July 31st, 2008
04:19 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain says 'race card' charges are fair

McCain talked with CNN's John King Thursday.
McCain talked with CNN's John King Thursday.

(CNN) - John McCain told CNN Thursday it is fair for his campaign manager to claim Barack Obama is playing 'the race card.'

Watch McCain: Obama's playing the race card

"I'm sorry to say that it is. It's legitimate," McCain told CNN's John King. "And there's no place in this campaign for that. There's no place for it and we shouldn't be doing it."

Earlier Thursday, McCain campaign manager Rick Davis lashed out at the Democratic presidential candidate over his comments that Republicans are making an issue of his race.

"Barack Obama has played the race card, and he played it from the bottom of the deck. It's divisive, negative, shameful and wrong," Davis said in a statement sent to reporters.

An Obama spokesman immediately denied the assertion, but noted that the presumptive Democratic nominee believes that the McCain campaign was “using the same old low-road politics to distract voters from the real issues.”

At three stops in the battleground state of Missouri, Obama told audiences that his opponent is trying to make voters “scared” of him because he doesn’t look like past presidents – an apparent reference to being black — and has a “funny name.”


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (526 Responses)
  1. Patrick Henry, Ft. Myers

    If McCain is to reach out to the few intellectual moderates and conservatives remaining who actually have compared the details of Obama's written and publicly stated policy agenda–against his rhetoric, resume, past actions as a public official–then he must do so without mercy in order to roust the truth.

    July 31, 2008 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  2. Larry and Barry

    "Obama is Here" Ludacris

    July 31, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  3. Day One

    Obama knocked one out of the park with his overseas trip. These sad, played out smear tactics from the GOP will sway the slow minded for a while but keep in mind that Obama will have to come up to bat again, Can we say convention...Give it up Mcfame, you and your party can't compete.

    July 31, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  4. adam

    McCain already played his "Ageist" card

    July 31, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  5. al

    ***********************************************

    ORIGINALLY YOU SEEM TO BE RUNNING AGAINST A FORGETFUL OLD MAN.

    NOW IT SEEMS YOU'RE RUNNING AGAINST A 10 YEAR OLD.

    REPUBLICAN MACHINE IS NOW AT THE HELM, WITH THE BACKING OF BIG OIL COMPANIES THEY ARE IN FULL FORCE.

    DON'T GET SUCK IN WITH ALL THE BS GOING AROUND. IT'S TIME TO BE SMART.

    STOP THE DECEPTION
    STOP THE LIES
    STOP THE MANIPULATION

    STOP THE MADNESS. VOTE OBAMA.

    July 31, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  6. RRE

    Have you notice we have not heard from Michelle Obama... have they locked her up at the Chicago Zoo until after the election?

    July 31, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  7. john williams san diego, ca.

    they are afraid of me-oh, by the way did i mention that i am half black??? many many many times, but not half white because that would be playing the race card against blacks. under qualifed.

    July 31, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  8. trend

    Can someone remind me what is McCain is running for? becuase for the past couple of days i have not heard anything with any substance from him he needs to say what he is for and not what hes against.

    July 31, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  9. Kelby from Houston, TX

    Where is my post CNN?

    July 31, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  10. Not fooled by negative ads

    At three stops in the battleground state of Missouri, Obama told audiences that his opponent is trying to make voters “scared” of him because he doesn’t look like past presidents – an apparent reference to being black — and has a “funny name.”

    That's exactly what the mclame camp is doing. What's wrong with a little truth tellin'? too bad mccain has been griping about every word out of obama's mouth for the last month an a half – I think many – including myself, have stopped paying attention to him.

    July 31, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  11. lee

    The accusation of race card by McCain's manager and McCain himself are not valid watch the entire economy speech in Springfield, MI on youtube. When Sen. Obama talked about " scare" he meant scare to take risk on the election, to take risk to vote for him (OBAMA) Clear and simple. There is no indication of otherwise. McCain blew it again. He has to say something negative about his opponent and it is a disgust.

    July 31, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  12. kris

    mccain camp and its steriotypes is the one that is injecting race. it is clear that what obama is talking about when he made the dollar statement is in response to the hilton/ spares ad saying that obama is a celebrity. there is no celebrity on the dollar bill.

