August 17th, 2008
11:18 AM ET
6 years ago

Crowley: McCain was on his game

McCain won over the Saddleback crowd.
McCain won over the Saddleback crowd.

LAKE FOREST, California (CNN) - During a break, someone yelled: "We love you John." In fact, McCain was on his game, doing better than I thought he would, given that faith is not his most favorite subject to discuss in public. And in fact, it does seem that the crowd is greeting him every bit as warmly as they did Obama. (Although: as far as I can see, the two Obama supporters who told me they were forced to turn their t-shirts inside out left a while ago.)

Act Two is over - and McCain gets huge applause, and a standing ovation.


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (788 Responses)
  1. katiec

    This woman is not a political reporter. She is a Mccain lacky.
    Cnn, how can you let biased people such as this hav e the
    headlines?? You are truly losing all credibility as respectible
    news media.
    You have pandered to Mccain since day one. You do not
    give your viewers enough credit for being intelligent. We
    afre sick of it!!

    August 17, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  2. Brian, OR

    McCain, my freinds, reminds me of a used car salesman. I don't trust anyone who will call me freind without knowing me. Obama on the other hand came across as thoughtful and sincere.

    Also, when McCain was talking tough aboout Russia and their invasion of Georgia, why didn't Warren ask him the question on everyone's mind: Does the U.S. have any moral authority to complain about invading a country and attempting to enact regime change when the U.S. did the same thing in Iraq? A war of choice that was undertaken without provocation and which McCain has supported from the begining.

    August 17, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  3. Deb, Allentown, PA

    I never really thought I'd find a candidate worse than GWB, but McCain proved himself worthy of the honor last night. He was smarmy, patronizing, condescending and obviously had answers well in advance. He also confused Rwanda and Darfur, completely avoided the adultery question and pandered to the right-wing audience.

    I hope reasonable, thoughtful people will see that BO carefully considered his answers and viewed things in terms of gray rather than plain black and white.

    My husband and I have already started figuring out what other country we can move to in the horrible event that McCain is elected. I refuse to live in a place where my daughter can not terminate a pregnancy that results from rape, and where my children may be drafted to fight a war resulting from a hot-headed temper and refusal to negotiate. That's what Straight Talk Johnnie will give us.

    August 17, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  4. vam

    Kool aid drinkers are sooo predictable. "McCain knew the questions ahead of time"...McCain spoke to the audience instead of to Rick...McCain spoke too quickly. blah blah blah. McCain answered the questions directly because he was telling the truth and speaking from his heart and experience. Obama was quote..",thoughtful, listens and gathers information carefully before responding to the carefully worded questions." That's because Obama can't speak without his teleprompter and has no true values or experiences to draw on. His slow stammering answers wasn't because he was noble but because he was trying to figure out how to answer so that he can stand on both sides of the issue. "I'm pro-life, but pro-choice" Obama talked at (as in the direction of) the pastor because he was lying. The pastor didn't have this forum so that "he" could ask these questions for "himself" but so that "the people" the ones you think are unimportant..could ask these questions and get answers to "their" questions. Remember, the pastor said he got thousands of questions from the "people" to ask these candidates. So McCain was the one addressing and answering questions of the "people" who are the ones who asked the questions. Obama won't agree to a debate with McCain because Obama knows he can't go one on one with McCain without getting his rear end handed to him. You watch..Obama will do everything he can to get out of the 3 debates they have to have because he's a phoney and he knows it.

    August 17, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  5. Montana is Obama Country

    yeah... WAR...GAMES...!

    No faith in people.. only war..

    August 17, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  6. annie

    I love it when obama has lost at something – the whole obama campaign 'cries foul'. obama did not fully answer any question. As he normally does, he hedged, hemmed, hawed around every question.

    McCain did an excellent job and obama stared at the floor and certainly cannot think on his feet. The only way he can look up and out at the audience is if there is a teleprompter there. He can never seem to look anyone in the eye for more than a brief second. A sign someone is not telling the truth!

