July 14th, 2008
09:30 AM ET
6 years ago

Obama camp calls New Yorker cover 'tasteless and offensive'

The New Yorker magazine says its latest cover is just satire.
The New Yorker magazine says its latest cover is just satire.

(CNN) – Barack Obama's campaign has sharply criticized The New Yorker magazine over the publication's latest cover illustration that appears to portray the Illinois senator and his wife, Michelle, as terrorist enemies of the United States.

Specifically, the cover, published Sunday, shows Obama in the Oval Office dressed in traditional Muslim attire and Michelle with an "Afro" hairstyle carrying a machine gun. An American flag can also be seen burning in the fire place and a picture of Osama bin Laden hangs on the wall.

Watch: Journalists debate the New Yorker Cover

"The New Yorker may think, as one of their staff explained to us, that their cover is a satirical lampoon of the caricature Senator Obama's right-wing critics have tried to create," Obama spokesman Bill Burton said in a statement.

"But most readers will see it as tasteless and offensive. And we agree."

John McCain campaign spokesman Tucker Bounds said he agreed with Burton's sentiment.

iReport.com: Satire or slander? Share your thoughts

Obama himself refused to comment on the illustration Sunday.

Full story

soundoff (306 Responses)
  1. Karwolo

    wow, the politics in this country never ceases to amaze me! for goodness sake, can't we stick to the issues?

    July 14, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  2. Tennessee Mike

    Mr. and Mrs. Obama:

    POTUS is the most powerful job in the world. If you and your family do not have the intestinal fortitude (i.e. guts, mental toughness, "thick hide", etc.) to handle this kind of satire – tell me how in the hell do we expect you to make the crucial decisions demanded of POTUS?

    Bottom line is: We can't.

    Obama is not qualified, capable, or tough enough to do the job – this will be the 2nd admin of Jimmy Carter if Obama wins – as I recall, Carter is a Lover of the Muslims / Palestinians / Terrorsits as well.

    July 14, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  3. Emma

    The New Yorker's cover page is outlandish, insensitive, wreckless, undermining, demeaning and nasty journalism, excuse me, this is not journalism.

    I have not been a subscriber to The New Yorker and this has certainly caused me to never buy the magazine.

    It is offensive to Black Americans everywhere who try to rise above such caricatures of sterotypical African Americans. It is not funny and I find no humor!

    July 14, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  4. Dan, Mpls, MN

    Anyone who tries to defend this tactic is simply out of town with reality. America has become a Natio of Idiots.

    July 14, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  5. james

    let them tell the truth. looks like they are the only one doing so. heck makes me want to go and buy one!

    July 14, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  6. smile!!!!

    once again, the ignorant and simple minds of the repugnants comes to light......they only have a fraud of a candidate who cannot even think for himself.....no brains.

    July 14, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  7. Ryuken

    I loved the cover – it was funny to me, but then again I've decided to support one of the 3rd party candidates or even SENATOR MCCAIN if Obama does't pick SENATOR CLINTON!

    July 14, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  8. K

    The cover is just a reflection and the perception of new yorker's in general......."Tasteless and Offensive." and in poor taste.

    July 14, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  9. John E Lexington KY

    It's not the most brilliant NYer cover ever, but get a sense of humor. More disturbing to me is this pattern of Obama's staff slamming someone – the Clintons, the New Yorker, anyone in their way – and he's cooly above it. Actually that means he's seething about it. You want to be the most powerful man in the world you need thick skin whatever shade it is. Grow up. The proper response is to laugh at it and a dismissive joke. It could be a long four years.

    July 14, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  10. John, Long Island, NY

    Satire or otherwise, it is offensive. Unfortunately it reflects the ignorance of people like JohnBoy and other McSame supporters.

    July 14, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  11. A. Boston, MA

    Racism at it's best. I expect to see and hear more of this type of hatred.
    They can't accept it but they have no choice. Obama will be your leader!
    Resistance is futile!

    Suck it up!!!!!!

    OBAMA 08

    July 14, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  12. RC

    YEAH IT MAY OFFENSIVE AND TASTLESS, BUT IT'S THE TRUTH.

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  13. Bruce

    Screw Obama's people if they can't take a joke. Pretty sad state of affairs when they have to even comment on something that was satire in nature.

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  14. lakeside

    I'm sure this article is a reflection of just how much we DON'T KNOW about the Senator. I am not of the opinion that the photo is right or wrong, we just DON'T KNOW.

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  15. ddaryl

    America continues to sink to new lows...

    but lets face it... the right wing neo-cons will always sink to whatever lows they have to to preserve themselves.

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  16. JomoDaMusicMan

    I NOT ONLY FIND THE NEW YORKER'S COVER ON OBAMA AS TASTELESS BUT OVERTLY RACIST. IT SHOWS THE MAGAZINE IS A SUPPORTER OF JOHN MCCAIN AND IS ATTEMPTING TO HELP McCAIN STEAL THE ELECTION. THIS IS EXACTLY THE SAME TACTIC THAT JESSE HELMS USED IN CAROLINA . THIS IS AN OLD SOUTHERN PLOY THAT WAS USED IN THE OLD SOUTH TO RALLY WHITES AGAINST BLACKS SEEKING JUSTICE

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  17. FEDUP

    Never bought the New Yorker before, when does it go on sell!!!!

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  18. Obamabot

    Quote: "Obama spent 1/2 his life outside the USA, he is not a complete American."
    And where did you get that piece of information , my friend? Last I heard, he grew up in Hawaii, and Hawaii was a part of the USA.

    McCain was born in Panama. What does that make him?

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  19. Ohio girl

    Tacky, tacky tacky. Are they going to do the next cover with the McCains in the oval office with John sitting in a rocking chair and Cindy McCain covered in jewels and chugging a beer?

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  20. Nobody Asked Larry But...

    Shame on Saturday Night Live – the New Yorker Magazine beat you to it. Actually, I think it is quite good, hilarious, and will, to the regret to the right wing nuts, bring some sympathy and additional support for Barack Obama. The New Yorker reaches a clientele that is, at the very least, above average, and will see through it as a mis-fire on the rights' part and nothing more than satire.

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  21. Some Thoughts

    Hmm... Well, it's one way to increase readership, at least temporarily. I am slightly surprised however that there wasn't a caption of some sort to show that it was intended to be satirical about a rather idiotic view that some people cooked up to instill general hatred of a candidate instead of using persuasive and logical argument to sway people in their favor.

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  22. LET IT GO

    This is just racist, They could had wrote the article without the picture.And why does Michelle Obama have a afro the last time I check her hair is straight.

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  23. Pat D

    I don't agree with the cover, but Vi and Obama overload have it right.
    Hillary keep the Americans in your politics.............................................

    July 14, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  24. James Buchanan

    Not quite the comedic quality of Jerry Falwell sleeping with his mother that sent Larry Flynt to the Supreme Court, but its in the ballpark.

    Sorry to the whiners, but the press does have the right to offend you.

    July 14, 2008 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  25. Rudy NYC

    imbecilliantic – 1. n, the nonsensical actions of an imbecile.; pl. imbecilliantics.

    July 14, 2008 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13