August 5th, 2008
07:38 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama: Republicans take pride in being ignorant


Watch Obama speak out against McCain and the Republican party.

BEREA, Ohio (CNN) – For almost a week, John McCain and his campaign have been mocking Barack Obama’s comments to a voter last week in Missouri when he told her to one way to conserve energy is “making sure your tires are properly inflated.”

On Monday a top McCain advisor passed around tire gauges labeled “Obama’s Energy Plan” to reporters on the Arizona senator’s campaign plane - and the Republican National Committee says more are waiting for the Obama traveling press corps at Tuesday night’s hotel.

Obama shot back at a town hall in Ohio Tuesday afternoon, accusing them of lying about his energy plan and ignoring what experts say would reduce gas consumption between 3 and 4 percent.

“It's like these guys take pride in being ignorant,” Obama told a packed gym. “They think it’s funny that they're making fun of something that is actually true. They need to do their homework.”

“Instead of running ads about Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, they should go talk to some energy experts and actually make a difference,” Obama added.

Both the RNC and McCain’s campaign responded by urging Obama to call for Congress to return from summer recess for a special session to pass an energy package.

“Rather than demanding Americans inflate their tires, Obama should be demanding Congress return to DC to vote on a real energy plan. Obama is wrong: Inflated tires are no substitute for oil drilling and a comprehensive energy plan,” said RNC spokesman Alex Conant.

The race took a sharp turn for the negative last week, as McCain released the ‘Celeb’ ad aimed at Obama, who said the presumptive Republican nominee would try to make him look scary by saying the Illinois senator doesn’t “look like all the presidents on the dollar bills.”

“Our politics has gotten so nasty,” said Obama in Berea. “But not just nasty, also cynical and manipulative, right? Where we say things that we don’t mean.”

“I’m happy to have a battle of words because I’ve got facts on my side. I’ve got truth on my side. I fear no man when I’ve got truth on my side,” he added.

soundoff (377 Responses)
  1. Ex-republican

    Right on!!

    August 5, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  2. Peter

    Very True

    August 5, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  3. Kevin

    When I saw that Obama was calling for Americans to get their vehicles tuned up and make sure they had their tires properly inflated, I thought, that's the exact thing my own father used to preach to me 30 years ago when I was new to driving.

    He said, "If you don't want to be throwing all your money in your gas tank, make sure your tires are not under inflated and you get regular tune ups!"

    I'm glad to hear one of our leaders taking a common sense approach to dealing with this issue. Obviously it will not fix the total problem, but it is significant enough not to ignore!

    Thanks, Mr. Obama!

    August 5, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  4. White Trash

    When an articulate well-educated black man tells truth about conservation . . . the people who are most offended tend to be white trash.

    August 5, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  5. norml

    way to go barack!tell the ignorants like it is!they want votes,not solutions!vote obama!!vote for intelligence,not lies!

    August 5, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  6. Belinda (CA)

    Anyone with half of a brain knows that keeping your tires 'PROPERLY' inflated will help with the efficiency of your gas. The problem is the Republicans have turned into spin doctors that are trying to grasp at every little thing Obama says no matter how ridiculous it makes them look in the end. Everyone should be trying to find ways to help the American people conserve and get by until Bush is out of office.

    This political season is wearing me out! Lets go Dems, unite and takeover.

    Concerned citizen in California

    August 5, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  7. John Allen

    Go Obama,

    All these years Republicans did nothing, in fact caused ALL the energy issues we facing today. At least Obama doesn't matter how simple the idea is, due to the nature of current energy issue (caused by Republican administration), it needs to be corrected from basics to resolve the issue.

    McCain's plan is extension of Bush-Dick failed policies in all grounds. So ask yourself, were you better of 8 years back ? Do you want the same failed policies go on for another 4-more years ? Do you want to suffer/struggle with bad economy, higer gas prices, lower job market.

    McCain did nothing in last 8-years for energy, how can he even talk about it saying he has better ideas.

