October 8th, 2008
06:15 PM ET
5 years ago

Michelle Obama not offended by 'that one' comment

 Michelle Obama
Michelle Obama

(CNN) - The wife of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama told CNN's Larry King Wednesday that she is not offended by a much-publicized comment made towards her husband in Tuesday night's debate.

In the presidential match-up at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, Sen. John McCain criticized Obama for supporting the 2007 Bush-Cheney energy bill.

"It was an energy bill on the floor of the Senate, loaded down with goodies, billions for oil companies, and it was sponsored by Bush and Cheney. ... You know who voted for it? You might never know. That one,” he said, gesturing towards Obama. “You know who voted against it? Me."

When asked if McCain’s reference to Obama as "that one" was offensive, Michelle Obama simply said "no," adding that this issue has nothing to do with what's affecting average Americans hurting from the economic downturn.

"I think there are two conversations that have been going on throughout this whole election. There's the conversation that's been happening with the pundits ... and then there's the conversation that's been happening on the ground," she said.

She said that Americans "right now are scared" and "nervous about the economy."

"They don't care about the back and forth between the candidates ... They want real answers about how we're going to fix this economy and get the health care benefits on track so, you know, this is part of politics," she added.

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soundoff (609 Responses)
  1. Lou II

    Will someone at CNN tell Lou Dobbs he is not an independent. He is a Republican wanting more of the same from McCain. Let him know his racist colors are coming through his body language and the way he attack anyone who has anything positive to say about Obama. Watch yourself Lou.

    October 8, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  2. JGM

    Sen. Obama knows what's what and so do we. There are plenty of questions, and answers, on the ground. We just have to point ourselves towards the goal and ignore everything else.

    October 8, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  3. NO Insane McCain

    can a McCain supporter explain to me,what makes McCain so ready to be president? Last time I checked he was never a President of the United States either.

    October 8, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  4. Josh Maloney, Oakland, CA

    Your thoughtful answer was brilliant to the the "that one" comment Michelle Obama. You should run for President in 2016 ! You are great.

    October 8, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  5. YES, YES, We Can.

    Barack is so cute and Michelle will make an excellent first lady. I can't wait, they will be so popular in D.C.

    Obama/Biden 08

    October 8, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  6. Hayes

    Michelle is absolutely right. McCain's comment while a bit odd had no racial overtones (I am a black man). At worst, it is a matter of dislike but I believe he would have used that term with Hillary. That said, the comment is not news worthy. What is important, as Michelle stated, are the solutions offered up by the candidates to solve our problems. 4 more years of Republican economics is not something I am willing to support.

    Obama/Biden in 2008!

    October 8, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  7. d.c.

    What a lady she is unlike that Cindy "one". Did anybody else notice that last night Cindy McCain would not shake hands with the audience. She kept her hands behind the whole time. She is soooo frozen.

    October 8, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  8. darrell

    I took his 'that one' comment as the grumblings of an angry old man whose election is in the toilet. I really did not perceive it as a racist comment of any sorts.

    October 8, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  9. Allan

    I was offensive, no question about it, but on the other hand it has led to what is probably destined to be one of the most popular items this season. cafepress.com is selling "I´m voting for That One" shirts, and they are probably having a hard time keeping them in stock. Go Obama, otherwise known as That One. What is McC going to do when he has to address him as Mr. President? And is he going to refuse to shake the hand of the President of the United States? God help us....

    October 8, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  10. John in VA

    This what I admire about the Obamas; they let these ridiculous and outlandish comments from McCain and Palin roll of their back. It takes the power away from the McCain camp.

    I do, however, want to get a pool going? Who will be first to slip up and use the "N" word and what day will they use it?

    October 8, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  11. MEP

    It will be very interesting to juxtapose the comments of these two such different women– one who has always had everything and a self -made woman with her own accomplishments.

    October 8, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  12. kaia

    i would be proud to have Michelle Obama as our First Woman... I can't wait to vote Obama/Biden......

    October 8, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  13. Republicans for Obama

    Goo Goo! Ga Ga!! Who gives a crap?!

    October 8, 2008 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  14. Nickluas

    The Rev Wright said it all. Now the truth has come out. So, how is right. McCain's camp or Rev Wright. It is the same. Media let's see how much attention you will pay to McCain racism?