    July 31, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  13. Puff

    NOBAMA IS RUNNING SCARED HE WILL STOOP TO ANYTHING. I THINK HE IS GOING TO STOOP HIMSELF RIGHT OUT OF THIS RACE.
    MCCAIN 08

    July 31, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  14. Ted

    Obama has been saying these supposed "race card" things throughout his campaign. Now all of a sudden they are the race card?.....It's no different than McCain saying he's qualified to be Pres because he was a prisoner of war. Obama is not racist, and McCain is not qualified to be Pres. on those specs. Get a grip McCain. Fire your idiots that are killing your good name and integrity and be yourself. Show your supporters the maverick in you.

    July 31, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  15. ProudToBeDemocrat

    Stick to the issues facing America Old racist Man . We know you are a racist like the rest of the repuplicans, may be you should hire Sean Hannity, Bill O'Relly and Kar Rove to help you spead your racist view, but be aware you will fail miserably.

    July 31, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  16. Lynn

    Why shouldn't McCain say things about Obama geez Obama's star struck groupie sure say alot worse thing about McCain.

    It's just that Obama is smart he lets his follower say the bad things and he sits back grinning looking like an angel. Wise up people.

    July 31, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  17. Sherry, Atlanta

    MCCAIN=ATTACKS OBAMA

    MCCAIN=ATTACKS AMERICA (with his Bush Policies)

    July 31, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  18. FactCheck

    > PUMA – write in Hillary '08

    Please vote for McCain. Once he gets rid of women's suffrage, you can tell all your neighbors in the trailer park how ya' done good.

    July 31, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  19. Gordon, Houston, TX

    re: Independent in Iowa's comment above:
    "Not that it matters to bots, but PUMAs can see the real deal."
    --------------
    Let me tell you something. PUMAs can't see beyond the tears they continue to shed for their fallen candidate, their precious Hillary. I am so sick of the whining and attacks on another candidate who beat her fair and square in the primaries.

    I wish to hell you sour grapers would just blog in your own rubber room and leave sane adults to discuss the issues. Your needling little comments like the above make real voters who are actually following the elections cringe.

    July 31, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  20. Really I Mean Really

    Hillary's playbook being used again by the Restublicans.\

    what really is sad is that some idiot out there will believe this crap. GOD Help the USA

    July 31, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  21. Derek in Seattle

    I think McCain is either having a stroke or he has alzheimers. He is incapable of rational thought.

    July 31, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  22. E for Obama

    If Obama is playing the race card its because McCain is making an issue of Obama's race. DUH!

    And if you want to claim that he is playing the "race card" then what about McCains campaign playing the "age card" when Obama said that McCain had "lost his bearings."

    McCain is an IDIOT!!!

    July 31, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  23. Roofin Reality, Houston, Tx.

    I disagree that the race card was played by Obama, but I can see why McCain feels so, being as sensitive as he is right now.

    Too bad though, as Obama has, in the worse case scenario, pulled an "attack on Iraq for preemptive pruposes."

    So now, if the Reps try to go down that path, Obama has told us they would.

    Moreover, it's a subtle way to tell people who aren't an ethnic minority that's it okay to vote for someone who isn't in the ethnic majority.
    How about that for a sanitized explanation?

    July 31, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  24. Christie

    Obama is a joke. Higher taxes, no plan for gas prices, statements being made about having "talks with Al Queda" and yet people still back him? Yes we can? Yes we can...do what? Run this country into the ground with Obama as president. Maybe he wouldn't be compared to celebrities if he didn't act like one and pose for People magazine/OK magazine.

    The race card is lame, but it was going to be in the media at some point. By the way, he smokes...cigarettes. Isn't that supposed to be an instant demerit in today's society. If McCain smoked, he would be chastised. Oh wait, its called a DOUBLE STANDARD!

    July 31, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  25. Will

    Mccain would you please tell me who you are. You wonder why Obama gets the media attention its because you bring him up more than the media does. I am not in the tank for Obama i would just like to see an ad of yours on TV saying what you are going to do for this country not what Obama cant. Please anything.........still waiting......

    July 31, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
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