10/16/2008 05:12 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Obama Asks Whether McCain Puts "Country First"

Last Friday morning, my nationally syndicated newspaper column asked whether, in fact, Republicans really do put "country first?" On the afternoon of the same day, Barack Obama asked the same question.

Here's a snippet of my column (the video commentary version for Grit TV is above):

In 2004, the Republican White House called outsourcing "a plus." In 2006, the Republican commander-in-chief okayed the sale of critical infrastructure to foreign dictators. And today the Republican presidential nominee is demanding more NAFTA-style trade pacts that eliminate American jobs. This, says the GOP, is putting our country first.

Here's Obama in a speech in the afternoon of the same day:

Obama Implies McCain Puts Other Countries First

ABC News, September 12, 2008 4:05 PM

A pretty scathing charge from Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., this morning as he spoke to the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers and assailed Sen. John McCain's, R-Ariz., position on free trade.

"Just ask the machinists in Pennsylvania who build Harley-Davidsons," Obama said of McCain's record. "Because John McCain didn't just oppose the requirement that the government buy American-made motorcycles, he called Buy American provisions 'disgraceful.' Just ask the workers across this country who have seen their jobs outsourced. The very companies that shipped their jobs overseas have been rewarded with billions of dollars in tax breaks that John McCain supports and plans to continue.

"So, when American workers hear John McCain talking about putting 'Country First,'" Obama said, "it's fair to ask -- which country?"

Let's be clear: I'm not saying my column in any way influenced Obama's speech. What I'm saying is that this line of questioning may be exactly what starts resonating and starts being echoed by the entire Democratic/progressive machine.

I say keep it up, Barack. It's a good question to ask.