Extraordinary Times

It is perhaps fitting that this election is the first in American history to have this much media coverage. Someday history writers will look back on this election cycle as one for the ages. Tonight’s actions are just another example. From the Washington Post’s The Trail:

The president has invited the bicameral and bipartisan leadership, and the two senators running for president, to the White House tomorrow “to work on driving to a bipartisan and timely solution.”

Obama has agreed to attend the meeting.

“A few moments ago, President Bush called Senator Obama and asked him to attend a meeting in Washington tomorrow, which he agreed to do,” Obama-Biden spokesman Bill Burton said in a statement. “Senator Obama has been working all week with leaders in Congress, Secretary Paulson, and Chairman Bernanke to improve this proposal, and he has said that he will continue to work in a bipartisan spirit and do whatever is necessary to come up with a final solution. He strongly believes the debate should go forward on Friday so that the American people can hear from their next President about how he will lead America forward at this defining moment for our country.”

Take a moment to consider that. A sitting US president has invited both senators running for president to the White House to discuss an active piece of legislation worth at least $700 billion 40 days before the election. To my knowledge there is nothing even close to precedent for that kind of action. 

 

From Johnathan Martin’s Blog:

The two candidates also released a joint statement tonight, urging bipartisanship in a time of crisis:

“The American people are facing a moment of economic crisis. No matter how this began, we all have a responsibility to work through it and restore confidence in our economy. The jobs, savings, and prosperity of the American people are at stake. 

“Now is a time to come together – Democrats and Republicans – in a spirit of cooperation for the sake of the American people. The plan that has been submitted to Congress by the Bush Administration is flawed, but the effort to protect the American economy must not fail. 

“This is a time to rise above politics for the good of the country. We cannot risk an economic catastrophe. Now is our chance to come together to prove that Washington is once again capable of leading this country.”

I can only wonder if you don’t realize you’re watching history as it’s happening. Watching the world change or at the very least the country. But today there are thousands of voices chiming in reaction as a unpopular sitting president, the two men vying to replace him, the treasury and federal reserve as well as the congress attempt to work together to craft a bill designed to stave off another depression. 

These are extraordinary times indeed.

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