June 23rd, 2008
12:23 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama camp hits McCain on offshore drilling

 Barack Obama's campaign is taking aim at McCain's position on offshore drilling.

Barack Obama's campaign is taking aim at McCain's position on offshore drilling.

(CNN) - Barack Obama's campaign launched a broad swipe at rival John McCain's record on energy policy Monday, taking aim at the Arizona senator for appearing to reverse his position on offshore oil drilling.

A memo released by the Obama campaign sharply criticizes McCain for recently expressing support for lifting a decades-old moratorium on offshore drilling, noting he was against lifting the ban while campaigning for president in 1999.

Related: A battle of accused political 'flip-flops'

"The question is whether we are going to offer the American people real answers and genuine relief or the same, tired Washington gimmicks and special interest favors that have failed our families and country for too long," the Obama memo states. "With his proposal to lift the moratorium on offshore drilling that, as even the McCain campaign admits, wouldn’t produce any increase in resources for years and his gas tax gimmick that economists agree wouldn’t significantly reduce the price of gas if at all, John McCain has chosen to offer more of the same instead of change."

Defending McCain's shift on the position Sunday, his economic adviser Carly Fiorina argued that "a good leader is influenced by the facts on the ground."

"We've never before faced a situation where the price of a barrel of oil has doubled in the last 12 months," Fiorina said on CBS' "Face the Nation." "So what John McCain has said is that we now need to take control of our own energy future."

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (188 Responses)
  1. Concerned INDEPENDENT CT voter

    "FLIP FLOPPER" _- really? So now changing their minds is a bad thing? i don't agree with a few things that EACH candidate says... I wish they'd change or alter their stance on some issues...

    & YES Race IS something that the republicans have used in the past as a weapon. Why do you think that being Muslim is inadvertently synonymously linked to being a terrorist or an extremist?

    There is no secret that SOME people out there will attempt to strike fear into people...


    June 23, 2008 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  2. MaryJo Bruce Surprise, Ariz

    Mc Cain and Obama both have waffled. So lets be fair all the way around. One day one thing, next day something else. No use reading into all of it. Just figure thats the way it is, always has been and always will. No need to dig deeper. All politicans are useless. Somehow our government needs to get back to of the people, for the people and by the people PERIOD

    June 23, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  3. Bob K

    "a good leader is influenced by the facts on the ground."
    Oooops ... someone "forgot" the facts about global warming, the war and healthcare among others ... so much for that. The good old "pick and choose" when it benefits you. Good leader. Yeah. This is making me sick.

    June 23, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  4. Ryan

    We will not forget. Hillary was robbed the nomination. Obama was selected, not elected. I will not vote for McCain, but I will not vote. My vote will still count and its MY CHOICE!

    June 23, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  5. Phil, FL

    Fiorina drove HP into the ground and was rewarded with a nice "golden parachute".

    We certainly don't need her advice on how to drive the US economy into the ground.

    The current administration has already done that.

    Obama '08 all the way !!!!!

    June 23, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  6. Lisa

    Obama please stop it already. I thought you were suppose to run a positive campaign. Ever since you became the nominee all you have done is attack, attack, attack!!!

    June 23, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  7. Venus

    So... it's OK for McChange to "change" his stand on issues and not Obama!

    How come the oil companies doesn't or haven't drilled where they already have leases?

    Go get em' Bam! Let's step it up on the slimey Repubs!

    June 23, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  8. Obama Fatigue

    And yes he is a flip flopper!!!! Just Like Kerry!

    June 23, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  9. cheater

    I've been reading that Obama "clinched" the democratic nomination...

    Media be honest.

    Obama cheated and stole the nomination from the voters's choice: Hillary Clinton.

    The superdelegates dragged the limping Obama just barely across the finish line.

    Hillary take it to the convention just like all the MALE democrats who were trailing further behind than you were allowed to do.

    June 23, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  10. Ryan

    Concerned IND CT Voter – So its ok for Obama to "Change" his mind. You freaks were all over Hillary if she changed her mind.

