April 18th, 2008
04:20 PM ET
10 years ago

McCain camp calls Obama 'recklessly dishonest'

Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama.

Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama.

(CNN) - John McCain's campaign is crying foul over what it characterizes as repeated distortions from Barack Obama, saying on Friday the Illinois senator is "recklessly dishonest."

The most recent dustup comes after Obama criticized McCain earlier Friday for comments the Arizona senator made in an interview on Bloomberg Television.

"John McCain went on television and said that there has been quote "great progress economically over the last seven and a half years," Obama told a Pennsylvania crowd. "John McCain thinks our economy has made great progress under George W. Bush. Now, how could somebody who has been traveling across this country, somebody who came to Erie, PA, say we've made great progress?”

The McCain campaign immediately took issue with the comment, noting the Arizona senator also said he knows families are facing "tremendous economic challenges."

“American families are hurting and Barack Obama is being recklessly dishonest," McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds said. "It is clear that Barack Obama is intentionally twisting John McCain’s words completely out of context. Obama is guilty of deliberately distorting John McCain’s comments for pure political gain, which is exactly what Senator Obama was complaining about just yesterday."

The McCain campaign has long argued Obama has a habit of twisting the presumptive Republican nominee's words. Referencing McCain's comments earlier this year when he said he'd be okay with some troop presence in Iraq for 100 years, Obama has said the Arizona senator "wants to continue a war in Iraq perhaps as long as 100 years."

The non-partisan factcheck.org later called that characterization a "rank falsehood."

Obama has since dialed back from that characterization, saying Friday that McCain is "willing to potentially maintain the troop presence there for as long as 100 years."

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (479 Responses)
  1. Frosty

    Well John McCain did say it. It's not just some families facing economic challenges...it's MANY Americans except those with beer companies. I am not sure I'll be comfortable with a president who thinks this current economic dissolution is an advancement.

    You went to Europe recently, the dollar ain't great there, is it Bush III?

    April 18, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  2. rumpusgoopus

    Yes! How dare Obama... how dare he... what did he do wrong here? McCain is sounding like Hillary.

    April 18, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  3. Jesse, Burnsville, MN

    Hey McCain team,

    If you want Obama to stop calling out stupid comments by McCain, maybe you should get your candidate to stop saying stupid things!

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  4. Praetorian, Fort Myers

    Great comeback John.
    Look at all of our 401 K's and real job growth–compared to the rest of the world.

    However...government decisions to spur biofuels and divert resources from food production–partnered with the burst of the housing bubble (that everyone predicted would come this year or next) are the biggest problems feeding our economic fears.

    Jobless claims also–do not truly reflect the seriousness of our current recession. Remember–millions of jobs that people don't have now–are part time or seasonal and not eligible for unemployment benefits.

    Both Clinton and Obama–are focusing on everything WRONG and BAD–to create fear and gain public acceptance "Nanny state" ideology as an alternative to the bleak picture they paint of capitalistic ideology.

    I don't think our founding fathers, nor the framers of our consititution would have agreed with the unAmerican values of Karl Marx.

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  5. cat n kansas

    OH......Quit Whining !!!! Wahhhhhh !!!

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  6. MM

    well did McCain say what Obama said he did? You never really tell us that in the article. You said that McCain "also said".......but didn't give us the whole quote of what McCain said. Again, the media gives us soundbites and not the whole story.

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  7. MD

    Here's another child running for presidency.

    McCain is the mouth of 100 factions. Every time this man says something, it gives Democrats ammunition to attack him.

    McCain cannot say we have had economic progress in the last 71/2 years, and then say he knows people are suffering. He is delusional.

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  8. Maria

    What does 7 years of great progress mean under the Bush Administration? Economic progress?, The only people doing well are the rich folks. The CEO's,and big corporate companies that Mc Cain supports. There is no twisting of words here. It is pretty clear. I are onto Republican's.

