July 12th, 2009
04:12 PM ET
5 years ago

McCain: Obama was wrong on stimulus either then or now

Sen. McCain said Sunday that his former rival can't have it both ways when it comes to the new administration's $787 billion stimulus package.
Sen. McCain said Sunday that his former rival can't have it both ways when it comes to the new administration's $787 billion stimulus package.

(CNN) - President Barack Obama can't have it both ways on his economic stimulus package, the man he defeated in last year's election said Sunday.

Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, told the NBC program "Meet the Press" that Obama either got it wrong when he predicted the benefits of his $787 billion economic stimulus package in February, or he's wrong now in saying the stimulus is working as intended.

"He's either not leveling now or he wasn't leveling at the time they passed the stimulus package," McCain said.

He cited predictions by Obama earlier this year that the spending plan would hold unemployment to 8.5 percent or less, noting the figure is now at 9.5 percent and likely to continue rising.

McCain also complained that the stimulus plan has failed to deliver the job creation Obama pledged.

"What they promised us would be the result of the stimulus in the short-term has turned out not to be true," he said.

On the same program, Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer of New York responded it was too soon to pronounce judgment on the stimulus plan.

"This is not a four-month plan - this is a two-year plan," Schumer said, noting that many Republicans also misread the situation earlier in the year because they opposed any stimulus package.

"It was very hard to read the economy. It was a whole new world," Schumer said of the economic crisis that started in the second half of 2008.

He praised Obama's "long-range perspective" on the economy, saying the measures in place will work as more of the stimulus money is allocated for projects around the country.

"I'm beginning to see in the last month … a lot of construction going on that I didn't see three months ago," Schumer said.

soundoff (302 Responses)
  1. JWS3

    When you have no idea what you are doing, it is best to do nothing at all. This should have been Obama's policy then and now. At least Palin has actually run a business, and has a clue. Be honest which scares you more, Palin running in 2012, or being stuck with Biden as a candidate in 2016?

    July 12, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    @Audrey in GA: "The American public want to hear positive
    progressive news."

    Shouldn't the public just want to hear 'the news' - get the facts straight so that they can make appropriate, well-informed decisions?

    July 12, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  3. Party of No

    They have NO clue. The gov. can't just throw money out there. It will take time to get it all out to people. It's not like dropping it out of planes. And didn't McPain back the stimulus????

    July 12, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  4. T Mckinley

    Where would we be if John McCain were President? Better off or worse off? What would have been John McCain's plan to fix the economy?

    We know what the GOP's plan is: 25% taxes for the rich, 10% taxes for everyone else, and the only thing we spend the taxpayers money on is guns, tanks, and bombs for our military. Everything else would be done away with.

    July 12, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  5. Joe

    I have resigned from the Democrat party, and am going back to being an Independent since these two parties don't have any clue what to do. As a friend of mine said, Palin could run as an Independent in 2012 to show these two parties how it's done. This country has sold our future to China, which in my opinion, is very dangerous. We have sold our promise land to other countries to make them better by outsourcing, etc... At this point in time, I'd rather have McCain than Obama, but this country was sold a bill of goods that is not being delivered. 2012 is 2 1/2 years away. I am very disappointed in my fellow American's who voted for Obama. Experience should always trump Inexperience most of the time. We need another change, and fast before we lose our future.

    July 12, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  6. Jonathan

    We ALL knew this would take time, we ALL KNOW this will take time to fix; just like it took the Republicans 6/8 years to RUIN this country. . .
    It'll take Obama more than six months to fix it and more than six months to RECOVER!

    July 12, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  7. david

    Sen John McCain should go alway You can see in his face that he still unhappy for loseing the election.Tell sen john McCain and the known nothing Republican that it going to take more than six month s to fix the mess they left for President Obama.

    July 12, 2009 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  8. annie for Palin

    Guess cnn has not crawled out of bed with obama yet – they are not posting any of my comments!!

    July 12, 2009 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  9. ObamaGRIT

    John McCain, you lost the election and you will give up your long-held Senate seat. It's time to retire and pay your dues for sending up Sarah Palin.

    July 12, 2009 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  10. blogger

    How does one know if it worked. Maybe it didn't hit target numbers, but maybe things were worse that they originally thought, After eight years of Republican waste, deficits, a bogus war in Iraq and huge deficits let give the man at least a year before the nabobs of the Republican Party mouth off.

