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FixCam: Introducing... 'Who Won the Week?'

Now that the presidential primary season is done and we won't have another vote at the national level until November 4, The Fix -- and his legion of editors, aides and hangers-on -- has been brainstorming ways to keep giving away the hottest item of the campaign season: The Official Fix T-Shirt.

And, man did we come up with an idea!

Our newest feature is called "Who Won?" Every Friday -- or, in this case, Thursday since we couldn't wait -- we'll put up a post in the afternoon asking Fixistas to pick who won the week in politics. Usually your choices will be between Barack Obama or John McCain, but every once in a while we will ask you to pick a winner between Congressional Democrats and Congressional Republicans or two other competing political groups.

What are we looking for?

Here's a good "Who Won?" submission: "Obama won the week because not only will he have two or three times as much money as McCain to spend in the general election but he is also addressing his biggest weakness -- all of the misinformation being spread about his beliefs and background -- with a national ad buy."

Here's a bad "Who Won?" submission: "McCain won the week because Obama can't win." Aha!

You get the idea. We'll comb through the responses every weekend (deadline for submissions: Saturday night at 5 p.m. ET) and announce the best of the best during the FixCam Week in Preview every Monday. The winner gets the glory of having his or her "Who Won?" submission read aloud on The Fix AND a coveted Fix t-shirt of their very own.

So, let's get it started. Offer your "Who Won the Week" pick between Obama and McCain in the comments section below. And then tune in to the "FixCam Week in Preview" post on Monday to see if you won.

By Chris Cillizza  |  June 19, 2008; 3:45 PM ET
Categories:  FixCam  
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Comments

Who Won This Week? Obama and McCain.
Dan Abrams of MSNBC's Verdict reported yesterday that McCain too has not always been "proud" of his country - at least he was not until he became a POW. Pundits, especially those from FOX News continue to criticize Michelle Obama for her being "proud for the first time in her adult life" in our country. Therefore, I believe Obama is the winner this week because America now sees that everyone has moments of what can be perceived as having unpatriotic episodes when life experiences dictate the country has not worked well for them and others.

McCain is a winner because he was honest about his feelings about the country before he became a presidential candidate. Now I hope Mrs. McCain can lay off of Mrs. Obama because her husband has had similar feelings.

Posted by: YOMO | June 24, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

I'll add my voice to the chorus denouncing the "Who Won the Week?" idea. It is not surprising Cillizza et al would want to find a means for maintaining the momentum of the media frenzy that the primary season hath wrought. After all, Cillizza and some of his fellow-travelers earn their livings doing such things. But that doesn't make this a good idea for the rest of us.

"Who Won the Week?" is a bad idea for a number of reasons:
1) While the media types may perceive the weekly news cycle to be a thing of importance, for the rest of us mere mortals, even us political junkies, this election season will not be so neatly parsed into weekly chunks. This weekly parsing skews the "game" artificially, making any "score-keeping" misleading.
2) Furthermore, score-keeping itself, at least on such a miniscule scale, is probably counterproductive. The only score that matters will be the vote in November. There are no delegate counts to tally here, and while many will be watching polls at all levels as the campaign unfolds, we all understand that things can change quickly.
3) I think the keeping such a weekly score will trivialize our discourse over this campaign--we will elevate non-issues to issues simply in order to have something to measure. The most minor misstatements may seem like real gaffes, the pronouncements of low-level campaign drones may receive attention they should never deserve, etc.

It's a free country, Chris, so do what you will. But if you must do this, why don't you at least wait until after both party conventions??

Posted by: old white male democrat in WV | June 24, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

The clear winner was Michelle Obama. The proof? The off-the-rack dress she wore while hosting the View clearly puts her in the non-elitist camp but more importantly the item has been so wildly popular that it is back ordered through August. Now that is clearly First Lady type influence. Clearly Michelle will be a leader as First Lady. Of course her coming across on the View as a composed, sensitive wife and mother didn't hurt her either.

By way of contrast, Cindy McCain's canned statement, "I was always proud of my country" was reminiscent of the lamest of beauty pageant comments.

Posted by: Portuguese Pete | June 24, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Isn't it a little early for "who won the week" analysis. It is only June and we have not even had the party conventions yet. Maybe we should pace ourselves so we don't get burned out.

Posted by: danielhancock | June 23, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

McCain -- by default. Any week John McCain maintains his relative position against Barack Obama, the Arizona senator wins, because he continues to avoid paying any price for doggedly supporting an administration that is reviled by the public like no other in our history.

Posted by: R M Gopal | June 23, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Would you please stop treating the elections as just another "Who won the week?" event and remember we're talking about the future of my grandkids.
I know it's great to get your 15 minutes, but for a change, would you try to act like a concerned American and less like a paper salesman - and I don't mean news paper.

Posted by: DICK BRANDLON | June 22, 2008 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Mccain had 3 + some months to get his act together while the dems were battling it out and still his campaign has changed logos, his background color. Mccain has made several mistakes and gaffes in a short period of time. I really do think Mccain is confused. He's change his position back and forth on issues. He continuously have private meetings with certain groups. Every where he goes he's promising to support what ever is expected in that state and he's comming off as fake and supperficial. I really was disturbed when he went to Canda talking about Nafta and Free Trade when 300,000. manufacturing jobs were shut down in Penn. State, Ohio, and Michigan. He seems out of touch with ordinary Americans. His speech on Nafta in Canada, I thought was a slap in the face to those states. Then he goes to those states and say whats needed to say. Mccain is trying to play both sides and its going to back fire on Him. I'll be glad when it does because I'm frankly tired of Mccain and his flip flops anyway. I'll put my bet on Obama.

Posted by: Brenda | June 22, 2008 3:59 AM | Report abuse

As recent as February, Barack Obama was for public financing of campaigns. His "flip-flop" on this could only be interpreted as 'I'll do anthing to get elected' where as John McCain's "flip-flop" on oil drilling can realistically be seen as a change of mind out of sheer necessity.

There are times when changing your mind (as in the case of John McCain and oil) is a good thing. But, I don't see any good coming out of Barack Obama's "change of mind" on financing. I'll do anything to get elected?

Posted by: AN | June 21, 2008 6:46 PM | Report abuse

I think this was last week, but since we just started, we've got to play some 'catch-up-ball.'

I refer to the suggestion made by John McCain to have 10 town hall meetings. Barack Obama's lack of agreement to this tells me that he's afraid that his oratorial skills won't lend themselves to a town hall meeting.

I think that this kind of forum would be the best; but I give Barack Obama a right to tinker with the plan and add what he thinks would work for him. To my knowledge, he just dropped the plan. This is quite telling to me. Barak Obama only wants to appeal to voters whom he's already won over. He doesn't 'need my support.' If that's his game, I need Senator McCain much more to LEAD me and my country.

When 'journalists' ask canned questions, you get canned answers and this election is too important for that. Both candidates are about change. But the change they represent is which candidate represents change that will work, and which candidate represents change that WILL NOT?

Posted by: AN | June 21, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

I wasn't aware that there was supposed to be a winner each week; rather a winner in NOVEMBER.

But while we're at it, the political pundits were surely the losers as NOT ONE OF THOSE SELF-PROCLAIMED ANALYSTS could fill Tim Ruserts' shoes.

Andrea Mitchell and Dolores Kearns Goodwin possibly-do you notice a gender trend here?

Did Alex come out last week? Moveon.org, shame on you.

As far as of-shore oil drilling being a "flip-flop," I see it more of a change of mind because the cost of oil has become a CRISIS.

It wasn't too long that oil was less than $50 a barrel. In not too long, we'll be looking at 4 times that amount. John McCain NOW sees the urgency in that, won't tolerate it and is for the offshore drilling to give us 21 years.

You NIMBYers, I'd fear $7+ prices at the pump more than the current rigs that withstood most of what Katrina and Rita sent.

Posted by: AN | June 21, 2008 5:22 PM | Report abuse

I,

"...The media either does not understand this situation or is not watching...." The media consists of a bunch of liberal, so-called 'analysts'

They see it, but they've been promulgating the idea that the American people will have forgotten the financing flip-flop by November.

I've been watching pretty non-stop (laid-up) and have written SO MUCH to the so called 'bipartisan' news outlets SO many times about their OBVIOUS partisanship. Tim Russert would be rolling over in his grave; too bad he can see them mis-behaving, especially Keith Obermann.

Posted by: AN | June 21, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Leeroyski,

..."Sticking to principles is admirable but it wins you nothing in the end. He made the right choice...." Have you learned NOTHING from the life and times of Tim Russert?

At the end of the day, if you haven't stuck to principles, you have and are NOTHING.

