September 15th, 2008
12:27 PM ET
10 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. PJ, Brookline, MA

    The problem with McCain/Palin are not only lies, but even more with getting the US less and less competitive in the world.

    Other countries will find the cure for illnesses faster than us because of not worrying about the "morality" of stem cell research.

    Our kids will sound stupid when they tell their counterparts abroad about creationism and "intelligent design" and how evolution does not exist.

    Other countries will become more competitive and less oil-dependent, since they will invest in new technologies (that we will then buy for an arm-and-leg price), instead of drilling in hurricane areas to only find a few percentiles of the world's oil reserves.

    And need I mention other countries blossoming in piece while we engage in a few more unneeded wars like Iraq?

    September 15, 2008 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  2. ProudDemocrat

    What surpises me most is the Media, they know ever thing Mccain had said and his add is lies after lies, but the media would not report it or question Mccain hard as the girls on the View did. CNN need to fire all of its whimp reporter and pundits, as a day goes by CNN is looking more of FoxNews.

    September 15, 2008 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  3. Unempressed

    McCain puts himself B4 country in this election!

    – Caved to his party's needs
    – Says Obama wants to teach 5 yr olds about sex
    – Says his use of the lipstick on a pig line 3 times against Hillary isn't the same as Obama using it
    – Repeats proven lies (bridge to nowhere, eBay, pipeline, Palin's foreign visit to Ireland, Iraq (aka never happened))
    – Anti earmarks/lobbyists? yet surrounds himself with them

    He's not stretching the truth... he's outright lieing and knows it!

    BUSH – if you repeat a lie enough times, it becomes TRUE!!!

    September 15, 2008 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  4. mary, colorado springs

    If McLoser is so concerned with the welfare of the country, why did he bring Cutesy Palin into the mix? Her experience, such as it is, is not the level needed to be Vice President. They both act like this whole election is the same as choosing the king and queen for the prom.

    Thank the powers that be for Obama and Biden, solid citizens we need to do the job.

    GO OBAMA/BIDEN 2008/2012

    September 15, 2008 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  5. sine

    How come the rest of the world knows McCain and the republicans are the sleaziest of the sleaziest, but we as Americans don't??

    Have we been so dumbed down to not know what's happening?? Have we forgotten what has happened the last 8 years ??

    If you have is a reminder of the disaster the republicans have brought upon us.

    Wake up people!

    September 15, 2008 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  6. Deb

    The only way that John McCain could stand any chance of winning the White House is by slurring & vile campaign ads. He has lost touch with reality!!!!!!!!!!!!!!...and all the S. Palin's of the world cannot help him. He is hopeless, old, bitter, & handicapped. Why doesn't he just stay home-where he belongs.

    September 15, 2008 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  7. ET from OMAHA


    September 15, 2008 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  8. jm for sc

    Actually, nothing happened to John McCain, he was dishonorable the entire time. What is in a man, will come out eventually. He want to be president so bad until he will do anything to win. When his lust forced him to go after Cindy, he put away his wife that stood by him during his POW time for her. How can he be such a hero with a past like his. You would have to be out of your mind to think McCain is the best candidate for president. He even went as far as choosing a VP whose executive experience is hiring some one else to make the decisions for her. Obama will make circles around both Palin and McCain.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 15, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  9. SPQR753

    Anybody has noticed that McCain campaign is mainly based on vague promises usually made of the trite phrase "trust me I know how to solvet his problem" (the voter is free to dd "economical", "fuel", "health care", "foreign policy" terms of his choice to complete McCain's empty promises.

    No wonder why he has to resort to smear ad....POOR OLD MAN he is short of REAL programs........

    September 15, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  10. Dave-LA

    CNN, get out of bed witht he Democrats! Are you a news organization or a paid spokesman? You are NOT unbiased in your reporting and I do not consider your reporting news. As a result, i will boycott all that is controlled by Time Warner. I no longer watch CNN and haven't for years, now.

    September 15, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  11. Phoenix

    Hey, if the American people are this stupid, I'm sorry, I don't want ANY complaints about McCain and Palin. I don't want to hear the smears, I don't want to hear from the Main Stream Media months later, I don't want to hear it. Eat it.

    September 15, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  12. OBAMA 08


    September 15, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  13. Mn MOM

    Obama should be impeached for treason. The bias media are covering for the anti-American democrats.

    September 15, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  14. GrandMa

    McCain does not have anything to say even on his add. We know him always crying about media attention and when he has it he talk about Obama. Media putting Obama under microscope and they can not find anything and now all I see McCain TV add for free in all the stations. McCain is follower and Obama is the leader. He had all week to talk about energy and all he said all the above is my plan he never give any $ or brake down on his plan he said “ALL THE ABOVE “he means Obama plans. Please ask him what his plans are about the war he just says we need to win just like a child not just like a leader. Senator Obama is a leader young like Kennedy and Celebrity like Ragan

    September 15, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  15. Ms. Brown


    Great minds talk about ideas, average minds talk about events, and small minds talk about people."

    OBAMA 08

    September 15, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  16. oneworld

    to lyndon, ca.

    your short comment is 100 % correct. The flirt of the average American voter with the far away possibility of a black president is over. Election Day is coming near! It is just to bad for the American society and the
    silent (uneducated) majority has to take the blame

    September 15, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  17. shawnee, ks

    It's about time the media held McSame accountable for his campaigns sleazy dishonest tactics I just hope the American people are listening. McSame and Sarah "world traveler" Palin would be a disaster for this country.

    September 15, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  18. Lynn

    I'm a Republican, and I have had it with the negative ads and no talk about the issues from John McCain. I also think Sarah Palin was a poor selection. You have given me no other choice; I won't be voting in November. Senator McCain has taken the low road. Don't talk to me about honor and love of country.

    September 15, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  19. Former McCain

    I used to support McCain in 2000, but he is not the same candidate now. I find his blatant lying, distortions, and fabrications, indeed, dishonorable. His perverse twist on legislation to protect young children from sexual predators was downright vile. I cannot support these less than honorable tactics for the highest office in this nation. My vote is going to Obama this year.

    September 15, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  20. Green Bay WI for Obama

    I hope both candidates–especially McCain–can start focusing on ideas and issues now instead of tearing each other down. The tone of the campaign has been disheartening and I hope the campaign shifts to issues in the coming weeks. Obama has been trying to do this, but all McCain seems to be doing is deceptively attacking.
    Obama-Biden 08'

    September 15, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  21. Felly

    Bush and McSame have shamelessly destroyed our economy. Look at the turmoil today in Wallstreet.

    September 15, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  22. Jo Anne

    I am so gald that people are finally seeing McCain and Palin for what they really ar, Two big lair together, wake up people who think they will do us good. We are going to worse off then we are now, if we don't make a change . Go Obama

    September 15, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  23. CNN - Proudly Serving Obamabots' Fantasies since 2007

    All Caps crying and cuing up the Obamabot Whaaaaambulance to mention "Karl Rove" aren't actually arguments, folks.

    Hillary 2012

    September 15, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  24. Ms. Brown


    Lies and Fabrications.. LOL!

    Obama -Biden 08, 12

    September 15, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  25. hey jason

    it's not 'low' to call a liar a liar. it's low to pretend lying is okay. you repubs are pathetic.

    September 15, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
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