April 25th, 2008
12:30 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain: 'It's very clear who Hamas wants' in the White House

McCain said Friday Hamas wants Obama to be elected president.
McCain said Friday Hamas wants Obama to be elected president.

(CNN) - John McCain said Friday that “it’s clear who Hamas wants to be the next president of the United States” - the second time in as many weeks that his campaign has referenced positive remarks by Ahmed Yousef, a member of that group, about Barack Obama.

On Friday, the presumptive Republican nominee was asked about the Hamas leader’s comments on a campaign conference call with bloggers.

“…I think it's very clear who Hamas wants to be the next president of the United States,” said McCain. “So apparently has [Sandinista leader] Danny Ortega and several others. I think that people should understand that I will be Hamas's worst nightmare...If Senator Obama is favored by Hamas I think people can make judgments accordingly.”

A week ago, the Arizona senator’s campaign sent supporters a fundraising e-mail that said Hamas approved of Obama’s foreign policy vision, and is hoping for his victory this fall.

The Obama campaign condemned the remark. "We want to take Senator McCain at his word that he wants to run a respectful campaign, but that is becoming increasingly difficult when he continually tries to use the politics of association and makes claims he knows not to be true to advance his campaign," said Obama campaign spokesman, Hari Sevugan.

"This type of politics of division and distraction, not only lead to a campaign not worthy of the American people, but also has failed to help our families for too long."

McCain adviser Steve Schmidt told CNN's Dana Bash that the Hamas view was "a fair issue for the American people to ponder should he be the Democratic nominee for president."

“Hamas has said they want Barack Obama to win. The reason for that is his policy. He wants to negotiate with the terrorist-funding, nuclear-aspiring, holocaust-denying, Israel-threatening dictator of Iran.

“This election is being watched all around the world. The Hamas spokesman made his comments because of his [Obama’s] policy pronouncements.”

McCain himself told reporters Friday afternoon that the Hamas nod was "just a fact."

Hamas, apparently their North American spokesperson is endorsing Senator Obama. People can make their own judgment from that. I don't view that as anything but a statement of fact. If that.... is wrong, that the North American spokesman of Hamas has not endorsed Senator Obama, I'd be happy to retract my statement, and I hope there'll be corrections in the media that state otherwise."

(UPDATED with campaign, McCain response)


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (295 Responses)
  1. Michael

    Ah yes the politics of fear!!! Oh how fun it would be to have a return to McCarthyism; have we found the new replacement for "pinko"

    April 25, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  2. Seth (FL)

    Does anyone ever stop to think about why so many people around the world hate America?

    They don't hate us for our freedoms. They hate us because we are arrogant, condescending bullies who shoot first and ask questions later. As a whole, our nation has a huge PR crisis to clean up, and McCain is not going to get it done.

    We wouldn't have so many diplomatic problems if other nations respected us, and you don't get respected just because you are powerful – you must earn respect. Bush and McCain don't believe this, and Obama does.

    Obama 2008

    April 25, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  3. yem

    Mr McCain, in your resume what we know is that you are a war hero.Are you that scared of Obama? Please remain respected. Stay away from gossipy comments.

    April 25, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  4. Krista

    Ok, this fear mongering thing is really getting old. It's hard to believe that there are people in this country that still fall for this Republican crap. The terrorists want us to fear them, that's how they win. Wake up people, OBAMA '08!

    April 25, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  5. Ratgurl

    What McCain FAILS to mention is that these are not the only groups who want Obama in…. the whole REST OF THE WORLD wants Obama as our POTUS!!! The peolple in this world that are responsible for governmental issues, policy making, & descisions want someone they can talk to, not someone who's gonna yell "(expletive deleted)YOU" at them if he doesn't like what they hear!!!

    Please post my comment CNN.

    April 25, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  6. Obama? No!

    I totally agree What McCain said!

    Go Hillary Or Mccain!

    April 25, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  7. White male for Obama

    and who want you in?

    April 25, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  8. Rich

    "It's not just Hamas…It's pretty darn clear who the entire WORLD would rather have as president, and it's definitely NOT John McCain."

    Excellent point, Dave. And I hope that more people point this out. Clinton and McCain have made it clear how they'd like to deal with Iran. It is going to be so depressing if they are our two choices come November. Their arrogance is incredible, "We don't like Iran so we're just not going to talk to them." How childlike. Worse, they're alternative is bully-like: "obliterate" or "bomb bomb bomb." How can we be so hypocritical as to vilify other nations for making nuclear weapons when we have by far the hugest stock pile of them in the world.

