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. david

    Sen SEN McCain should go alway . Tell John that it goimg to take more six months to fix the mess they for tthe President.

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

    Mr. Mc Cain may be right, because so far, I have not seen any significant results from the stimulus plan, but I still think it is too soon to jump in conclusion. I believe the former president Bush also tried to stop the recession with a stimulus plan and it took much longer and still could not stop the recession. However, if Mr. Mc Cain were the president what would he do? If any GOP were the president what would they do? Is slamming Obama the solution? I am not a fan of Obama, thought. I am a fan of any current president regardless. I am a U.S. citizen and as far as my brain is still functioning normally, I know the U.S. has only one president at a time. If I were one of the GOP and disagreed with the president’s policy I would tell the president what might or might not work and then propose alternatives or keep my mouth shut. I don’t think criticizing or slamming the president solves anything.

    July 12, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  3. scalesofjustice

    The naysayers seem not to recall President Bush's bailout of Wallstreet and the subprime debacle. If the Bush bailout was suppose to help the economy, it didn't given the unemployment rate. If a commenter wishes to slam the Obama stimulus package, he or she should also account for the FIRST BAILOUT which WAS UNDER A REPUBLICAN ADMINISTRATION! Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. The naysayers provide no novel ideas, just hateful homilies.

    July 12, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  4. david

    Has anyone ever heard of spell check? If so, please use it before posting your comments. Not only do your remarks make you sound stupid, the continuous misspelling of words verifies it.

    McCain is correct, Obama made promises and statements about the stimulus package that were not true. All politicians do this, including McCain, they sell themselves to the people. The democrats are the reason there is a need for a stimulus package in the first place, when the democrats took control of The Senate and The House, the ecomony plummeted, Bush got the blame.

    With that being said, McCain has the right to voice his opinion, he FOUGHT for that right, he EARNED that right.

    July 12, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  5. KK

    I agree totaly with Audrey from Georgia. It is time McCain and Palin ride off into the sunset. CNN, I am wondering if you want our country to rise from this terrible recession. Get with the American people showing your support for the ECONOMY, HEALTH CARE REFORM and CLIMATE CHANGE.

    July 12, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  6. Mario, mtl, ca.

    I agree Audrey

    July 12, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  7. CMD

    McCain–Stop campaigning! You Lost!!!

    July 12, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  8. Gentwelve

    It's a bad economy and not the fault of Republicans or Democrats, until politicians get this, we will vote them out left or right!

    July 12, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  9. Mike

    2 million added to unemployment since "stimulus" and 14 million unemployed.......change is all you have in your pockets.

    July 12, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  10. Obama Fan

    Well, well, well. Here comes the other opportunist in the McCain-Palin camp. This is just sour grapes coming from the guy who said, "country first"? Especially when you consider that this guy said that the fundementals of the economy were strong, and suspended his campain when the crisis hit?

    Hey John, why don't you keep your mouth shut and let the man who got 365 electoral votes do his job. You lost...get over it!

    July 12, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  11. mary

    Funny how McCain, as was the case during the campaign, manages to sound like a grumpy old man with no ideas of his own. So, what I'd like to hear is, what McCain would do to address the ailing economy, what are his solutions or ideas? Or does McCain still think that the fundamentals of our economy are sound? I don't need to hear anything about what McCain thinks about anything. After his choice of Sarah Palin as a running mate, what more can be said?

    July 12, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  12. VTDC

    I like the majority of Americans, hope and pray that the stimulus plan works. But, it will take time, much more time than these past months. My concern would be for the lack of fiscal responsibility from the President himself. How many more federally funded vacations do him and his family have to go on for someone to call this out. Imagine how much money it takes. The fuel for Air Force 1, the logistics, the security, the pay for the federal employees, etcetera. Those federal employees are paid overtime, double-time for holidays, 10% differential for nights, 25% differential for days, per diem, hazard pay (if necessary), etcetera. This are not diplomatic missions, they are free vacations courtesy of you and me.

