MORNING READ

Barack Obama, John McCain and Republicans left much to desire in their attempts to honor the troops on Memorial Day, according to their online critics. Bloggers also provide more suggestions on how the two presidential candidates pick running mates.

On a day reserved for honoring fallen Americans, Obama should have followed President Bush in giving a non-partisan speech and not talk about partisan issues at a town hall meeting, writes Power Line's John Hinderaker. Obama showed his inexperience by resorting to the "stock responses" of the left in his arguments against Republicans about gas prices, troop benefits and taxes, according to Townhall's Hugh Hewitt. And while Bush's critics have long harped on the president's speech patterns as evidence of past drug use and a lack of intelligence, they've yet to come up with excuses for Obama, who lauded "fallen heroes" and then tried to point them out in the crowd Monday, RedState's Moe Lane writes.

Republicans are the ones who lack respect for troops, according to liberal bloggers. McCain would do more to help them by getting behind Sen. Jim Webb's (D-Va.) GI Bill, which the Republican wrongly thinks would lower troop levels, according to MyDD's Jonathan Singer. Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) was "disrespectful" by suggesting that there would be a "mass exodus" from the military if they got the education benefits Webb is calling for, Daily Kos's Brandon Friedman writes.

Both sides give more veep advice to Obama and McCain. Obama should turn to younger, "promising prospects" in the Democratic Party, instead of to Hillary Clinton, since his pick will help shape the party for next two decades, The Plank's Josh Patashnik writes. McCain should consider Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) since she could help him among women voters and a wide swath of the electorate with her "sensible" positions on energy and the environment, Michael Goldfarb writes at the Weekly Standard's blog.

And there's more evidence that Congressional Republicans face a tough road to hoe this fall. The fact that Sen. Roger Wicker (R) is running a television ad five months before the election in his ruby red state of Mississippi suggests that Republicans must defend seats across the map this year, according to TPM Election Central's Eric Kleefeld.

FROM THE BLOGS:
Obama/Bush On Mem. Day: A Contrast - J. Hinderaker, Power Line
The Obama Melt - Hugh Hewitt, Townhall.com
Excuses For Obama's Speech Patterns - Moe Lane, RedState
Al Qaeda's Unraveling - Moe Lane, RedState
McCain's Distortions On Webb GI Bill - Jonathan Singer, MyDD
Stevens, VA Sec Disrespect Troops - Brandon Friedman, Daily Kos
McCain's Record on Repro. Rights - A. Huffington, HuffPo
Waiting For The Obama Bump - Michael Goldfarb, Weekly Standard
McCain-Palin? - Michael Goldfarb, Weekly Standard
How VP Debate Misses Mark - Josh Patashnik, The Plank
Bill Clinton's Disrespect - MissLaura, Daily Kos
Bum Rap Against John Hagee - Scott Johnson, Power Line
Two Probes Into Pentagon's PR Program - David Kurtz, TPMMuck
GOP Senate Seat At Risk In Miss.? - Eric Kleefeld, TPM Election
In Defense Of Lobbyists - Amanda Carpenter, Townhall.com

OTHER NEWS SOURCES:
Obama And McCain Are Dueling Out West - Los Angeles Times
No Clear Map For Clinton's Political Future - Washington Post
Atomic Monitor Signals Concern Over Iran's Work - New York Times
Bush Straddles Hard Line In Engaging Sudan - Washington Post

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