November 3rd, 2008
09:17 PM ET
9 years ago

Hank Williams, Jr. says Obama doesn't like the National Anthem

Hank Williams, Jr. has performed at several McCain-Palin campaign events.

Hank Williams, Jr. has performed at several McCain-Palin campaign events.

(CNN) - In the waning hours of the presidential race, the toughest shot against Barack Obama may not have come from the Republican ticket, but from country music star Hank Williams, Jr.

The country-rocker, a campaign trail fixture who has penned a special song for the GOP ticket called "McCain-Palin Tradition," suggested Monday Obama doesn't like the national anthem.

“You know, I’m usually at Monday Night Football tonight, but Colorado, this is a lot more important tonight. Join me now in our national — you know, that song that, uh, Mr. Obama’s not real crazy about, we’re singing it right now," he said before performing his version of the song.

Williams, Jr., aka Bocephus, also performed "McCain-Palin Tradition," which includes a line that suggests Obama has "terrorist friends."

After playing both songs, Palin thanked Williams, Jr. for his help on the campaign trail, and did not acknowledge the national anthem remark.

The comments appear to reference a long-debunked e-mail rumor that Barack Obama refuses to put his hand on his heart when the national anthem is played. That e-mail stems from a 2007 photograph showing the Illinois senator with his hands by his side during a performance of the song.

The e-mail also stated Obama said the national anthem is a "war-like message" and should be swapped for a tune like "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing."

Obama, in fact, has never said those things.

soundoff (356 Responses)
  1. Phil Newton in Murphy, Oregon


    November 3, 2008 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  2. dj

    Everyone stop and listen! A dumb, drunk redneck is about to make a political comment. Pay ATTENTION!

    November 3, 2008 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  3. Michael P. Cimini

    If you needed more proof that the Republicans rely upon proxies to do their dirty work, here it is. This just goes to show that the Republican playbook is the size of a matchbook. These folks offer nothing but banalities, lies, and fearmongering, and sadly they are too cowardly to even slander their opponents openly. Instead, they drop semi-formed ideas into the discourse. It's just sad.

    November 3, 2008 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  4. BJD

    If you can't win on the issues, lie. That seems to be the McCain-Palin way these days–make things up and try to scare people into voting for you. Luckily, if the polling can be believed, the American people aren't falling for it. We'll see for sure tomorrow.

    November 3, 2008 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  5. Jackson White

    Daniel Carver would be proud.

    November 3, 2008 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  6. ron

    all I have to say to this breaded fool is Nov 5 Barack will answer to Mr President. Your guy will answer to the rep from Arizona

    November 3, 2008 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  7. Ethan

    Wow...anyone noticed gop has to spread lies and stupid rumors to win elections? And look at the people that supports them? Come can McCain control our economy if he can't control his bladder?

    November 3, 2008 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  8. 47yo male for McCain

    There's no lies here. Obama said he wants to change the National Anthem. BS! And he said he intends to change the American Flag because it too is offensive. Also, I see that to a democrat if you are not on their side and basically you are a White Republican and you speak up and voice your opinion and refuse to have Obama be the leader of our country, then you are a "Redneck." I must be a big friggin "Redneck" then. But you know what, I'd rather be a "Redneck" then the alternative.

    November 3, 2008 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm |
  9. Dave

    Well now I am just going to have to go and burn all my Hank William Jr. Albums. Oh wait, I DON'T HAVE ANY!


    November 3, 2008 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  10. Joe

    He's all they could get.
    Lawrence Welk balked, God bless him

    November 3, 2008 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm |
  11. Smarter than you

    Please, don't be a douchbag. Vote anything but Republican! (the national anthem is just a song, we made it up, just like national/ethnic pride, religion, and human rights. WE MADE IT ALL UP! IT DOESN'T REALLY EXIST!!!)

    November 3, 2008 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm |
  12. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    and more moronic comments from Republicans that has ZERO CONTENT ABOUT ISSUES..... TOTAL CROP.

    Isn't Williams a crack head?

    November 3, 2008 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  13. Luther Jjessie

    So let me know how does ABC?ESPN allow him to keep his job with them. He uses his job to spread dispicable lies. This is sad. the interview with McCain at half time was not fair air time, he was allowed to have his people campaign behind him.

    November 3, 2008 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  14. AJ

    Hank, let me put this in a way you can understand it.

    Are you ready for some bad press?!

    November 3, 2008 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  15. nick romer

    Who would really care what a washed up old country redneck singer thinks about Barrock. I hope he retires to his home like he should have done many many years ago. I hope his party (extreme right) enjoys his new songs about McCain and Sara Palin. Maybe he and Toby Kieth can do a duet.

    November 3, 2008 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  16. Floridian for Obama

    Does America have only one legitimate type of music now? My God! What have we become if Hank Williams Jr is the sole representative of what we call music? Worse yet, what have we become if we actually listen to his misinformed opinion about who is a patriot and who is not? I have to wonder why Palin stood by and let him spew that crap out of his mouth. Is the strangler fig of John McCain's presidential campaign deaf? Why didn't she ask him to stop? All these people provide is form, not substance.

    November 3, 2008 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  17. Matt

    Beth....well said.

    November 3, 2008 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  18. lil

    Hank Williams should be ashamed of himself for saying that.
    Why in the world would he put himself out there like that?

    Vote,Vote, Go vote
    You see the stuff they are throwing out there.

    November 3, 2008 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    here is the true

    November 3, 2008 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  20. Thomas

    Bill ,
    What are you saying ?
    Are you saying your uptight ?

    Thanks for letting me know what OTM stands for.

    Now look where you came from. And why your here!
    Bill RNC

    November 3, 2008 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  21. cowboyneok

    If that kind of LIE had been said about John McCain or Sarah Palin, Obama would have stopped him and said, "No, now... come on! We don't need that kind of stuff. We just need everyone to VOTE!" Obama won't even let his crowd "boo" and "hiss" at the dark side. He ALWAYS is a true gentleman. Palin and McThuselah both let their crowds and surrogates get out of hand and shout violent threats and lies! Its disgusting. This nation is in enough trouble without McCain and Palin sewing more seeds of division. Their campaign can't end soon enough so our country can start digging out of the mess their beloved Republican Party has caused our nation.

    November 3, 2008 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  22. NoBarry

    Biden says's he's superstitious. Great! Just what we need in a V.P.

    November 3, 2008 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  23. Sue/PA

    Hank..You have disgraced yourself, just as McCain has.

    This country will forever look down upon you and McCain.

    you reap what you sow

    November 3, 2008 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  24. HillarySupportersForObamaInCT

    Um, I may be wrong, but I believe tradition and etiquette say you don't have to have your hand over your heart during the National Anthem; the Pledge, yes, but not the anthem. And to me, a person doesn't show their patriotism by putting their hand over their heart during a song; it's what they do to advance this country and help their fellow human being instead of trying to drag it into the dark ages. Vote Obama-Biden tomorrow!

    November 3, 2008 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  25. steve

    hank williams jr grow up ,its 2008 not 20s its done those days are gone ,wake up your children will tell u better america is better than that . dont divide us we one

    November 3, 2008 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
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