April 19th, 2008
03:25 PM ET
15 years ago

McCain camp says Hamas wants Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/18/art.mccainemail.cnn.jpg caption="The McCain campaign says he would be tougher on Hamas."] (CNN) - John McCain’s campaign sent supporters a fundraising e-mail Friday that claims Hamas approves of Democrat Barack Obama’s foreign policy vision, and is hoping for his victory this fall.

“Barack Obama's foreign policy plans have even won him praise from Hamas leaders,” writes McCain deputy campaign manager Christian Ferry. “Ahmed Yousef, chief political adviser to the Hamas Prime Minister said, ‘We like Mr. Obama and we hope he will win the election. He has a vision to change America.’”

The McCain fundraising e-mail says Obama’s stands have earned him “kind words” from Hamas. “John McCain's foreign policy provides a stark contrast to the policies of Barack Obama,” writes Ferry. “While Senator Obama would surrender in Iraq and hold talks with the Iranian regime, John McCain will never surrender in the struggle with Islamic extremists. Please join our campaign today by making a generous donation of $50, $100, $250, $500, $1,000 or $2,300.”

In response to earlier comments by McCain over Obama’s position on former President Jimmy Carter’s meeting with Hamas – when the Arizona senator said that “Senator Obama does not have the experience to make the right judgment as to how to deal with terrorist organizations, obviously” and that he approved of the dialogue – the Obama campaign said that the Democratic presidential hopeful did not condone the former president’s decision.

Obama supporter Rep. Robert Wexler responded to the McCain fundraising e-mail Friday. "John McCain likes to talk about the civil campaign he plans to run, and yet today he has engaged in a shameful, divisive, and cynical kind of politics that he pretends to reject - all in reckless pursuit of campaign dollars," said Wexler, calling the message "empty tough talk and divisive fear mongering."

"We call on Senator McCain to reject this embarrassing and outrageous tone, and to join with Barack Obama in calling for an America that is united in its determination to isolate Hamas and support our ally Israel," he said.

UPDATE: EDITED to reflect that the World Net Daily/WABC exclusive interview has since been widely distributed through other news outlets.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (980 Responses)
  1. Sammy

    From now on, I am going to always vote AGAINST anyone who has an R next to his name.

    – Sammy
    Boston, MA

    April 19, 2008 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  2. Jane, NC

    I have to tell you, I trust either democratic candidate to protect us - and our way of life - better than Sen. McCain

    April 19, 2008 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  3. kevin from alaska

    With an ultra-Zionist like Joe Lieberman whispering into McCain's ear no wonder they like the other guy.

    April 19, 2008 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  4. aaron

    let the fear mongering begin. this is almost as pathetic as romney calling obama an elitist..

    obama is right.
    the americasn people ARE SMARTER THAN THIS

    April 19, 2008 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  5. Mary

    I am really not sure I understand the anger over this one, if it not better to hold your friends close and your enemies closer. He is not and has made it clear a supportor of Hamas, but in this shrinking global world, is it not better to try and sort through things then to continue to say, we are the tough guys and if you don't do it our way then we attack.
    Clinton says she will pull the troops out or Iraq but then will attack anyone that messes with Isreal.
    She says she gets to make the choice what to do not the Army Generals that probably have a better insight, is this not the George Bush style of ruling, ( yes ruling)
    I hope that everyone takes a look at all the issues, this has become a campaign of she said he said ,he said he said.
    Americans deserve and should demand better, I am not sure that Obama knowing someone that engagined in terrorists type activities when he was 8 equates to a President pardong some of these same individuals.
    The ABC debate was a joke, and it doesnt surpise me that the Clinton campaign does not see the coflict with the moderator that was in their employ. They dont see the conflict with Penn, they dont see the conflict with the ex president taking 800,000 from the Columbians for the free trade deal.
    Obama also has some issues, but at least he hits then right on, we may not like the answers, but he doesnt hide from them.


    April 19, 2008 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  6. Bob

    The McCain campaign comments demonstrate the kind of wacko groups he is willing to use as sources. And he criticized Obama for attending a church where he publically disagreed with the preacher? Welcome to the gutter, McCain.

    McCain's Source: World Net Daily, whose current headlines include “District bans 'John 3:16,' promotes demonic leer” and “Lesbian demands custody of Christian mom's 6-year-old.”

    April 19, 2008 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  7. Dan


    If NO, leave the man alone Mr McSame.Ur too old for al this trickery.
    U critisized the Dems for mudslinging and now u at the forefront of it.
    Obama might just be the person to stop this madness in the world or at least a good chunk of it.

    I belive this is McCains camp's way of distracting the country and the media from the "Economy has been good for 7yrs and his wife's tax returns stories"
    FYI it will hurt the GOP more than help them...see what has happened to Billarry.

    Yes We Can

    April 19, 2008 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  8. Jane, NC

    I have to tell you, I trust either democratic candidate to protect us - and our way of life - better than Sen. McCain

    April 19, 2008 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  9. eddie n. powellnye

    John McBush is just like HRC, out of touch with reality. Both want to bomb, bomb and bomb. What is so shocking to me is the lack of relative value this information is. Gas prices sky-rocketing, home
    forclosures and on and on. We can even get a grip on our own country's problems more or less what the world thinks about us.
    'WE THE PEOPLE' had better wake-up and realize that if we put liars
    (McBush and HRC) in the white house our country has baically admitted that we will start the 21st century on a foundations of lies.
    if we build on that type of foundation 'WE THE PEOPLE' lose. Again,
    this line of reason THE PARABLE OF THE MUSTRAD SEED'. When we plant that seed in shifting sand nothing will grow. Lastly, what bothers me the most is how many people are willing to accept a lair
    word and act like we suppose to just go along for the ride. When are we as a country going to send a message to the world that our moral values are that of peace for our all fellow men/women.