Posted by: AN | June 21, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

So many, including the liberal media pundits, think that the American people will forget Obama's financial flip-flop by November.

I for one think they have too little respect for the intelligence and integrity of Americans. Right now, the subject of money is quite sensitive and someone who plays fast and loose with it and honesty in a strategic game, cannot be trusted.

If, as a previous writer, suggested, that Obama used financing strategically so that McCain would also commit to limiting his money and then Obama turned around and changed courses; that's not the kind of change Americans want to see in Washington.

That move-on.org ad didn't help McCain, and I wish he'd just come out and make a BLITZ so that Americans don't fall for that kind of crap.

In reality, NO ONE WAS THE WINNER: to echo a few others:

"winner - Tim Russert
Loser - the rest of the press who fall all over themselves trying to claim how close they were and how spectacular they all are."

Posted by: AN | June 21, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

The winner of the week was the memory of Meet the Press host Tim Russert. In an era where reporters and true journalist are viewed as lower than computer salesman, Mr. Russert's untimely passing allowed the public to look behind the curtain at what a great member of this profession did. Additionally, viewers and readers alike were able to understand the great place he held in the hearts of his peers. While Mr. Russert's contributions within Beltway borders, this past week enabled Washingtonians to see what meant to the rest of the country. Mr. Russert's career embodied everything that we treasure and expect from this profession. He did not engage in the tit for tat, partisanship that others practice on an hourly basis. He introduced important issues, presented both sides and gave us the opportunity to decide for ourselves. If the chattering class would take this tact, the level of public discourse and understanding would be raised. The memorials and tributes enabled us to grasp this fact. It is a more important lesson than Senator McCain's multiple flip-flops and pandering and Senator Obama's opt out. But, somewhere, Mr. Russert is discussing these events and enjoying every minute.

Posted by: Steve | June 21, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Obama clearly won the week. And John McCain seemed determined to lose it.

We all knew Obama would not take Federal Campaign Financing - it would have been crazy to limit himself to 84 million when he can raise so much more. But no one expected him to do so this early. It was brilliant strategy. He pushed McCain into accepting the money sooner than he would have and it means that this issue will be old news before the general election begins in earnest. His outreach to various groups within and without the Democratic Party is going well and the polls point to a likely victory in Novemeber - especially when you look at the state polls.

McCain had a bad week. The offshore drilling proposal may be popular nationally, but folks in Florida have always been adamantly opposed, which could cost him big there. If he can't win in Florida, I don't think he has a shot at winning the general election. Having George Bush jump on the drilling bandwagon the next day was not good for McCain either.

It was also not a good idea to go to Canada and give a speech praising NAFTA - in fact it was borderline insane. I guess John figures that he doesn't really need Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania either. Well maybe he's hoping the Canadians will stream over the border and vote for him. McCain's being caught pandering to hispanic voters in Illinois isn't likely to firm up the base either.

Sometimes the McCain Campaign reminds me of the 1962 NY Mets and their Manager, Casey Stengel's memorable quote, "Can't anyone here play this game?"

Posted by: Tim Irving | June 21, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Obama wins.

You can't change ANYTHING if you don't win the election. That is the ultimate bottom line for this election. Obama weighed the cost of receiving some bad press for foregoing some principles vs. winning the election. Sticking to principles is admirable but it wins you nothing in the end. He made the right choice.

Posted by: Leeroyski | June 21, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

A crazy, confusing week of potential first ladies, energy jousting, Bush avoidance, off-shore drilling, and mugging for domestic tranquility. But the clear loser of the week was Obama. His announcement to forgo public funding was sure to raise a howl in the press, with the Republicans eager to pile on. Only by default does McCain win this week. But if Obama succeeds in November, this week will be moved into Obama's win column.

Posted by: Youngblood Kaufman | June 21, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Obama clearly won the week. And John McCain seemed determined to lose it.

We all knew Obama would not take Federal Campaign Financing - it would have been crazy to limit himself to 84 million when he can raise so much more. But no one expected him to do so this early. It was brilliant strategy. He pushed McCain into accepting the money sooner than he would have and it means that this issue will be old news before the general election begins in earnest. His outreach to various groups within and without the Democratic Party is going well and the polls point to a likely victory in Novemeber - especially when you look at the state polls.

McCain had a bad week. The offshore drilling proposal may be popular nationally, but folks in Florida have always been adamantly opposed, which could cost him big there. If he can't win in Florida, I don't think he has a shot at winning the general election. Having George Bush jump on the drilling bandwagon the next day was not good for McCain either.

It was also not a good idea to go to Canada and give a speech praising NAFTA - in fact it was borderline insane. I guess John figures that he doesn't really need Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania either. Well maybe he's hoping the Canadians will stream over the border and vote for him. McCain's being caught pandering to hispanic voters in Illinois isn't likely to firm up the base either.

Sometimes the McCain Campaign reminds me of the 1962 NY Mets and their Manager, Casey Stengel's memorable quote, "Can't anyone here play this game?"

Posted by: Tim Irving | June 21, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

NEWS FLASH . NEWS FLASH


Obama really did it now - he is FALSELY ACCUSING the Republican party of racism BEFORE THEY SAY ANYTHING - Obama does not have an actual quote or instance of racism - so he is going with the "Republicans are GOING TO BE RACIST" line instead. The Constitution states one is innocent until proven guilty - Obama's new version of the Bill of Rights is "one is a racist before one says or does anything." Is this Obama's version of a post-racial campaign ? Give the country a break.


Obama is a disgrace to the Bill of Rights.


This is actually a new version of twisting someone's words around and "FALSELY PRETENDING TO BE OFFENDED." Or the FALSE ACCUSATIONS OF "OFFENSIVE COMMENTS."


This time, Obama has nothing to go on. He has nothing.

So Obama says the Republicans are "GOING TO SAY SOMETHING WHICH MIGHT BE TWISTED INTO SOMETHING THAT COULD BE CONSIDERED RACIST IF ONE REALLY REALLY REALLY TRIED." THESE REMARKS BY OBAMA ARE SO ANTI-AMERICAN AND SO OFFENSIVE TO EUROPEAN AMERCANS THAT Obama should RESIGN FROM THE SENATE IMMEDIATELY AND WITHDRAW FROM THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE.


****************************************


JACKSONVILLE, Florida (CNN) - Barack Obama told supporters that Republicans will "try to make you afraid of me" in remarks he made Friday at a Florida fundraiser.

"The choice is clear. Most of all we can choose between hope and fear. It is going to be very difficult for Republicans to run on their stewardship of the economy or their outstanding foreign policy.

"We know what kind of campaign they're going to run," said the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee. "They're going to try to make you afraid. They're going to try to make you afraid of me. 'He's young and inexperienced and he's got a funny name. And did I mention he's black?'"

In similar comments at a Chicago fundraiser last Thursday, Obama told supporters that Republicans would try to portray both him and his wife Michelle as "scary."

"They're going to try to make me into a scary guy," he said last week. "They're even trying to make Michelle into a scary person. Right?" And so that drumbeat - 'we're not sure if he's patriotic or not; we're not sure if he is too black.'


"I don't know, before I wasn't black enough," said Obama. "'Now he might be too black. We don't know whether he's going to socialize - well, who knows what.'"

.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | June 21, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

NEWS FLASH . NEWS FLASH


Obama really did it now - he is FALSELY ACCUSING the Republican party of racism BEFORE THEY SAY ANYTHING - Obama does not have an actual quote or instance of racism - so he is going with the "Republicans are GOING TO BE RACIST" line instead. The Constitution states one is innocent until proven guilty - Obama's new version of the Bill of Rights is "one is a racist before one says or does anything." Is this Obama's version of a post-racial campaign ? Give the country a break.


Obama is a disgrace to the Bill of Rights.


****************************************


JACKSONVILLE, Florida (CNN) - Barack Obama told supporters that Republicans will "try to make you afraid of me" in remarks he made Friday at a Florida fundraiser.

"The choice is clear. Most of all we can choose between hope and fear. It is going to be very difficult for Republicans to run on their stewardship of the economy or their outstanding foreign policy.

"We know what kind of campaign they're going to run," said the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee. "They're going to try to make you afraid. They're going to try to make you afraid of me. 'He's young and inexperienced and he's got a funny name. And did I mention he's black?'"

In similar comments at a Chicago fundraiser last Thursday, Obama told supporters that Republicans would try to portray both him and his wife Michelle as "scary."

"They're going to try to make me into a scary guy," he said last week. "They're even trying to make Michelle into a scary person. Right?" And so that drumbeat - 'we're not sure if he's patriotic or not; we're not sure if he is too black.'


