October 6th, 2008
11:00 AM ET
10 years ago

McCain aides: McCain, Palin to peg Obama as ‘risky...dangerous’

McCain's aides say they will peg Obama as 'risky' and 'dangerous.'.

McCain's aides say they will peg Obama as 'risky' and 'dangerous.'.

(CNN) - John McCain’s aides say they are certainly happy to turn the corner away from the bailout package - but insist the campaign’s stepped-up focus on Barack Obama’s character does not mean the Republican presidential nominee is going to stop talking about the economy.

Instead, they will try to reframe the economic issue as part of their overall theme against Obama: You don’t really know this guy - and you can’t trust this guy. The words in their new ad say it all: “risky… dangerous.”

Watch: Obama, McCain advisers discuss why their candidate is best for the economy

As Obama and running mate Joe Biden take a break from the trail Monday, McCain and VP nominee Sarah Palin are each pursuing a different part of that strategy.

In New Mexico this afternoon, aides say McCain is expected to revive his attacks on Obama — a top recipient of campaign cash from from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — for taking money from the failed mortgage giants, and for not coming up with solutions early in the crisis. The Arizona senator will once again talk about his own call two years ago for reform of Fannie and Freddie.

Last month, the McCain camp released ads highlighting Obama’s ties to former Fannie and Freddie officials — but that line of attack had not been prominent since a New York Times investigation alleged that campaign manager Rick Davis may have benefited financially from his firm’s links to the lenders until their collapse last month.

McCain advisors are wagering that the attack is worth the risk. One aide says that “with economic news at the top of voters’ minds, it makes sense for the top of the ticket to talk about Obama’s failures and lack of credibility on the economy.”

Meanwhile, Palin - who hit Obama this weekend over his associations with controversial Chicago figures - will continue a more personal line of attack, focusing on his relationship with Weather Underground founder William Ayers.

The two lines of attack are two sides of the same approach, says another advisor, questioning obama’s truthfulness and whether voters can really trust him.

But two McCain aides say Palin’s comments questioning why Rev. Jeremiah Wright wasn’t more of a campaign trail issue, was not planned as a signal that they are going to start adding Wright to the mix. The Alaska governor, they say, was just relating her personal opinion, not the strategy of the campaign,

Asked whether Palin’s remark wasn’t a green light to outside groups that Wright is fair game, the aide responded “we’re not that good to strategize like that,” adding that Palin was talking as a woman whose daughters pregnancy was fair game, who doesn’t understand why the comments of Obama’s pastor aren’t.

soundoff (224 Responses)
  1. Gone

    When all is said and done, Obama is going down in November because of two issues that won’t go away:

    1. Jeremiah Wright
    2. Michelle Obama

    There’s not much else voters REALLY know about Obama – but these two will stick!

    October 6, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  2. ANGIE


    October 6, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  3. Jill- IIN

    Swiftboat Sarah is a Rove disciple and Bush look alike. No surprises here.

    October 6, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  4. ERRATIC DEFINED “a: characterized by lack of consistency, regularity, or uniformity”. FOR EXAMPLE SEE GEEZER/GIDGET’S CAMPAIGN LURCHING FROM REST STOP TO REST STOP IN THE “LIARS EXPRESS”!

    First there was the Georgia drama and photo op.

    Second there was the Gustav drama and photo op.

    Third there was the fly-in to D.C. to accomplish absolutely nothing but screw up the negotiations.

    The only two things McCrypt is consistent on:

    We have all seen McCrypt’s Superman suit and it shows his man breasts, his comb over overcombed his Depends pantyline and his limp cape!

    McCrypt tells the Poor Old Warrior story for the 4,157,819th time.

    Pretty sad when the campaign can be summed up in two lines!

    October 6, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  5. david Armendale, SF, CA

    Let me see if I got this right – Sarah Palin and John McCain are warning that the OTHER GUYS are "risky and dangerous???"
    Give me a break!

    October 6, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  6. Republican Base Voting OBAMA

    They need to hit the ground running the Market is Crashing and they are focussing on the man's personal life. We need to get real people. My 401k is gone and I am mad with the current politics as usual. McCain and Sarah are a joke and I renounce you right now. No one in my family will accept this......

    October 6, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  7. ltd1974- Ohio for Obama

    Wont work Keating 5. LiarPalin witch craft and prob case.

