September 15th, 2008
12:27 PM ET
6 years ago

Dems hit McCain on tone of campaign

A new Obama ad is attacking the tone of McCain's campaign.
A new Obama ad is attacking the tone of McCain's campaign.

(CNN) – Democrats stepped up their offensive to paint John McCain and his team as deliberately dishonest Monday, as Barack Obama’s campaign released a new ad that accuses the Republican nominee of “deception,” and the Democratic National Committee launched a Web site tracking GOP “lies.”

“What happened to John McCain?” asks the announcer in the 30-second spot, “Honor.”

The ad quotes commentators calling the Arizona senator’s ads “vile” and filled with "dishonest smears" from a "disgraceful, dishonorable campaign."

“After voting with Bush 90 percent of the time, proposing the same disastrous
economic policies... It seems ‘deception’ is all he's got left,” says the announcer. The Obama campaign said the ad was running on national cable and in “key” states.

Monday morning in Jacksonville, McCain blamed Obama for the increasingly brutal tone on the trail. “Senator Obama's been saying some pretty nasty things about Governor Palin and me,” he said. “...That's ok. He can attack if he wants, but all the insults in the world aren't going to bring change to Washington.”

Last week, Obama’s spokesman used similar language to describe McCain and his campaign ads, accusing the Arizona senator of “cynically running the sleaziest and least honorable campaign in modern presidential campaign history.” On Sunday, former Bush strategist Karl Rove criticized both campaigns, saying the recent McCain charges against Obama went “beyond the 100 percent truth test.”

The McCain campaign strongly rejects the charge, and says the judgment from the Obama team and many journalists reflects bias against the Republican nominee’s presidential bid.

As the new Obama spot debuted, the DNC launched a Web site - "Count the Lies" – focused on statements from McCain and his surrogates. Democrats pointed to 51 so far since McCain effectively captured the Republican nomination.

The McCain campaign quickly responded. “As Americans face economic uncertainty, it is clear that Barack Obama would sooner hurl insults than discuss his record of seeking higher taxes during a down economy, opposing additional off-shore drilling to reduce energy prices and voting the partisan line nearly 100 percent of the time," said McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds. "This latest ad by Barack Obama is a desperate effort to move away from talking about his thin, but alarming record on the issues, and it isn’t going to reform Washington or strengthen our economy.”


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (345 Responses)
  1. M

    You mean to say... "Since McCain effectively captured the REPUGLICAN" nomination.

    September 15, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  2. Lynne In Illinois

    "In a democracy, you get the government you deserve." All of voters who voted for George Bush are going to vote for John McCain. I guess they deserve gas at over $4 a gallon, and an economy that's on its way to a recession. Too bad they're going to take the rest of us with them on their way down. A vote for John McCain is another vote for the policies of George W. Bush.

    How can anyone vote for the Republicans this election after the way this country has been led by a Republican over the past eight years is beyond me....

    Obama/Biden in '08!

    September 15, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  3. Lori

    Because that's the only thing McCain has.
    He has no ideas or solutions for the issues facing America.
    You Never hear him talk about solutions.

    September 15, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  4. Vincent

    Just on a side note. The VVA in their latest issue has taken issue with John McCain. Normally they don't voice their opinions either way as it is a Veterans news source.

    September 15, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  5. politicjock

    In running the sleaziest campaign since South Carolina in 2000 and standing by completely debunked lies on national television, it's clear that John McCain would rather lose his integrity than lose an election.

    September 15, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  6. facts are facts

    What does it matter how many lies John McCain tells it's common knowledge this is an integral part of the GOP policies and platform.

    No one cared about the Bush/Cheney lies to justify invading Iraq or their many domestic lies about their justice department cover ups or their cover up on the Valerie Plane fiascal.

    History tells us the better or more proficient a liar a politician is the better chance he has at getting elected. Remember the recession is just mental and Americans are simply a bunch of whiners and judging from the recent polls that is not a lie.

    September 15, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  7. Aaron from Battleground Ohio

    For the first time in my life, I'm authentically scared as to what our lives will be like in 5 years. I often wonder if this is how people felt before the Great Depression. Let me say this...it took a Democrat to get this county out of that mess, and it's going to take another one to get us out of this one.

    September 15, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  8. Ron

    he his desperately trying to save the country from a person the media will not vett. but knows they should.

    September 15, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  9. Ed, Santa Fe NM

    McBush is a sleaze merchant and never answers a straight question with a simple answer.... A BLIZZARD OF WORDS to hide the truth.