"I don't know, before I wasn't black enough," said Obama. "'Now he might be too black. We don't know whether he's going to socialize - well, who knows what.'"

.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | June 21, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Barack Obama won the week. He won because he got away with some moves that could easily be perceived as non-change, and overall his change image has only been harmed slightly.

First, obviously; there is public financing. Instead of hearing all the political pundits talk about how this is a knock against his integrity and his call for change, I see most of them (you included, Mr. Cilliza) wondering what the impact would be -- discussing both positives and negatives for Obama.
Obama insured that he would fundraise more than John McCain, too. In the wake of his announcement, he has gotten donations from over 68,000 people. John McCain attacked, but didn't pounce as quickly as needed. In Barack Obama's "Declare your Independence" fundraising emails, he continues to point out an edge that McCain still doesn't have when it comes to change -- Obama doesn't accept lobbyist money, and he even convinced the DNC to follow suit.

Another slightly behind the scenes event that has still been going on this week has been attempts to get Barack Obama to join lots of debates this summer. John McCain is proposing them in a format that might give him a bit of an advantage, and while Obama received some flack last week for not immediately accepting -- everything has calmed this week.

All in all, John McCain should have beaten Obama hard this week. But he missed key opportunities, and that has to be seen as a win for Obama.

Posted by: Michael Hurta | June 21, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

This week is pretty easy to pick. Barack Obama will not use the public funding which means that he can raise a projected 400 million dollars as a oppose to 85 million for McCain. He a Clinton raised 500 million during the primaries combined and now he has her donors working for him. The only thing he pays for is a couple a days of negative press.

Posted by: Nathan Ledesma | June 21, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Who won the week? John McCain won the week. He and Barack Obama agreed to use public financing on the general election.

This week, Barack Obama reneged on that 'promise.' His only explanation that he gives for his 'switch' is that the public financing system for campaigns is broken. So broken, that he won't use it.

To me, that is the same as using as a defense for speeding: "the other guy was driving faster; give him the ticket, instead!" Equal playing field for all?

If this is what he does now (uses what works for HIM) imagine how much a change agent he'll really be in Washington.

Oh, yes, he'll avoid those speeding tickets but in the process, will he violate agreements and possibly, the law?

teamrn

Posted by: teamrn | June 21, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

McCain seemed to win the week but Obama really won it.

McCain seemed to win because he got to trumpet Obama's hypocrisy in rejecting public financing.

Obama really won because the public will forget the so-called hypocrisy in a week or two but Obama will still have practically unlimited funds to spend on his campaign all the way to the election.

Smart move.

James Hayman

Posted by: James Hayman | June 21, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Neither of them won the week, the day, or the hour.

If, and when one of them says something that has some meaning, something that we have not been hearing for the past 40 yrs., something that we can associate with some real change that both continue to spew about daily, something that will get our attention, then we may have a winner.

Posted by: lost in my rage | June 21, 2008 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Hooray! John McCain Won The Week! While Liar Barack Hussein Obama lost,after McCain
exposed Obama as nothing more then another
phony lying crooked Chicago Democrat pickpocket and purse snatcher,on Campaign
Finance Reform! Obama the Clear Loser!

Obama Lies & Campaign Finance Reform Dies!

Posted by: Sandy5274 | June 21, 2008 12:46 AM | Report abuse

Neither one won this week. Barack Obama came across as a man who breaks promises. A man who is more interested in money than in principle. Collect every cent you can!

McCain, campaigning in Canada, came across as a fat-cat manipulator, up there reassuring Canadians that our trade IMbalance will continue for 4 more years. We love NAFTA, which gives us the shafta.

Posted by: zaney8 | June 20, 2008 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week by tying John McCain in RED STATE GEORGIA. He also won by not buying into the Republican play book and trying to be the good guy like John Kerry did (on public financing), and by enlisting to his National Security team former Secretaries of State Madeleine Albright and Warren Christopher and former Defense Secretary William Perry to a panel already heavy with former Clinton administration officials. Obama continued to consolidate the support of Clinton loyalists - his 50 state strategy is winning!

Posted by: Sheridan1 | June 20, 2008 8:25 PM | Report abuse

McCain won the week for two reasons: 1. Barack has revealed that his new politics is being harnassed by the same old mule team. Grass roots campaign organized around hundreds of thousands of donors herded together by names like Warren Buffet and Ethel Kennedy is just new packaging. 2. because the true long-term implications of Michele Obama's comments are now becoming evident. Juxtapose for instance Michele Obama's comments about "for the first time I'm proud to be an American"" comment against John McCain's recently revealed comments, and you'll see what I mean. She meant she was never proud to be American, until she and her husband were given something, their mandate at the ballot box. McCain in several old news clips out this week is shown saying he was never truly proud of America until "deprived of her presence" , meaning a prisoner of war. That schism is going to be exploited for all it's worth.

Posted by: elstongunn | June 20, 2008 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Obama wins week--Money talks and nobody walks,except McCain, who had his own flip flop problems and is now looking at new poll numbers and Obama ad buys that should make him take stock of his campaign strategy.

Posted by: Curt Lader | June 20, 2008 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Obama lost the week (despite some major flip flops by McCain) by acting like a typical politician rather than a harbinger of change. Case in point: his poor explanation for opting out of public financing and caving in of FISA. The halo picked up some serious tarnish this week.

Posted by: Teresa | June 20, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

The real winner was the View and its bump in ratings with Michelle Obama. But in terms of your reference, it has to be Obama, a good intro ad combined with the Alex ad, which is a gut chop

Posted by: cferry3124@aol.com | June 20, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Here are the criteria for my pick:

Who had the most "face" time on TV?
Who had the most talking heads talking?
Who was responsible for the most interesting gossip of the week?

Tim Russert!!

His loss will be felt in the next few months as we stumble to the end of the 2008 campaign. I am sure it will become a new Beltway Parlor Game as to who will fill the vacuum of his untimely death.

Who is going to ask the questions for folks like me?
Who else could have gotten Joe Lieberman and John Kerry to sit side by side? Or our Presidential pugilist's for that matter.

Posted by: elizabeth | June 20, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

O'Bama is the big winner and has the fortunate advantage of campaigning and drawing votes and funding from 57 states as opposed with McCains limitation 0f 50 states. In this race the people can not win. They are both making Bush look like a messiah.

Posted by: lenny | June 20, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

You lost when you used "where" for "wear"

"Also, looking for something hip to where this summer? An official Fix t-shirt is the way to go. Want one? Play our latest contest on The..."

shirt size XL

Posted by: lenny | June 20, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

You lost when you used "where" for "wear"

"Also, looking for something hip to where this summer? An official Fix t-shirt is the way to go. Want one? Play our latest contest on The..."

shirt size XL

Posted by: lenny | June 20, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Obama won, because even when he loses (the financing flop) he wins by taking the sting out of bite (Moveon.org agrees to stop it's 527 campaigning). His timing is impeccable (opening his first national ad the same day) so that even when he has what should be a bad moment, he turns it around to his advantage.

And it doesn't hurt that he's leading in PA, Ohio and even Florida - all before his ad comes out.

The man is brilliant.

Posted by: bissron | June 20, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

There was no winner. But there was a loser, and that was the American people. We are slowly, but surely, finding out that Obama gives good microphone, and not much else. These past weeks we saw him changing his stance on NAFTA, Jerusalem, and money among other things. And more important, the media has not challenged him on his over 100 "Present" votes while in the Illinois Senate because he didn't like the "add-ons" to proposed bills. Why didn't he just vote "NO"? Someone (The Fix) should tell him that a President doesn't have the option to vote "present". It's either "yes" or "no". Does he have the spine to be President? McCain just looks lost as he keeps changing positions on everything. His "straight talker" image is a myth. If "None of the Above" were on the Republican ballot during the primary, it would have won in a landslide. My first vote for President was for Harry Truman, so I have a few years of observation. These two candidates are the WORST in my lifetime, and our beloved country is the loser.

Posted by: Mel Ehrenreich | June 20, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

There was no winner. But there was a loser, and that was the American people. We are slowly, but surely, finding out that Obama gives good microphone, and not much else. These past weeks we saw him changing his stance on NAFTA, Jerusalem, and money among other things. And more important, the media has not challenged him on his over 100 "Present" votes while in the Illinois Senate because he didn't like the "add-ons" to proposed bills. Why didn't he just vote "NO"? Someone (The Fix) should tell him that a President doesn't have the option to vote "present". It's either "yes" or "no". Does he have the spine to be President? McCain just looks lost as he keeps changing positions on everything. His "straight talker" image is a myth. If "None of the Above" were on the Republican ballot during the primary, it would have won in a landslide. My first vote for President was for Harry Truman, so I have a few years of observation. These two candidates are the WORST in my lifetime, and our beloved country is the loser.

