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. Adam

    So when Obama goes and has his sit down conversations with the evils of this world, is he going to remember what he needs to talk about, is he going to need to bring note cards with him? if it isn't written down for him, he has no idea what to say.

    August 17, 2008 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  2. GPM

    Mcain was surely briefed before the "debate", he had ready made answers to all the questions and some even had the stories to go with the question. Sometimes he did not wait to until the interviewer had even asked the question until he answered.

    The guy is NOT that verbally swift on his feet unless he had been rehersed.

    By God's will McCain's "debate cheat sheet" will become publically known to the American people. ..You shall reap what you sow.

    August 17, 2008 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  3. Max

    As usual, I'm disappointed that we only get to hear from the two parties that have monopolized the system to bring us where we are today. I would have loved to hear from some of the "third party" candidates, particularly since this is the kind of stage that is intended to be fully informative to a significant block of voters.

    Nevertheless, I'm a little surprised that people are touting McCain's quick answers as a necessarily good thing. What it says to me is that he hasn't put all that much thought into each of the issues, and is content with ignoring their complexities. The "Is there evil in this world?" question is a great example that could have been taken in many ways. McCain took the easy route to quickly answer "evil must be defeated" in the context of Al Qaeda. Obama (though sacrificing his typically fluid speaking rhythm) at least gave the question some thought beyond the obvious.

    It just seemed that McCain fell back a bit too much on his generic stump stories - the Vietnamese guard who drew a cross in the sans, the bear DNA joke, how we've supposedly "won" in Iraq already yet should not return home. There was a major deficit in unique thought in McCain's answers, which I found a little bit disappointing.

    August 17, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  4. PAW, CA

    The same smug look I have witnessed from bush for the last 7 + years.....McClone is scary in his attitude

    August 17, 2008 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  5. educator in AL

    Terri in FL is absolutely correct about our founding fathers and the establishment of our government on the principals of enlightenment.
    The founders were, indeed, suspicious of an organized, government-sponsored religion (see British history), the same way we are suspicious of the Taliban!

    By the way, I'm a Christian. However, I am offended by the neo-cons and others who insist on the "faith and values" dialogue as a legitimate process for vetting a candidate. I have faith, and I have values. They are personal, and I'll keep them that way. The founding fathers chose to do so. Obama wisely chooses to do so as well.

    Now, let's get down to an intelligent, serious discussion about the BIG issues. We've got a lot of work to do.

    August 17, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  6. Texas Teacher, Houston

    Thank you, Crowley, for letting us know that McCain was on his game!

    I tired of Bush's game, I don't think this country can handle McCain picking it up and running with it. That is exactly what he will do.

    I don't want a President who "plays games" and "has fun with elections!"

    Give me the serious candidate who has some real answers to questions that concern all of us, not just canned answers and old stories that he has rehearsed over and over again. There was nothing of substance in anything McCain had to say. He was on his game all right.... same ole, same ole.

    The conversation with Warren only solidified my decision to vote for Obama!

    August 17, 2008 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  7. Dick in Statesboro

    McCain gave us bombast and crowd-pleasing and over-used story lines, and any resemblance of his responses to questions asked was purely coincidental. Obama did his share of crowd-stroking also, but at least he gave thoughtful and honest opinions on complex subjects before an audience predisposed against him.

    August 17, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  8. Mc same Straight?

    YAH THINK ??

    MC SAME WOULD STOP BEING CRITICAL OF DNA RESEARCH ON BEARS IF IT RESULTED IN A CURE FOR SKIN CANCER...

    PROBLEM IS HE CANT THINK THAT DEEPLY.. :P

    August 17, 2008 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  9. R

    I'm a democrat, but let's be fair. Why is everyone saying McCain was listening to Obama's Q&A? This was set for him not to hear anything.

    IMO McCain did a better job, but I still won't vote for him. I'm tired of the republicans thinking it's alright to have a war.

    August 17, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  10. jackie

    mccain answered the questions before they were asked. hewas spoon fed. rev warren asked the candidates not to give stump like responses mccain disregarded the questions and gave his boilerplate answers.i thought david gergan was smarter than that he didnt even pick up on the fact mccain already had the questions.

