July 31st, 2008
09:30 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama camp says McCain tactics worse than Rove's

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Obama's campaign said the latest McCain ad is beyond Karl Rove's playbook.
Obama's campaign said the latest McCain ad is beyond Karl Rove's playbook.

(CNN) - Few names inspire more of a heated reaction among Democrats than Karl Rove, and Barack Obama’s campaign is making a concerted effort Thursday to link the former Bush advisor to John McCain's presidential campaign.

On a campaign conference call with reporters responding to the Arizona senator's latest television ad, Obama campaign manager David Plouffe said the spot is worse than anything Rove would have developed.

"This is not the John McCain voters thought they would be seeing in this presidential campaign," Plouffe said. "He's not just embracing the Rove playbook that people really are tired of, he's taking it to a further extreme."

Those comments came only hours after Plouffe circulated a fundraising e-mail to supporters in which he said McCain's campaign had taken a "nasty turn” with its "Karl Rove-style ploy."

"This Karl Rove-style ploy misleads people about Barack's energy plan and even mocks his ability to inspire voters and bring Americans back into the political process," Plouffe wrote in the e-mail.

The television ad in question compares Obama's celebrity status to that of Britney Spears and Paris Hilton, and questions whether the Illinois senator is "ready to lead." Obama dismissed the ad as "game playing" Thursday while McCain said he was "proud of it."

Watch: McCain ad compares Obama to Paris Hilton, Britney Spears

Rove has no official role with the McCain campaign, though Steve Schmidt, a senior adviser in charge of the day-to-day message, was a longtime protégé of Rove's.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Extra • John McCain • Karl Rove
soundoff (497 Responses)
  1. Rave

    McCain like Hillary turned out to be Cheap, Lame, Fake, Desperate, Lying, Egoistic, Jealous, Brain damaged ... I thought he atleast had some decency... he has nothing left and nothing to offer for us.
    OBAMA (2008 -16)

    July 31, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  2. Lili, FL

    Karl Rove is a god! Please join the McCain camp and put McCain in the White House!!!

    No more Democrats in the White House... EVER!!!!

    July 31, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  3. Sheople yes, people no so much.

    I thought the Obama cult was the smart demographic.

    Why can't they figure out that the more venomous hate and threats they spew... the less inclined we are to vote for Obama.

    WERE he the best candidate- and he is actually the worst choice of the 3- we would rebel against the forcing him down our throats and not vote for him just to protest the tactics of force, strong-arming and forcing our hand.

    Threats and democracy do not mix- I guess you left wing socialists do not realize that. even AFTER alienating the Hillary democrats and turning them into opponents of Obama.

    the above is my response to this blog:
    Turnabout is Fair Play July 31st, 2008 9:24 am ET

    I will say it again. If these PUMA idiots and those who just don't want to see a black man in the Whitehouse give this election to the Republicans AGAIN, you will deserve the pain and suffering that will continue that you are going through right now and we "18 million" Obama supporters will do to Hillary in 2012 what you are trying to do to Obama this time around. All those fools who keep posting "McCain '08, Hillary 2012″? You better think about that again, that's not how your dream will work out. If yall wreck this for Obama, Hillary's chance in 2012 will NOT happen. We guarantee it

    July 31, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  4. BROOKLYN

    Tactics?

    Saying that he is "playing the race card"... Is that a tactic? Pretty sure it's a fact...

    He is HALF WHITE people... But he says he's Black! That is a race card...

    And... I actually support him... I am rethinking the whole thing.

    July 31, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  5. Tom

    McCain should have learned by now that you are not allowed to criticize the unqualified Affirmative Action Candidate.

    July 31, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  6. hate drove us away

    Turnabout is Fair Play July 31st, 2008 9:24 am ET

    I will say it again. If these PUMA idiots and those who just don't want to see a black man in the Whitehouse give this election to the Republicans AGAIN, you will deserve the pain and suffering that will continue that you are going through right now and we "18 million" Obama supporters will do to Hillary in 2012 what you are trying to do to Obama this time around. All those fools who keep posting "McCain '08, Hillary 2012″? You better think about that again, that's not how your dream will work out. If yall wreck this for Obama, Hillary's chance in 2012 will NOT happen. We guarantee it
    ______________________________________________________

    Yeah... that will work. Now I'm shi*ting in my pants and will vote for Obama.

    What are you Obama supporters? In kindergarten?

    You did not see how those tactics caused Millions of LIFELONG democrats against Obama?

    You think that it will now encourage a return to the flock?

    July 31, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  7. michael minorgan

    mcCain is finally stooping LOW..it had to happen sooner or later eh John? What about all that respect etc etc etc. I guess you have to use this you dont have much else to fall back on do you????

    July 31, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  8. Scott L

    Obama's team is now starting to feel the heat of the Republican machine. They will eat Obama for breakfast. Too bad Obama has played the race card so early...he is not even the nominee yet. Pretty shameful tactic himself...look at me look at me, I am different from all the other presidents. Shameful. But typical of the Dems who will lie and say anything to get elected. Look at Pelosi. She promised when Dems took over Senate and House 2 years ago that they would get gas under control. Instead it has skyrocketed. Why you vote for Dems is beyond me.