Posted by: Mel Ehrenreich | June 20, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

McCain won the week


Obama showed his inexperience by opting out of the campaign finance .

Posted by: Apple | June 20, 2008 3:27 PM | Report abuse

June 16th-20th: Who won the week

Winner:Obama
Money, 50 States and the Bump Bump

Obama is forgoing 80 million in public campaign financing! McCains is crying... er talking about how he can't get enough money... oh wait .. about how Obama broke his promise (Despite the fact that McCain actually broke the law by getting loans based on federal election finance promises). But more importantly look closely, Obama is building MOMENTUM my man. We all knew a bump was coming when Hillary supporters fell back in line and here it is. We had news this week of Quinipac polls coming from Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania where Obama leads by a comfortable margin.... but here are some mind blowers: Obama trailing by 4 points in ALASKA, by 3 points in NORTH CAROLINA, winning IOWA. What do we know about Obama? The more he campaigns places, the better he does. Then there was the news that Obama is launching an ad Alaska, Georgia, Indiana, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, and Virginia in addition to the swing states. Is this the begining of Obama's 50 state strategy? How many congressmen and Senators will win on these coattails?. In basketball terms Obama's got Home Court Advantage, a 10 point lead and he's still giving McCain the full court press... or what I call "Juicing the Bump Bump" (Ok... I just made that up.)

Posted by: David Lerner | June 20, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

June 16th-20th: Who won the week

Winner:Obama
Money, 50 States and the Bump Bump

Obama is forgoing 80 million in public campaign financing! McCains is crying... er talking about how he can't get enough money... oh wait .. about how Obama broke his promise (Despite the fact that McCain actually broke the law by getting loans based on federal election finance promises). But more importantly look closely, Obama is building MOMENTUM my man. We all knew a bump was coming when Hillary supporters fell back in line and here it is. We had news this week of Quinipac polls coming from Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania where Obama leads by a comfortable margin.... but here are some mind blowers: Obama trailing by 4 points in ALASKA, by 3 points in NORTH CAROLINA, winning IOWA. What do we know about Obama? The more he campaigns places, the better he does. Then there was the news that Obama is launching an ad Alaska, Georgia, Indiana, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, and Virginia in addition to the swing states. Is this the begining of Obama's 50 state strategy? How many congressmen and Senators will win on these coattails?. In basketball terms Obama's got Home Court Advantage, a 10 point lead and he's still giving McCain the full court press... or what I call "Juicing the Bump Bump" (Ok... I just made that up.)

Posted by: David Lerner | June 20, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week because he succeeded in the three goals of a winning Presidential campaign:

1. Maximize your money while keeping your opponent in a defensive and lower funding position (e.g. his four to one advantage without PAC money while McCain is limited to public financing).

2. Keep your opponent and his allies unable to get major media attention for a full daily press cycle while you hammer away at them from all sides - at no point this week did the GOP not step on it's own stories or get driven off the front pages by external events.

3. By attacking his opponent through non-conventional means (Michelle O on The View, etc) slice into the traditional support base of your opponent (swing voters) while capturing most of the former Clinton supporters using charm not bully tactics.

Sadly, McCain was floundering this week, and even failed at deploying Cindy McCain, who failed to get national media traction even with some good early prep work.

Posted by: Will in Seattle | June 20, 2008 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week because he drove the narrative, good or bad. Re-introducing Michelle Obama (good), first national ad up (good), up in swing state polls (good), and opting out of public financing (minor bad, as only people who live in DC care).

McCain was reactive for most of the week, except for his new coastal drilling support, which like the gas-tax holiday, requires some ignorance on the part of the electorate (time will tell).

Posted by: TM Moore | June 20, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Luke Russert won the week. The way he handled the press, supported his mother and eulogized his dad.

He became BIG RUSS this week.

Posted by: garnicmac in dc | June 20, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

McCain won the week because Obama's campaign finance opt-out gives McCain something he hasn't had in weeks: an issue establishing him as the good-government reformer and giving him daylight from the GOP brand. Still, McCain would rather have the money. Obama gave McCain the week so he could win the months ahead.

Posted by: Leather D | June 20, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

The American People are the Losers this Week. Even though Congress supposedly plugged the "Enron Loophole"with the Farm Bill the winners are the people at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission......Walter Lukken who is the Chairman appointee by Bush/Cheney is the same guy who worked for Senator Lugar when the bill was snuck through Congress. Lukken even boasts that he is an expert in derivatives and futures and was instrumental in the development and passage of the bill. O.K. June 17, the CFTC had a letter in their news section with ICE Intercontinental Exchange asking to be allowed to use the UK Financial Services commission as their monitor. The email link did not work - so I called the commissions office. I was given to an agent. After I told him I was against giving this exemption to ICE - he told me to put it in writing and hung up on me. ]
Yes. Americans are the losers with this Administration, maybe with all Republicans.
The commodities traders have been allowed to use electronic trading (Electronic trading was why ICE was established in the first place according to their own press), to shelter the identities of the traders. No one knows who hold large positions or who is possibly manipulating the market. When CTFC said they were doing an investigation, I almost choked on my Cheerios. What a joke!@ So, I think you should announce that Walter Lukken is the winner of you T-Shirt.

Posted by: Mary Keefer | June 20, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Neither Obama nor McCain...Tim Russert won the week!

Posted by: Mel | June 20, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week because Obama defined the week.

(1) He got excellent press on his father's day speech.

(2) He fought back on terrorism and then changed the entire subject by dropping his opt-out bomb; demonstrating that he controlls the campaign story outline.

(3) He won the week on press: his forums and meetings have been extensivly covered and he's gotten a mention that has been postive all week.

(4) Michelle Obama rocked out on the view, the couple is on the cover of USWeekly, and the dress she wore to the view sold out. Great example of how the couple is becoming a cultural powerhouse; much like the Clinton's have been and the Regan's before them. And the Bush's; before everyone decided they hate 43.

(5) Obama aired his general election ad in 18 states a 3.5 million buy: a cold welcome to prime time for the McCain campaign.

The negative press has rallied the base online as the democrats revel in the fact that they are the party with the money for once. The hit he's taken have been balanced by the positive press overall: and the money can't be beat.

So whatever anyone else says: the week has been good to Barack Obama.

As for John McCain: he hasn't had an attack penetrate and hit cleanly yet. Despite having some good lines. That's gotta be worrying the McCain camp.

Posted by: Rhoda | June 20, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Who won the week?...McCain campaign! (And this coming from an assured Obama voter is a little iffy huh? lol) As Barack Obama fought off those nasty little rumors about him and his wife that always end up being the first thing in the voter's pysche before the hang that chad (although they'll never admit it), John McCain got out front of an energy message that helped him step away from this unpopular president, his wife was pretty much casting herself well as Laura Bush - lite (a great thing), and he got Barack Obama's help when Obama threw aside the public financing system, handing McCain an issue that he really REALLY needs meat on. McCain may have wont he week...but i believe in my boy Barack and his team so they'll pull through just as they did in the primaries whenthey surprised my then girl Hillary (who I still love!)....Go Barack!

Posted by: NJ Law Dem | June 20, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

It's too early to know the true winner of the week. The defining monet of this campaign occured this week when Obama decided to back out of public financing. It remains to be seen whether the McCain campaign will be able to use this to effectively tarnish Obama's image, and turn the change mantra against him. (Similar to what he did with Romney in the New Hampshire debate when Romney tried to adopt the change message.)
But I will say this the McCain campaign lost the week. With Cindy touring Vietnam to help children, and McCain in the midwest touring flood damaged areas, this week should have been all about McCain and compassion, instead we were distracted by a patriotism contest, and a process story about campaign finance.

Posted by: myhojda | June 20, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

It's the week of flip flops! Obama reversed course on campaign finance, McCain flipped on offshore drilling. Obama's is a process issue, McCain's is a policy issue. We suspect voters don't care that much about process, and they care a lot about energy. It also becomes easier for Obama to define McCain as a run-of-the-mill Republican the more times he tacks right on issues that once defined his "maverick" status. Advantage: Obama.

Posted by: Evan | June 20, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse

The week was probably a tie in the end. Obama had to deal with the complaints over the women in head scarves, as well as complaints that he reneged on public financing. In the long run, this will help Obama dramatically, but it counts as a loss for the week. On the McCain side, the Senator had the unfortunate timing of calling for offshore, domestic oil drilling at the exact moment President Bush was doing so. That hamstrings McCain's argument that his policies differ dramatically from the Presidents.