    August 17, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  7. RJ, CA

    One thing was clear: Obama just doesn't like to COMMIT on any issue. That works for a college lecturer who wants to "challenge" his students to think for themselves - in a safe academic environment. But it is NOT the sign of a good leader - who must make decisions quickly and decisively - in the not-so-safe REAL world.

    And, yes, of course this audience was a pro-McCain audience - just as a union audience is ALWAYS pro-Obama.

    If Obama had agreed to joint townhall meetings with McCain, we would have had a more equitable picture - but he refused to do that. So quit your whining, Libs.

    August 17, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  8. Mike

    Oh what might have been. Imagine how Hillary would have handled the questions on education, orphaned children, and "Why she wanted to be President" (think universal healthcare). Her depth, experience and record would have been a much more appropriate contrast to McCains pandering and war stories.

    August 17, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  9. Don Colony14Author, Peruibe, Brasil

    McCain's answers were direct and confident. He knew some people would disagree with him, but that didn't stop him from saying what he believes is right. Obama, on the other hand, squirmed and wriggled, and had to lie (hence all the downward gazes) and distort his own positions in his eagerness to avoid portraying himself for what he is: a recycled 1960s radical leftist. Yes, the Obama fans will say their boy-wonder did great. That's a given, as no one expects them to change their minds (or develop them). The problem for Obama is the middle-ground voter who may not yet have made up his mind – last night a lot of them decided to vote for McCain.

    August 17, 2008 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  10. RFO

    Are we really that stupid?

    Complex problems require complex solutions. To not want to put a dollar figure on what McCain considers rich was a joke! To state that 5 Supreme Court judges, whom happen to differ with McBush, two of which McCain voted for, should not be on the Supreme Court is a threat to our democracy at its core.

    John McCain was an honorable man, was being the key word! A vote for McCain is a backwards vote, we must not make that mistake, again!

    August 17, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  11. Tim E

    Glad to see the "axis of evil" was dealt with head on by Obama. He sounded intelligent in recognizing that a lot of evil can be done by those professing to do good. And he did not begin a stump speech about Bush in the process, which showed great restraint on his part. I don't understand McCain's "to the gates of hell" pledge. Did he mean literally that the President of the U.S. would pursue OBL? Or just that America would never stop in its relentless pursuit of OBL? If he means America, John has had 7 years as a U.S. Senator to make that a front burner, purpose-driven policy of the U.S., and failed to get it done. If he means POTUS, it sounds pretty infantile.

    August 17, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  12. Alice in Florida

    John – you GOT my vote!

    I am a former true-blue Democrat

    Once Barack played the race card, he lost me, and he will NEVER get me back

    In the meantime, I have grown to respect you, and I NEVER thought I would say that about ANY Republican!!!!!!!!!!

    I just really do respect you now.....

    WOW! You could have been released, but you chose not to be

    That says a LOT about the man you are

    Of course, Bam Bam continues to hide from actual debates and/or town hall meetings, whilst the main stream media continues to WORSHIP Himself and report on how "adorable" bony butt looks in a bathing suit

    Bam Bam was his USUAL stuttering self when asked TOUGH questions – I could almost see his pea-brained mind asking "WHAT would Hillary say??????"

    Don't get me wrong – I WILL throw up after I vote for you, but vote for you I WILL

    I HATE the Republican Party and EVERYTHING they stand for

    But I HATE Disenfranchizing Obama, Pelosi, and the DNC MORE

    I shall vote for the lesser of two evils

    August 17, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  13. vam

    Obama's answer to the moral failure was lame. He used the "I tried drugs and drank while I was a teenager" ploy. That's like saying, I once stole something when I was little. He knew he wouldn't get much flack over his teenager answer because most people can't point the finger at him for that as they have probably done the same thing. McCain, on the other hand, answered like a man and gave an answer that is a little harder for "people" to forgive him for. How many marriages can survive when one spouse is being held prisoner and tortured everyday and not knowing if they are dead or alive. How many of you people could survive five years of torture. How can you all be so sure that his wife didn't cheat on him during that time? The things he suffered through changed him and when he did finally come home, he was not the same man his wife married. Perhaps it was a mutual decision that the love was just not there anymore. How can you people point the finger at him for 'using his POW experience for an advantage" when you are using the same thing to belittle his service to this country for YOUR rights and freedoms. You say he doesn't talk about his "personal" stuff just military...the military IS his personal stuff. He started his military career at 17 years old. What did Obama do for his country? What has Obama done for YOU

    August 17, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  14. John W., Milwaukee, WI

    John McCain knock it out of the ball park!