    Obama is the only one playing the race card.

    June 23, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  11. 123456789

    Hey Democrats for McCain.......Thank you for voting with us, However we feel you are laughing stock of politics and could never truely welcome you turncoats......we will enjoy your votes and "USE" you to the fullest. Do you expect anything from us in return.......LMAO

    McCain 08

    June 23, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  12. Lisa

    Obama when are you going to accept a debate from Mccain?

    June 23, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  13. Chris

    Carly Fiorina is his economic adviser??!!! ROFL! She about killed Hewlett Packard because of her Marketing background and not Operations/Economic background and thus was fired.

    McSame keeps making missteps and promoting well... the same. His 1999 presidential run was better than this one already!

    June 23, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  14. Enlightened Voter -

    Off shore drilling is not the solution john mcwar, I know it would make your buddies richer but we (the average american) wouldn't see any oil from this for about a decade nor any relief at the pumps. What we need is a policy to become energy efficient like Barack suggests. Please john, stop thinking like a republican for a second and actually care for your country. And no, we don't mean a gas tax holiday to pandar to us that would hurt us in the long run. We need alternative fuel solutions. For someone with so called experience you sure have lousy judgement.

    June 23, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  15. puff

    First of all, Obama is the person working all the fear tactics, he seems to be a pro on it.
    As for McCain flip flopping, yeah, times have changed and he is getting with the program.
    Obama can do nothing but harp on McCain. What is his problem?? I am sick of his jabs. Why doesn't he say what he will do, or is he just trying not to flip flop? This guy is a joke and I wish he would just go away.
    MCCain 08

    June 23, 2008 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  16. Steve

    If we need to be in control of our own energy future, why not invest in alternatives that already exist, like electric cars, solar and wind power? Instead of giving everyone another stimulus package, give everyone a rooftop solar panel. Make it appealing to automakers to actually manufacture pure electric and hybrid cars.

    Even if we drill for oil, we're all still bound to the bloated oil companies.

    At the very least, give people a *choice*.

    June 23, 2008 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  17. Liar Obama

    McCain legitimately changed his mind on an issue once the circumstances and the facts about the situation changed.
    Nothing wrong with that.

    You, Obama simply betray your own stated principles, values and beliefs whenever it is politically expedient for you to do a complete, hypocritical turn about.

    Wright? Trinity Church? NAFTA, Public financing, talking unconditionally with our enemies.

    June 23, 2008 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  18. dres

    Although i am a HUGE Obama supporter.... I think both the presidential hopefuls plans of solving our gas prices are poor at best for the short term.... Obama's long-term plan is excellent.

    Obama/Hagel 08


    June 23, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  19. Yes.We.Can.

    Changing you mind is not a bad thing if it is done as a result of learning something new. If it is done to pander to special interest, as it s in this case, then it is a bad thing and flip flopping. Good for the Obama team for pointing this out.

    June 23, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  20. Obama stole the nomination

    The biggest flip-flopper ever to hit the political scene- and one with no track record of any achievement....
    Dares to attack the other candidate for a change of position and opinion on an issue. It is a good thing to have your position evolve along with the circumstances.

    McCains is a valid change of opinion.

    Obama- your shifts are all political pandering and looking out for your own self interest. You are the lying hypocrit- not HRC and not McCain.

    June 23, 2008 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  21. Rachel

    Obama won't accept a debate, because theyn he may be questioned

    June 23, 2008 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |

    ALL these guys are a bunch of whining babies... The only one who EVER just simply stepped up was Clinton... She acted less like a woman than these guys.

    NObama 2008

    June 23, 2008 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  23. dres

    @ Lisa,

    Obama isnt attacking McCain, he only attacking his policies. He has not disrespected McCain in anyway.

    June 23, 2008 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  24. Jean

    Go Obama...I like they way you can Irk people..Har! You have my Vote.

    June 23, 2008 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  25. H


    June 23, 2008 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
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