June 4th, 2010
11:27 AM ET
8 years ago

McAuliffe says Obama needs to 'amp it up'

(CNN) - Urging President Obama to "amp it up," former Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe said the president should invite the world's oil experts down to the Gulf to brainstorm a solution to the BP oil disaster.

"If I were President Obama I would call everybody in from all over the world. I have got no pride in this. We have got to shut this down," McAuliffe told CNN.

McAuliffe declined to join the chorus of critics who say the president hasn't shown enough emotion during the crisis. Still the one-time party chairman said former President Bill Clinton "probably would have moved the White House down there."

After his unsuccessful run to become governor of Virginia, the 53-year old McAuliffe started a clean energy company, GreenTech Automotive. Last month, he purchased the China based "My Car" electric vehicle company with plans to move manufacturing operations to the U.S. McAuliffe bought the company after test-driving one of the vehicles in London. The small two-seat electric vehicles can be plugged into a standard garage outlet and go 70 miles on one charge, at a cost between 13 and 15 thousand dollars, McAuliffe said.

"We have got to get off of oil… We need people buying electric vehicles," McAuliffe said. "China, the Middle East are eating our lunch in moving ahead on wind, solar, biomass, waste to energy. We should be the world leader," he added.

McAuliffe also dismissed the controversy over White House meddling in at least two Democratic Senate primaries. But the former DNC head said the White House should tell all it knows.

"I think they should put out what it is because I don't think anybody would be shocked at the end of the day, this is politics," McAuliffe said. "When I was head of the party, I would call people and tell people 'I don't want you to run.' That's your job."

Filed under: Energy • President Obama • Terry McAuliffe
soundoff (106 Responses)
  1. gary

    The President is one of the smartest men who have held this office in quite a long time. He looks at every option, gets opionions from everyone in his cabinet and then makes his decision.

    I guess everyone would like to see him jump up and down on his desk, put the country on DEFCON 1 and go invade some country.

    Since the Republicans have 0 black senators and 0 black members of the house, they will continue to be the party of no and do anything they can to try to cause this President to fail.

    I am a white seventy year old male and would do anything in my power to eliminate the party of NO from office.

    June 4, 2010 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  2. Ken, AZ

    Either I'm hearing things or no one else is listening. I heard the president say a few weeks ago that experts around the world are being consulted for possible solutions to the BP oil spill problem and that he welcomes ideas from anyone, anywhere.

    June 4, 2010 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  3. pnaut

    First Mark Penn and now this hack, I'm a democrat and i find McAuliffe to be utterly clownish, at least he's trying to do something positive in business I'll give him that.

    June 4, 2010 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  4. Needed to do more....

    Obama needed to do more from day one of the "Oil Spill" not going to a clean beach on day #38 picking pebbles and trying to find a dirty one
    ............................................too little too late...................................................

    June 4, 2010 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  5. SocialismBad

    You'd think with all of his community organizing skills Obozo would know how to organize a response to this catastrophe! I guess he was used to just screaming for other people to do things. Now it is HE who is expected to do something! And by something I mean something besides manufactured rage and photo ops.

    June 4, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  6. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    If you have a solution to fix the oil spill you can make millions. Complaining never fixed anything, solutions do.

    June 4, 2010 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |

    How is anything that this punk McAuliffes says relevant to anyone in America other than to fellow slime balls?

    June 4, 2010 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  8. YoungGOP


    How is the lack of black policy makers in the Republican Caucus even relevant to this issue?

    Thank God you are a 70 year old man. Eventually the younger people will come into positions of power and fix all the mistakes that your generation and your children's caused.

    June 4, 2010 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  9. phoenix86

    Hilarious to see all the Obamabots defending Obama's lack of leadership when they ridiculed President Bush for not being hands on enough after Katrina.

    Hypocracy of the left is always fun to watch.

    June 4, 2010 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  10. Brenda

    Urkel is only going to the Gulf for a photo op.

    The empty suit will get out of his clown car and say AGAIN........"I will not rest until the oil crisis is solved'..........Just like he said that he 'would not rest' until unemployment was down, our economy was better, etc.

    Every time I see/read something about this, I want to cry.

    PLEASE resign Obama-–so that a competent leader can take your place.

    I am quite sure that there are many communities that need organizing.

    June 4, 2010 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  11. Dave

    Obama should have done a lot of things a lot earlier. I thought Bush was bad with the way he handled Katrina, but this is just as unexceptable. Obama is not a leader.

    June 4, 2010 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  12. domincanmamaforuhbama

    uhbama will go down as the biggest joke this nation has ever seen.