    GO JOHN!

    August 17, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  15. Larry Greiner

    McCain just gave stump speeches. He is direct and hawklike, just like he pursued Cindy while his wife was ill with cancer.

    August 17, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  16. Liz

    Thanks Mary in Cleveland, Ohio
    I have been debating within myself since last night. u just solved it for me.

    Mary wrote..
    August 16th, 2008 10:17 pm ET

    I thought John McCain used his "war hero" status too much. I mean, the guy did nothing but brag about himself, and didn't reveal much of anything about his personal beliefs. It was as if he memorized the answers to the questions.

    On the other hand, Obama showed introspection and humility in discussing very, very personal feelings. Also, in contrast to McCain, Obama "thought" about his answers and I feel more secure with a President of the U. S. who is able to and does think about his answers. Call me crazy, but memorizing answers doesn't put one at the "top of their game" when the game is a responsibility of such importance

    August 17, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  17. vam

    Evil is a test from God??? If it's a test from God then how do you answer that test? You can confront evil without defeating it, but you can't defeat evil without confronting it.

    August 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  18. ED FL

    Typical cosumate bad boy. The minute he gets caught with his hand in the cookie jar[The BIg Cookie Jar] Then he turns to religion for an exit or an excuse as to why he did it. The old war monger is pretty slick at CYA and if you do not understand what the letters stand for ask any politician Who has abused every vice that there ever was Or you shouldn't be allowed to vote.

    August 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  19. Obama supporter:White, 60 year old woman

    CNN needs to fact check Daily Ko: Cross in the Dirt" Story Stolen from Solzhehenitsyn". Do some investigation rather than blindly repeating what a candidate states as fact.

    This election is too important to be treated like a game!!

    August 17, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  20. Chipster

    Sen. McCain believes human rights begin at conception? So, from the moment of conception, something that may or may not make it to term has rights of inheritance? I wonder what the consequences of that will be. It actually got a little comical to see how many ways McCain could find to pander to the radical religious right. It was easy though because there was no "truth meter" running.

    Oh, and Ms. Crowley, Sen. Obama also received a standing ovation. Your report must have been trimmed. I'm sure you wouldn't have left that out intentionally. uh-huh.

    August 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  21. MIla from Pa.

    On his game?

    Well, surprise, he lifted the "cross in the sand" incident from a 1973 story by Solzhenitsyn on life in the gulags.

    Hillary rightly got called out for making up a story about being fired on at the airport. Let's see CNN and the rest of the mainstream media call out McCain for this fabrication.

    August 17, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  22. NORA, FLORIDA

    THATS EXACTLY WHAT IT WAS.......A GAME!!!! MCCAIN WILL BE THE SECOND WORST JOKE FOR PRESIDENT. PRESIDENT BUSH JR. IS HOLDING THE LEAD BY WIDE MARGINS!!!

    August 17, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  23. Jon

    Senator Obama had a real conversation with Pastor Warren. He took the time to genuinely address difficult questions with rigor and thoughtfulness. I didn't see him shooting from the hip or having a knee jerk reaction. It was a great conversation and a breath of fresh air. Pastor Warren seemed much more connected with Barack Obama on a personal level. I have a new found respect and admiration for Senator Obama - very impressive.

    August 17, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  24. Juha

    McCain was far more credible than Obama. Obama is just rhetorics.
    McCain is my choice, no doubt about that.

    August 17, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  25. Joy Hall

    John McCain won my vote last night. He was forthwright and honest on his answers. He did not have to sit and study on his answers to try to not answer the questions. Obama can't give a straight answer to anything. Obama is full of fluff. I was a Hillary supporter, but now I will vote for McCain.

    August 17, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
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