July 21st, 2008
03:20 PM ET
6 years ago

New York Times rejects McCain essay

The New York Times rejected an editorial written by John McCain.
The New York Times rejected an editorial written by John McCain.

(CNN) - The New York Times has rejected an op-ed piece written by John McCain defending his Iraq war policy in response to a piece by Barack Obama published in the paper last week.

Read the rejected op-ed

In an e-mail to the McCain campaign, Opinion Page Editor David Shipley said he could not accept the piece as written, but would be “pleased, though, to look at another draft.”

“Let me suggest an approach,” he wrote. “The Obama piece worked for me because it offered new information (it appeared before his speech); while Senator Obama discussed Senator McCain, he also went into detail about his own plans. It would be terrific to have an article from Senator McCain that mirrors Senator Obama's piece.”

McCain’s rejected op-ed had been a lengthy critique of Obama’s positions on Iraq policy, particularly his view of the surge. “Senator Obama seems to have learned nothing from recent history,” wrote McCain, criticizing Obama’s call for an early withdrawal timeline. “I find it ironic that he is emulating the worst mistake of the Bush administration by waving the ‘Mission Accomplished’ banner prematurely.”

Obama’s July 14 essay had taken shots at McCain for not further encouraging the Iraqi government to take control of the country.

Full story

soundoff (266 Responses)
  1. Voter, Omaha NE

    My respect for the NY Times just went way down–yes, they are most definitely in bed with Obamaman–probably won't print this either since it is not news, just the truth

    July 21, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  2. People make no sense

    Iraq appears to share Obama's pullout hope
    Statement on U.S. troop withdrawal by 2010 follows meeting with al-Maliki

    Wow, Obama's only been to Iraq once and he's been speaking about this timeline for years and on his second visit the Iraq government agrees with him....

    What a leader?

    How many times has McCain been there? These dummies on this blog have no clue about leadership. The call Al-Maliki a criminal but this is the man that was put into power by the republican's. So if he is a criminial, corrupt, or whatever else you call him, then who do you blame. This man may just be a great man who agrees with another great man. Maybe they aren't progressing in Iraq because our government's making high demands on them, just like refusing to listen to the will of a soverign nation who would like a time table. What goes on behind the small picture is ugly, anybody that has owned their own business or worked in an executive capacity understands this.

    July 21, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  3. Kevin Leo (Jonesboro, GA)

    I can hear all of McCain's supporters screaming right now against the liberal media but the NY Times was right in this regard. McCain has spent far more time criticizing Obama's position instead of detailing his own.

    July 21, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  4. Donna

    "Fair and Balanced"..two words MCCAIN has never heard of...kudos to the Times for wanting to keep it fair between both candidates..McCain only wanted to whine and take digs at Obama...so much for his high road...

    July 21, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  5. Anonymous

    LOL. wow. All McCain does is criticize... It seems as though he would do anything, at any means, to win the presidency. It's kind of sad... McCain needs to lighten up a bit with his poor attitude. It doesn't help his campaign at all.

    July 21, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  6. Matt, Manchester, CT

    Wow, this is a shocker of a turn of events. Never in a million years thought that the bastion of quality journalism, The New York Times, would ever do anything to make things seem difficult for a Republican candidate. And Obama's new found hawk status on Afghanistan is pandering to the point that his zombies can't even bring themselves to recognize it. Just keep sticking your fingers in your ears, kids. You'll be talking about "change we can believe in" all the way to the nuthouse.

    July 21, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  7. Jaime, Plantation FL

    Obama offers up specifics and policy. McCain offers up criticism and hackery. Obama's article is accepted, McCain's is turned down. Should McCain decide to put forth his own vision instead of just attacking and the ever so childish "We win or they win" rhetoric, then perhaps we can have a bit of a discussion.

    Of course everyone here is missing the point:
    McCain offers war in Iraq and inflation from paying for what we can't afford in the government with big debt.
    Obama offers war in Afghanistan and inflation (not as much as McCain but still plenty) for paying what we can't afford in the government with big debt.

    There is a third option here. How about NO foriegn wars, bring our troops home, and focus on infrastructure (energy, roads, education) instead of "Team America : World Police!" behavior.

    July 21, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  8. Heather

    Hahaha. That is priceless.

    July 21, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  9. Annie

    LOL. wow. All McCain does is criticize... It seems as though he would do anything, at any means, to win the presidency. It's kind of sad... McCain needs to lighten up a bit with his poor attitude. It doesn't help his campaign at all.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  10. Michelle

    What has happened to our free press?