    June 4, 2010 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  13. paul

    Terry, Way to jump on the Spike Lee just "Go Off!" train.... Have some of your own thoughts and ideas for once.

    June 4, 2010 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  14. Ted

    Maybe everyone, regardless of party, should shut up and let the President do his job. Too many wannabees on both sides think they can do better when in fact the few men that have been president can tell you that it is a difficult and lonely job and you can't please everyone.

    But I do think the big oil CEOs need to get involved with the feds and BP as this affects all of them and their future and profits and shareholders.

    June 4, 2010 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  15. PalmReader

    Hoist by our own shallowness we Americans deserve all we get. We want what we want and then cry when it all goes wrong.

    Emotion Terry? We had that with Bush. Lack of leadership? We had that with Bush as well.

    Quite frankly, I for one am sick to death of our current president having to clean up one GOP mess after another.

    June 4, 2010 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  16. LacrosseMom (the real one)

    The criticism of President Obama is really silly! WHAT can HE DO? Other than what he is already doing, his Sec. of Energy, a Nobel Prize winner has gathered a group of our Nation's best experts on Oil!

    I understand our collective frustration about the British Petroleum Disaster. However, stop the blame game, it does not help! The AG will sue BP, fine BP, make sure BP pays for this. The U.S. government will make sure that the people in the Gulf states whose businesses have been destroyed will be compensated. Hate, criticism, angst, does not help. This IS a National disaster, let's come together and pray for those attempting to solve this very difficult disaster!

    June 4, 2010 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  17. Jeff Spangler

    A pansy politico like McAuliffe knows nothing about engineering, and very little about rational public relations other than pandering to the Left. He and other folks brimming with emotion, like "Snakehead" Carville and his lovely wife, ought to realize that there are no good answers or strategies in this case because _all_ parties have utterly failed to plan for the worst case outcome of an event which was clearly forfeseeable, no matter how unlikely. We are [funked] and will be until the well is plugged (don't count on August) and for decades.

    June 4, 2010 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  18. Wake up Terry, Hillary lost!

    Terry, Terry, Terry. Still pulling for Hillary aren't ya? Still can't believe she didn't get the nomination, huh? I cut Carville some slack since he is a Louisiannan and the "raging caging" and all. But your sour grapes are still definetely showing Terry. What's wrong? Can't find a good campaign to manage to make yourself relevant again? Get over it already. Our President has compiled the "best minds in the world" to solve this disaster and I have 100% total faith and support for him.

    June 4, 2010 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  19. TwM

    AMP it up???

    Obama is on TV 2-3 times every single day. He is now a Non-Event.
    He speaks now, only the Obamaites who genuflect over his every utterance listen to him now.

    June 4, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  20. Jann in Denver

    I'm really sick of people wanting President Obama to be someone other than who he is. I really don't want and didn't elect a President who puts on a show. That is not the person I voted for and not the person I want to see. I would have voted for that fool McLame and Dumb-Ass if that was the case.

    June 4, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  21. Laverne

    Terry, why didn't you amp up your campaign in Virginia, if you did just maybe you would be governor, but I doubt it. Listen people screaming and yelling for theatrics is not impressive at all. If President Obama behaved like that then all of a sudden he will be the "angry black man"! I am more interested in the facts and getting results than someone getting in front of the cameras pretending to be outraged. I wish Americans would stop the foolishness!

    June 4, 2010 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  22. mj

    Just another Photo Op. Hasn't stopped the parties at the Big House. We do, however, have another committee to "study" the problem. In the mean time, wells have been shut down that provide much needed jobs. Wish those who worship our CIF's butt would get off Bush's.

    June 4, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  23. idea

    I'm surprised to see the party of NO wants the federal government interfered into the business. What a hypocrisy! Being said i need to acknowledge since Obama is black he doesn't have too much margin of error.There is a double standard here : If Obama had called for international aid at the first days of the oil spill , Republicons would have called him an allien who have sold out our country. Stop blaming the guy!

    June 4, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  24. AL in Palm Beach

    So those num witts screamed, painted, yelled, drill baby drill. Yet, they godess says, "well, we were only talking of doing so 'safely' on land." Now, they want someone to be blamed for this and have set their sight on Obama? Now, where was the outrage when they were bodies on the streets of New Orleans?

    Bush was there, I forgot, he was a few miles up looking down through the window of Air Force One.

    H Y P O C R I T E S!!!!

    June 4, 2010 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  25. Chandler01

    He ALREADY HAS invited oil and environmental experts from around the world to work on this! The people who say he isn't doing enough are the people who are uniformed. Do your homework before you make REDUNDANT suggestions!

    June 4, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
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