September 16th, 2008
07:18 PM ET
6 years ago

Fiorina's comment called 'Biden-like'

Fiorina said neither McCain or Palin are qualified to run a company.

Fiorina said neither McCain or Palin are qualified to run a company.

(CNN) - Top McCain-Palin official Carly Fiorina is facing criticism from some within the campaign for a day of what they call "very Biden-like" comments, after the former Hewlett-Packard CEO told two separate interviewers that neither member of the Republican ticket would be capable of running a company.

Democratic VP nominee Joe Biden is noted for his off-the-cuff gaffes.

Asked by a St. Louis radio station whether she thought Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin could run a company like Hewlett-Packard, Fiorina responded: "No, I don't.

“But that's not what she's running for. Running a corporation is a different set of things."

Asked about that remark on MSNBC, she made the same unprompted assessment of the GOP presidential nominee. "I don't think John McCain could run a major corporation."

She also said she did not believe Democrats Barack Obama or Joe Biden had the right business background either.

But with the economy center stage in the campaign, the words that gave Democrats easy fodder to attack the Republican ticket.

A top McCain official contacted by CNN said, on condition on anonymity, "No big deal, but not how you get on the surrogate all-star team. Very Biden-like."

“This campaign source said Fiorina would be discouraged from additional media interviews.

Another top campaign adviser was far less diplomatic.

"Carly will now disappear," this source said. "Senator McCain was furious." Asked to define "disappear," this source said, adding that she would be off TV for a while – but remain at the Republican National Committee and keep her role as head of the party’s joint fundraising committee with the McCain campaign.

Fiorina was booked for several TV interviews over the next few days, including one on CNN. Those interviews have been canceled.

A third source said "it was another bad day for her, and important people are mad because the timing is horrible… But I would not necessarily buy the Siberia storyline."

Fiorina has forced the campaign off message before. In July, she told reporters women often express frustration over the fact many health insurance plans cover Viagra but not birth control medication.

"Let me give you a real, live example, which I've been hearing a lot about from women. There are many health insurance plans that will cover Viagra but won't cover birth control medication. Those women would like a choice," she said.

It was a topic McCain wasn’t as keen to talk about. "I certainly do not want to discuss that issue," he said, when reporters asked if he shared that view.” That comment, and the pause that preceded it, captured headlines for days.

Filed under: Carly Fiorina • John McCain
soundoff (711 Responses)
  1. Amy

    With friends like that who needs enemies? I guess McCain/Palin can't script her tightly enough so she's not good enough to speak for them anymore...

    Where oh where did the honorable John McCain of 2000 go? I sure miss him! If I saw a glimmer of him in this campaign it would be a much tougher decision...

    September 16, 2008 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  2. Luke

    You know who REALLY can't run a company? Carly Fiorina.

    September 16, 2008 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  3. Disgusted in NC

    This dame, who was sacked from Hewlett Packard after ruining it, left with a $25 million golden parachute. Just another bunch of bull from the dishonest and two faced republican posse who wasn't qualified to effectively run a business either.

    September 16, 2008 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  4. Carla

    This Rep. campaign has stumbled and bumbled . . . it's over.

    September 16, 2008 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  5. Dayahka

    Thanks, Lady. You hit the nail on the head, but now you're going to be locked out, the way anyone who speaks the truth is locked out. Palin does not have the maturity, the judgment, or the vision to be in the position that that flake, McCain, put her in. And McCain?? The man who lost 5 navy aircraft in four accidents (3 caused by pilot error) and one combat mission before collaborating with the enemy so he could get lenient treatment? That flake?

    September 16, 2008 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  6. Dollar Bill

    She should know, she is an expert at failing, for someone who was fired, she has a lot of nerve to talk

    September 16, 2008 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  7. JOfromATLforObamaBiden





    September 16, 2008 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  8. Sage

    dane September 16th, 2008 10:08 pm ET-wrote

    Brian Wrote – "P.s. Obama is running a $30 million/month campaign and he's doing a rather good job at it. I'd trust him with our economy over McCain, Palin or Ms. CEO Fiorina.'

    If that is all you got in regards to experience you dont see that as a problem? This is the dumbest logic i have ever heard, do you really believe he is running the campaign by himself? yikes
    do you really think a President or a CEO run the entire country or company by his/her self?that is the dumbest "come back"i have heard since McCain saying "he" is "change". yikes is right, oh if you are interested in learning more about Obama, just go to the website, you will find not only experience, but good Keating 5 or Trooper-gate there...LOL dane...where are these people coming from

    September 16, 2008 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  9. Joan

    Yeah, Palin, now Fiorina avoid the serious questions by serious journalists. And McCamps are accusing Ophrah of not inviting Palin.
    Those cunning repubs attempt to scapegoating Ophrah. Disgusting.

