September 8th, 2008
04:06 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama campaign calls McCain ad a 'lie'

New McCain television ad claims Republican VP candidate Sarah Palin stopped the “Bridge to Nowhere”.
New McCain television ad claims Republican VP candidate Sarah Palin stopped the “Bridge to Nowhere”.

(CNN) – The presidential campaigns of Barack Obama and John McCain are sparring over a new television ad claiming Republican VP candidate Sarah Palin stopped the “Bridge to Nowhere” - the infamous $400 million congressional earmark that became the ultimate symbol of excessive pork-barrel spending.

Watch: The McCain campaigns latest ad, 'The Original Mavericks'

The new McCain ad, set to air in key states, calls both the Arizona senator and Palin "original mavericks," and characterizes the Alaska governor as an ardent opponent of the 2005 bridge proposal championed by Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens connecting Ketchikan, Alaska to the Ketchikan airport on Gravina Island (Population: 50).

Several opponents of Palin, as well as the non-partisan factcheck.org, have noted the claim she was against the bridge is not entirely accurate - the Alaska governor was for the bridge during her 2006 gubernatorial bid, and did not begin opposing it until it became clear the project was doomed on Capitol Hill.

Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton went even further Monday, calling the assertion a flat out "lie."

“Despite being discredited over and over again by numerous news organizations, the McCain campaign continues to repeat the lie that Sarah Palin stopped the Bridge to Nowhere," Burton said. "McCain and Palin will say or do anything to make people believe that they will change something besides the person sitting in the Oval Office."

But McCain spokesman Brian Rogers is standing by the claim, and said the Obama campaign is launching "hysterical attacks."

“The only people ‘lying’ about spending are the Obama campaign," Rogers said. "The only explanation for their hysterical attacks is that they’re afraid that when John McCain and Sarah Palin are in the White House, Barack Obama’s nearly $1 billion in earmark spending will stop dead in its tracks."


Rogers also provided several press clips noting Palin became a critic of the bridge in her early days as governor of Alaska.

UPDATE: The McCain campaign says the Alaska Democratic Party has removed a Web page that credited Palin for killing the Bridge to Nowhere project.

"National Democrats apparently want to rewrite history and say that Palin did not kill the Bridge to Nowhere," the McCain campaign's Michael Goldfarb said.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (726 Responses)
  1. Theresa Jones, Mesa, Arizona

    All I have to say is, "It takes one to know one." Mr. Obama has been telling blatant lies to the American public for over a year. I think he should look to himself before making accusations about others.

    September 8, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  2. Epluribus

    I wish McCain/Palin all the success in obtaining the Oval Office.

    Hillary2012

    September 8, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  3. mk

    Not only did she SUPPORT the bridge, she kept the money even though the bridge was never built.
    That is the weirdest version of "thanks but no thanks" I have ever heard.
    This woman is scary. She prays for pipelines to be built.
    Thinks the war in Iraq is gods mission and thinks ALaska will be the refuge when the end of the world comes.
    This person is our potential VP?????

    September 8, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  4. bitter_in_pa

    was she under sniper fire?

    September 8, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  5. Mike in California

    if mccain is so opposed to earmarks, and will veto every bill with them as president, then why didn't he vote against every bill with them as a senator?

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  6. Peg

    Same old republican lies; lies and more lies. Dems better step up to the plate and start playing hardball -

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  7. Paul C. Palmetto Bay, FL

    The Republicans are very effective in making lies and half truths appear to flow from the lips of God.

    The definition of chutzpah is to convince the voters that only the Republican party can clean up the mess made by the Republican party.

    Fool me once....shame on you.
    fool me twice...shame on me.
    Fool me three times ... God help us all.

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  8. nate

    Palins position against the bridge is NOT A LIE! How can anyone know what is in the heart of a person? I believe that she may have been in-different to this bridge proposal at first and had no real involvement since the proponents of this project is at the Federal level. Then later on, after carefully thinking about it further, she opposed it. This same situation can be applied to Obama with his position on Georgia and Russia. He changed his position three times probably because he thought about this issue further after discussing it with his 300 advisors. The bottom line is that the bridge to nowhere was not built and Palin ultimately went against it. THE END RESULT DOES MATTER PERHAPS MORE THAN WHAT WENT ON IN-BETWEEN!

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  9. Tony

    Palin is a liar, hypocrite, and a typical two-faced republican who will say or do ANYTHING, even use her own children to get what she wants.

    Anyone who stands in this woman's way is expendable as far as she is concerned. I look forward to the hard questions that will come at her from the media and during the debates when she is she is asked to explain them.

    This woman is the epitome of greed, arrogance and selfishness and it is mind-boggling to read what women across the country, who plan to vote for she and McCain say.

    A vast majority of women in this country are like a "Stepford Wife". Easily fooled, easily led and one issue oriented. To hell with their familes, friends, country as long as they get what they want.

    There isn't enough Kool-Aid on the planet to quench the thirst of these mindless women. McCain picked her for two reasons ONLY. Becaue he think the women who are still bitter about Hillary will flock to him, giving women of this country absolutely no credit for having a brain of their own (whcih apepaers to be the case in alrge numbers), and to try and get the undecides, as well as a bunch of horny old men.

    Pathetic!! Take McCain and Obama out fo the equation and ask yourselves, "Who would you rather have negotiating with insane world leaders like the presidents of Iran, China, North Korea, etc.?", "Biden who has years of Foreign Policy experience and experience negotiating with these crazed deictators, or Palin who has NO FOREIGN POLICY EXPERIENCE at all and has never met with ANY world leader in her lfie?"

    Nice to know so many people put their familes, friends, communities and the country ahead of their own personal biases. As long as she wears a skirt that is good enough for them.

