McCain: Obama campaign video invoking bin Laden is 'pathetic'
April 27th, 2012
09:32 PM ET
3 years ago

McCain: Obama campaign video invoking bin Laden is 'pathetic'

(CNN) – Sen. John McCain on Friday evening sharply rebuked a web video produced by President Barack Obama's re-election campaign that questioned whether presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney would have ordered the raid that culminated in the killing of terrorism mastermind Osama bin Laden.

"Shame on Barack Obama for diminishing the memory of September 11th and the killing of Osama bin Laden by turning it into a cheap political attack ad," McCain said in a statement distributed by the Republican National Committee.

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"This is the same president who said, after bin Laden was dead, that we shouldn't 'spike the ball' after the touchdown. And now Barack Obama is not only trying to score political points by invoking Osama bin Laden, he is doing a shameless end-zone dance to help himself get reelected," he continued.

The video was posted Friday morning, just days ahead of the one-year anniversary of the operation authorized by Obama.

McCain, who is a top surrogate for Romney and was the 2008 GOP presidential nominee, said Obama deserves credit for ordering the operation, but characterizes the ad’s political motives as "hypocritical."

The campaign video features former President Bill Clinton praising Obama for authorizing the raid and explaining the gravity of that choice. "The president is the decider-in-chief. Nobody can make that decision for you," Clinton said.

Text on the screen asks, "Which path would Mitt Romney have taken?" It further quotes the former Massachusetts governor saying during his 2008 presidential bid, "It's not worth moving heaven and earth, spending billions of dollars just trying to catch one person."

Romney later backpedaled from the comment, which he made to The Associated Press, saying at a presidential debate, "We'll move everything to get him."

Hours before McCain, a spokeswoman for Romney’s campaign likewise criticized the video.

"The killing of Osama bin Laden was a momentous day for all Americans and the world, and Governor Romney congratulated the military, our intelligence agencies, and the president. It's now sad to see the Obama campaign seek to use an event that unified our country to once again divide us, in order to try to distract voters' attention from the failures of his administration," press secretary Andrea Saul said.


Filed under: 2012 • John McCain • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (128 Responses)
  1. Anonymous

    Someone is clearly jealous. Time to take a nap, grandpa.

    April 27, 2012 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  2. Gurgyl

    Pathetic is Bush made Bin Laden escape from tora bora mountain. What are you talking insane idiot!!!

    April 27, 2012 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  3. bwise

    Mr. McCain a flip-flopper when confronted with the stark choice and dire consequences of failure wold not have hung around too long. You and your belligerent ilk have failed. Obama has taken out the architect of 9/11. Just shut up.

    April 27, 2012 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  4. labman57

    Republicans to Obama: "How dare you campaign on your accomplishments!"

    April 27, 2012 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  5. Joyce

    If President Bush had gotten Osama bin Laden, McCain would be singing a different tune. President Obama did what President Bush was suppose to do but couldn't. The President is running for reelection and this is part of his resume.
    Obama/Biden 2012

    April 27, 2012 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  6. Little Jimmy Truth

    McCain was right that Obama campaign was too far about Bin Laden. Oh yeah, Clinton failed too, according to movie- the Path to 9/11.

    April 27, 2012 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  7. lily

    I love it how, in the video, Clinton praises Obama for getting Bin Laden when he himself DID NOT take out Bin Laden BEFORE 9/11 when he had the chance to do so!!!

    April 27, 2012 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  8. Bill Fitzgerald

    How about daily blunders now from this administration and friends! Hilary Rosen, GSA, Secret Service, Get angry at the knuckleheads leadership quality, and now another addition to the circus, Taking credit for Osama which is not his to take, and then using it to hopefully find something to have people vote for him because his record will not suffice.

    April 27, 2012 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  9. Debbie

    John, John, John, He got him and so he gets to use it. Remember GWBush and Mission Accomplished? It is political but it is accurate. People want to know what would Mitt do. It's hard since Mitt flip flops so much. Granted Mitt knows how to make money and is a great business man but that's a CEO not necessarily someone who should be running the country. Obama took a chance on getting Osama and it paid off. He gets to claim that prize. Had GWBush not lost sight of the ball with Iraq and given up on Osama (Cheney said it himself) then the 9/11 3000 Americans would have been avenged and GWB could have had the glory. The point is GWB didn't care about the 9/11 victims, our military that died fighting for us, and now Romney is touting GWBush foreign policy. So yes, people want to know what Romney would really do. People need to know if they are voting for GWBush again or not.

    April 27, 2012 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  10. Chipster

    McCain is being quite disingenuous. Candidates run on their record and I cannot imagine that McCain, had he pursued the people behind the 9/11 attacks and ordered the operation that killed Bin Laden and many Al Qaeda leaders, would not include that in the many reasons that someone should vote for him again. Of all the foolish things McCain has said, this ranks pretty close to the top of the list. This would be like saying it's a shame that Obama shouldn't mention that we went from losing nearly 800,000 jobs in Dec. 2008 to 26 months of positive private sector job growth. Of course, President Obama will remind people of his achievements. The pursuit and victories over 9/11 terrorists is but one of them.

