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The presidential campaigns of Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Barack Obama (D-Ill.) on Wednesday each continued to try to seize the economic crisis issue for themselves, releasing competing ads and dueling statements designed to showcase their candidates as best suited to handle the staggering economy.

Both of the new ads show the candidates speaking into a camera, “addressing the nation” directly. Obama’s piece features an extended commentary in which the candidate lays out several initiatives and does not mention McCain, portraying Obama as rising above “petty attacks.” McCain’s spot includes grainy shots of Wall Street, where “greed” has put U.S. workers at risk. “My opponent’s only solutions are talk and taxes,” McCain says. “I’ll reform Wall Street and fix Washington. I’ve taken on tougher guys than this before.”

A group called “Economists for McCain” released a statement saying its membership had grown to 450, including five Nobel Laureates. The Obama campaign offered a statement deriding McCain’s call for a commission to address the financial meltdown.

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