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12:40 PM ET, September 18, 2008

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 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
McCain Slights Spanish Prime Minister  —  The Union Radio interview with John McCain on issues of interest to Hispanics was conducted in English and only later translated into Spanish for listeners.  The audio above is of the English-only interview.  —  By Glenn Kessler and Ed O'Keefe
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Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
EMBARRASSING  —  Well, we've heard the interview now.  And John McCain either doesn't know who the Prime Minister of Spain is, thinks Spain is a country in Latin America, or possibly both.  —  In case, you haven't seen our updates from last night, yesterday John McCain was interviewed …
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
OY  —  Well, it doesn't appear to have registered in the American press yet.  But the story keeps bubbling in the Spanish press about McCain's bizarre gaffe about the Spanish Prime Minister.  Here's the front page cut out from the Spanish news channel that did the interview.  They've talked to the interviewer now.
David Kurtz / Talking Points Memo:
EL CID — IN ENGLISH  —  The original untranslated English version of John McCain's interview with Radio Caracol Miami has now been released.  —  Have a listen (the key passage about Spain starts at 2:58 in):  —  At first it sounds like McCain is taking a hard neocon line against Prime Minister Zapatero …
Discussion: Wonkette
Lisa Abend / Time:
The Pain in Spain Falls Mainly on McCain  —  Sen. John McCain pauses as he speaks to supporters at the Winner Aviation hangar at the Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport  —  You gotta feel for José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero.  Here the Spanish prime minister is only four months …
Tim Fernholz / American Prospect:   VIVA (PRIME MINISTER) ZAPATERO!
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:   Sheunemann: McCain Just Doesn't Want to Meet With Spain's PM
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
MCCAIN'S PAIN IN SPAIN.... Following up on an earlier item …
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:   RANDY GIVES IT HIS BEST SHOT
Douglass K. Daniel / Associated Press:
Biden: Paying higher taxes patriotic for wealthy  —  WASHINGTON - Democratic vice presidential candidate Joe Biden said Thursday that paying more in taxes is the patriotic thing to do for wealthier Americans.  In a new TV ad that repeats widely debunked claims about the Democratic tax plan …
RELATED:
Joseph Morton / Omaha World-Herald:
Sen. Hagel doubts Palin's ready  —  WASHINGTON — Sen. Chuck Hagel of Nebraska on Wednesday became the nation's most prominent Republican officeholder to publicly question whether Sarah Palin has the experience to serve as president.  —  “She doesn't have any foreign policy credentials,” Hagel said in an interview.
Domenico Montanaro / MSNBC:
FIRST THOUGHTS: BACK TO AUGUST?  —  From Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, Domenico Montanaro, and Carrie Dann  —  *** We're back to August?  This presidential contest has certainly been a roller-coaster ride.  And as we suggested yesterday, something in the race turned this week.
RELATED:
Kathleen Hennessey / Associated Press:
Obama mocks McCain in Nevada stops  —  Barack Obama sharpened his attacks on John McCain and mocked the Republican's recent calls for reform in two stops in Nevada on Wednesday after days of listening to nervous supporters fret about the Democrat's chances of taking the White House.