    August 5, 2008 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  8. Fazio

    It takes time, energy, dedication and love of country to actually research the facts, and make educated opinions to support a political position. For the past 7 years, and continuing to this day, the Republicans don't want us to do this - but would rather the American population sheepishly accept their lies, spin and condescending rhetoric.

    Not this time.

    Republicans, your time is coming to an end.

    Obama 08!

    August 5, 2008 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  9. skunkrat The Marine

    Sen. McCain should be asking or calling on his buddy our Moronic President to ask congress to reconvene and not the Junior Senator. McCain is so stupid and it seems to get worse every day.

    August 5, 2008 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  10. Annette, Washington, DC

    No offense, to some of the repubs, but there is some truth to that. For example this, gen. election, each time I hear the repubs talk, they always referr to Obama said this, Obama said that, which is understandable to a certain point, they never come back with their own solution or idea of their own to counter Obama. I also notice that each time McCain speaks at rallies or in town hall setting, two things his wife is somewhere near, I guess giving Lieberman a break ?? and McCain is constantly reading from index cars as if he is reading talking points. McCain is really by day he is reminding me of Bush the 2nd. We all better pay close attention to these cues. Sometimes what you see, is what you get?

    August 5, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  11. Obama Supporter from Texas

    I agree with you whole-heartedly Obama. They truely are missing "the boat!!" Continue with the negative ads and watch what will happen to your campaign. All I hear is what is wrong with Obama's plan. Do you care to share your plan with the american people McSame? Democrats rule!!!

    Obama '08

    August 5, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  12. Donna from Colorado Springs

    Republicans are indeed ignorant. They would rather belittle and lie about something or someone than admit that they are wrong. It has long been a well known fact that proper inflation of your tires and keeping your engine in good working order will increase your gas mileage. I've been driving 44 years and have always known that is true.But, McStupid, in his lame attempt to discredit Obama, has shown how incredibly stupid he really is. Handing out tire guages is just another example of his arrogance and childishness

    August 5, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |

    Go get Senator Obama!!!!!!

    August 5, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  14. Marty

    If McCain was half the leader he claims he is, he would leave the campaign trail to support his colleagues in Congress. McCain says he has the experience and the judgement; now's his chance to show it. If McCain is such a maverick, let him be the one to turn the lights and cameras on in spite of Pelosi.

    Play acting, pure and simple.

    August 5, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  15. RapidRay

    “Rather than demanding Americans inflate their tires, Obama should be demanding Congress return to DC to vote on a real energy plan"

    Why in earth would he want to do that?

    Oh sure...
    "Lets get every one back quick BEFORE this guy wins the White House. He might actually have a good idea or two, but we still have time to make sure the big oil companies make insane profits before we take a vacation."

    Too bad all that Republican hot air can't be harnessed. We'd be able to light every house on Earth for infinity.

    August 5, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  16. NJ Republican

    For once a member of Congress is asking the people you and I pay, Congressmen and Congresswomen to get back to work to solve our energy do there job.....And Obama won't advocate this??

    The only reason why it won't happen is so Obama won't have to make a clear choice on an Energy Policy and dance around it till the election.

    No wonder why Congress has a worse approval rating than the President...and what party is the majority again.....

    If this is the new politics....geez...we are really in trouble.

    McCain 2008

    August 5, 2008 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  17. McCain’s PHONY EXPRESS

    It was reported yesterday that if ALL Americans would maintain their tire inflation levels it would save us 3% of our oil consumption. Compared to drilling offshore would only increase by 1% (see Bush’s own estimates!!!). Also, if all Americans would do proper maintenance regularly it would save us another 4%.

    So Obama was the one stating the truth while mcCain’s oil drilling on our precious shores is misleading the American people. McCain’s position just proves that even after misleading us into the unwarranted war, America can still be mislead easily! That’s what McCain is counting on!!!

    As for McCain’s expensive, long long term & dangerous Nuclear Reactors: First, they mentioned there was once a leak at the other closed Nuclear Plant McCain went to. Then there was information on a Nuclear Sub leaked not too long ago. Even France has reported 2 Nuclear spills last month!!! One of the spills leaked into 2 rivers!!!! Care to go for a swim?