    July 12, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  11. Fred

    So,,, McCain thinks the stimulus is a bad idea? Did he tell the person who created the problem, and whose administration originated the idea of a stimulus – GW Bush? His buddy. It wasn't Obama who created the problem, and by the time he got into office the stimulus was well under way. Want to look for someone to blame? You will find him playing cowboy on a ranch in Texas. Considering his functional IQ and his past history, he is probably branding cactii and trying to rope birds. Oh – and screaming "9/11!!".

    July 12, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  12. who...will ..be..taxed...then..?

    Obama wants to tax the rich again and again...but who will pay taxes ?
    when the rich will join the ranks of the poor...forget the middle class for they have gone missing a long time ago......................

    July 12, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  13. Mark from NJ

    Why is it that left-wing comments are rampant on the CNN site? Is it that CNN is to the left what FOX is to the right? Of is it that those who support the Nanny State and turning the U.S. into a European-style socialized economy have a vast amount of free time on their hands because they are not contributing to society?

    July 12, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  14. Obama is a total failure on the economy.....

    Unemployment keeps rising.....

    Foreclosures keep rising......

    The economy continues to sink.....

    On top of that Obama has no credibility with Iran, N. Korea, China, the Taliban or Al Qaeda....

    Tell me again why we need Obama??????

    July 12, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  15. Indiana Mike

    I'm not saying is the best plan for economic recovery, because that is not my area of expertize. However, no one else should slam the current plan UNLESS they have a better one. Senator McCain did not give an alternate plan in his interview. All he did was complain.

    July 12, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  16. Independent

    So what else is new....when have you seen him being backed by the Republicans...

    I'm glad McPain didn't make it, I think we would be in a whole lot more trouble than we are now...Besides, McPain can only do one thing at a time, he isn't a multi tasker for sure...

    Maybe if McPain would remember, they said it would take at least 18 months...but, NOOOOOOOOOO, they think it has to be now...Good Heavens people, it has been only 6 months since he took office...

    Got any more of those blank pages with your so called ideas???? Haven't heard anything from them except being critical....

    July 12, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  17. Ancientrivr

    Obama never said that this stimulus would cure us in 6 months. Economists even predicted it wasn't enough. We were not mislead although we might be impatient as the pain mounts, none of which is Obama's fault. It might be the fault of the Right, however, if they had a better plan and did not come forward. When Obama was opening up the debate to ideas for a bipartisan plan, the Right just dashed off a two page tax cut plan that would not have done anything but worsened matters. Unless the Right really had, or developes a real alternative, they have no room to criticize .I f I am drowning, God bless the person who jumps in, to try to save me not the idiot comfortably on the shore criticizing his style of saving me..

    July 12, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  18. Jeffer65

    It's only been five months since it was passed. Jobs are the last thing that come back in a recession. GI Joe is right some of the $ did go to states that used it to fill their budge holes.

    July 12, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  19. ObamaGRIT

    John McCain, you lost the election and you will give up your long-held Senate seat. It's time to retire and pay your dues for sending the lower 48 Sarah "the fighter" Palin.

    July 12, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  20. Ann

    Mr. McCain, the guy said it clear: He wants the stimulus to show results in 2 YEARS.. which is when he'll start campaigning for the second term. It would be a waste of a good crisis to have results now.

    July 12, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  21. Scott L

    Stimulus is failing miserably and the Democrats will rush to get a second one passed thus putting this country deeper in the hole.

    July 12, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  22. Wanda

    I agree with the posters who say it will take more than a few months for us to get out of this mess. It took years to get into this mess. I know the president is working hard to solve these issues and I am willing to give him his complete term to solve these issues not just 6 months.

    July 12, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  23. Brian

    It's nice to see there are still a few people out there like McCain who appeal to the peabrained among us. In their tiny little world, a McCain can "slam" the POTUS, and expressing one's inability to grasp complex issues is a sign that "sumpin' ain't right thar in Washingtone."

    July 12, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  24. Wes

    Has John McCaIn ever heard of an economist?

    The man who gave us Sarah Palin carries zero credibility for judgement.

    July 12, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  25. Gaston

    Come on John, where have you been the last 8 years when "W" wrecked our nation financially, and when the GOP claimed it was on a personal mission from "GOD" to promote democracies abroad thru the barrel of the gun? your policies have been bankrupted & now you are turning on President Obama, President Obama has been in office for 100 days, it takes time for the economy to recover from the years of neglect by the GOP & Bush.

    July 12, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
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