August 16th, 2008
09:25 PM ET
10 years ago

Schneider: McCain sends a message to evangelicals

(CNN) - Asked to define his stands on abortion and gay marriage, McCain is sending a message to evangelicals: I am one of you.

Among evangelicals, judges are the biggest issue - the source of a great deal of their anger and disappointment. Another message from McCain: I understand.

But on the issue of stem cells, he parts ways with this voting bloc - and his answer there is a careful one. He knows he's on the wrong side of this issue for many of them.

His answers are perhaps not as intellectually nimble as Obama's, but they come across as clearer, sharper - he's taking more of a tough, unambiguous stand on these issues.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (96 Responses)
  1. Al

    Same old biased CNN
    your obviously a McWar supporter
    Dont agree at all on this I thought Obama was much more clearer and precise!!
    McWar gets older looking every day!!!

    August 16, 2008 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  2. Carl29

    I hope those crazy women who supportered Hillary during the primaries were paying attention at the "Maverick." Forget about abortion rights, girls!!!!! From now on, pregnant and barefoot.

    August 16, 2008 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  3. irene

    i am setting here watching this fourm ,and i am just amazed that rick warren is giving john mccain a campaign floor, i thought this was going to bias. boy was i wrong , here we are thinking that we are going to find out things about these politicians ,and all we are getting from this is stumping from mccain. if i wasnt for oboma i would be after this . and i will not be watching any more of mccains "poor little me "ever one knows he's a vet nam war hero , but there is cemetarys full of heros.

    August 16, 2008 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  4. Damon in Georgia

    this crowd is pro mccain big time, but obama did what he had to do, and did it well. p.s. why is the heading on your site for obama comments giving the appearance that he is making a comment that he is against america, this we know is not true but we do know it is one thing that is part of the unfair rumors that keep questions of his patriotism and religion a float. please change it? please

    August 16, 2008 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  5. Terry Grant

    My take on it is this: McCain seems to see the world in black and white and has that "my way or the highway" sort of stance, and Obama sees the shades of grey and seems much more inclined to be inclusive.

    August 16, 2008 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  6. Crush Rush

    All churchs should pay taxes now.

    August 16, 2008 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  7. Melissa Atlanta, GA

    Although Obama's answers were "intellectually nimble" I think the evangelicals will like McCain more coming out of this precisely because he is giving more direct and unambiguous answers to the questions concerning abortion. My entire extended family is evangelical voters so I know that the evangelicals prefer black and white answers McCain is giving.

    August 16, 2008 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  8. Diane Krivo

    I am disappointed with mc Cain's presentation. It was nothing more than a replay his often heard stump speech. There was nothing in his responses that indicated anything new.

    He doesn't look well; he is very pale and his affect is flat.

    August 16, 2008 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  9. Jennifer

    "His answers are perhaps not as intellectually nimble as Obama's, but they come across as clearer, sharper."..

    Obama actually answered the questions in a thoughtful manner. McCain's answers are one-liners. The crowd seems more receptive to McCain's comedy hour tone rather than Obama's pensive and detailed answers.

    McCain dodged the question on defining the rich and Warren never picked up on it. Warren had a tendancy to interrupt Obama, while he has a more jovial manner with McCain.

    August 16, 2008 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  10. Grace Needed

    As an Evangelical myself, I am constantly confronted with those who easily accept these kind of easy answers – black and white on issues of great complications and complex answers. It bothers me that we can be so sure in our judgements and lack such empathy for those who are confronted with challenges that we so easily dismiss and give answers so easily said and so much more difficult to act on. When I think about "What Jesus would do", I am sure He wouldn't give the easy answer and be so quick to reply with pat answers.

    August 16, 2008 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  11. Babs Bell Hajdusiewicz

    John McCain, please omit "my friends" from your every paragraph.

    August 16, 2008 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  12. oddjob

    "Asked to define his stands on abortion and gay marriage, McCain is sending a message to evangelicals: I am one of you."

    I guess considering evangelicals divorce more often than the country at large, while self-righteously lecturing everyone else about their shortcomings, there's some truth to that........

