August 5th, 2008
05:10 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain: Obama 'confused' on energy positions

Sen. McCain slammed Sen. Obama at a press conference held in the shadow of a nuclear energy plant.
Sen. McCain slammed Sen. Obama at a press conference held in the shadow of a nuclear energy plant.

NEWPORT, Michigan (CNN) – A day after Barack Obama released a television ad that accuses John McCain of seeking tax breaks for big oil, McCain struck back Tuesday, calling Obama “a little bit confused” because of their divergent votes on the 2005 energy bill, which contained tax breaks for oil companies.

Watch: McCain slams Obama on energy policy

McCain made the remarks to reporters after touring the Fermi 2 Nuclear Power Plant, a facility that provides power to 2.3 million customers in southeastern Michigan. McCain is an ardent supporter of nuclear power.

“I saw that Senator Obama's latest attack has got to do with oil and campaign contributions,” McCain said, referring to Obama’s new TV spot. “I think he might be a little bit confused because when the energy bill came to the floor of the senate, full of goodies and breaks for the oil companies, I voted against it. Sen. Obama voted for it. People care, not only what you say but how you vote.”

Obama was one of 25 Senate Democrats to support that energy bill, which the Illinois senator has said represented a compromise that removed several of the Bush administration’s original proposals.

McCain also tweaked Obama for his newfound openness to offshore oil drilling.

“I noticed that there’s confusing now information from Sen. Obama as to whether he actually supports offshore drilling or not,” he said. “The fact is we have to drill here and we have to drill now and we have to drill immediately.”

Related: Obama teases McCain on drilling

McCain acknowledges that “nuclear power isn't enough and drilling isn't enough,” reiterating his regular proposals for a comprehensive approach to energy reform that includes wind, solar and tide production.

Flanked by South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham and Representative Fred Upton of Michigan, McCain chided Congress for taking their annual summer recess without focusing on fuel prices.

“People are paying four dollars a gallon for gas, are sick and tired of a Congress that won't act in their behalf,” he said. “So I'm urging Senator Obama to urge the Democratic leaders of Congress to call Congress back into session.”


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (228 Responses)
  1. biffington, biff

    non-believer, what is astonishing is 1) that you parrot everything you hear from rush, orielly, and/or hannity..

    2) that you would AGAIN follow the republican party right over a cliff.

    and WE are the blind followers????

    August 5, 2008 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  2. gary

    OBAMA DONT KNOW JACK ABOUT RUNNING A COUNTRY. I CANT SAY I FEEL SORRY FOR OUR COUNTRY IF THEY ELECT OBAMA. THATS THEIR BIG MISTAKE. I RATHER HAVE A EXPERIENCE TEACHER IF I WAS IN SCHOOL, NOT AN UNEXPERIENCED ONE. AMERICA GETS WHAT THEY ASK FOR.

    August 5, 2008 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  3. tigerakabj

    No McSame you are confused. You voted against wind, biofuels, and increased mpg standards on cars. That 2005 bill also included significant more investments in renewable energies.

    Funny McSame doesn't refute what Obama said about campaign contributions. (Yeah, 1.1 million dollars the oil companies gave him after he flipped on off-shore drilling in June).

    McSenile, get ready for more big-time butt whoopin's in the next 3 months.

    Obama/Sebelius 2008/2012.

    August 5, 2008 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  4. Praetorian, Ft. Myers

    Because my friends...Mr. Obama is shifting his agenda along with the prevailing political winds.

    By straddling the ditch where the Independant voters are–he's making himself look like an opportunity strategist rather than a catalyst for change.

    August 5, 2008 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  5. DA

    You people that are supporting this crap of off shore drilling are idiots!!! Go do your research before being ingnorant to the calls of doing this crap!!! You will not see the benefits of this for years!!! Also, what they are failing to tell you is the Big Oil Companies have a number of leases already and are not even thinking about doing anything with them. They are not building any more refineries so, if they get this oil they won't be able to process it. I mean folks think about it oil is a commodity do you really think they want to put more out there? Wise up folks!!! Jeez!!!

    August 5, 2008 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  6. Ex-Republican for Obama

    McCain and his Big Oil Company pimps are doing ONE thing: Attempting to secure all available land for themselves to ensure no access to future competitors that might do business in an ethical manner. This will allow them to continue to bend us over their oil rigs and pump american citizens for all we're worth!

    We can NOT allow them to have this additional land until they do something with the leases they already hold. Drilling is NOT the answer, but even if it is, they have plenty of land to start doing something with this very SECOND. Until they tell us they are busy on ALL of what they already have access to, they do not get more.

    McCain: The Puppet of Big Oil Criminals

    August 5, 2008 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  7. Tupac

    Thank you for telling us what Obama has done. Now tell us what have you done for the last 26 years in the Senate to help the energy issue?

    August 5, 2008 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  8. Sherry, Atlanta

    By the way McCain:
    – Solar
    – Wind
    – Natural Gas
    Would be less expensive financially, and enviornmentally...we already have the Natural Gas, and Wind in our posession.

    WHO'S CONFUSED?

    August 5, 2008 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  9. Val from MA

    I have to admit I am confused too. Didn't Obama just YESTERDAY admitted that he would be open to offshore oil drilling? And now he is mocking McCain for his energy "drill here, drill now" plan? Did Nancy call Obama overnight and he changed his mind ONCE AGAIN? I am sure you made Nancy happy again. What a pathetic loser this guy really is!

    And what about that energy bill that came to the floor of the senate, "full of goodies and breaks for the oil companies," that Obama voted for? How do you respond to this and how do you explain your vote to the American people, Mr. Obama?

