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McCain: Serious, Somber Straight Talk

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) has used his first three responses in the debate to offer some "straight talk" on the economy.

Not surprisingly, McCain is working to turn the debate more into one over cutting spending -- long a focus of his -- rather than one over cutting taxes. (He did not support the 2001 Bush tax cuts.) He's also resisted calls for protectionism in trade, insisting that "every time the U.S. has become protectionist we have paid a very heavy price."

McCain is in a tough spot in the debate as the fourth man on the totem pole -- behind Romney, Thompson and Giuliani -- and yet tasked with trying to use the national stage to distinguish himself.

It appears as though he's decided on a tact of seriously and somberly approaching the issues while weaving in his 2004 mantra of "straight talk".

By Chris Cillizza  |  October 9, 2007; 4:50 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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