Michael Cooper / The Caucus:
Palin Unscripted  —  Gov. Sarah Palin and Senator John McCain held a town-hall-style meeting Wednesday in Grand Rapids, Mich. (Photo: Todd Heisler/The New York Times)  —  GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - As she took questions from voters for the first time since she was tapped as Senator John McCain's running mate …
Discussion: New York Times and Runnin' Scared
RELATED:
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:   A PACKED HOUSE.... A few months ago, John McCain described …
FOX Embeds:
McPalin town hall was pre-ticketed
Discussion: Crooks and Liars
Michelle Malkin:
The story behind the Palin e-mail hacking  —  This afternoon, I mentioned an infamous group of hackers whose Internet bulletin board was the gathering place for those who bragged about and publicized the Sarah Palin private e-mail hacking.  —  A tech-savvy reader who monitors …
RELATED:
Karl Rove / Wall Street Journal:
Obama Needs to Sell Himself, Not Attack McCain  —  Be careful not to assign too much scientific precision to polls.  They aren't as accurate as portrayed.  But several different surveys at roughly the same time that show similar results are useful guides.  So three trends in recent polls must worry …
Discussion: Oliver Willis
RELATED:
Jennifer Rubin / Commentary:   Role Reversal  —  Karl Rove thinks it is a mistake for Barack Obama …
Wall Street Journal:
Will McCain Waste Palin?  —  The media is turning the news into a presidential video game.  “Hurricane Ike” or “Wall Street Meltdown” appears onscreen, and the media boots up Barack Obama and John McCain to see how well they talk the problem.  Mostly they are speaking gobbledygook about things they barely understand.
Nicole Belle / Crooks and Liars:
ABC Calls Out McCain On His Financial Flip Flops  —  Dude, you're losing ABC...that's like FOX-lite.  That's not going to keep the base motivated.  —  When even McCain's Media points out that the Straight Talk Express has derailed, you know you have some problems.  —  Transcripts below the fold
Discussion: Newshoggers.com
RELATED:
Gail Collins / New York Times:
The McCain of the Week  —  “The people of Ohio are the most productive …
Discussion: CNN
Wall Street Journal:
Worst Crisis Since '30s, With No End Yet in Sight  —  The financial crisis that began 13 months ago has entered a new, far more serious phase.  —  Lingering hopes that the damage could be contained to a handful of financial institutions that made bad bets on mortgages have evaporated.
Kristin Jensen / Bloomberg:
Democratic Congress May Adjourn, Leave Crisis to Fed, Treasury  —  Sept. 18 (Bloomberg) — The Democratic-controlled Congress, acknowledging that it isn't equipped to lead the way to a solution for the financial crisis and can't agree on a path to follow, is likely to just get out of the way.
USA Today:
Our view on bipartisanship: Who's the better uniter?  —  McCain has a longer record of bucking his party's orthodoxy.  —  Presidents who try to push through major policy changes without the opposing party almost always come to grief.  George W. Bush's bid to create private accounts …
Discussion: Commentary, Hot Air and Sister Toldjah
Jim Treacher / Mother, May I Sleep with Treacher?:
THEY HOPE PEOPLE DON'T NOTICE HOW THEY'VE CHANGED THE GROUND RULES  —  In today's Chicago Tribune, the Obama camp responds to nitpicky concerns about their attempts to shut down radio shows that might say things they don't like, via their “Obama Action Wires”:
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
DREW JOINS THE ENOUGH CLUB.... It seemed unlikely that Elizabeth Drew, an accomplished journalist and author, would join the ever-growing “Enough” Club.  She did, after all, write a glowing book about John McCain as recently as 2002, praising him as a principled, honorable man of conscience.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Rachel Lucas:
You're decent, but just confused and stupid.
Discussion: Chicago Boyz
George F. Will / Washington Post:
McCain's Closing Argument
The Politico:
Campaign-trail reporters sidelined
Discussion: FishBowlDC and Wonkette
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
OBAMA TAKES ON MCCAIN ON CHOICE.... For reasons that defy reason …
Discussion: Associated Press
Barry Ritholtz / The Big Picture:
How SEC Regulatory Exemptions Helped Lead to Collapse
 Earlier Items: 
City Journal:
The Trillion-Dollar Bank Shakedown That Bodes Ill for Cities
Discussion: The Other McCain
Daphne Retter / New York Post:
BIG WHEEL BENZ THE RULES
Discussion: JammieWearingFool
John Podhoretz / Commentary:
Shock Poll: Jews Now Favor McCain in New York, 54-32
Andrew Malcolm / Top of the Ticket:
With little notice, Sarah Palin becomes a GOP fundraising machine
Discussion: Political Machine