Obama also announced the start of his nationwide ad campaign, which, especially in contrast to McCain's bizarre environmental ad (complete with techno audio intro), should be very effective in bringing in average, middle class voters who may not know much about him yet.

Posted by: ManUnitdFan | June 20, 2008 10:35 AM | Report abuse

The winner this week was Barack Obama. He finally found the "bump" everyone was looking for. Most recent polls have him ahead in MI, PA and OH. He is slightly in front in VA and MO, tied in FL and charging hard in Rep. strongholds like NC, AK and GA. (from http://electoral-vote.com/)
He doesn't have to win all these states, but if these polls show anything it's that McCain is clearly on the defensive. And to make matters worse Obama now has the financial advantage to keep McCain campaigning in his own back yard trying to hold on to states that haven't voted for a Democrat in 40+ years.

Posted by: JNoel002 | June 20, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

CC:

Good luck with choosing among all the similar posts for winners between BHO and McC.

To me, the Constitution and the American people won this week. The Supreme Court decision granting Gitmo detainees constitutional habeas corpus was a win for our form of government and shows the faith of the majority of the Supremes in our judicial system. Just as no one should be above the law, the law should protect the rights of people under US jurisdiction. If we end up with kangaroo courts and show trials because we fear the terrorists, then we all lose.

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty or safety"
-- Benjamin Franklin.

Posted by: mnteng | June 20, 2008 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, technical failure

Posted by: nclwtk | June 20, 2008 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Money talks, Obama walks. Obama's decision changes the landscape of the campaign.

Tim Russett actually won the week by winning so many hearts, but we arent allowed to pick third party candidates who fall below the 15% level.

Posted by: nclwtk | June 20, 2008 9:57 AM | Report abuse

Money talks, Obama walks. This definately changes the landscape of the campaign.

Tim Russett actually won the week by touching so many hearts, but he wasn't an official candidate and we must stick to the rules.

Posted by: nclwtk | June 20, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse


The reversal of Obama on Campaign Finance is beginning to appear as if Obama is elected, this country is headed for the THIRD NIXON ADMINISTRATION.


Please do not let that happen.


Clearly Obama is advocating OLD POLITICS OVER NEW POLITICS - in fact Obama is supporting going BACKWARDS TO A NIXONIAN ERA IN WHICH CAMPAIGN CASH HAS NO LIMITS.


Remember CREEP and the bagloads of campaign cash all over the place? The TWA situation??? ahhhhh.......


Washington Post please run the old stories to refresh everyone. Obama's support is from the young people who do not remember Watergate or who were born after those scandals.


.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 20, 2008 9:30 AM | Report abuse

The reversal of Obama on Campaign Finance is beginning to appear as if Obama is elected, this country is headed for the THIRD NIXON ADMINISTRATION.

Please do not let that happen.

Clearly Obama is advocating OLD POLITICS OVER NEW POLITICS - in fact Obama is supporting going BACKWARDS TO A NIXONIAN ERA IN WHICH CAMPAIGN CASH HAS NO LIMITS.


Remember CREEP and the bagloads of campaign cash all over the place? The TWA situation??? ahhhhh.......

Washington Post please run the old stories to refresh everyone. Obama's support is from the young people who do not remember Watergate or who were born after those scandals.

.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 20, 2008 9:22 AM | Report abuse

With his reversal on campaign finance, Obama simply proved that he is a LIAR - that the American People can not trust Obama on his word - and Obama has shown that he is weak on campaign finance reform.


What a mess..........


This is very bad. This is serious. The conduct of Obama during this campaign has been so pathetic - like the rules simply do not apply to him. Going back on such a commitment on such a important subject to our democracy as campaign finance reform is a serious transgression. I seriously do not know why the media is not pouncing on Obama over this.


The media either does not understand this situation or is not watching.


McCain is now positioned as the REAL REFORMER - THE REAL CHANGE AGENT. Obama has confirmed that he stands for the same old politics.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 20, 2008 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week by sacrificing the week to win the war. He also won by switching the headline from something that could gain traction with voters (treating terrorism as a police action) to something that has little traction outside of Washington (the finer points of campaign finance). Extra credit goes to team Obama for subtly reminding conservatives of McCain's campaign finance reform.

Posted by: funnytable | June 20, 2008 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Neither Obama nor McCain won this week. Tim Russert won this week. Normal politics will resume next week.

RIP to someone who dared to believe he could be a real journalist and a real person at the same time.

http://obamalondon.blogspot.com

Posted by: KarinJR | June 20, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week. By opting out of federal funds, just on his own he will be able to match McCain and the assorted Republican financing machines, allowing the Democratic Party to focus on down-ballot races. And with McCain criticizing Obama for opting out, Obama can spin that to say that he's playing "Washington Insider politics" on a topic few people care and/or know about to hammer McCain on not being an agent of change.

Posted by: Chris L. | June 20, 2008 8:29 AM | Report abuse

More T-shirts! I think you should give away 3-5 shirts/week. You want to create a community of people wearing those shirts around town, and giving them away one at a time is too slow.

Posted by: THS | June 20, 2008 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week. This past week has marked a fundamental shift in the narrative of the race: Obama is experiencing a Unity Bounce following the end of a heated primary season. State polls further indicate this new trend. Recent polls show Ohio and Pennsylvania leaning democratic, and while there is no consensus, some polls are beginning to show Florida and Virginia as very competitive. Renouncing public financing was handled in a very tactful way, and the story has little traction in the mainstream media. Michelle Obama's appearance on the view was highly successful, and has tempered her image well. McCain has also shown himself to be even more indistinguishable from our unpopular sitting president with his recent endorsement of the administration's energy policy through calling for increased offshore oil drilling.

Posted by: budseligsucks | June 20, 2008 4:19 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week with his admonishment to absentee black fathers. It was his Sister Souljah moment as only a black man could enter into this discussion without the media screaming about the race card (or prejudice). The fuss about campaign financing is a storm in a teacup as Obama develops his teflon coat

Posted by: RickJ | June 20, 2008 3:52 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week with his admonishment to absentee black fathers. It was his Sister Souljah moment as only a black man could enter into this discussion without the media screaming about the race card (or prejudice). The fuss about campaign financing is a storm in a teacup as Obama develops his teflon coat

Posted by: RickJ | June 20, 2008 3:50 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week with his admonishment to absentee black fathers. It was his Sister Souljah moment as only a black man could enter into this discussion without the media screaming about the race card (or prejudice). The fuss about campaign financing is a storm in a teacup as Obama develops his teflon coat

Posted by: RickJ | June 20, 2008 3:50 AM | Report abuse

McCain won the week. Obama just shot himself in the foot..... again. With his reversal on campaign finance, Obama simply proved that he is a LIAR - that the American People can not trust Obama on his word - and Obama has shown that he is weak on campaign finance reform.


What a mess..........


This is very bad. This is serious. The conduct of Obama during this campaign has been so pathetic - like the rules simply do not apply to him. Going back on such a commitment on such a important subject to our democracy as campaign finance reform is a serious transgression. I seriously do not know why the media is not pouncing on Obama over this.


The media either does not understand this situation or is not watching.


McCain is now positioned as the REAL REFORMER - THE REAL CHANGE AGENT. Obama has confirmed that he stands for the same old politics.


.


Posted by: Anonymous | June 20, 2008 2:56 AM | Report abuse

Obama just showed that he is a LIAR - that the American People can not trust Obama on his word and Obama has shown that he is weak on campaign finance reform.

What a mess..........

This is very bad. This is serious. The conduct of Obama during this campaign has been so pathetic - like the rules simply do not apply to him. Going back on such a commitment on such a important subject to our democracy as campaign finance reform is a serious transgression. I seriously do not know why the media is not pouncing on Obama over this.


The media either does not understand this situation or is not watching.

McCain is now positioned as the REAL REFORMER - THE REAL CHANGE AGENT. Obama has confirmed that he stands for the same old politics.

.

.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 20, 2008 2:53 AM | Report abuse

I think Obama has actually had a pretty big week. Al Gore endorsement, cover of Us Weekly, M.O. on the View, oodles and oodles of moohlah, hijacking P.S.Doyle to shut down the Clinton VP-rumor machine, a well-received how-to-be-a-daddy talk at church, and a slew of positive polls in key states.

Posted by: PhixInPhilly | June 20, 2008 2:51 AM | Report abuse

Obama wins the week because he put several strategic items in play. Each item provides a base to build on through the campaign and is formidable when combined. These include- website to combat rumors with a networking component to extend reach; addressed the national security issue by forming and meeting with a working group; put Michelle Obama's image in a better light as a guest host on the View, a magazine article and a NY Times story; stepped away from federal money which may be a short term PR problem but will be a huge long term benefit financially.

