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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Greg Sargent says that Obama may take a firmer grip of what's going on in D.C.:
In Nevada today, Obama turned up the volume, reiterating his idea to increase the FDIC limit to $250,000, and suggesting that he would be taking on a more active and hands-on role in the days ahead.

"We must act and we must act now," Obama said. "We cannot have another day like yesterday."

"For the rest of today and as long as it takes, I will continue to reach out to leaders in both parties and do whatever I can to help pass a rescue plan," he added. "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."

The fact that two-thirds of House Dems voted for the bailout creates an interesting political dynamic for Obama. On the one hand, because most Dems are already on board for this plan and are unlikely to bolt should it be revised, it's hard for Obama to actually show meaningful concrete results in terms of delivering votes.

On the other, there's not really any room for the sort of failure that publicly claimed McCain. And the pressure is still on the Arizona Senator to deliver on his initial vow to rally his own party behind the plan, or a revision of it.

Barring more specific proposals as to how to address the crisis, one way Obama will likely try to show leadership is to use his skills at persuasion to convince larger swaths of the public that the crisis is real enough to demand unpalatable action (though again, success in this endeavor would be hard to quantify). And he is already staking out a role as the candidate who is setting an appropriately sober, measured, and reconciliatory tone in discussing the crisis.


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