Which Candidate Will Leave Gamers Be?
08 Sep 2008 21:15
David MarseillesDavid Marseilles

Which Candidate Will Leave Gamers Be?


Excepts from edge-online

If Hillary Clinton had won the Democratic nomination, the question of whom the avid gamer should vote for in the next presidential election would have been easy: anyone but Hillary Clinton. Her Senate history was scattered with failed attempts to regulate games and frequent calls to investigate industry bodies, leaving no question that a new Clinton White House would challenge the industry status quo.

But she didn't win. So who is more hands-off in the race now? Obama or McCain? Hit the break to see excerpts of Edge-online's assessments of candidate's records, but the summary is as follows.

Obama sees a need for regulation but believes the industry should regulate itself. That sounds okay, but he promises that if they fail to self-regulate, his administration would do it for them. This is precisely the kind of rhetoric Hillary Clinton (along with McCain's friend Joe Lieberman) was using while her record was becoming littered with all those regulation attempts.

McCain, in yet another stance he doesn't share with his supporter Joe Lieberman, says game regulation should be up to parents, not government.

More Excepts from edge-online

Of all the politicians involved in the presidential race, Obama has spoken the most frequently about videogames. He has publicly expressed his love for Pong, though he also admitted that Pong was the last videogame he has actually played. Still, a politician willing to admit to playing any sort of game is rare.

But then Obama has always been quick to show that he doesn’t hold the medium in the highest respect. He frequently references videogames as shorthand for youth inactivity and apathy, the most famous example of this being from a speech he gave in Austin in February 2007. There, he implored young people to “turn off the TV and stop playing GameBoy” because “we’ve got work to do.”

Obama does actually have an official stance on federal videogame regulation. Speaking to Common Sense Media in late 2007, he expressed his belief that the industry has the opportunity to regulate itself via better informational campaigns and tools for parents. If the industry does not take the chance to improve this system, however, he said his administration would indeed step in. In the same interview, the Senator stated that he would back a federal study examining videogame’s effect on childhood cognitive development.


Biden does not have a significant history with videogame-related issues, but he is notorious for being anti-consumer on issues of technology. He has historically been vague on net neutrality, and fought vigorously for the intellectual property concerns of the RIAA and the MPAA.


In this report, McCain is paraphrased as saying that parents [not government] should be responsible for choosing what games their kids can play, and that this should be done on a case-by-case basis.

The McCain campaign has also toyed with the idea of using games to market its candidate. Earlier this year, the group released the Facebook-based browser game Pork Invaders, a Space Invaders clone, to introduce young voters to McCain’s desire to cut government overspending.


Photographic evidence of Palin’s flight sim experience aside, comparatively little is known about the governor on any political issue, let alone one as fringe at the moment as videogames.

kotaku on Obama's videogame quotes

I'm fairly certain my prime minister doesn't know what a video game is, so for now, Canada is safe. But it's scary when a potential leader of a country so passively attributes video games with failure. It sounds like yet another instance of a politician not fully understanding what he's talking about, and jumping on the bandwagon, proliferating the popular sentiment that "video games are evil."

For the record, John McCain makes campaign ads with Medal of Honor (European Assault) music in the background (against the wishes of the Obama-supporting composer). We're hunting down the footage (it's broken at all sources we can find), and we'll post it here when we find it.


There are some quotes on VP picks as well after the break, and we're looking for the video of McCain using Medal of Honor: European Assault music against the composer's wishes.

edge-online.com Via gamepolitics.com | Permalink

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