    So does anyone want to volunteer we build one of these in their backyard? Can we say 3 mile island!!! NOW THAT IS SCARY!!!

    Yes, oil prices have increased but let’s use our brain!!!

    August 5, 2008 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  18. GOP Terrorists have destroyed America

    It's true: conservative apologists ARE ignorant. They focus on the micro issues like marriage, flag burning and tire inflating, while ignoring the critical issues of Economics, War, Gas, and Health Care. But since the Republicans are to blame for the sorry state of our nation, I guess I'd try to divert attention from my misdeeds, mistakes and stupidity if I were a luddite GOPer too.

    Obama '08!

    August 5, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  19. Tim

    McCain is the king in idiots!!! He is so funny. Running his mouth without doing his homework. But that's nit unusual, that's why he supported the war. I love the tire gages. Keep up the support McLoser!!! LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 5, 2008 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  20. Cosmic Comedy Queen

    What an a bunch of silly teenagers these people who want to be President of the United States of America are! I wouldn't give you two cents for either.

    Hillary, Hilliary I will write you in...

    August 5, 2008 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  21. Diamond

    You tell them Obama!!!!!!!!

    republicans have nothing else to do but mock Obama, its pathetic.

    August 5, 2008 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  22. Shane O'Sheeran, Las Vegas, Nevada

    Of course John McCain's response was to distract to the strawman garbage of the less than competent Republicans creeping around the closed Congress, what else can he say in the face of facts and reality with nothing but angry old man rhetoric and a campaign staff left over from Bush 04. They don't deal in issues, substance, and facts, unlike Obama...the McCain campaign deals in the old old ways, as their party is fast becoing...old and mostly dead!

    Here are the facts...

    Jack, How about this...

    I realize that it cuts against the media narrative right now to focus on anything that doesn't suggest a dead-heat, but it's quite instructive to see how the independent groups (and even right-leaning ones) currently see the state of the race through the only prism that matters - the Electoral College:

    Obama McCain Margin
    Real Clear Politics 322 216 Obama +106 316 209 Obama +107 303 235 Obama + 68 284 147 Obama +137
    AVERAGE 306 202 Obama +104
    If you think about the reporting of the fluctuating state polls lately that show a tight race, all of them involve red states that McCain can't afford to lose: Colorado, Montana, Virginia, Ohio, Florida, North Carolina, Alaska, Georgia, etc.
    Despite the media narrative that a number of blue states are competitive, the truth is none of the recent polling shows McCain making any significant inroads in the blue states. Consider:

    ·In Michigan, McCain had not led in any poll since May;
    ·In Pennsylvania, McCain has not led in any poll April, and a Republican poll released last week showed McCain trailing by 9, in line with the current average;
    ·In New Hampshire, McCain has not led in any poll since April;
    ·In Minnesota, while one recent poll showed McCain within the margin of error, no other poll in the past month (including one poll taken more recently) has him within 12 points

    So, while the media breathlessly reports the national tracking polls which shows a close race, the state polling is still showing a pretty significant Obama lead.
    P.S. - Again reminding us how slanted to making this a horse race when it is not even close that CNN's political reporting has become, their current electoral map has it Obama 221, McCain 189. What a farce.

    August 5, 2008 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  23. Herman in LA

    Yes he is back on stride and kicking these neocons right where it hurts.

    Vote smart: Obama

    August 5, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  24. bob in L.A.

    Obama is turning into a national joke!
    He chides McCain on his energy stance and yet he- not McCain voted for the Cheney engery bill!
    Congratulations Democrats- you managed to give the White house back to the Repulbicans again by your choice.
    I think its time for me to re-register as an Independent. The demcratic nominee is an presumptive embarrasment to the party.
    Of Course Hillary will campaign for him- in 2012 she will be begged to be the nominee to run against McCain if she hasn't jumped shipas well by then.

    August 5, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  25. David

    The RNC is so out of touch with reality and with every day Americans. They are quickly becoming the laughingstock of politics. So sad.

    August 5, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
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