    August 17, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  11. LOvE MY USA

    MCain on a one to one with BO came out on top! Great job John!

    August 17, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  12. Juha

    McCain showed why he is the best choice for the America. In the current
    turbulent world, I just can not see how anybody dare to vote Obama.

    August 17, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  13. Gene

    McCain was on his game? McCain blew his cover asking the pastor when they're gonna get to the Supreme Court Justice question.... and the pastor laughing it off saying that's coming up.

    Any question that McCain knew the questions that were gonna be asked?

    August 17, 2008 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  14. Gail AL.

    I think when people see them together, their mines will be made up, MCcain made Obama look like a first grader. Obama dodged the questions as best he could. MCcain was quick to the point, answered every question. Let's get on with the debates, it's about time somebody turned this train around. GO MCCAIN THANK GOD THEIRS STILL HOPE FOR OUR COUNTRY.

    August 17, 2008 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  15. Meg

    Those of you who are criticizing McCain's interview are really disturbing. I love how all over these CNN blogs everyone whines and cries about how people are so quick to judge Obaman, and everyone's out to get your candidate. McCain ABSOLUTELY answered all the questions he was asked tonight. He didn't dance around anything, he gave very direct answers. If you know what you believe in and stand for, it doesn't take long to answer these hard questions.
    Obama was not the same. Now, I don't even want to address the issues, just how disgusted I am with you avid Obama supporters– absolute hypocrites. Give credit where credit is due. If you don't like a political position on subject– address that– I'm sick of hearing how everyone thinks the other guy is garbage without listening to the words coming out of his mouth.
    I

    August 17, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  16. Mc same Straight?

    HEY..!

    HOW CAN SOMEONE BE PRO LIFE & PRO WAR???

    August 17, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  17. lou

    McCain united the Dems in 1 hour .What are you HRC voters going to do now. You heard him last night. A 72 year old man is gonna tell you what to do with your body and your life. It's your body let them hear your voice. Ready to overturn Roe vs wade ? Ready for war with the whole world ? Please ,America. Don't be stupid this time. lets show the right wing that America is still free. Obama 08

    August 17, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  18. Kathy

    After reading news about how great McCain was in that forum, I was a little apprehensive about Obama's part. I shouldn't have been. Obama was FAR superior; he talked to the questioner and answered him; McCain was just looking for opportunities to get his campaign spiel in.

    August 17, 2008 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  19. Gail AL.

    I think when the debates start, people will see how much more intelligent MCcain is then Obama, Obama dances around the issues, while MCcain gives a straight answer, it's quit clear to me whose the best candidate, that's a no brainer. GO MCCAIN MCCAIN WILL TURN THIS TRAIN AROUND.

    August 17, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  20. lou

    WAR ,War ,War...that is all McCain knows oh and Abortion. How bout answering the questions old man.Oh and HOW did your first marriage "END"? You CHEATED on your wife with a Rich,younger women. You Republicans DISGUST me . Hypocrites all of you.

    August 17, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  21. Fay Tx

    Robert... Well, of course he was on his game. The game was different once McCain entered: he didn't really talk about faith at all, he rattled off campaign talking points, and he clearly got the questions in advance. .......I AGREE!!!

    August 17, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  22. Lisa Salt Lake City, Utah

    McCain knew the questions that were coming. Maybe he couldn't hear the answers Obama gave in his soundproof room – but it doesn't mean he didn't have the questions to look over. Why was he prepare to answer questions before they were asked?

    August 17, 2008 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  23. Michael Templer

    I think at this point this blog forum here is not useful anymore

    it is full of rhetoric by hacks on both sides of the spectrum

    and used for misinformation

    they both looked good with contrast in styles

    with pretend independents

    if you made your decision based on just this forum

    you are an idiot

    most importantly you did get information with out attacks

    August 17, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  24. Jeffrey G. Brown

    SNORE...

    August 17, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  25. realbobsemt

    Mccain rocked the questions and answered quickly BECAUSE he did not have to think about how to spin and word the responses!!!as an independent voter thats what i want. i have decided!!

    August 17, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
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