Wall Street’s troubles pose a challenge for both candidates, though because his party hasn’t held the White House for nearly 8 years, Barack Obama has a slight leg up, writes Gerald Seib in the Wall Street Journal. Neither ticket has a strong market background, with John McCain more a “national-security and character candidate” and Obama lacking the experience to be a definite source of reassurance.
The candidates can spin the problem to fit their messages. McCain will cast himself as a “different kind of Republican,” and has already run an ad pushing tougher regulation. The Democrats can more easily take the offensive route, painting the issue as a “compelling argument” for Bush economic failures. For Obama, “Wall Street just provided a ripe opportunity” to appeal for change.