    April 19, 2008 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  10. A concerned American

    Not that I am any Obama supporter..

    if Hamas leader said ,"he has a vision to change America"..I will seriously take it as a positive note.

    Seriously, if your enemy thinks you are changing and your enemy is no more your enemy- Is not that a good sign?

    April 19, 2008 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  11. Judith from ohio

    Cheap tricks John.

    Now go to bed.

    April 19, 2008 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  12. California Voter

    This is only the beginning Obama! If you crumble over the questions asked by ABC you'll never stand up to the Republicans. I'm sure the countries in Africa, besides Kenya, are looking forward to the US aid that Obama will funnel to them. Obama has already spoken to Brown about support African democracy and prosperity . . . . ."a non-negotiable commitment to Africa" ring a bell with anyone???

    April 19, 2008 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  13. Kev

    Does Hamas get to vote?

    Not sure about Hamas, but I suspect most terrorist organizations would *not* favor an Obama administration. They have profited from the militancy of the Bush administration and would likely get more recruits from a McCain administration than Obama. Although, in fairness, if McCain follows through and closes Gitmo, our international standing will improve.

    For all the claims of his lack of specifics, Obama's stump speech has always promised to close Gitmo, reject torture and restore habeas corpus. These actions will do more to dry up al Queda's recruiting pool than any military action.

    April 19, 2008 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  14. ForBetterAmerica

    There goes the panic campaign again. They made the life of millions of Americans, miserable all these 7+ years. They are tying to use the same panic campaign again to do this again for another 4 years.

    The Trillions of $s spent on war ( most of which has gone into their coffers) did not make situation any better.

    Time for these panic campaign and these R's to go !!

    April 19, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  15. Richard, St. Paul, MN

    At this point, I think everyone in the world wants a change for America away from the crippling policies of the Bush administration, which has brought us only 'shock and awe' at screwing up everything they touch.

    April 19, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  16. Dave C - N.J.

    Pretty weak, John.
    We are not buying it.

    Just like we did not buy the "small town bitter" BS.

    Obama mean when govt sucks, people vote social issues, like guns, religion, abortion, gays, etc. They "cling" to non major issues like Iraq, economy, etc because they gave up.

    I don't know if I agree with that, but it's painfully obvious that is what he meant.

    I love how the GOP keeps saying we will "surrender" under a Dem. What a joke. Again, not buying it. I thought we declared victory at some point anyway? 🙂

    Keep it up John, you've got no hope.

    April 19, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  17. Renee /Expat Winterthur Switzerland

    As I said before "Papa McCain" and his campaign need to take a Geritol and a nap!

    You know how grouchy Senior Citizens are if they don't get their naps and medicine on time!

    How sad! I as a Democrat had a tremendous amount of respect for McCain, but after this episode he has shown me that he is not the type of Republican whom I could see myself voting for. A few years ago I would have most certainly voted for him.

    I guess it is a good thing that he is showing his true colors now!

    April 19, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  18. Kevin

    That means

    If McCain becomes the President- WE WILL BOMB USA

    If Obama becomes the PRESIDENt.we Won't as WE LIKE HIM

    STupid- it is that simple

    April 19, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  19. Ernie Sr.

    Obama, does not have the best interest for America at heart and he lacks the values of the American people. He has already demonstrated that. I wonder what it's going to take for the Obama supporters to see him for what he really represents! I along with many Americans am really worried about this!

    April 19, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  20. Alice Martin

    It has to be understood that in general Arabs in history have always had a greater affiliation with the African than the european. After all the top half of Africa is comprised of Egypt with Bethlehem, Tunis, Morroco etc. and people feel they can communicate better with an African. There has always been good relations between Africa and the Arab world including Israel. There has been zero or little communication between the Arabs and the european world, except for Mr. Carter's unprecedented visited. The road to peace requires communication not bombs.

    April 19, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  21. JOHN

    Well whats wrong with talking to enemies?May be thats the only way we could see if we have common ground.
    George Bush did not have success isolating Hamas.
    Time for change America and Obama is the man to do it.

    April 19, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  22. J

    Well, the problem with McCain is that he has an immensely difficult task remaining faithful to the Christian right and trying to push their agenda. Personally, I have been disapointed in these right wing Christians lately. Pastor Hagee has been giving terible witness lately with his hatred of Catholics and the peoples of India. I don't think it is our job to make non-Christians act like Christians. We shouldn't be so concerned with prayer in the school and having the ten commendments in the court houses. On the other hand, there are some useful ways Christians can participate in the affairs of the state and still not offend people. Hagee needs to pick up on these clues in my view.

    April 19, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  23. Jack

    Tell me something I don't already know. It is funny that Hamas keeps talking about changing America. How about changing themselve first. For example, stop trying to get their way by strapping suicide bombs and instead use the money to hire the top lobbyist firms to plead their case to our dollar-sign-eyes congress.

    April 19, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  24. Sylvia

    Typical McCain....he failed in his overall military mission which resulted in his becoming a POW. I guess he wants to continue this one in order to get his "mulligan". Sorry, John. The rest of the country believes diplomacy and dialogue should be honestly and sincerely tried to ELIMINATE war.

    Barack for President!

    April 19, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  25. s.positive

    So does IRAN want McCain to win as reason to wipe up its public towards the nuke as a weapon against US and Isreal. GIVE ME A BREAK old man, you need some young fresh thinking strategist...

    April 19, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
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