September 16th, 2008
12:19 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain adviser: BlackBerry a 'miracle' he 'helped create'

A McCain senior aide said Tuesday he “helped create” the Blackberry.
A McCain senior aide said Tuesday he “helped create” the Blackberry.

(CNN) – McCain senior domestic policy adviser Douglas Holtz-Eakin said Tuesday the BlackBerry mobile e-mail device was a “miracle that John McCain helped create.”

Addressing the nation’s economic crisis, Holtz-Eakin told reporters traveling with the campaign “there’s no magic solution. And I don’t think that it’s at this moment imperative to write down exactly what the plan has to be.” He also said a president isn’t someone who needs to be heavily involved in policy specifics, which should be handled by “quality” advisers, and echoed McCain’s assessment that there might be a need for a “9/11-style commission” to determine what went wrong with the nation's economy, and to issue recommendations.

He added, though, that McCain — who has struggled to stress his economic credentials this cycle - did have experience dealing with the economy, pointing to his time on the Senate Commerce Committee. Pressed to provide an example of what McCain had accomplished on that committee, Holtz-Eakin said the senator did not have jurisdiction over financial markets - then held up his Blackberry, telling reporters: “He did this.”

“Telecommunications of the United States, the premiere innovation in the past 15 years, comes right through the Commerce Committee. So you’re looking at the miracle that John McCain helped create,” said Holtz-Eakin. “And that’s what he did. He both regulated and de-regulated the industry.”

During the 2000 presidential campaign, Al Gore drew controversy when he said that during his time in Congress, he “took the initiative in creating the Internet” – based on his work promoting funding and early research in that area.

UPDATE: The Obama campaign responded to the comments minutes after they were reported. “If John McCain hadn’t said that ‘the fundamentals of our economy are strong’ on the day of one of our nation’s worst financial crises, the claim that he invented the BlackBerry would have been the most preposterous thing said all week,” said Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton.

Meanwhile, McCain senior aide Matt McDonald said that the senator "laughed" when he heard the comment.

"He would not claim to be the inventor of anything, much less the BlackBerry. This was obviously a boneheaded joke by a staffer," McDonald said.


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (509 Responses)
  1. Lisa

    LOL....LOL...LOL....LOL...LOL....

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  2. aliou FL

    Mccain is a blueberry inventor, Palin is an oil expert. his wife is a bear expert, and her husband is a moose catcher expert. What a team!!!!!!!!!

    May be fiorina can put them to use.... in a museum.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  3. t

    Research In Motion is a Canadian company. Maybe he should concentrate on Americans

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  4. Gary Preston, Annandale, VA

    This is really getting ridiculous. Tomorrow they will be saying that McCain also created God (if they think it will help them win).

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  5. Anonymous

    First he says the fundamentals of the economy are strong on the same day as the worst DOW plunch since 9/11. Now he's invented the Blackberry...priceless!!

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  6. Spencer from VA

    Sounds like a bunch of BS. Stop lying GOP.

    OBAMA/BIDEN 08

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  7. HMMA

    McCain helped creating Earth and the heavens too !!

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  8. Ray M.

    HIs comments sound a lot like "We do not know what to do and we sure do not have anything to say about the fiasco." And now the President is solely a figurehead that lets everybody else do and figure out everything? Now we owe McCain thanks for the Blackberry?

    Please, somebody tell me this is a very bad joke or prank and this is not current status of our Presidential campaign.

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  9. Al

    Wow. Next thing you know he'll be taking credit for inventing the question mark.

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  10. chas alabama

    I'm so busy laughing I can't get anything done, what a joke.

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  11. Their Desperate

    Their desperate to show that McCain has some knowledge on the economy when he doesn't.....How does this help with creating jobs and stopping people from losing their homes? This is laughable.

    September 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  12. Bill

    Just when I thought the lies and exaggerations from the McCain camp could not get any worse. McCain should just declare himself to be President in the hopes that people will simply believe him. It is obvious that his supporters are more interested in remembering the 2000 version of McCain and NOT the 2008 lying, "will do anything to win", version.

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  13. anon

    why isn't CNN covering the $30,000 a ticket fundraiser Obama's wealthy Hollywood friends are throwing him?

    I guess Obama DOESN'T GET that 95% of Americans can't afford $30k to get access to their candidate!

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  14. Don from California

    HAHAHAHAHA OH GOD ITS SO FUNNY HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  15. I don't mean to be whining, but..

    Senator McCain, my Blackberry seems to have stopped working.

    A few months after being laid off I paid my son's tuition with the last of my savings. I don't know what we'll do for his last semester.

    Then my wife had a relatively minor medical issue for which we no longer have insurance. That cleaned us out.

    My Blackberry service stopped about 90 days after I paid the last bill I could. I don't get the impression it's a mental issue.

    Can you please fix it?

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  16. jfs Memhis, Tn

    Are you serious.........McCain is a complete computer illiterate. He cannot even sign on to the INTERNET> It was by complete accident that this srewball has done anything for personalized communications. I supposed he also was a champion of women's rights ??? This is getting Ridiculous........who's running this campaign ??? Palin????

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  17. Pam

    This is hilarious!! It's bad enough that his domestic policy advisor said it's not necessary at this time to write down a specific plan for the economy, but then gives McCain credit for inventing the Blackberry??? This just keeps getting better and better.

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  18. John McPalin

    Excuse me if I'm wrong here.......but Blackberry was created and is still owned by RIM (Research In Motion) a Canadian company. Does he mean that since he can see Canada from the ranch he created it?

    Listen people, I LOVED my grandfather. He was a great man. When he was 72 he slowly starting losing his "facilities". Don't ignore the facts, we've all been down this road. John is slowly losing it and when he's lost it all he will leave us with a President who wants to invade Russia, tell women what to do with their bodies, teach creatism in school and crush those of us who disagree with her under her shoe. Does this not sound like the old Soviet Union? Did we not stand up to them?

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  19. Rob

    You couldn't write stuff like this!! Where do they get it from??

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  20. McCAIN THE SCIENCE GUY?

    Please. the clown cannot log onto a computer.

    And Palin has been in a bank lobby, so that must make her his economic guru.

    PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT:

    I cannot find the time portal to exit this very bad X-FILES rerun, so would someone out there please send Agent Scully?

    Thank you.

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  21. Critical Thinker

    And if you listen closely, you can here Al Gore laughing to himself.

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  22. Franky

    "McCain senior domestic policy adviser Douglas Holtz-Eakin said Tuesday the Blackberry mobile e-mail device was a “miracle that John McCain helped create.”

    LOL!!! Like how? Are you talking about the miracle in 2000 in what he said about South Carolina?? You know what I'm talking about. Or was it when he "allegedly" wanted to get out of the GOP?? LOL!!!! Now that's a miracle...

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  23. Sean

    Well, McCain and his campaign lie about everything else, so I guess why not start taking credit for popular things that he's never done too?

    Pitiful. And I'm a registered independent who used to respect and support McCain. No more. Obama is clearly the more even-keeled, capable leader for our country.

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  24. Allen Hussein

    Hahahahaha. now john "I don't know how to access the Internet" McCain invented the Blackberry? Is there anything the McCain campaign won't lie about?

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  25. B

    The blackbarry was invented in

    CANADA!!!

    By Research in Motion (RIM)

    September 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
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