Obama mocks McCain's call to fire SEC chair

Image: Barack Obama greets supporters at the end of a rally at Plaza de Espanola
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama greets supporters at the end of a rally in Espanola, New Mexico, on Thursday.Emmanuel Dunand / AFP - Getty Images
/ Source: The Associated Press

Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama promised new ideas Thursday to calm America's financial meltdown and help struggling families avoid mortgage foreclosure, saying "this is not a time for fear and it's not a time for panic."

Obama heaped criticism and sarcasm on John McCain, his Republican rival, and mocked his call to fire the head of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

"I think that's all fine and good but here's what I think," Obama said. "In the next 47 days you can fire the whole trickle-down, on-your-own, look-the-other way crowd in Washington who has led us down this disastrous path. Don't just get rid of one guy. Get rid of this administration. Get rid of this philosophy. Get rid of the do-nothing approach to our economic problem and put somebody in there who's going to fight for you."

He said McCain was so out of touch that the White House had to distance itself from his statement Monday that the fundamentals of the economy were sound. President Bush has used that same language but his press secretary would not repeat the line Wednesday in the face of historic financial turbulence.