    LIES LIES LIES LIES LIES LIES

    September 15, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  10. Tom Soppe

    Good for Obama. Tell the truth about what a liar and right-winger McCain is.

    Do the media's job for them, even as they make sure more and more people are fooled into voting GOP again, like they do this time every election year.

    September 15, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  11. John in Ohio

    "As the new Obama spot debuted, the DNC launched a Web site — "Count the Lies" – focused on statements from McCain and his surrogates. Democrats pointed to 51 so far since McCain effectively captured the Democratic nomination."

    Nice editing CNN.

    Should read
    Democrats pointed to 51 so far since McCain effectively captured the Republican nomination.

    September 15, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  12. let there be truth!

    it is do or die! Obama be on the notice ! McCain is 72 you are 47 he has 1 chance and it does`nt matter if he can`t use computer or email. he just want to be the president! he might not know much about economy who cares! all he wants is to be the MAN, it does not matter who is the VP all he wants is the White House. He might have 7-9 Houses everywhere , even though you just lost yours, all he wants is the one on penn ... ave.
    Look young Obama , all he has is just one chance, no need for change. HE IS THE REFORMER! NOT A CHANGER! ha ha ha ha ...

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  13. Ben C

    Um... is it me or did CNN just suggest John McCain captured the Democratic nomination?

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  14. Scott Tucson

    Simply do your research on Obama and you may have second thoughts. Do you really want higher payroll taxes to pay for his pie in the sky programs? Check out his voting record, what little he has shouldn't take you too long and see what he had voted for, it might shock you.

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  15. berliner49

    It's about time they call him out. There should be a law against that much lying by someone who is so desperate to become president. That alone should ban him from running. How long and how far is his "hero" syndrome going to last, He's a liar and a cheater of the worst kind and all, and I mean all Americans that continue to buy in on this are the same liars and cheaters.

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  16. Mccain Palin=Bush

    Gooooooood Job Democrats Finally My Campaign Contributions are Being used appropriately about time Obama and Biden should come out this Week swinging Like in any other Fight is this Country Obama Biden are starting to realize that these Republicans Don't Care about the TRuth they will lie anyway? Obama Biden Keep fighting for the American People and YOu will Win this Election!

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  17. Jackie in Dallas

    When even Karl Rove says that you are running a bad campaign, you are in deep doo-doo! Why won't McCain talk about the real issues? Because in his 30 years in government, he has consistently voted for special interest groups, and against the very people he prides himself (and heaven knows, talks enough about) on being ... veterans. Here is a man who talks incessantly about being a POW (as if that automatically makes you a leader), but who voted against major bills that were created to help the VA and the VA hospitals which have suffered from chronic underfunding by the current administration, and whose advisors on the economy are the very people who got us into this mess! He's run a sleazy, bitter campaign, after promising to run a clean one, has flip-flopped so often we ought to plug him into the national power grid to get some of the benefits from his perpetual motion, and who has attacked the other candidates personally rather than on the issues this entire election! Yuck, if we actually get him as president, we have to find a way to survive four more years of this and I'm not sure we CAN!

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  18. joe

    Obama is NO different in his sleezy tactics.

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  19. Erik

    The Democrats have finally decided to fight back against the McCain attack ads with attack ads of their own. THIS is what wins elections in America today. Sad but true.

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  20. To Obama supporters...

    your guy lost me and millions like me back with Rev Wright...

    Obama will never recover from that!

    September 15, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  21. Billy in NJ

    Karl Rove said that!
    Wait, I see a pig flying and it has lipstick!

    Enough finger pointing.
    Obama/Biden in 08!

    September 15, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  22. ajks

    McCain said on the View that he would not have these types of ads if Obama had met with him in Town Hall meetings like McCain wanted him to do. Talk about a bully and what he does if he does not get his way. Looks like a leader–NOT!!!!!

    This is an independent for Obama!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 15, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  23. Mari

    I had to respond. Voting in Black and White!! C'mon, its ignorant comments like that that will always hinder this country! It's 2008 and the color of ones skin should not matter – AND – Obama is black AND white!! So where does he fit in???

    September 15, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  24. sa

    we need more ads like this, make the republicans accountable

    September 15, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  25. Allen Hussein

    It's about time for Obama to hit McCain on the banking crisis and that his top financial advisor, Phil "nation of whiners" Gramm wrote the current banking legislation leading to this mess. Go for the jugular B.O.!

    September 15, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
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