Posted by: bj123 | June 20, 2008 2:39 AM | Report abuse

THE FORCES OF DARKNESS WON THE WEEK...

Because the mainstream media is fixated on the horse race, while electronic voting machines and "gang stalking/community stalking" threaten our democracy by invalidating our elections and destroying our civil liberties.

Please read the following link and its sublinks:

http://www.usenet-replayer.com/faq/alt.abuse.recovery.html

Our elections are MEANINGLESS if the lack of a paper trail and Gestapo-like "gang/community stalking" rob us of our democracy and our personal freedoms.

1984 is here -- and the media continues to act like "it can't happen here." It can... and it is.

PLEASE -- read that link.

And Chris: How about a blog about the impact of electronic voting on the upcoming election? How about some original reporting on other than "horse race" topics?

Posted by: scrivener | June 20, 2008 2:36 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week when he addressed the importance of strong family values, setting the rock or foundation within the home, and about the important issue that we need more responsible and engaged parents. He spoke the truth in a way I haven't heard from McCain YET! I don't intend for that to be taken as insult, however. Furthermore, he gave a wonderful response when he was asked what life meant to him. In a nutshell, he recognized what is going on in this nation, how he envisions improved standards for his two little girls to live in, how people work hard and high government sometimes fail to meet these people halfway, and he feels he has a purpose to help do something about it, backed by his Christian faith. Obama won the week. He's been a faithful, loving father and husband to his family; he and his wife are raising their daughters to be so intelligent, beginning at a young age. He spoke with sincerity. They definitely have set an example of a rock or foundation in their own home, to be able to talk about it, the truth. I am glad that he and his wife are on the right side in the corner of many, on the issues. Apart from other comments, I'd like to add this one too. Obama won!

Posted by: Obama2008 | June 20, 2008 2:04 AM | Report abuse

By raising 3 million dollars in Chicago McCain won the week by raising more money than Obama.


.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 20, 2008 1:58 AM | Report abuse

Obama won the week, month and election in chosing no public funding. Insight isn't brevity's enemy.

Posted by: ccarter | June 20, 2008 1:39 AM | Report abuse

Obama won because in a week where McCain was trying to launch his energy policy and was in full barrel attack over Obama's statements on terrorism, Obama managed to drown out everything with his campaign finance announcement - a position that won't have any long term negative impact. McCain may have set the seed for a future winning issue if the popularity of offshore drilling polls as high as it is right now throughout the election. Interestingly though, comparing the two latest Rasmussen polls on this subject drilling seems to be losing popularity which could be disastrous if McCain just sacrificed Florida, New Jersey and even Virginia where voters have been traditionally dead-set against this.

Posted by: Jeremy | June 19, 2008 11:45 PM | Report abuse

Although I am an Obama supporter I think McCain won the week. McCain has been going on the offense with drilling for oil off the coast (although a reversal), hitting Obama on financing, visiting flood disaster areas, revelations that Obama team prevented muslim women from sitting behind him during rally (probably a wise choice, but not wise to get caute), maintaining that Obama is week on terror because Obama supported supreme court decision on allowing "enemy combatants" an opportunity to request a hearing in U.S. courts, calling "wind fall tax" a remenant of Carter oil policy, etc... McCain has been hitting hard and has put Obama on the defense.

Posted by: Karl Warrington | June 19, 2008 11:41 PM | Report abuse

When your wife gets to soften her image by co-hosting The View and appearing on the cover of US Weekly--both to rave reviews--as you're releasing your first ad buy of the general election--overwhelmingly in red states to demonstrate that the playing field ain't 2004--and your opponent is spending the week erasing what he offered as the primary distinction between him and a terribly unpopular President--a commitment to the environment--you've won the week. Pretty solidly in fact.

Posted by: Navin | June 19, 2008 11:25 PM | Report abuse

Barack Obama won the week because he received more, and more positive media coverage. Just look at this week's Fix headlines: Obama's picking up steam with additions to his staff, flowing "Coattails," and a "Nationwide Ad Campaign"--not to mention the "Goreacle."

And McCain? The Arizona Senator is stuck with "McSame." Not exactly the message he wants out to this vastly influential audience of Fixistas.


>>LEAD ON MASTER FIX.

Posted by: bsencore | June 19, 2008 10:55 PM | Report abuse

Thumbs up for Optimyst's truly transcendental post at 9:05P.

McC uses the word to describe Islamic fundie terrorists when he should use "transcendent".
Optimyst's metaphysical meditation on Russert and Theodore White is transcendental.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | June 19, 2008 10:36 PM | Report abuse

Obama won by default because McCain is on the injury list. He is suffering from whiplash, due to repeated and violent rotations of his positions.

Posted by: Ann | June 19, 2008 10:08 PM | Report abuse

Who won?

McCain won this week because by opting out of the election spending limits, Obama opens himself to questions about who is going to donate all this money and what will they expect in return?

Americans are wary of politicians who have too much of other peoples moneys to spend on getting elected. Nobody makes big donations without expecting something in return. So people will wonder just what Obama is selling. Selling most of us out?

Posted by: William | June 19, 2008 10:03 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week by showing his compassion for the flood victims. Going and making sand bags with disaster folks while McCain is raising money with Texas Oil Tycoons, does it get anymore contradictory than that! Especially during the week where Obama announces not to take public financing for his campaign. Obama also had the genial make-over of his wife this week. McCain hasn't had much great press this week. Obama has ruled the headlines and McCain has been reactionary. McCain needs to do something news-worthy to get in the winners circle.

Posted by: laurenbp | June 19, 2008 10:03 PM | Report abuse

Michelle Obama is the obvious winner, as her positive press overshadows the punditry and makes the wonkiness of political discussions and "who won" contests accessible to the masses. But...
The real winner is Barak Obama. As an avowed and unapologetic feminist and former HRC supporter I've been looking for a personal connection to Obama - I get that he's right on policy-wise and you couldn't pay me enough to vote for McCain, but I'm old enough and cranky enough not to believe in "Hope" as policy and to know in my heart of hearts that "transformation" simply won't happen in Washington or in politics generally. So how did he begin to win me over this week? On that silly cover of that fluff magazine he referred to his headstrong, opinionated, uppity wife (those are sincere compliments by the way)as his "rock." I can dig a guy who respects and values his wife's strength of character and her fearless ability to think for herself and make things happen.
Since I represent one of the demographics BHO needs to win over, I'd say he won the week.

Posted by: miss-crabby-pants | June 19, 2008 9:24 PM | Report abuse

For just the week in the narrowest sense, I'd call it a draw, but I think the events of the week will pay bigger dividends for Obama as the campaign progresses.

For example, Obama's decision to opt out of the public financing of the general election is a loser for the week as pundits compare it to his early pledge, but for the long term, it will be a winner for him because he'll be able to get his message out with the bigger ad budget.

McCain's tack to the right on habeas corpus helps shore up the base, but may be a drag with independents as they focus in on the issues.

McCain's stance on offshore drilling may seem like a winner now for drivers stung by $4 gas at the pump, but when this issue is fully vetted, they'll find out that there is no short term benefit AND he is again pretending to be McBush instead of the pro-environment maverick he was last week. Too many flip flops will doom him with the independents.

But most importantly, this is a draw because BOTH candidates need to take a vacation and recharge their batteries and let the pundits recharge theirs. It's about time for "No mas, no mas," but nobody sees it. The rainbow at Russert's service showed us all that this is a time for introspection. There's too much talking going on right now, not enough thought.

If you want the real winner, though, I'd say it's the people in heaven, because they'll have Tim Russert to handicap this 2008 contest for them. I imagine he and Teddy White on a couple of bar stools making complete sense of it all. Wouldn't you like to be a fly on that wall, Chris?

Posted by: Optimyst | June 19, 2008 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Obama wins for spinning his strategy decision to opt out of public financing into an indictment of a "broken" campaign finance system.

Posted by: Andrew | June 19, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week.

1) Money. While McCain can hammer him on not living up to his pledge that will go away. Also, Obama has the cash to fight off the 527 groups and general campaign nastiness to come. Money also allowed for the first general election ad that was introduced to the country. Notably in areas not generally believed to be in play for the democrats. This will force McCain to defend those states further diluting his strength, time and money.

2) Michelle was able to show her softer side through careful planning. Mrs. McCain should be told not to engage on this front. This is not reality television and to do so makes her appear tacky and will remind voters that she is the one with the elite background not Mrs. Obama. They will sympathize with Michelle and feel she is being picked on.

3) Mr. Russert's death. This is cynical to say but his story reminds voters the importance of national pride tempered with responsibility and hard work and being just a great guy good at his job. Mr. Obama is also a good guy personality that works hard having some of those very similar traits and American story that invites sub-conscience comparison between the two.

