August 16th, 2008
12:46 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain backer takes on Howard Dean over 'white' remark

DNC Howard Dean, pictured here with Sens. Clinton and Obama and former Sen. Edwards, said Friday that people of color and women have historically been more successful in the Democratic Party.
DNC Howard Dean, pictured here with Sens. Clinton and Obama and former Sen. Edwards, said Friday that people of color and women have historically been more successful in the Democratic Party.

(CNN) – Carly Fiorina, a supporter of Sen. John McCain and the chair of the Republican National Committee’s Victory 2008 campaign, took aim at Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean over racially-tinged comments Dean made Friday.

“If you look at folks of color, even women, they’re more successful in the Democratic Party than they are in the white, uh, excuse me, in the Republican Party,” Dean said Friday in an appearance on NPR’s “Tell Me More” program.

Fiorina, a prominent female supporter of McCain, fired back at Dean. “It is disappointing to see Howard Dean trying to use gender and race to divide voters," Fiorina said Friday evening in a statement released by the McCain campaign. "His comments are insulting, inappropriate and have no place in this election.”

McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, is set to face off in November against Sen. Barack Obama, who is about to become the first African-American to garner the nomination of a major political party. Obama beat out Sen. Hillary Clinton in a long, hard-fought primary race that galvanized many women behind Clinton’s candidacy and many African-Americans behind Obama’s.


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soundoff (579 Responses)
  1. malclave

    It's nice to know that the head of the DNC doesn't consider becoming Secretary of State to be successful.

    August 16, 2008 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  2. Jill

    How in the world could anyone be surprised that the Democratic Party would introduce, once again, race and gender against its opposition. The only way Democrats can win is if enough people believe that race and gender were negative attacks brought on by "upstart" Republicans. Obama is just another politician and probably worse than McCain. Yes we can translates to yes we can lie and get away with it!

    August 16, 2008 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  3. rima

    como'n Carly! Dean was just joking.
    "You gotta keep your sense of humor".Don't you agree with your maverick boss making jokes in every occasion?don't you want a funny president in our current economic crisis?I'm sure he also thought it was funny.

    CNN:
    After he emerged from the meeting, a reporter asked McCain his reaction to the new Jerome Corsi book, "Obama Nation."

    "Gotta keep your sense of humor," McCain responded, before his aides shuttled reporters away.

    August 16, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  4. Frankie

    Was he really wrong about the Right Wing party???

    August 16, 2008 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  5. Obama supporter:White, 60 year old woman

    Check out who ran for the Republican party's nomination.....

    August 16, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  6. TJ ca

    Seams like Obama has divided this country more than he has united it. I have never heard of so many racial remarks until he ran for office I mean the church of rev. wright and remarks made by Jesse Jackson, and so fourth this campaign is becoming more and more about race. I am personally just sick of it. It is Very sad to be occuring in this Great Nation of Ours. Next thing you know it will be about religion. Obama has mentioned in his opinion this is no longer a nation of chritians but of muslim, hindus, buddist, nonbelievers, etc. as wekk....Sounds like he is trying to divide us and then unite us with a so called common ground. We have severe issues in this country and it is sad we have regressed in this area.

    August 16, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  7. dani

    sad day for the Democratic party when all they can do is
    race bait & insult anyone who doesn't 'fall in line'.
    This race baiting by the koolaid drinker is getting old.

    Time for a third party because the Dems are DONE.

    August 16, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  8. Luke

    I love the way the Mccain always comes out and says what has no place in the election. I guess no one told him that running ads full of lies, supporting a book full of lies, and using the race card doesn't have a place in this election either.

    August 16, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  9. TJ ca

    Seams like Obama has divided this country more than he has united it. I have never heard of so many racial remarks until he ran for office I mean the church of rev. wright and remarks made by Jesse Jackson, and so fourth this campaign is becoming more and more about race. I am personally just sick of it. It is Very sad to be occuring in this Great Nation of Ours. Next thing you know it will be about religion. Obama has mentioned in his opinion this is no longer a nation of Christians but of Muslim, Hindus, Buddist, nonbelievers, etc. ….Sounds like he is trying to divide us and then unite us with a so called common ground. We have severe issues in this country that need to be addressed and it is sad we have regressed in this area and now this has become an issue.

    August 16, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  10. KENT in NC

    I would like to think that Dean was not playing the race and gender card but in the end that does not matter. I am an Obama supporter but must say that even if his comment was a slip of the tongue, it was wrong. If race and gender have no place in this race then it has no place on the Democratic side of the coin either. It was just as wrong for Dean to make that slip as it would have been for someone from the McCain camp to make the same slip.

    August 16, 2008 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  11. GoHillary

    There are obviously a lot of pro Obama biggoted racists moderating these comments and filtering out anything against Obama or pro McCain.