    April 25, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  9. Smiley from Conyers, GA

    honkey white guy from Cali – I agree with you 100%

    April 25, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  10. steph

    Peace may come after all if Obama is President. This is not a bad thing for Obama. He was the only one who is willing to talk to those who are our enemies. McCain is constantly throwing this up as if he's harming Obama. When it seems to be helping him to be able to talk peace talks with the other nation when he becomes President of the U.S.

    April 25, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  11. Tejano

    This is not fear mongering you liberal/socialist idiots. This is the plain truth. The despots all over the world will rejoice if Obama is our President. He will be another Clinton or maybe even worse a Jimmy Carter with no clue as to how to deal with these enemies of the United States and the free world.

    We are at war and the enemy is already within our gates. This war is for the minds of men and seeks the destruction of Western Civilization all in the name of Justice. The justice they speak off is death to the White man.

    Face it folks we are the new Jerusalem the Bible speaks off. Therefore we are the enemy of the destroyers of civilization.

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  12. Stephen Crowley

    So if a Hamas member said that they enjoy drinking water and breathing air, should we stop stop drinking and breathing and all over and die? Nice logic, McCain, you small minded man.

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  13. Michael

    Thank you McCain, it's attacks like this that will re-solidify the Democratic base, regardless of who our nominee is we'll realize that our choice is you....or much better than you!

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  14. Ratgurl

    What McCain FAILS to mention is that these are not the only groups who want Obama in…. the whole REST OF THE WORLD wants Obama as our POTUS!!! The people in this world that are responsible for governmental issues, policy making, & descisions want someone they can talk to, not someone who's gonna yell "(expletive deleted)YOU" at them if he doesn't like what he hears!!!

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  15. Senior Gal

    Maybe other countries and people around the world would like to see a 'change' in America's politics, too. Barack Obama represents all that is the very best in us. Shame on McCain for his 'political' comments.

    When are our leaders going to start caring more for the people of this country then their own ambitions?

    Wake up voters. If you really want change, Barack Obama is the only person running that gives us any hope for that change.

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  16. we ARE bitter!!!!!

    It's not about who Hamas wants. The entire world wants us to have a leader who is tolerant of others and their beliefs. A leader who is willing to COMMUNICATE, not start wars all the time.

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  17. Debby

    McCain is only speaking what Hamas said in an interview above which was all over the media last week. Hamas is the one who is the fear monger.

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  18. John

    So John McCain thinks we ought to listen to what Hamas says?

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  19. David

    Is it fear-monger if they would perfer O to be in the White House? Fear-monger would be if it is made up. I thought people wnated facts. What part did McCain make up?

    April 25, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  20. don from canada

    Keep up the good work McCain – you spread Hate with every word you say and now you pander to the poor for their votes. It was you and Bush that did nothing for the people in New Orleans yet you managed to find milllions for those rich people burn't out of their homes in California. The people can see through what you and Hillary are doing having Republicans vote for her to get rid of Obama in the primaries. It truly is just pathetic and they will vote you out. Its time to go home and play checkers your time is done, its time to relax now and let Obama find a new way to make the US proper now that you guys have ruined it for everyone.

    April 25, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  21. Rose

    It is clear to me why Hamas wants Obama in the White House, they would love to have someone with little experience and no guts to stand up to them, I suppose Obama thinks he can give them one of his speeches and they will fall for it. Obama needs to grow up and face reality, he is living in a dream world, it takes more than HOPE to deal with that part of the world.

    April 25, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  22. Balaiso, Everett, WA

    FEARMONGER and IDIOT over all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 25, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  23. kathleen retired Professional w/woman for obama

    Will you please post my comment. I am getting tired of wasting my
    time.

    April 25, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  24. Wake up America!

    With all due respect to your service Senator McSame, the majority of the world wants Obama. You and Spinton voted for the war. The world doesn't want war. Simple, isn't it?

    You resort to this shameless fear-mongering with one-hand, then have the presence of mind to ask fellow good ol' boys in NC to NOT run a grossly inflammatory ad that they say is not targeting Obama. Do you see the hypocrisy in this?

    April 25, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  25. Michael Bower

    The old fear and smear! The sad part is, the lemmings these guys are talking to will believe it, and thereby vote for this carbon copy W. Enough with this nonsense!! It's time for a change!

    Obama 08!!

    April 25, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
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