    A free press is essential to democracy.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  11. James B, Little Elm, TX

    I wonder if the NYTimes helped Obama write his editorial, or set some guidelines on it before publishing? I suspect not. Short of incoherent vulgar ranting, there is some value to publishing what McCain has to say, given the latest polls almost half of the country supports him for President. The NYTimes certainly has the right to publish whatever they like, it's their newspaper. But next year when their revenues and subscribers are both down, this will be an easy thing to point to as just another reason why.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  12. Irishspacemonk

    This has nothing to do with who the NYT wants as president and more to do with the fact McCain has nothing to offer the national dialogue. McCain needs to get out a computer, do a google search on some current topics and get up to speed with the world.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  13. DPerry

    Thank you GW: is the fact that we're voting for minorities and women a bad thing?? Or do you live in the south.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  14. James in NJ

    That is so funny...Take back your sloppy paper Johnny McCain and try to make it look more like Obama's. It sounds like a grade-school teacher episode.
    America love it or not you will have to endure a smart, sophisticated, charming, and all around different Commander In Chief than what you have been accustomed to.
    Go Obama in 08!

    PS Republicans:
    How's about when they asked Condi Rice who she was voting for and she said...I'd rather not say! That folks says it all.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  15. Ricky - Hispanic/Educated and voting for Obama

    I love the New York Times

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  16. Lee, New York City

    CNN, CBS, ABC, NY Times are doing all they can to portray Obama as the perfect candidate for President.

    The only thing they can't do is change his voting record as the most liberal Senator, the fact that he is a SOCIALIST, that he wants even bigger government, etc.

    He wants the highest earning American's to share more of the tax burden and CURRENTLY 1% OF THE HIGHEST EARNING AMERICANS PAY 46% OF THE TAXES IN AMERICA.

    Obama is WRONG FOR AMERERICA.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  17. Kingslough NY.

    Hmmmmm...i think McCain is losing it period

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  18. Peggy Robson

    The media has already elected Obama, I am not a bit surprised that there is just more and more negativity about every politician except Obama. No body even knows what were going to get with him because he has no experience, says nothing and if the media whipped him like they do McCain and Hillary where would he be...I'm just sitting back and waiting for all of this to come crashing down around Obama.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  19. CNN = Jerry Springer of news

    Doesn't McCain have any details about his Iraq and Afghanistan policies he can share with the rest of us besides, "Obama is wrong?" What are the post-surge plans for Iraq and what are the plans for Afghanistan? What I really want to know is how McCain plans to protect the non-existant Iraq/Pakistan border that he referred to this morning. I will be very interested to see some polls at the end of the week regarding who the voters currently think really is stronger in foreign relations. I think this one issue where McCain has led so far may even be slipping away from him. It will be interesting to see what the Republicans do with their nominee after the convention – they need a miracle.

    July 21, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  20. DMAC in ID

    How very unprofessional of the NY Times. Sure go ahead and give Obama the free advertising and pushing his agenda and don't allow
    rebuttal. You should be ashamed of your selves showing so much blatant bias.

    July 21, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  21. caywen

    Basically, if the NYT was SlashDot, Obama's oped would be (5, Informative) while McCain's would be (-1, Troll)

    July 21, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  22. Janey for McCain

    The photo-op with the General made me cry–the Obamabot comments were so Hollywood. Do you people realize they were flying over a war-zone? Obama's grin was the biggest I have ever seen in any photo–I hate to break it to you, but this is not a movie–it is serious business. I have a nephew fighting for our freedom in Iraq and there is nothing funny about it. Strange that Obama would choose this photo out of hundreds of others.

    July 21, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  23. Mel

    In the first place Mccain couldn't write a piece like that, not smart enough.....

    STUPID FOR PRESIDENT MCCAIN........

    July 21, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  24. syl

    This merely shows the New York Times bias. If they asked for McCain's position, why would they want to dictate what he writes. Does lthe NY Times have a journalistic obligation to let their readers (American voters) know what the McCain position is on Iraq? What the NY Times approach indicate is a wanton lack of journalistic integrity.,

    July 21, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  25. Veteran in Kansas

    Senator McCain has forgotten, why we are at war. We are at war chasing down those that planned and carried out the 9-11 attacks. We were side tracked.

    The Iraqi government as it is and Obama seem to agree on a senerio of a reduction of US combat troops in Iraq over a 16 month period. This also falls in line with Obama's understanding that we have too few troops on the ground in Afganistan to get the job done and that is where we needed the military force in the first place.

    McCain also appears to have failed to grasp that the true gains in Iraq have been from interaction with the Iraqi people and local governments. Even though it has been accomplished by military personnel, it is still called diplomacy.

    July 21, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
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