    October 8, 2008 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  15. Rita

    To those on this wesite that claim Democrates do not know Obama's true track record. You are sadly mistaken. The reason we are voting for him is because we do know about his track record and about John McCains and we have made the right choice. Obama is ready ,willing and able to lead us in the right direction instead of the path of distruction that McCain and his buddy Bush have lead us down for the past 8 years, Just a thought maybe you should troroughly check out the facts you just may find some surprises.

    October 8, 2008 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  16. Texan2112

    Are we debating what "that' means now? Are we to "that" point where we are saying it depends on what "that" means in a conversation? Is 'that" what this whole love feast is about? I glad we all can agree "that" Michelle did the right thing and not taking "that" out of context. I am glad we got "that" out of the way. Last decade we worked on the meaning of “is” this decade will be “that” it’s always interesting with a Dem in the White House.....Did anyone notice something about a global financial melt down in news lately? I am trying to find a web site that carry's the news and stumbled upon this Obama for President web site.

    October 8, 2008 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  17. SickofMcCain

    First Lady Obama, from one REAL woman to another...Thank You!!!!

    Michelle Obama is the kind of woman and wife that we need in the White House!!!!! Her intelligence, humility, and strength is serving as a role model for women everywhere.

    For those of you looking at track records, look at McStupid's record of wasteful spending, bad decisions, party flip-flopping. Then take a look at Obama's record of community mindedness, activism, and dedication to what we as "Americans" want. The math is easy, it doesn't matter about the length of the track record, the quality of the track record is what is important.

    Obama/ Biden 2008...The ONLY choice for America!!!!!!!!!!

    October 8, 2008 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  18. Darnell

    All of you saying that your proud of Michelle, well she's proud of you to. For the first time in her adult life.

    October 8, 2008 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  19. Allan

    Where is my comment? What right do you have to censor me? Must be Schneider making more decisions.

    October 8, 2008 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  20. anita

    Why wasn't Ralph Nader on the debate? Give me some truth.

    October 8, 2008 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  21. Dmitriy

    Who cares about Michelle ' for the first time in my adult life I am really proud of our country' Obama?

    October 8, 2008 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  22. Karen

    I salute our next President Obama and his gracious First Lady Michelle. It will be such a relief to have a FAMILY in the White House that knows the concerns of the American citizens and not thinking of ways to "screw the peons" anymore.

    October 8, 2008 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  23. wanbligi

    Thanks Michelle Obama for helping us understand why we need Barack Obama and Michelle Obama in the White House. Our country has been far too divided for so long and now is the time to bring our American people together for the good of the nation.

    Myself as an outsider looking in and trying to see what John McCain was referring to when he said 'that one' and when John McCain did not want to shake Barack Obama's hand, it is obvious to me that McCain has lost his way and is more angry in the process. And for John McCain to have his wife do the recent negative campaigning is another low for them.

    I think Cindy means well but she has to go home and she appears to be an abused wife. With John McCain's outrageous temper tantrums I'm sure Cindy has seen her share of the hate that spews from John's mouth.

    At least for the rest of us, it will all be over soon, November 4. I know I am anxiously awaiting the new President of the United States, Barack Obama and First Lady, Michelle Obama. What a wonderful family for a wonderful country.

    God Bless America and God Bless Barack and Michelle Obama.

    October 8, 2008 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  24. JMN

    Ms. Obama's graciousness is stunning and refreshing. I truly hope that when this election is over, people on both sides can reach deep down into themselves and find such dignity.

    October 8, 2008 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  25. Lesley

    I don't think that McCain meant any disrespect. He is just inept at making arguments that are not scripted for him. On the other hand, who knows what the heck he'd say to a foreign emissary. He is not presidential material; he cannot meet intelligently and diplomatically with world leaders because he doesn't have the temperament to do it. Stuff pops out of his mouth that he doesn't mean to say, like bomb Iran and that we're exporting cigarettes there trying to kill Iranians, and it is offensive, or telling that teenager in New Hampshire that he was a jerk for asking a question. McCain shoots from the lip as well as from the hip. He may be ready to lead, but he is not able to lead. He doesn't put things in perspective.

    October 8, 2008 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
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