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  9. Uncle Sam

    Sen. John McCain has a point about the economy despite the recent downturn. Where were the critics of President Bush when the economy was doing well for the previous five years? Why no mention of the millions of jobs created and the sustained low unemployment rate? When do we get to see in the media the progress being made on the ground in Iraq, such as the infrastructure, schools, businesses, etc.? And how is it that we have not been attacked since 9/11? While it is easy to demonize someone, including the president, it says more about us than him.

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  10. After further review,Texas

    Please dont get your diaper in a bunch John.

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  11. Doc

    Comedy! Like a republican is the one to cry foul ball. Hey Mc Cain it's not like you are busy campaigning, just get up there and explain yourself. But giving you claim that you are not strong on economics I mean its not out of order for people to think when you say the economy is not hurting that you are completely out of touch with the everyday people. By far in comparison with the other running mates you have been living well for a long time. Come to think of it why are you running for president at the age of 71 or so, knowing you should be more of a person on the board than at the helm (president) of the corporation. I mean when the society talks of candidates just wanting to run out of popularity or for power i'm sure you are definitely the one who fits it better than them all. Let it go my friend

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  12. Ian

    Am I bad for wishing that one of these candidates gets up on a podium and just starts cussing and hollering and throwing up heir middle finger at the other candidate while grabbing their crotch and making vulgar gestures? For some reason I would just love to see that at this point in this thing...

    April 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  13. Patricia P. in Austin, TX

    McCain, who has 8 houses and is married to the heiress to a beer fortune, can't possibly understand that America has not seen "great economic progress."

    April 18, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  14. Stephanopoluos NOT

    For the record, George Stephanopoluos did a horrible job, and Charlie wasn't far behind him. I think the too of them should never do another debate unless they promise to be grown-ups. George should have recused himself since he worked in the Clinton administration.

    America is furious, and Hillary, Obama is not whining, and he certainly will never cry the way you did in NH. But his supporters are stating the obvious, which is you had help the other night. Having to debate three people, I'd say Obama did a fabulous job.

    April 18, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  15. Ron


    April 18, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  16. Grif

    Obama thinks's, he's the "Black" "Robin Hood" But King John will always send him back to the Forrest in Tatter's....

    April 18, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  17. maria antbing

    Look at foxnews when Obama "makes the finger " at Hillary! If you elect Obama I will never visit USA again

    April 18, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  18. donnajane

    Between his politics and his personality he doesn't stand a chance against Barack Obama...if he is the best the repugs can do they are more desperate than i previously thought.

    April 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  19. Eileen from Portland, Maine

    I thought McCain was some sort of war hero. Why is he such a big crybaby all the time?

    April 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  20. NC

    Mccain is a reckless warmonger!

    April 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  21. Ross in MD

    So Obama gave a direct quote of McCain's. That is not being disputed. Nothing dishonest about it.

    It is McCain's decision to promote the Bush administration. Live with it.

    April 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  22. David

    So when McCain says "Obama is going to raise your taxes," is that recklessly dishonest? Off course it is. Obama has said he will not raise the tax on anyone making below $200,000. Yet, the media won't follow up on that.

    April 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  23. T

    yeah sure, here is a guy who accepts the endorsement of Pastor Hagee and his false ministry.
    Who is being dishonest here ?

    April 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  24. Here we GOO

    GRREAT! Here we go again. Can we all just focus on the fact that McCain (McBush Jr.) was in deep denial about the economy and the current recession. When we start with name calling we get nowhere! Remember Mr McCain how much you didn't like the war mongering label???

    So back off the smack talk and focus on the issues.

    April 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  25. Mark M Kansas City

    WOW! The folks who have subverted the truth for years are claiming someone from the democratic party has been "recklessly dishonest". Are you kidding me?

    How long until the Republicans start there smear campaign? O can answer that, as soon as Obama or Clintion gets the nod.

    I am an Independent, but man the Republicans and W have left a real sour feeling in my stomach. I don't even want to hear what they have to say for the next couple of decades. How W was able to trick the good people of the U.S. not once, but twice will never cease to amaze me.

    Go take a nap, Mcshame.


    April 18, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
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