    August 16, 2008 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  13. Joan Callahan

    I am Obama supporter, but I think McCain is answering the questions more "honestly" than Obama–or less ambiguous than Obama. Obama was being too careful with his answers and McCain is being more blunt. I still won't vote for him, but I do think he is scoring more points.

    August 16, 2008 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  14. Angel

    McCain is speaking to us no at us like Obama. I find myself understanding McCain, whether I agree with him or not...I know where he stands. With Obama, I had a difficult time deciding if he believed his own answers or if he was choosing the best answer to get votes.

    Dem for McCain!!!!!

    August 16, 2008 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  15. Pat

    I was impressed that Obama thought carefully and answered questions as to how he honestly believed. McCain gave answers that he thought the audience would want and spent too much time giving stump speeches. He came across as not real. Obama came across as honest and real.

    August 16, 2008 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  16. Diane Krivo

    Obama seemed thoughtful in his responses. His approach is more positive than Mc cain's.

    As a result of this event I am leaning towards Obama

    August 16, 2008 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  17. Damon in Georgia

    "i love a good war". has been mccain's theme ,thought this was a religous conversation?

    August 16, 2008 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  18. Nancy McComas

    McCain sounds like he is answering to get the audience to applaud....focusing on his Vietnam experience more than we need to hear. His answer on the privacy issue was totally flawed as he talked about the need to keep up with the many different methods of communications the terrorist 'cyberspace' ??????
    If he says 'my friends' one more time, I'm going to be sick.
    His "anecdotes" got him off the hook for answering tough questions.
    God help us if we have a president who is so focused on winning and NOT losing a war on terror.....seems to be an obsession from the war he was in....he doesn't have the ability to be aware that it's not about losing and winning 'wars''s about uniting people around the world in non-violent ways.

    August 16, 2008 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  19. Damon in Georgia

    why are they panning to his wife and friends with a positive look for all of his responses.

    August 16, 2008 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  20. Raphael

    great insightful comments MR.S... clear and simple answers are what americans are used to perhaps because requires them think less critically at the issues. This way so called journalist or pundits like yourself can do an easier job. Mr. S... this is not the Olympic games where everythign can be reduced to a slogan or propaganda In my view Mr. McCain comments are what I can expec t of someone that just is pandering to people that dont trust him anyway. sorry sir but thats might be unambiaguous but is extremely disingenious and hypocritical. The problem seems to me not Mr. McCain or Mr. Obama which I think we all know where they stand. it is people in the media like you that have yet admit how much damage with your reporting have done to this nation.

    August 16, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  21. Bob Lueck

    Just watched the questions and answers to Senators Obama and McCain. I will vote for Bob Barr. Obama answered the questions well, while McCain campaigned for president well. Neither has explained how they will pay off the incredible debt that President Bush is leaving them.

    August 16, 2008 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  22. Julie

    It's easy to take a tough, unambiguous stand on these issues as a conservative. The concept of abortion is a black and white issue from a conservative perspective. When you are for abortion, there is a lot more to consider that requires a lot of scientific research and discussion as to when it is no longer appropriate to abort, such as when a fetus is developing brain activity. Black and white decisions are easy to make and sound strong on. Taking time and considering all factors naturally takes more time and can't be answered in a black and white fashion.

    August 16, 2008 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  23. syl parbe

    Obama has a history of being on both sides of an issue. Hence his dodging

    August 16, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  24. Duane Smith

    I was disappointed as many of the questions regarding John McCain is that he does not have his finger on the pulse of most of America. By not listening for the questions before shooting off candid and thoughtless answers just affirmed that position. Another commander in chief not listening to his constituents won't be tolerated.

    August 16, 2008 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  25. Ashley

    As a young public school teacher and a new mother, I believe that McCain's stance on education is sickening; get rid of bad teachers? We all have room for improvement, and if he believes that people who have faults in their professions should find another job, why does he still support BUSH? It is unbelievable that this nation is still caught up in the abortion/gay marriage debate that they cannot see the real moral issues that this country is facing. I guess watching Americans face life with no food or health care is not a moral issue.

    August 16, 2008 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
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