    July 31, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  9. Kenneth M.

    I am an Obama supporter but I think he did it too himself this time. As the words came out of his mouth I was yelling, dont say it! This will mark the beginning of the end and we will all be able to say he should not have said it.

    July 31, 2008 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  10. Krissy

    McCain's ad is going to cause a LOT of people to donate to Obama's campaign.

    July 31, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  11. Sue

    Let McFool run his negative campaign.........It will be his demise.

    Obama/Sebelius 08 & 12

    July 31, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  12. Ruth Waller

    Everyone in the United States and particularly african americans know that when these rich pampered people call Barack Obama an "elitist" these are code words for the old "uppity N....word". As much as I am appalled by these code words from folks who, unlike Obama are rich and pampered, I am more appalled by the media who acts like they don't get it. Please!

    July 31, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  13. scott

    John McCain is pathetic. I'd give the guy the benifit of the doubt, but this is stupid. It will backfire big time. Hey John! Americans are not stupid.

    July 31, 2008 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  14. Independent

    I'm so sick of McCain's whining!!! For heaven sakes "GROW UP." His campaign has totally turned me off...when he comes on the air, I push the mute button....

    July 31, 2008 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  15. aware

    Give it uo Obama!

    Even a doctor from the hospital in Germany where you chose not to visit the troops is dissing you! :(

    July 31, 2008 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  16. Concerned in Alabama

    "Steve Schmidt was a longtime protégé of Rove's"

    In other words, he's using the advice from Karl Rove........duh.

    Shame on you Mr. McRove................and you want the American people to think that you are set apart from your other counterparts..please!

    Watch it Senator McShame, your Hillarynism is showing. Desperation gets you the same thing it got Hillary when she went negative.....NOWHERE.

    July 31, 2008 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  17. Concerned foreigner

    I've watched these 2 candidates closely since the begining of the primary season and I truly cannot understand why way too many Americans have not embraced Barack Obama. He would bring fresh air to the Presidency of the United States at worst, and exceed expectations at best.

    There are citizens of other major countries that have shown him much more respect than Americans have, yet Americans on these tickers and television are consumed with trying to find something wrong with him. Why?

    The only other alternative is John McWar. Old Ideas and Attitudes. Loves War more than Bush does. Knows nothing else.

    This election will be history making.
    There is no doubt about that.
    It will also leave an immediate impression on the rest of the world.
    It would be a shame if Americans choose to continue to live in the past rather than move forward into the future.

    July 31, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  18. Thanks

    Turnabout is Fair Play July 31st, 2008 9:24 am ET

    I will say it again. If these PUMA idiots and those who just don't want to see a black man in the Whitehouse give this election to the Republicans AGAIN, you will deserve the pain and suffering that will continue that you are going through right now and we "18 million" Obama supporters will do to Hillary in 2012 what you are trying to do to Obama this time around. All those fools who keep posting "McCain '08, Hillary 2012″? You better think about that again, that's not how your dream will work out. If yall wreck this for Obama, Hillary's chance in 2012 will NOT happen. We guarantee it
    ______________________________________________________
    That means indefinate Republican rule.

    That is the kind of thinking that loses democrats elections.

    July 31, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  19. RJ, CA

    Obama's tactics are exactly like Rove's. Rove targeted the religious right for Bush. Obama is targeting the black and ultra liberal left for himself. No difference at all - so quit complaining Obama!

    July 31, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  20. aware

    What is your problem Barack. You used the same comparison yourself in an "I am over exposed moment." You are such an arrogant, obfuscating phony! :(

    July 31, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  21. anna

    whats wrong Obama, cant handle the truth, this is not a "nasty turn”
    ,

    July 31, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  22. Sheople yes, people no so much.

    Turnabout is Fair Play July 31st, 2008 9:24 am ET

    I will say it again. If these PUMA idiots and those who just don't want to see a black man in the Whitehouse give this election to the Republicans AGAIN, you will deserve the pain and suffering that will continue that you are going through right now and we "18 million" Obama supporters will do to Hillary in 2012 what you are trying to do to Obama this time around. All those fools who keep posting "McCain '08, Hillary 2012″? You better think about that again, that's not how your dream will work out. If yall wreck this for Obama, Hillary's chance in 2012 will NOT happen. We guarantee it
    ______________________________________________________

    And WE guarantee you years and years of Republican rule.

    You silly Obama cultists- you already lost the support of half of the democrats by such vitriol- can you afford to lose Obama any more votes?

    July 31, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  23. Bill, Covington

    Screw you plouffe, just go and suck up to your negro-caucasian buddy whatever you and that pretty thing do.

    July 31, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  24. Democrat

    McCain has taken the low road. Who would of thoght?

    July 31, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  25. Michelle

    well it might be game playing but ignore it at your own peril .

    July 31, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
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