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. PA Independent

    Oh, and if she was so against it, why did she take the money?????

    September 8, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  2. Le'Dia

    Not Surpising. HAHA

    Obama/Biden '08

    September 8, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  3. Danny

    CNN, why did you delete my message. I have my right of free speech. Barack is on the run now. He is desperate. He has no substance, no resume and he can do nothing for oru country. Let him go to school now. He needs more experience.

    September 8, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  4. Charles in Cincinnati

    So, in a nutshell...

    SHE WAS FOR IT BEFORE CONGRESS KILLED IT.

    Then, and only then, was she against it.

    Wow...that's some seriously weak mavericity, there.

    September 8, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  5. Jim

    Joey from NC and the rest of you Liberals get a clue. You keep blaming Republicans for everything that went wrong in your lives the last 8 years. I'm sure you are too busy bashing to notice that the Dems control the Huse and Senate and they are just as responsible if not more. Also most Dems voted for the war or did you forget? Quit whinning and get a job like the rest of us and pay your fair share and quit asking for people who work hard to bail you out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 8, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  6. rodlang

    Obama is feeling the pressure. Palin has gotten under skin. Hillary did the same....he doens't like strong women.

    Palin vetoed the bridge...end of story.

    September 8, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  7. Nikki, Florida

    Everything in the McCain camp is a lie.

    September 8, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  8. Sue

    As a Canadian observer, not that most of our American neighbours care, I am watching with dismay how McCain has manages to reinvent himself everyday, spew lie after lie, hire a shoot-first ask-questions-later sidekick, then when pushed, waves the POW flag, and everyone believes him. Americans are not ready for change. They are bending over and holding their ankles. As a former admirer, I am thoroughly dissapointed. As a business owner that exports to the US, I have seen my dollar become stronger than yours. We are all holding out the the Dems pull through. The world is watching. It matters what we think. Your economy and national security relies on this. Obama is right. Republicans think you are stupid. I am holding out hope that you are not.

    September 8, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  9. TRBoston

    And one other point ... why do we hear about every gaffe the Obama, Biden, OR McCain make, but no news organization has commented on the fact that Sarah Palin in a speech made a statement about Fannie and Freddie that shows she doesn't know what they are or what they do?

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  10. Greg, San Francisco, CA

    From AP:
    "John McCain and Sarah Palin are criticizing Democrat Barack Obama over requesting money for his home state of Illinois even though the Alaska governor's record is mixed.

    At a rally, the Republican presidential nominee and his running mate accused Obama of requesting nearly $1 billion in earmarks.

    In fact, Obama hasn't asked for any earmarks this year and last year, he sought $311 million worth.

    Palin has cut back on pork-barrel requests, but in her two years as governor, Alaska has requested nearly $750 million, by far the largest per-capita."

    More lies from McCain. How can anyone take his candidacy seriously? 22 months and not one compelling reason to vote for McCain.

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  11. Terry

    THIS ELECTION IS VERY SIMPLE.
    ASK YOURSELF WHO IS THE MOST QUALIFIED PERSON TO BE PRESIDENT??? ITS JOHN MC CAIN.
    OBAMA DOES NOT HAVE MORE EXPERIENCE IN ANY FIELD OVER MC CAIN.
    SO ITS OVER FOR OBAMA.
    PEOPLE ARE FINALLY WAKING UP.
    LOOK AT THE POLLS
    THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  12. SCM DC

    LIes, lies, lies. We can only hope that all Americans do their research before they cast their votes on November 4th. This country can't survive another 4 years of Republican rule!

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  13. Liars

    I don't understand how these people can flat out lie and get away with it, and they continue to deny it as though they were telling the truth!

    I guess if you tell yourself something enough times it must be true!?!?!

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  14. Dejon

    I just can'nt understand how in world the American people would listen to the Republicans after the failure of the Bush Administration clearly we need to go in a new direction and we don'nt need Bush=Mccain or Cheney=Palin direction.The Only reform that Mccain/Palin is going to bring is to transform Bush/Cheney platform.

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  15. obama all the way

    For it before you are against it is NOT "I was against it". The more important piece is...

    WHERE IS THE MONEY?????? WHERE DID THAT MONEY GO???? IF YOU WERE AGAINST IS SHOULDN"T THE MONEY HAVE GONE BACK.

    CHARLIE GIBSON...ARE YOUR LISTENING??? WE WANT ANSWERS TO THESE QUESTIONS!!!!!

    Pitbulls are a stupid breed of dog aren't they?????????

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  16. Trysh, Los Angeles

    Unfortunately most Republicans don't really care about anything but winning. What happens to the country or their wallets is irrelevant. Personally, I think those who are broke and still support McCain and Palin deserve to be broke, homeless and should be the ones who are sent to war to die for a bogus war.

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  17. Republican tired of republicans

    No Jason she was for it until it became politically unpopular and THEN she opposed it. I am under no allusions that all politicians don't stretch the truth whenever it is conveniant. I am however sick and tired of the current "Carl Rove" republicans and wan't my party back. Where oh where has my REAL John Mccain gone!

    Real Republicans for OBAMA/BIDEN 08

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  18. Joe Idaho

    It really doesnt matter what the Republican's say, they always turn the campaign into a race about idologies, and smear and not the issues: Obama/biden would do good to get in the mud and call them on their lies. If mcCain/Palin win, by 2012 America will be in 3rd world status, as we are very close. Susan says on another post, 'we must win this war no matter how many lives it takes, yet just like all of the other Republican Cowards, she wont suit up! And I dont know of any american that wants America to lose this war, the issue is the lie that the president told that got us in to this war in the first place.

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  19. Your Conscience

    McSame-Pain

    Four More years.

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  20. KATHLEEN

    And men, stick by your families. It is called "lust" and you can't
    have a barracuda. You can only "dream about it." Let it GO.

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  21. Ed

    McShame is lying to and misleading the American people before he's even president. Just image what he'll do once he has that power...we've already been through 8 years of this...NO MORE!

    Vote Obama-Biden!!

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  22. Shari, NY

    Republicans may be lousy leaders but their deceptive campaign is what may keep them in the White House. Beware!

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  23. time4change

    Thats right! call it 4 what it is...A FAT LIE! THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IS FULL OF LIARS! WAKE UP AMERICA!

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  24. Senators Biden and Kerry

    Actually we were both for John McCain before we were against him.
    For the first 71 years of his life he was a magnificent, independent-minded reformer, but then he became the Republican nominee for president and now he's becoming a totally different person......

    President John McCain :-)

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  25. JO

    Oh ... she can't change her mind? Obominable flip flops every day...the surge, taxes, etc.

    September 8, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
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