    August 16, 2008 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  12. carlo

    The audience at the Republican National Convention is as white as sugar cookies year after year after year. Where is the lie?

    August 16, 2008 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  13. Grace

    Obama, Howard Dean, and DNC are getting sicker and sicker by the day. I’m done with Democratic Party. By the way, who elected Howard Dean as chairman of DNC?

    August 16, 2008 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  14. pat C.

    if you do not think the rebublican party is for whites just ask any old man over 70 what the party used to stand for? in the old days when the KKK wa big in this land they were 99% republican. i know because my grandfather was high on the list in his day. think about it....GOB stands for grand old party.
    as for as fIORINA ..SHE IS A BIGGIT In her own way. she looks down on women that are not educated and she has no feelings for the poor. look how she ran her comapny straight into the ground. she could not have cared less about the american worker. she got rich and powerful and that is what McCain sees in her. his barbie doll adultery wife was rich and powerful and that is what he saw in her. none of the republicans have any respect for the little people on this earth. they all think they should rule because of their own intelligence and money. yep...THE GRAND OLD PARTY. it is time to get rid of them all.

    August 16, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  15. Dave, Illinois

    Why should anybody be suprised that the same party that was pro-slavery in one century would again use race to get votes in another. The sad part is that a majority of the black population blindly throws their vote to a party who's best interest is to keep them down. I hope Dean and Pelossi keep their idiotic faces in the spotlight all the way till November.

    August 16, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  16. i dont really know

    in both parties their are racists ...but theirs MUCH more in the republican party ..to them racists =patriotic.....americans are weird

    August 16, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  17. Anonymous

    It is true!!!

    August 16, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  18. Mauri

    I would say to Carly Fiorina that Howard Dean is doing what he does best: touting race and gender bias while at the same time, putting his foot in his unattractive mouth.

    August 16, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  19. TJ ca

    Seams like Obama has divided this country more than he has united it. I have never heard of so many racial remarks until he ran for office I mean the church of rev. wright and remarks made by Jesse Jackson, and so fourth this campaign is becoming more and more about race...and now Howard Dean. I am personally just sick of it. It is Very sad such idiodic comments are occuring in this Great Nation of ours. Next thing you know it will be about religion. Obama has mentioned in his opinion this is no longer a nation of Christians but of Muslim, Hindus, Buddist, nonbelievers, etc. ….Majority of this country are Christians and it ounds like he is trying to divide us and then unite us with a so called common ground. We have severe issues in this country that need to be addressed and it is sad we have regressed in this area and now this has become an issue.

    August 16, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  20. RML

    Carly, I agree but if you feel that strongly about that type of divisiveness, you should be lecturing your own candidate... is mocking the democratic nominee as being the antichrist not divisive??? And saying that you are going to run a respectful campaign and all you have managed to do is create media that undermines and disrespects your opponent. Is lying a quality you value?? Why the double standard?? It's okay for your candidate to be divisive but not the opposing party...hmmmmmm. I guess that's the same old politics...surprising – not so much!!

    August 16, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  21. Alfred From PA

    The one thing the right wing in this country is expert at is spinning the truth 180 degrees from reality. The Republican party road to power by conciously cultivating white racists by way of the well documented and widely acknowledged southern strategy over the last forty years. But whenever someone points that out, or alludes to it as Howard Dean did, it's the person pointing it out that's raising the race card.

    You see, Carly may not be racist, but she thinkgs its perfectly okay to benefit from other people's racism. And if anybody dares to mention it, it's other guy who's racist. Get it? There's a scary, if malevolent, brilliance here.

    August 16, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  22. Elizabeth in Seattle

    I agree with some of the prior comments that Dean spoke the truth and struck Republican nerves. Again, look up at most of the make up of the Republican party – mostly white men with a few women, black, and other minorities scattered here and there. IT'S THE TRUTH.

    Look at the Democratic party – yes white men, but many more women and minorities.

    THIS IS REALITY. WAKE UP AMERICA.

    It is sad to say there is also more racism and sexism that some people don't won't to admit either. in this country.

    August 16, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  23. JustinM

    I think he was going to say "white haired" which is a common term in describing the RNC.

    August 16, 2008 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  24. Cheryl in T.O.

    TJ ca,
    It's not that Obama has caused 'division', it's simply that his nomination has brought all the bigots into the broad daylight! The division you may feel has always been there, but now that it's out in the light people like you STILL don't want deal with it. SHAME ON YOU!! You think you can hide your head in the sand and carry on so 'maybe it will just go away'. You really need to think about why this is bothering you so much...

    August 16, 2008 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  25. poyoray

    I can't believe the Dems are playing the race card at every turn. It seems like their only outlet to get their candidate elected because of white guilt. It's not going to work by getting someone totally inexperienced elected who is willing to ask for a UN resolution against Russia and doesn't know Russia can just veto that revolution since they are permanent members on the UN security council.

    August 16, 2008 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
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