DCCC Chairman Rahm Emanuel was scheduled to debate RCCC Chairman Thomas Reynolds on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos. Entangled in the Foley page scandal himself, Reynolds ducked the debate, sending Rep. Adam Putnam in his stead.
Emanuel gives a nearly perfect performance. He easily dispels Putnam's attempts to blames the Democrats for the scandal. In the end, Putnam's attacks appear desperate and hollow.
EMANUEL: George, look, I agree with Adam. And I was at my kid's soccer game. I was out swimming. They're talking about this issue, Mark Foley, and they're talking about Iraq.Go to C&L for the full transcript & video downloads.
And you guys came to power in 1994. You said you were going to change Washington. Washington changed you. You promised a balanced budget. You've added $3 trillion to the nation's debt. You promised to make America more secure. We've got ourselves in a quagmire in Iraq.
You promised to clean up this swamp, and you've created a deeper set of swamps around here. At every point that you promised to do something in 1994 with your Contract with America, you're in a breach of contract. And the fact is that this election, the American people know full well, Adam, that they do not want to stay on the course that you've set for this country. They want a new direction. They want a change.
And that's what this election is about: a change from the endless occupation in Iraq to a change from this wageless recovery, and most importantly, they also want…
PUTNAM: Let's talk about what that change would mean.
EMANUEL: … they want a different Congress using a different tone.
PUTNAM: Let's talk about what this change in (inaudible)…
STEPHANOPOULOS: Go ahead.
PUTNAM: Let's talk about what that change would mean. That change would mean a Speaker Pelosi, whose idea about values is to after the Boy Scouts and prevent them from camping on federal lands. The idea of change would be a Chairman Rangel, who said he would strangle off funds to fight the war for our troops. The change would be a Chairman Barney Frank in charge of the Banking Committee who's had his own scandals in the past, for which he is still a serving member.
EMANUEL: A change…
PUTNAM: A change would mean that the chairman of the Judiciary Committee whose first act, as he has said, would be an impeachment resolution against the president of the United States. All of those things are what change in this country would mean.
EMANUEL: Six years…
PUTNAM: Elections are about choices, and choices have consequences. And those are the consequences of this election.
EMANUEL: It's amazing. Six years of a Republican majority in the White House, the House and the Senate, and all you've got is fear.