    July 12, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  13. CNN is obama's SMOKE AND MIRRORS

    It's about time CNN actually provided a dissenting point of view!

    WAY TO GO CNN. You published an opposing point of view. Great job!

    Okay, how long before CNN goes without a piece on Palin? I give it about 8 more hours.

    July 12, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  14. Gary

    Stop borrowing money from our children and grandchildren. Deficit spending won't work! Stimulus won't work! We'll get out of this recession in time without intervention. Furthermore that "so-called" stimulus bill was nothing more than Democratic pork and should be repealed.

    July 12, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  15. paksa

    Anyone who has kept up with the economy and watched various news channels in recent months would have to come to the conclusion that the stimulus package(which no one read) has been grossly ineffective in doing what the public was told it would do for the economy. No one who works and budgets their income would expect that if they spent more, went into debt more, their financial status would be more secure. This administration needs to change course, and stand up and own their mishandling of an already difficult situation. It is time to stop blatant paybacks to political supporters under the guise of 'stimulus package' and time to call a halt to appointing 'czars' (now 32 already) who will stay on the government payroll with offices, aides, and numerous other expenses. That is not economically sound 'job creation' and just adds to big government.

    July 12, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  16. Shawn - GA

    Look he lied to ge elected. Not one political canidate is diffrent on this. So let us now pray that he will do more good than harm moving forward.

    I am afraid he will do more harm, however I pray I am wrong.

    God Bless America, her People, and her President

    July 12, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  17. Dave Easterwood

    Very odd. McCain is part of the problem and of course has no ideas of his own to help solve the ptoblem.

    July 12, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  18. JoAnn

    I find it extremely interesting to read the comments posted. Do any of the individuals pay taxes? Based on their comments I assume the answer is no. What if, instead of complaining, the American public and the government representatives they elected found positive solutions to this country's financial mess. We're in a crisis America. Now is not the time to play dirty politics.

    July 12, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  19. lol

    Can't even imagine where we would be economically today had McCain become president instead of Obama.

    The recovery program was never meant to "fix" the economy in 140 days. Instant fix and recessions aren't compatable.

    McCain must have a touch of demetia. How easily he forgets the carte blanche he and his party gave Bush. Or how that carte blanche actually set into motion the economic disaster we now face.

    Oh well. Rewriting history has always been a GOP talking point. Nothing new here.

    July 12, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  20. danel

    Why is it ok for the republicans to vote for the first stimulus during Bush term but not Obama's. They always criticise the stimulus not doing anything or helping automakers while the first stimulus passed under Bush was to help the banks and wall st. Wall st should have not gotten the stimulus . Rewarding those who got us into these mess is beyond me.

    July 12, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  21. Polly

    Obama knows full well that it's going to pull us into further debt.

    July 12, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  22. ab

    McCain, The world knows you know NOTHING about the economy. Your partisanship is showing in a big way. Man am I tired of seeing this guy's face.

    Why is this even a ticker item, CNN?

    July 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  23. Get real people!

    If it was going to take 2 years for the stimulus plan to work why did Congress need to pass it in only a day or so? Why couldn't each member not have a week or two to sit down and actually read it before they voted? It's simple, the administration didn't want them to read it! From what I've read the states are using the stimulus money to balance their budgets which doesn't create new jobs. Spending it on unemployment benefits also doesn't create new jobs either. The Federal government has never been good at spending money fast and on worthy projects; why should be believe this time is any different?

    July 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  24. Realist

    Sen McCain is pointing out that President Obama indicated the more than $700 B stimulus would reverse unemployment and bring us to the road of recovery. It has done neither. Just because he is tremendously likeable doesn't give him a bye. I wish his program success, give it more time isn't what he promised. Tell the folks being foreclosed upon to "give it more time." President Obama needs to gather up his team and look for alternatives to Plan A.

    July 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  25. Anny

    This is the man that said everything was just fine with our economy........he's so rich he doesn't know if this stimulus is working or not.......I would still stand by President Obama even if this stimulus didn't work before I would stand up for any republican

    July 12, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
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