McCain To Attend Debate, Resume Campaign

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After a controversial decision to suspend his campaign in favor of placing his focus on the economic crisis, Republican nominee John McCain announced Friday that the campaign is being resumed. The announcement came shortly after it was confirmed that McCain will be attending the first presidential debate scheduled for Friday at 9 pm ET in Oxford, Miss.

He had originally called for the debate to be postponed until an agreement was reached on a financial rescue plan, but rival Barack Obama said the debate should continue as planned. In the statement the Arizona senator announced that the campaign is no longer suspended.

"The McCain campaign is resuming all activities and the Senator will travel to the debate this afternoon," the statement read.

"John McCain's decision to suspend his campaign was made in the hopes that politics could be set aside to address our economic crisis," the Arizona senator said in a statement.

Rather than work together, the statement claims Washington "played the blame game rather than work together to find a solution that would avert a collapse of financial markets without squandering hundreds of billions of taxpayers' money to bailout bankers and brokers who bet their fortunes on unsafe lending practices," the statement reads.

McCain announced Wednesday that he was suspending his campaign and looking to postpone the debates. Senate Majority leader Harry Reid (D-NV) slammed McCain for wanting to suspend the debates.

"We need leadership; not a campaign photo op," Reid said in a statement. "If there were ever a time for both candidates to hold a debate before the American people about this serious challenge, it is now."

However, McCain has been touting his reputation as the "original maverick," reaching across party lines to work towards an agreement.

"Both parties in both houses of Congress and the administration needed to come together to find a solution that would deserve the trust of the American people," the statement read. "And while there were attempts to do that, much of yesterday was spent fighting over who would get the credit for a deal and who would get the blame for failure."

The Arizona senator has been criticized along with other GOP leaders for eschewing what was supposed to be a finalized deal yesterday. Work on a rescue plan for the U.S. financial sector stalled in Washington late Thursday, despite ongoing calls for urgent action.

The delays emerged as conservative Republicans from the House of Representatives balked at the $700 billion bailout plan, which was proposed by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke.

The alternative plan was pushed by conservative House Republicans, who have said the Paulson/Bernanke plan would cost taxpayers too much, while McCain's campaign staff later issued a statement expressing dissatisfaction with the original proposal.

"The plan that has been put forth by the administration does not enjoy the confidence of the American people as it will not protect the taxpayers and will sacrifice Main Street in favor of Wall Street," the statement said.

McCain said he knew going into the White House meeting called by President George W Bush that there was no deal.

Obama said leaders in Congress had appeared to be closing in on agreement before he and McCain arrived to take part in the White House talks.

"Something happened in the intervening hours," he said.

In his statement Friday, McCain's campaign claimed that there was "no deal or offer yesterday that had a majority of support in Congress….no deal yesterday that included adequate protections for the taxpayers."

McCain's campaign was harshly critical of Obama, claiming that Obama's priority Thursday was "political posturing in his opening monologue defending the package as it stands."

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