    April 27, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  11. Blindersoff

    In your face McCain and Romney . . . all up in your face, Totally in your face. Obama is all up in your grill. Question, McCain and Romney, who did you two ever get? Oh, I know, you got get all and it's all over your faces. Don't victimize, Idolize! LOL!

    April 27, 2012 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  12. PTNY

    Pure Jealousy! J. McCain, we like it as much as you don't.

    April 27, 2012 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  13. Blindersoff

    In your face McCain and Romney . . . all up in your face, Totally in your face. Obama is all up in your grill. Question, McCain and Romney, who did you two ever get? Oh, I know, you got get and it's all over your faces. Don't victimize, Idolize! LOL!

    April 27, 2012 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  14. Ken

    Not as pathetic as George's now famous (or rather infamous) banner "Mission Accomplished"!!

    April 27, 2012 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  15. GI Joe

    Loser - we saw you the other day endorsing President Obama - aren't you glad you had Nikki Haley to remind you that you like Romney now? ha ha ha ha ha

    April 27, 2012 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  16. Howard

    Obama said his father served in WW II? Barack's father served in WW II?
    He said so in a speech. Here is an 18 second video:
    CNN News clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fv4jnlkxOaw
    Is he a compulsive liar? Were there no reporters who checked or double checked these statements and called the party on this? They did for everyone else. Why not him?
    Like it or not, here are the facts:
    Barack Hussein Obama Sr. (Obama's father) Born: 4/4/36 Died: 11/24/82 at the age of 46.
    He was 5 years old when WW II started, and less than 9 1/2 yrs old when it ended.

    Lolo Soetoro (Obama's step father) Born: January 2,1935 Died: 3/2/87 at the age of 52.
    He was 6 years old when WW II started, and 10 years old when it ended.

    April 27, 2012 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  17. Joan

    They have got to be kidding. Killing Bin Laden was a huge accomplishment and it took real courage to make that decision to go after him. Admiral Gates said it was a gutsy move. Bush had let him slip away in Afghanistan and then decided it wasn't that important to go after him. Romney said as much during his last presidential run. It was a real accomplishment not like the "Mission Accomplished" banner that Bush had behind him on the carrier. If the shoe was on the other foot, McCain would be shouting it from the rooftops. It is pathetic that McCain and others would belittle such a historic event. They are just jealous and it is really showing.

    April 27, 2012 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  18. Paul Ernest Show

    John, why is it that your videos, while a prisoner, used to win sympathy for you often, even during the presidential election, is not pathetic, but Osama Ben Laden video is? You cannot ridicule or diminish your opponent's outright achievements by attaching negativity to them. It's like saying Mitt Romney's personal financial success is pathetic. It's pathetic that your party tied student loans interest to women issues. It's pathetic that a bishop abandoned his holy calling to pursue and engage in the ugly, ruthless and deceptive game of politics.

    April 27, 2012 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  19. ryan

    pot meet kettle. spew what you will mcCain. you are no different. whatever it takes to get elected. shoe meet other foot. your the hypocrite.

    April 27, 2012 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm |
  20. Stcyaries

    So tired of hanging my head because I live in AZ and am surrounded by crazy people. Had John McCain killed Bin Laden, we would have never heard the end of it from every conservative pundit to John McCain himself. He would have had a "Mission Accomplished" banner made just like W; prior to the Seals even going in. This from the man who suspended his campaign, supposedly, to run to Washington to address the financial crisis. Whatever!

    April 27, 2012 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  21. John

    What John McCain should just stop taking ,because all he doing Is making more of a A$$ of himself.

    April 27, 2012 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  22. Bootstomper

    McCain and the GOP are pathetic period. If Bush had gotten Bin laden these clowns would say ,see the democrats are weak on terrorism. Obama Biden 2012!

    April 27, 2012 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  23. DBA

    Oh please. Willard "Mitt" Romney is on the record during the 2008 GOP primary for decrying any attempt to attack al-qaeda terrorists in Pakistan ("our ally"), and claiming the pursuit of Osama bin Laden to be a waste of money & time. I don't think it is even a slight stretch to assume that Romney would not have made the decision to get bin Laden.

    Unfortunately for Mitt, those are the kind of decisions that real-life Presidents have to make.

    (Perhaps Mitt would prefer to concentrate on the "Soviet union" or "Czechoslovakia", as mentioned by his campaign?)

    April 27, 2012 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  24. Anonymous

    McCanine is insane!!

    April 27, 2012 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  25. MaryM

    McCain, you, the repubs and romney are pathetic. President Obama and the Navy Seals DID GET Osama and you and the repubs just cant stand it. What would you be saying if bush got Osama? huh? hypocrites all of you.

    April 27, 2012 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm |
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