    August 5, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  10. Susan

    Don't go there old man. You are not only confused, but a reckless liar!

    August 5, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  11. Steve

    Why wasn't McCain in the Senate, pushing for this? Probably because he was in Czechoslovakia, surveying sites for off-shore drilling.

    BTW, there is no Czechoslovakia (even though McCain thinks there is). and that area is land-locked (although I doubt McCain knows that).

    And for those of you making comments about me and others blindly following Obama, at least for me it's not a messiah complex. Obama is just a man. A smart, young man, who knows his stuff. McCain isn't. I am not blindly following Obama. I've just looked at McCain with my eyes wide open, and don't like what I see. If Hillary had won the Democratic primary, I'd be solidly behind her. My vote goes to anyone that's not a surrogate of Bush and his policies. My vote goes to someone that knows geography, and who is recognized as a world leader by other world leaders, even before he has been elected. If McCain gets elected, the majority of the world will be very much disappointed.

    August 5, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  12. ItsObvious

    Oh, that's just what I want to see....and 70+ year old man in front of a nuclear power plant.

    August 5, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  13. Marj,Paso Robles, Cal

    It doesn't take much to confuse Dumbama-just ask him ANY question without his uh uh uh uh ummm uh umm uhh uhh uh uhhhh um teleprompter and watch the fun.

    August 5, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  14. indlw

    Amazing, that you attack McCain when your candidate is blatantly lying in a campaign ad, has changed positions on drilling when he saw the polls indicate 75% of Americans support it, and continues to completely misrepresent McCain's policies. Are you intentionally lying on the blogs, or are you just too ignorant to research the truth for yourselves? Or perhaps even worse, have you so blindly jumped over the cliff for Obama that you can't distinguish good and bad policies, right and wrong, or truth and fiction? Sad.

    August 5, 2008 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  15. Erik

    A sad little has-been trying desperately to be relevant in a modern world.

    August 5, 2008 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  16. rob

    Once again McBush treats the voters like ignorant children. He says Obama voted for the Bush energy Bill that he McHero was opposed to. He thinks we are to stupid to understand the compromise Bill that Obama was compelled to support. And if McOil was really opposed to the Bill. Then why has he done a tripple somersault Flip Flop to where he now supports the Tax breaks for Big Oil be made 'Permanant' ?

    August 5, 2008 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  17. susie

    Obama's memory must be failing. Obama vote with Cheney for the energy bill. He always places blame on everyone but himself.

    August 5, 2008 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  18. Steve

    Why wasn't McCain in the Senate, pushing for this? Probably because he was in Czechoslovakia, surveying sites for off-shore drilling.

    BTW, there is no Czechoslovakia (even though McCain thinks there is). and that area is land-locked (although I doubt McCain knows that).
    And Mr. McCain, Obama's message isn't confusing to most of us. He simply stated that offshore drilling is a possibility as a part of a larger, comprehensive energy plan. That doesn't confuse me. Does it really confuse you? That's unfortunate if it does. Your mental processes must be called into question if you call that confusing.

    And for those of you making comments about me and others blindly following Obama, at least for me it's not a messiah complex. Obama is just a man. A smart, young man, who knows his stuff. McCain isn't. I am not blindly following Obama. I've just looked at McCain with my eyes wide open, and don't like what I see. If Hillary had won the Democratic primary, I'd be solidly behind her. My vote goes to anyone that's not a surrogate of Bush and his policies. My vote goes to someone that knows geography, and who is recognized as a world leader by other world leaders, even before he has been elected. On the other hand, McCain never got the attention Obama did when McCain went overseas. The rest of the world recognizes McCain for what he is. A surrogate of Bush. Not a leader. If McCain gets elected, the majority of the world will be very much disappointed. The world, Americans, is where we must live and trade. The world is watching.

    August 5, 2008 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  19. raheen PA

    NoMcSame

    August 5, 2008 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  20. Believer

    Non-Believer: My problem is how you so blindly follow this (Obama) man. It's astonishing to me.

    Really!?! What's astonishing is Republicans backing Bush for 8 years... a C avg student who got where he is because of his daddy who can't even get 200K Americans motivated enough to listen to him.

    We Believe, as 200K in Germany showed, that he can bring not only the country but the world togather.

    August 5, 2008 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  21. Nando, Florida

    THE VILLAGE IDIOT MCCAIN STRIKES AGAIN !!!!!

    August 5, 2008 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  22. raheen PA

    Obama08

    August 5, 2008 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  23. Tjaye in LA

    This from the man who thinks we will benefit by drilling offshore now, so we can save $.02 a gallon in 7 years.

    I'm am giddy with anticipation.

    August 5, 2008 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  24. rob

    PLEASE READ

    McCain acknowledges that “nuclear power isn't enough and drilling isn't enough,” reiterating his regular proposals for a comprehensive approach to energy reform that includes wind, solar and tide production.

    For all you morons who believe Obamas lies and don't read the whole article, McCain has accepted that we need to drill for our own oil while we transition to new and cleaner energy sources.

    August 5, 2008 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  25. LOL @ THE IDIOTS

    Dear Non-Believer, they are called issues, and like everything else in this world they change or evolve over time. Nobody follows him blindly so please spare us the Faux News talking points.

    OH AND MR. MCCAIN. Grats on originality... your "energy Solutions" placard on your podium while branded with your logo, is something that Obama has been doing since the beginning. I suppose since you lack an original idea however that stealing his suit you just fine...

    August 5, 2008 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
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