    September 16, 2008 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  10. Speider

    McCain: Knock-knock!

    Palin: I won't answer that!

    September 16, 2008 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  11. Joseph, Los Angeles

    Republicans eating their own... The thing is, she wasn't reading a teleprompter or a prepared speech with redundant talking points throughtout prepared by one of their writers. She spoke the truth, and the Republicans can't handle the truth.

    To bad she's still supporting that ticket. Because in reality, Obama and Biden are ready to run this country and create a transparent government again.

    September 16, 2008 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm |
  12. Obama Inevitable Win

    This comes from the woman that almost ran HP into the ground. Hey Bush is not the worst CEO in America. Go figure!

    September 16, 2008 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  13. stephanie

    Honor comes with Honesty...something McCain-Palin can't buy or fake.

    September 16, 2008 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  14. Independent, white female !

    Great, even their supporters do not believe they have what it takes to run a major company, imagine running the country. We are in toruble if Mccain/Palin even get close to the white house.

    September 16, 2008 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  15. OB FL

    Please be aware that there are many Americans with disabilities who can use a computer by the grace of technology.

    Fiorina exposed the truth about McCain/Palin. If their own surrogate would not entrust them to run a company, they do not seem the correct people to run an entire country.

    I trust Obama/Biden to direct America in a positive new direction.

    September 16, 2008 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  16. Romney/Fiornana 08 why not?

    I think that should have been the ticket all along this election. McCain forgot the #1 issue is the economy. Obama was really not qualified, what does he know about economics? Biden was the worst choice for VP, should have been Bill Richardson, who is outside from Washington D.C. Obama and Biden are both Washington. McCain should have realized that he his too old for 73, I would have retired that age and enjoyed life retirement by now. Romney and Fiornana would have been a perfect ticket. They both know how to run a business, and both know how to manage that money. Which I'm stuck in the middle voting for these two circus clowns from both parties.

    September 16, 2008 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  17. Sherry

    Wow, she can sit back with Palin , since she isn't permitted to do interviews either . . . unless McCain & his flunkies loosen the leash a bit. They won't do that because they are afraid everyone will be in no doubt just how unqualified to be VP is is. At least Fiorina answered the question honestly.

    September 16, 2008 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  18. Cathy in MD

    I'm tired of these McCain puppets lying through their teeth. You can see in their faces and through their phony, misplaced smiles that even they don't believe what they're saying. They have no options, though. They are stuck with McCain/Palin and are forced to pretend - just as they did with George W. Bush - that the Emperor has clothes.

    September 16, 2008 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  19. K2

    Isn't it lovely when a statement that none of them (McCain, Obama, Palin, Biden) could run a business gets parsed into this story. And the title referring to "Biden-like", what the heck is that? Most Americans are asking "Who's Biden"?

    Also, if the US government were a business, most CEOs would fire the entire Congress for being worthless.

    September 16, 2008 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  20. lil

    mccain might not be able to tie his shoes or comb his hair but he
    sure know how to approve negative campaign commericals and
    tell lies.

    September 16, 2008 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  21. K2

    >"P.s. Obama is running a $30 million/month campaign
    >and he's doing a rather good job at it.
    >. I'd trust him with our economy

    Wow, that's a train of thought I never saw coming. If someone is spending record amounts of other people's money and is losing, that's not a bandwagon you want to jump on. He has more than proven his ability to be a "tax and spend liberal".

    September 16, 2008 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  22. Bob, Ohio

    At least Joe Biden didn't run Hewlett-Packard into the ground.

    The next time you clowns at McSame HQ want to compare one of your surrogates to Joe Biden, suggesting his name is some kind of comical slur, maybe you should consider that Joe Biden has been a stellar example of dignity and honor in Washington DC, while your candidates have so many skeletons in their closets it would make OJ Simpson blush.




    September 16, 2008 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm |
  23. Is Palin guilty of abuse of power? Why won't she let the troopergate investigation continue?

    Fiorina, just come clean and tell the truth about the fact that neither mccain nor palin are qualified, that way you can at least sleep at night knowing you have cleared your conscience and stopped being a part of the lie machine called the republican campaign.

    September 16, 2008 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  24. Dan,Texas

    Cant teach an old dog new tricks.Putting lipstick on John McCains campain changes nothing.

    September 16, 2008 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  25. DFoster Georgia

    There are so many people that have started succsful businesses that didn't have much education but those people went on to have great business sense. So ... what would make her think that any of these candidates couldn't do the same? Elitist!!

    September 16, 2008 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
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