    October 6, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  8. Texas

    Who is surprised by Swiftboat tactics from the Reps. It is just what they are about. If people fall for this BS after two past elections and the consequences we are still paying for and will continue to pay for a long time, I will be GREATLY surprised!

    Hit um with all you've got, Obama! These people don't have any pride or conscience. They just want to win. And if they do, we ALL lose!

    October 6, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  9. Palin thinks the Bush Doctrine is an OBGYN

    I am more AFRAID of the scary hockey mom,joe six-pack,wolf killing,crazy nut and her warmongering Old man running mate.

    October 6, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  10. Country First?

    John McCain chose a "COUNTRY FIRST" motto, and then
    selects a totally unqualified woman to be possible president of the
    country. This woman is a threat to our national security. How is SHE going to protect us? The foreign enemy will know that we are a weak target if Sara Palin is ever allowed to command. John McCain may even be captured AGAIN while he is asleep in the White House. His "judgement" after all allowed him to crash five planes and get captured. We Had better think twice before helping unqualified Sara Palin the republican party fool this country again. WE THE PEOPLE are the country.

    October 6, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  11. Texas

    Gone, don't be too sure! You just might end up eating those words.

    October 6, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  12. KJL

    Risky? Dangerous? Sounds like McCain. He added a potential V.P. to his ticket without having her properly vetted, and she has turned out to be unknowledgeable, opinionated, and has an unsavory record in office. I guess "risky...dangerous" applies to Palin, too.

    October 6, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  13. Jim Schimmer


    Dow is below 10,000!!!!

    October 6, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  14. george from alaska

    mccain = misery and palin = pathetic

    October 6, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  15. Hey Obamatrons

    You liberals who worship Obama can't seem to be able to tell lies from the truth. Your party (Democrats) caused this fiscal crisis and your candidate stands for nothing but himself.

    October 6, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  16. Tony in NM


    we can do better than McCain/Palin

    October 6, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  17. NC Women for Obama/Biden!

    Oh, give me a break! Old news is not going to work this time! We've heard enough of the "No Straight Talk Express". And, by the way, if I read correctly this morning that Sarah Palin said yesterday that "there's a special place in hell for women who won't help (i.e., vote) for other women", then she's sunk oh-so-very-low and has become despicable, not to mention self-defeating as well. I've heard enough!

    October 6, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  18. Lisa

    Sarah Palin is still a JOKE! Its really sad to see her allow her self to be used like that.

    Does she understand that she is committing Political Suicide. After the election no one will want her on their team.

    And the world will not trust her!!

    October 6, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  19. Jack Jodell, Minneapolis, MN

    Risky? DANGEROUS? Why, that's the PERFECT description for McCAIN and PALIN!!!!!

    October 6, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  20. Dandelion.

    All of this stuff is old news. Thanks to the Clintons, people heard about this months and months ago. People have made up their minds, whether they're comfortable or not with Barack Obama. The majority of the people see this kind of junk for what it is. It's all a fog screen. Where are the issues? Where is the substance? Why don't they want you focusing on what truly matters?

    October 6, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  21. Teresa of Orange County

    This is why McCain/Palin is losing the race because everything they say is not true. They have no proof.

    October 6, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  22. Paul

    It s time for real change. Change that will bring prosperity and peace to our nation. We need the Democrats in the White House. As a nation, we are sick and tired of the GOP 's failed policies that benefit just a few and forget about most of us.

    The GOP will say anything, they now they have lost the respect of millions who are now facing foreclosure, who are worried about medical bills, college tuition, retirement, and who simply can no longer trust a party that simply benefits the wealthy.

    Our economy, our safety and prosperity depend on people who truly care about all people.

    Yes we will!

    Obama – Biden 08

    October 6, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  23. Sly in Seattle

    Republicans are the scum of the earth.. this is so pitiful

    October 6, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  24. Lisa

    GONE, Sorry but just like McCain and Palin you have it WRONG!

    October 6, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  25. elm

    It is the Republican's policies of the last 8 years that has been risky. John McCain is more of the same.

    Run, run, hide, hide, distract here... Look Haley's Comet over there....

    McCain and Palin are running from the American Public and they both are a farce.

    Do you really want the disoriented McCain as President? Years in a POW camp is bound to leave a few screws loose. Remember the movie Manchurian Candidate. Has he published any medical or psychological records?

    Know-nothing Palin isn't much better. Her last interview was a joke! Her debate was just a litany of memorized talking points that she regurgitated even if they didn’t answer the question.

    America wake up.

    October 6, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
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