4) The bump in polls and the endorsement from Al Gore all will lead to continued endorsements and the unification of the Dems around the candidate. Adding pressure to McCain to be heard through the MSM clutter. While McCain had time to gather himself it seems he is still trying to raise money (not his strength) but also just to grab positive attention each day in the news cycle. His positions seem to be still evolving and his party does not seem to be completely on board as of yet something that should have occurred during the long Democratic party primary.

5) And finally, Mr. McCain flipped on off-shore drilling which may sell except then the president went further and made McCain appear solidly as a Bush man again with him adding his voice. That will work for the base but not for the independents. They do not need another reason to mistrust the independence of McCain as another Bush but reminded that he is his own man not someone to closely aligned with this administration.

Posted by: Cleo | June 19, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

The week, in a landslide, goes to Michelle Obama with a sterling performance around the kitchen table on "The View", while Cindy McCain once again gets nabbed with a plagiarized recipe (this time cookies no less).

Women enjoy The View and women will share recipes, but NEVER claim a recipe from someone else as your own. It's a faux pas of magnanimous proportions. Aficionados of the Food Network flock in mass to the Obama side.

Posted by: CoralGables | June 19, 2008 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Barack Obama wins this week for pressing every advantage in what is shaping up to be a historical race for the presidency.

Posted by: wotto | June 19, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse

JD, call me old - fashioned, but McC wins the week b/c BHO conveniently chose the pragmatic over the principled. He did not "aggressively pursue" an agreement with McC about this matter as he said he would.

Further, the RNC has much more cash than the DNC and McC is raising money for the RNC - I have been solicited twice in two days. BHO may suck up the available D fundraising by this decision and leave the drowning DNC without a lifeline. He certainly will not fundraise for them under this arrangement.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | June 19, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Obama is the hands down winner this week for the following reasons:

1. Opting out of public financing: This is a great move certainly because of the massive fudraising advantage but it is easily defensable as well. When you have over 1.5 million individual contributors to your campaign (which is more than half of the just over 2.5 million people that checked the box on their tax return to contribute to the presidential campaign fund) its pretty fair to say that your campaign is already publicly funded.

In the end this is a dead issue in a weeks time but the money that will be raised will have a broad impact on the election. Obama will be able to challenge McCain in traditionally red states while still outspending McCain in battleground states. Even is Obama can't win all of these red states he goes after it will be really embarassing for McCain if polls start to come out showing Obama running close to him in traditionally red states.

2. Battleground State Polling: It is always good for momentum when polls begin showing you winning in key battleground states. The new numbers in Florida are a particualrly good thing because the early numbers there looked pretty dismal for Obama.

This new polling will also relieve some pressure in the VP search. Clearly Obama is not interested in Hillary being his VP. It is much easier to turn her away when the arguement can't be made that you need her to win battleground states like Ohio, Florida, and Michigan. In addition the Obama cmapaign gets to avoid a round of "I Told You So"s from Hillary supporters about his ability to win in those states. Now he is the guy that can win in all the key Democrat states and put Republican states into play. Can someone say landslide.

3. Al Gore's Endorsement: While some believe that this endorsement should have come much earlier I think the timing is just fine. Gore stayed above the fray in the contentious primary battle and then gave a strong endorsement to the nominee. This is the way a respected party elder should behave. Now that some of the shine has been rubbed off of Bill Clinton because he dove head first into campaign politics after spending the last 8 years above the fray (not that he had much choice his wife was running), Al Gore remains the only true elder statesman in the party. Throw in a Nobel Peace Prize, and Emmy, and winning the popular vote in 2000 and this is a guy that you want stading next to you singing your praises.

Posted by: cmb | June 19, 2008 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week. He took full advantage of his fundraising abilities by opting out of the public financing system. If primary trends hold, he will have vastly more financial resources to use in the general election than McCain. He also held his own against several well scripted moments of political drama, none more compelling than Rudy Giuliani slamming his position on a response to terrorism. If he can continue turning attacks from the RNC's favorite topic area into opportunities to go on the offensive, he should do quite well. McCain didn't do himself any favors by supporting off-shore drilling. Coupled with his support of suspending the gas tax, he left himself open to continued attacks from the Obama campaign that he doesn't understand the economic conditions that exist for people today, and that his economic plans are based on talking points. Bush and Cheney are perhaps tied to the oil industry more than any other sector of corporate America. McCain ties himself closer to this administration by supporting off-shore drilling.

The week wasn't a slam dunk for Obama by any means. Polls showed him losing badly in the South to McCain, despite continued talk by the Obama campaign about changing the electoral map. And opting out of public financing doesn't fit well with his stated support of the system. But if elections are a series of trade-offs, Obama made the right choice for his political future and played to his strengths.

Posted by: JC | June 19, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week by drawing more coverage than McCain. Since March the Democratic primary race all but drowned out coverage for McCain. Now that the race is over and the general election is the focus it would make sense that the coverage would even out, but Obama still seems to have gotten more of the spotlight in the last week.

Posted by: Thomas Fiore | June 19, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

John McCain won the week if only because of today. But he will lose the war because of a lack of cash. Voters will forget about Obama's silly primary promise.

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: matt | June 19, 2008 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week for three reasons.

1)
New Q-polls out in FL, PA, and OH show Obama up (big in PA - supposedly a McCain target)

3)
Media focuses as much if not more on national Obama buy rather than the opt-out. Coverage of "Can Obama win ND or AK?" feeds idea McCain has no prayer in Nov.

Posted by: Zach | June 19, 2008 6:32 PM | Report abuse

This is a trick question - Chris didn't mention which Obama or McCain.

Clearly, Michelle Obama beat Cindy McCain. She has her own PR squad, and they managed to get gushing stories into US and "The View." The Michelle Obama spin crew has even managed to make it seem like the only member of the current admin that isn't universally reviled - Laura Bush - is pulling for her.

All that Cindy McCain and her PR crew has managed is that musty head shot that has been on the Drudge Report for the last week - the one where she is full of wrinkles and looks like Natalie Schafer (you know her as Mrs. Thurston Howell or "Lovey") when she did her famous cameo on "The Brady Bunch," singing "On the Good Ship Lollipop."

Michelle 1, Cindy 0!

Posted by: bondjedi | June 19, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Who win or who will win than who should win is an important political matter which also is depends on time.

Posted by: Bella Liberty | June 19, 2008 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Horse race ideas are pretty boring. The overiding issue for Joe Sixpack right now is the price of gasoline. On that score, McCain's initiative to halt the ban on offshore drilling is a tailor made wedge issue to pry working class votes away from the Democrats.

Posted by: Ed | June 19, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse


Obama won the week - and it wasn't even close.

On "The View" (daily viewership - over 3 million), Michelle Obama wins solid reviews - this should give pause to efforts to demonize her, with female suburban voters at stake.

US Weekly (circulation 2 million) puts the Obamas on the cover.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (membership 1.5 million) endorses Senator Obama.

President Bush (29 percent approval rating), like Senator McCain, reverses position on coastal drilling. Re-enforces challenge Senator McCain faces in putting distance between himself and the current (and very unpopular) President.

Al Gore (Nobel Peace Prize Winner) gives Barack Obama endorsement and access to Mr. Gore's e-mail list. As important, for the first time in a long while, the words "Dream Ticket" are being used in reference to someone other than Hillary Clinton.

Quinnipiac University releases polling data showing Senator Obama ahead of Senator McCain in swing states Florida (by 4), Ohio (by 6), and Pennsylvania (by 12). Shows it does matter that the primary is over.

Posted by: Swinford | June 19, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week because he got the long-awaited (by the media) endorsement of former vice president Al Gore, who sent an email asking for donations to help Obama for the first time to his vast base of supporters. He is also the first major candidate to shun public financing for the general election campaign. Though critics will say that this shows he does not follow through on his words, it will allow Obama to gain a financial edge of at least 2 to 1 over McCain. This money will allow Obama to spend more in key battleground states, but it will also cast some traditionally red states like North Carolina, Georgia, Montana, etc. into play, keeping McCain up against his back and digging through his pockets. Obama now has a special website fightthesmears.com and a new ad to communicate to voters the real truth about his values, background, etc, combatting the rumors and lies being spread on the Web. Obama has also been fighting more on the issues, outlining solutions rather than speeches, against John McCain, particularly on the economy and the war in Iraq.

