May 2nd, 2008
04:00 PM ET
6 years ago

Voter tells McCain he needs 'Swift Boat' help

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A voter said a “Swift Boat”-style group should come to McCain’s aid.
A voter said a “Swift Boat”-style group should come to McCain’s aid.

DENVER, Colorado (CNN) – A voter at a John McCain campaign event told the presumptive Republican nominee that he needed a “Swift Boats for McCain” group to aid his campaign this fall.

Air Force veteran Clif Sams told McCain that he had done a “damn good job” surviving his imprisonment during the Vietnam War. He then told the senator: “I hope that we have somebody called Swift Boats for McCain come out and help you. You’re damn good.”

“Thank you sir, and thank you for your service,” McCain responded.

In 2004, McCain vigorously defended John Kerry against attacks from “Swift Boat Veterans for Truth,” a group which sought to undermine Kerry’s Vietnam war record. At the time, the Arizona senator called the ads “dishonest and dishonorable.”

Asked why McCain had not had a similar reaction to Friday’s "Swift Boats for McCain" comment, campaign spokesman Steve Schmidt said the senator had repeatedly staked out a “clear position” against third-party groups, and "the only 527 activity is against us."

Sams, the Air Force veteran who now sells life insurance, re-iterated to CNN after the town hall that he would like to see a group similar to “Swift Boat Veterans for Truth” to help McCain defend himself from Democratic attacks in the general election.

He predicted “there will be a lot of veterans like us who come out of the woodwork this fall” to assist McCain.


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (133 Responses)
  1. Ike DeLong

    No excuses for some people McBUSH is stuck on VIETNAM era!! let it go McBUSH!

    May 2, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  2. Charlotte

    McCain won't need much help if Obama is the nominee. He has plenty of ammno in Obamas' books. Obama has taken over a million dollars in donations from sub-prime lenders. Citigroup,Washington Mutual,Countrywide,Credit Suisse, Centex and Goldman Sachs. He is beholden to them and their tatics. He talks out of both sides of his mouth. He is a typical politician who will say what he thinks you want to hear. Rev. Wright said it all, Obama is a politician who says what a politician needs to say to win."

    May 2, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  3. lol

    moveon.org and oprah have obama's back. swiftboat has a lot to work with against obama rev wright, hamas endorsing him, and ayers, not to forget about the rezko trial and auchi.

    May 2, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  4. Esoxslayer

    CONSERVATIVES: Vote for Republican Barr, on the Libertarian Ticket.

    May 2, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  5. Jermaine

    Don't worry, McCain will be SWIFT VOTE. He wrap himself in the flag and POW status, but John McCain give up US SECRET'S to his captors 30 plus times. John McCain in 2000 was said by the current President to be no real Hero, those are from G.W. own lips and McCain ill hear it all again in 2008. John McCain is a panderer, the reason neither he nor Hillary will become President not in this lifetime, maybe in another parallel universe but not on Planet Earth!

    May 2, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  6. Brian

    campaign spokesman Steve Schmidt said the senator had repeatedly staked out a “clear position” against third-party groups, and "the only 527 activity is against us."

    This is a blatant LIE. Come on CNN be fair call this out. There are 527's against Obama and Clinton as well!

    May 2, 2008 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  7. JP

    today McCain admitted that we went into war for oil. Wow – truth from a republican – how refreshing.

    May 2, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  8. richard

    Hillary can withstand any swift boats that come her way. I am affraid Obama will have an armada of swift boats taking him down.

    May 2, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
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