    It just proves what I have always said, "Never understimate the stupidity of the American people."

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  10. Paul

    Palin has been full of lies and half truths, yet so many people believe her and like her. Because she has a family and she is tough? That's all we know about her, other than her continous lapses of reality.

    Check her bridge to nowhere. (MEDIA PLEASE BRING ALL YOU KNOW to be FACT about her, Out in the OPEN so the American People can decide if they like her after they learn about her.) CNN is at least trying to bring to light some of the her history and beliefs. I watched FOX last night and Geraldo had three pro McCain guests on. When one of them started repeating Palin lies and half truths, he did not call her on them. Just accepted them as truth. This woman is trouble for the country and it concerns me greatly ,that this person could very well be headed to the White House and possibly sitting in the #1 chair. If your not concerned about the future of this country, under this person, I am asking you to learn all you can about her on your own if possible. I am a retired U.S. Naval Officer, and from what I know so far I truely fear for the U.S. under Palin/McCain rule.

    CNN keep going , your country needs you more than ever. CNN's Betty, Rick, and others keep digging and THANK YOU!

    I am not asking you to do anything other than find the truth and tell America.

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  11. Rtreff

    When the voters pick thru their trash talk, they will make sure McCain and Palin are on the Bridge to Nowhere.

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  12. ken

    Haven't the Dems learned anything over the last 8 years, It's time to take off the gloves and fight back or we are going to lose again.

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  13. John

    The republicans believe that if you continue to run this fabricated political ad that republicans will believe the propaganda. They're right, most people don't follow the campaign in detail, and some are simply to simple minded to follow the trail of BS to the McCain/Palin camp. Lets hope that Americans are smart enough to see that McCain is not presidential worthy, he has a below average intellect. Just like Bush....a D- academic, that's scary because we already have an example of a below average student in Bush.

    September 8, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  14. muff_diver Mccain

    what the people of america don't understand is that mccain is very good at something!

    September 8, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  15. hooey

    Alaska spent every penny of the Bridge to Nowhere money, while collecting no state income tax AND doling out checks to every Alaskan.

    Palin _enjoys_ lying. Palin is having a ball seeing whether she can sucker all of America. Palin thinks it's all a great big joke.

    3AM phone call anyone?

    September 8, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  16. Morningstar

    McCain is such an old hypocrite, I was feeling bad in 2000 when Bush and Karl Rove as well as the Republican Party played dirty to silent him. Today McCain is playing the very same dirty games against Obama. McCain lies here and there, tell half truth here and there, accuse Obama of being a celebrity and I wonder what he calls Palin? Now McCain, the old snake wants us to believe that if he is elected, then he will be different from Bush? No McSenile!

    September 8, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  17. Veridico

    You probably wont publish this one, like in the past, but I'll try anyway.
    Wasn't Obama against NAFTA before he was in favour, once he got the Dem. nomination?
    Just asking; I mean, if you want to talk about lying, then let's be fair.

    September 8, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  18. Nurse2bOh

    She is a liar. And I cannot believe some of the American people are actually believing it. The whole republican convention was a week of who could tell the biggest line of BS. And I find it amusing how they jump on the "CHANGE" bandwagon. Its almost like follow the leader. I can't wait til she debates Joe Biden. He'll eat her alive!!!! LOLOL

    September 8, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  19. just joe

    When you write a negative article about a candidate, wouldn't it be more appropriate to use quotes from the candidates themselves rather than their "campaign spokesman(woman). How the heck do you expect us to know what's on McCain's mind or Obama's mind if we have to hear it from a bunch of guys who earn their bread running the campaigns of the latter, and would tell us the sky if falling if they had to..............this is NOT news, guys.

    September 8, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  20. Lisa from VA

    Who are they polling???? If you read these comments.... they are 80% for Obama....
    I have never been polled nor do I know anyone who has. Have any of you been polled??

    September 8, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  21. S.A.M. from Virginia

    Liar Liar Liar

    September 8, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  22. Lisa

    From the Republicans to the Media they're continuing to play these dirty little cunning games they use fear to control the world in all that it does and to get the people to question the truth and look at thing the way they want them to. McCain and Palin will get the rewards of manipulation and lies. I'm not worried and I'm not afraid they must be polling those old folk while the young folk are work, attending school, and preparing ourselves to take over this crooked and perverted world they are handing down to us. All I have to say is wait and see who wins this election people who are voting for Obama don’t play those stupid manipulating game we are higher than that.

    September 8, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  23. Barbara

    The Republican Party should be called The Pinocchio Party. If this weren't such a perilous time in our nation's history, it would be almost comical.

    WAKE UP PEOPLE!

    Do a little research (factcheck.org). The FACTS speak for themselves.

    OBAMA/BIDEN '08!

    September 8, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  24. Tom in Delaware

    All you little Drama Queens are going to be disappointed when Sarah Palin answers these questions with Charlie Gibson on Thursday night.

    The Children of the Corn will jump at anything that is unseemly and turn it into 'undisputible fact'.

    To wit: On the governors plane..."I put it up on e-bay"

    The universal translators (ears to the rest of us) of the Liberal Left heard..."I SOLD it on e-bay for a profit."

    You guys crack me up...you're the best weapon the Republican Party's got...don't change a thing.

    September 8, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  25. Linda Schatzer

    T he biggest thing that I think Americans are missing and that is really scarey is that religion is becoming a part of politics...what happened to separation of religion and polictics..if McSame gets in this country is going to go back to Puritan days...they will tell us what we can and cant do with our bodies..what we can read...heck talk about socialism at it s best...so you dumb people...wake up and see what is happening...

    September 8, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
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