Posted by: briggs | June 19, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Obama's week: The Gore endorsement does have some pluses and minuses, but the pluses do outweigh the minuses if they are played right in michigan. The poll of PA, OH, FL must be good news for obama. Up 6 on Ohio, up 12 in PA, even up 4 in FL, but we do have to see if these results are consistent with other polls to come out. Perhaps they don't have to win Michigan if they can hold on to Florida. McCain did manage to get Obama off message almost everyday, which is always a bad thing in presidential campaigns because it means you don't have control over media coverage. However, Obama (and Gibbs/Axerold/Plouffe) handled it well. Obama got off message some, pounced on McCain's points, then got back on message. Nonetheless, his explanation on habeas corpus may be difficult for average voters to understand. The muslim discrimination flack was hurtful a bit in the very very short term, but the media seems to be forgiving him since it was volunteers who conjured the mess. The public financing may hurt him nationally with independents, but the advantages of a 2,3:1 spending on McCain certainly outweigh a dip in support for a few weeks.

McCain's week: In terms of process, McCain camp did very well. As stated above, they kept Obama off message. However, that was useless with poor poor poor timing of his off-shore drilling proposal. One, he flip-flopped which goes against the McCain, maverick brand. Two, The President came out the next day in support of it. This isn't the ideal way to distance yourself from Bush. There was some good news in polls for McCain. In terms of the Republican base, McCain has a very good lead. The question now is: yes they support him, but will they stay home or vote? Back to the off-shore drilling a bit, the Florida poll must be worrying McCain a little bit. The poll was conducted before his off-shore drilling speech. How bad will the damage be now? Will he trade support in Florida for support in Michigan or Ohio? Another thing, they should try not to put Rudy Guiliani as their spokesperson for National Security. He got like 2 delegates right? Maybe a Joe Liberman or someone else.

Who won the Week:
In my opinion Obama won the week. He was terrible in process but he covered his mess up very effectively. Obama gets this week not because he was good; they were both bad. McCain just had it worse.

Posted by: Sean K. F. | June 19, 2008 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Texas Democrats (and our U.S. Senate Candidate Rick Noriega) won the week!

As Mark Halperin notes, Barak Obama's decision to forgo public financing means that he can spend some serious dough (like $15 million) on TV ads in the Lone Star State. Kudos to Evan Smith of Texas Monthly for pointing this out! Helping turn out voters in Texas can help Noriega along with down ballot races. Democrats need to win 5 seats to take control of the Texas House of Reps.

Posted by: Rice Owls Fan | June 19, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Biden won the week. With another opportunity to promote his foreign policy bonafides against both McCain and Guiliani he shows the expertise and toughness of the most credible VP choice for Barack. Also the loss of Russert reminds the country of the need for the Biden - style straight talk v. McCain "straight talk".

Posted by: dave in NY | June 19, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

bsimon's dark horse pick:

Ad-driven media outlets won this week. With Obama's decision to forgo public funding, & ad buy in non-traditional swing states, you could almost call this week a 50-state economic stimulus strategy. GOP-friendly 527s are going to rake in more dough - and spend it on ad buys - as a result. McCain's ongoing fundraisers where checks up to $50K are collected is another indcator that ad-sellers are in for a windfall year.

Posted by: bsimon | June 19, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Obama is the clear victor this week for a trifecta of reasons:

I. The Endorsement of Captain Planet himself, Al Gore.

II. He's in poll-position with leads in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and even Florida.

III. He has hit the airwaves in every battleground state with an ad that is well done, and not rushed like McCain's 5 second spot.

McCain lost the endorsement game this week, the poll position, and the ad-war. Not to mention he now knows he will get pummelled in fundraising. I would buy into the assertion that Mrs. Obama also had a great week, but not on the level of Mr. Obama. She comes in a close second.

Posted by: Aaron, St. Paul, MN | June 19, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week on two counts. First the polls showing him up in Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Second, he did the right thing by opting out of public financing in the usual sense. He already is publicly financed. I did it out of my grocery money!

McCain lost the week on two counts. First he flipped on trashing the environment with off shore drilling. Second, he said he wouldn't even try to curtail 527 ads and that was a deal breaker with Obama and public financing.

Posted by: karela | June 19, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Tie as both are weak.

Posted by: Tom | June 19, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week. The short-term hit he'll take on breaking his financing pledge will be far outweighed by the huge money lead he'll enjoy, and McCain's flip flop on offshore drilling will hurt him in Florida, which until this week he though he had in the bag. Most of all, look for the image of Obama bending over to shovel sand with his sleeves rolled up before the flood was on the radar screen of most of America to linger in the American subconscious.

Posted by: jallenba | June 19, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Obama won the week because not only will he have two or three times as much money as McCain to spend in the general election but he is also addressing his biggest weakness -- all of the misinformation being spread about his beliefs and background -- with a national ad buy.

Well, you SAID it was a good post!

Seriously, Obama won the week for two big reasons - The McCain flip-flop on offshore drilling brought up all the other instances of his reversals, while the polls showing Obama ahead in large swing states (and decidedly ahead in PA) will make the 50-state strategy even more effective. People are moving Kansas (KANSAS?!?!?) from "solid McCain" to "leaning McCain," and that ain't a good week for him.

Posted by: FlownOver | June 19, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Young people won this week. The main reason Obama can afford to opt-out of public financing is the mobilization of small donors, a large proportion of whom are young. As well, Luke Russert's handling of his father's untimely and tragic death showed that the Digital Generation has some great poise and potential.

Posted by: jesyke | June 19, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

McCain - despite the toxic environment for the Republicans, despite the huge draw that Obama is supposed to have, despite Obama's huge spending advantage, despite the vast differences in their oratorical abilities, despite the age difference, despite Obama's grassroots support, McCain is keeping the race close. Each week that McCain keeps himself within striking distance is a win for him.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 19, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

I think the week belonged to Obama - the much anticipated post-Hilliary bounce has taken place in the crucial states of OH, PA and FL. The symbolic Gore endorsement will further cement his stature as the new leader of the democratic party and finally opting out of public financing will give him a good spend advantage in the long run - a smart strategic move. All in all, copious positive press coverage - the free advertisements that politicians yearn for.

Posted by: raph | June 19, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Jesse Ventura won the week by mentioning a possible senate run and immediately polling in the mid 20s. In a year with a weak incumbent and a weak challenger, Minnesota may see more of him for the next 6 years.

Posted by: Jack K | June 19, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

No one won this week. We all lost a little something with Tim Russert's passing.

Posted by: ADS | June 19, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

I'd say Barack Obama was the winner this week. Earlier this week we found out that polls are showing Obama ahead in the key swing states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida. Al Gore endorsed Obama on Monday in Michigan, bubbling up further enthusiasm in that critical state. Michelle also Obama garnered a lot of positive coverage on the View and in US Weekly. There may be some rough winds ahead due to Obama's decision on public financing, but the overall trend this week was a huge gain for Obama.

Posted by: JD | June 19, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Issac-
So you're saying that McCain won the week by releasing an engery policy that will provide an ample target for Obama to attack?

In a way, it reminds me of an argument between a weekly and a daily paper.
Daily: We get it first!
Weekly: We get it right!

Posted by: Mason | June 19, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

winner - Tim Russert
Loser - the rest of the press who fall all over themselves trying to claim how close they were and how spectacular they all are.

Posted by: kingofzouk | June 19, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

McCain won the week because he was able to present his energy package first and attack Obama because he opted out of the public finance system. Obama will win the war because he will have more money then McCain to attack him on such things as his energy policy.

Posted by: Isaac | June 19, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

I would call this week a draw. The candidates sniped at one another, but with litte effect. The polling is a little to muddy or thin to divine any clear trends. BHO will be able to spend a ton of money, but at the possibe loss of some of his "transformational" street cred.

Mostly, however, the race was really overshadowed by Tim Russert's death and flooding in the Midwest.

Posted by: Mason | June 19, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

FIXCAM- every video should start with that declaration.

Posted by: sfcpoll | June 19, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Obama is the winner this week. He ops out of public financing, ensuring a superior $$ position; and campaign reformers, reform minded groups, websites and blogs all APPLAUD it as a grassroots effort and TRUE campaign finance reform for banning lobby and special interest money from his campaign and DNC.

Posted by: chadibuins | June 19, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Hellllo, Michellllle Obama.

The clear winner this week has been Michelle Obama. With her reintroduction through Us Magazine, The View, and her new offense team to go after smears against her and critics she is the clear Winner of the Week.

Posted by: smre88 | June 19, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Too soon to call. But if Obama manages to avoid a lot of political damage for backing out of public financing, then he will be the big, big winner.

Ensuring a four-to-one spending advantage over your opponent usually counts for a good week.

Posted by: copa | June 19, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Good idea...so if I'm the only one to enter...it's an automatic t-shirt?

Posted by: DC in Tennessee | June 19, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

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