GRAMM STEPS DOWN

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The former Senator and McCain economic adviser resigns as co-chair of the campaign.

Says in statement: “It is clear to me that Democrats want to attack me rather than debate Senator McCain on important economic issues facing the country…” Says he wants to “end the distraction and get on with the real debate.”

Comes after Gramm told the Washington Times the country was in a “mental recession” and Americans are a “nation of whiners.”

Obama camp responds: Says the question for McCain is “whether he will continue to keep the economic plan that Gramm authored…”

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