Republican presidential candidate John McCain on Sunday called Democratic rival Barack Obama insensitive to poor people and out of touch on economic issues.
The GOP nominee-in-waiting rapped his Democratic rival for opposing his idea to suspend the tax on fuel during the summer, a proposal that McCain believes will particularly help low-income people who usually have older cars that guzzle more gas.
"I noticed again today that Sen. Obama repeated his opposition to giving low-income Americans a tax break, a little bit of relief so they can travel a little further and a little longer, and maybe have a little bit of money left over to enjoy some other things in their lives," McCain said. "Obviously Sen. Obama does not understand that this would be a nice thing for Americans, and the special interests should not be dictating this policy."
The Arizona senator deflected questions about his record on the Bush administration's tax cuts — he initially opposed them but now supports extending them — by again criticizing Obama.
"Sen. Obama wants to raise the capital gains tax, which would have a direct effect on 100 million Americans," McCain said. "That means he has no understanding of the economy and that he is totally insensitive to the hopes and dreams and ambitions of 100 million Americans who will be affected by his almost doubling of the capital gains tax."
In an interview with "Fox News Sunday," Obama said McCain "not only wants to continue some of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans and corporations, he actually wants to extend them, and he hasn't told us really how he's going to pay for them. It is irresponsible. And the irony is he said it was irresponsible."
Obama also said he would not raise the capital gains tax higher than it was under President Reagan and added, "I'm mindful that we've got to keep our capital gains tax to a point where we can actually get more revenue."