May 30th, 2008
02:25 PM ET
12 years ago

McCain admits mistake in using Petraeus picture for fundraising

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" A fundraising e-mail sent to McCain supporters Thursday."]

MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin (CNN) - John McCain, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee for president, said he was wrong to use an image of Gen. David Petraeus in fundraising material, and it "will not happen again."

His admission came hours after the Barack Obama campaign criticized an e-mail showing McCain shaking hands with the general who has been commanding U.S forces in Iraq.

It was not the first time McCain had used the picture of himself with Petraeus; it appeared on the candidate's website for several days in April before being taken down.

McCain has been hammering Obama for days over the length of time been since the Democratic front-runner last visited Iraq, mentioning Friday it was "873 days."

"I have visited Iraq on many occasions because I think the most vital decision that any president of the United States can make has got to be about the security of this nation and the lives of the young Americans who are serving," McCain said in an e-mail to supporters sent Thursday afternoon.

Adm. Michael Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recently took the unusual step of admonishing all members of the military to stay out of politics as the presidential campaign heats up.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (362 Responses)
  1. Tron

    I really hope that the American people are smart enough to really see McCain for what he is, A BUSH CLONE !!! electing him will be the same as re-electing Bush for another term. Our country is in serious trouble, We cannot have a person in the whitehouse who wants to keep us in a war that has been going on for over 2000 years. These people fight because they like to fight, it bred into them. Look at thier medrasas, they teach their young how to kill and hate before they are 5 years old.
    We must end our part in this war and rebuild our economy. Mc Bush is not the man for the job.

    May 30, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  2. kathe oakland, california

    McCain knew what he was doing and would have continued if he had not been called on for it.
    And trying to force Obama to go to Iraq with him????? Please, Senator Obama is absolutely correct – why make it a 'photo op' for McCain who already lied about how safe he was overthere. I GUESS SO WITH 100 SOLIDERS WITH GUNS WALKING with him ON HIS TRIP?????

    YOU GO OBAMA, when it is right for you. These folks they have no clue period.

    And this "new minister" stuff – that was indeed a joke, and it is on FOX BLUES for even making a big thing out of it. It is by the way all true, Hillary thought when she started she and Bill had this election "in the bag" NOT THIS TIME CLINTONS

    May 30, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  3. Jose


    May 30, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  4. Dylan McLernon.

    Typical endearing qualities of McCain. Use any means necessary.
    He and Clinton would make perfect running mates.

    Obama '08

    May 30, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  5. New Day

    I think that, if a person is running for president, they should be forced to use a shock collar controlled by an independent observer. And, every time one of the candidates says or soes something stupid, they should get zapped. I like Obama but, for his campaign to even care about this is dumb. 75% of the people in this country can't find Iraq on a map, let alone know what Gen. Petraeus looks like. And, the political junkies that do know who he is, have already made up their minds up about the candidates and how they feel about the war.

    May 30, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  6. New Yorker

    McCain is rightfully contrite because he put Petraeus in a bad spot. Aside from that he has nothing to be sorry for. Obama is sucking up to the anti-war sentiments that run deep in this country.
    FDR knew the US had to enter WWII and yet he had to wait years before Japan handed him justification via Pearl Harbor.
    Obama will tell you anything you want to hear- BTW there's a bridge I want to sell you in Brooklyn...

    May 30, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  7. EBC

    Sen, McSHAME you are nothing but a LIAR just like your buddy George Bush. NO need to apologize the American people have already made their choice. IT'S NOT YOU!!!

    So all this "straight talk express" is fast becoming a serious joke. It's okay though, because come November Sen. Obama is going to EAT you alive buddy.

    I hope you have your respirator close by, cause you're going to need it come November!

    May 30, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  8. Kim

    I think Obama did the right thing on calling McCain on this and McCain said he won't do it again.
    Perfect these two can be civil.

    I wish the rest were the same... Hillary signs an agreement to NOT use the votes and delegates and now her lawyers say he isn't elidgeable for any Michigan Votes?

    DETROIT are You going to Take This

    May 30, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  9. 58 old white ladies for OBAMA





    May 30, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  10. angry eric

    Does it make sense to advertise that you heavily contacted to the military industial complex. Maybe someone should tell the old man that you should seperate your self from Iraq. You idiot!!! Everyone wants Iraq to end and you are promoting as if it's a good thing.

    May 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  11. Franky

    "Adm. Michael Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recently took the unusual step of admonishing all members of the military to stay out of politics as the presidential campaign heats up."

    You know, I agree. Is different when you're talking about military and be honest, it is VERY different and distinct. I think is the right decision that the Adm. said.....

    May 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  12. Kenneth M


    May 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  13. Truth

    It is not important how many times McSame visits Iraq, what is important is what did he do and when our troops will come home...

    On similar note, it is not important how many years you spent in Washington, but what did you learn from you experience and how were your voting records and what were the consequences to your decisions to initiate the war?

