALLACE: ... as you alluded to it — I was going to ask you about it. Obama today announced that he raised $150 million in September. By way of comparison, accepting public financing, you're getting $84 million for the entire campaign.

He's outspending you on advertising 4-1. In the key state of Virginia, for instance, he has three times as many field offices. Is he buying this election?

MCCAIN: Well, I think you could make that argument, but we're not going to let him. We're not going to let that happen.

But what I worry about is future elections, too, not only mine. I worry about — most about mine at the moment, but what's going to happen the next time around, four years from now?

What's going to happen, particularly if you've got an incumbent president, and we no longer stick to the finance — the public financing, which was a result of the Watergate scandal?

So what's going to happen? The dam is broken. We're now going to see huge amounts of money coming into political campaigns, and we know history tells us that always leads to scandal.

Palin Appears on SNL: Transcript, Video (10-18-08)

Sarah Palin appeared on Saturday Night Live last night. Read the complete transcript. See videos below.

Palin Raps

Partial transcript below:

JASON SUDEIKIS - "Good evening, I'm Tim Lydecker Sarah Palin's spokesman and we're very excited to be holding the Governor's first official press conference. Now tonight, nothing is off-limits while at the same time, I urge you guys to 'be cool.' Seriously guys just be cool. And one last thing: no recording devices and don't write anything down."

(Gathered "reporters" react)

SUDEIKIS - "Worth a shot. Can't blame me for trying. Without further ado, I present Governor Sarah Palin."


FEY AS GOV. PALIN - "First off, I just want to say how excited I am to be in front of both the liberal elite media as well as the liberal regular media. I am lookin' forward to a portion of your questions, so let's get started. Yes, you?"

FRED ARMISEN (as reporter):
"What were your thoughts on Senator McCain's debate performance Wednesday?"

You know, I just thought he was great. Because the American people are angry. And John McCain is angry too. And you can tell he's angry by the way he sighs and
grits his teeth and he's always goin' like (MAKES FACE AND GROWLING NOISE). And that Barack Obama? Well if he's angry, I certainly can't tell. His voice is smooth and when he's talkin' it's like an angel whispering in your ear. He makes John McCain sound like a garbage truck unloading trash at a landfill. So to answer your question, yes, I think John McCain did great. You guy?

WILL FORTE (as reporter) - "At a rally in North Carolina this week you said that you like to visit the quote pro-America parts of the country. Are there parts of the country that you consider un-American?

FEY AS GOV. PALIN - Y'know , that was just my lame attempt at a joke. But um, yes - New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Delaware and California (SHE GIVES A THUMBS DOWN). But then also too you have states like Ohio and Pennsylvania and Florida which could be real real anti-American or real real pro-American. It's up to them. (SHE winks) And now I'd like to entertain
everybody with some fancy pageant walkin.'

(CUT TO: "SNL" Executive Producer LORNE MICHAELS and the real GOVERNOR SARAH
PALIN standing next to a monitor watching the scene)

MICHAELS - "I really wish that that had been you."

GOV. PALIN - "Well, Lorne, you know, I just didn't think it was a realistic
depiction of how one of my press conferences woulda gone."

MICHAELS - "Yes, but it's obviously it's a heightened reality."

GOV. PALIN - "Why couldn't we do the '30 Rock' sketch I wrote?"

MICHAELS - "Honestly, not enough people know that show."


WAHLBERG - "Hey, Lorne?"

MICHAELS - "Mark!"

WAHLBERG -I'm looking for Andy Samberg. Where is he?"

MICHAELS - "Mark, that was all in good fun."

WAHLBERG -- "Are you gonna make me bust your head open too? Because I will.
Where is he?"

MICHAELS - "Third dressing room on the left."

MW - Thank you

(WAHLBERG storms off)

MICHAELS -- He didn't like the impression we did of him on the show.

GOV. PALIN - "Tell me about it."