    May 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  14. proud army and navy mom

    didn't the general tell all of the armed forces that they have a right to vote, but they were not to publicly pick sides.

    this is absolutely illegal and mcsenile should be punished for it. did the general ok this photo, if so he should be demoted as well.

    i know both my daughter(army) and my son(navy) cannot say one word about the president or any one over them.

    May 30, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  15. boered1

    Sorry folks I know this does not belong here but I cannot withhold my two cents again from the previous tickler article, the one from hillary's lawyer.

    While I am loath to give her ANYTHING (it is my belief if you AGREE to a rule you stand by that agreement). I can see the reasoning in the lawyers talk that since Obama got no votes he should get no delegates. but I continued on in this reasoning path, if 47% of the voters voted AGAINST hillary (44% uncommitted and 3% for other candidates who violated the DNC request and left their names on the ballot) we should take HE percentage (53%) and subtract those who voted AGAINST her (47%) and give her the delegates left, 6% of the delegates and NO OTHERS GET SEATED. Now is that fair or what?

    moronic Clintonistas

    May 30, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  16. Chris, Middletown, CT

    I'm voting for Obama (and I'm a Republican) – when I read this story about McCain – I thought....who cares....then I thought more about it....and I thought who cares

    May 30, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  17. helen

    I was worried that Obama would not be able to go against Mcain. I am proving wrong. He is very effective fighting back. Hillary voted for the war therefore, she cannot fight on that front. I am will ing to support whoever the democratic nominee is, even if it means having womanizing Bill Clinton with and not too honest wife back in the whitehouse. Mcain will not go through on my watch. He is a war supporter.

    May 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  18. carmen

    And the contradiction and hypocricy keep on coming from McCain. His hereto true stripes are really showing more and more.

    May 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  19. andrew s

    McCain is a military dictator and will become a conquerer to the middle East if elected. stop him now vote Obama/ Hillary

    May 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  20. Capt. Smash, Salt Lake City, Utah

    The national nightmare will continue.

    Look how many people still support McBush jr and this Bush crime family.

    Mcwar is almost as popular as Obama or Hillary.

    No the national nightmare will be over when most americans come to terms with what they have become after decades of conditioning by the capitalist media and the industrial military complex.

    Capitalism will warp the minds of its citizens with greed and desires for imperialism.

    The nightmare continues until most americans repent for their imperialism and war mongering.

    Mcwar bombed men women and children and we called him a war hero.

    I dont see the nightmare ending any time soon we prefer to blame our politicans

    May 30, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  21. Danny in Pittsburgh

    You visit Iraq...and everything gets put on hold for a week, John. Just so you can have your picture taken with the boys...soldiers who must go to great extra duty just to see to it you are safe while you are there.

    That means you extend this war for your own self aggrandizement, John.

    If your politically-motivated visits cost even one extra week...that's 10 more soldiers that die needlessly, 3 billion that gets spent "over there" that could have been used here, that's at least 100 wounded and Gosh knows how many innocent civilians hurt.

    All so you can say you "visited."

    All so you can have your picture taken in a fabricated, feel good moment that you'll then use again and again for your own political gain.

    You risk and waste the very lives you purport to honor, John. Not only is that a terrible way for an honored soldier to act. It's a terrible way for ANY American to act.

    Stop playing politics with the greatest mistake in US foreign policy history, John. When my engine is blown, I have NO NEED to lift the hood to see the damage–I only need fix the problem as soon as possible.

    You show no desire to fix this problem–rather, prolong it so you can be President. That makes you, among other things, a sadist. And a sorry excuse for a Presidential candidate.

    May 30, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  22. Pete

    McCain doesn't know if the troops are Iraq or Iran!

    May 30, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  23. Doris,Memphis,TN

    The bottom line is John McCain is too old to be president.
    He can't remember what he says or does.
    We need someone who can improve our image in the world.
    Why would we go from Bush to McCain?
    As intelligent Americans we must elect someone we can be
    proud of in the White House. Someone that we are not making
    excuses for everyday.

    Obama 2008-2016

    May 30, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  24. Capt. Smash, Salt Lake City, Utah

    The fact that McCain and the GOP have decided hitting Obama over his lack of Iraq visits is rather stupid. Making this a line of attack will remind everyone of McCain’s dog and pony show where he visited Bagdad market guarded by “100 American soldiers, with three Blackhawk helicopters, and two Apache gunships overhead” while wearing a bullet-proof vest. McCain's statement afterwards made him the joke on every comedy program and blog in and out of the country. Our troops in Iraq have better things to then act as guide to these dog and pony shows. McCain's attack is stupid publicity show.

    May 30, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  25. Tom G from Anaheim

    Always with the "mistakes". Look past the spin and another "war president" is revealed. Wars to infinity, no friends in the global community. He is cozy with the military and weapons manufactures.

    May 30, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
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