July 1st, 2008
10:05 AM ET
14 years ago

McCain campaign pulls ads from some anti-Obama web sites

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[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/12/art.mccain.6.12.jpg caption="McCain ads appeared on several Web sites run by Hillary Clinton supporters."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - John McCain's campaign will stop advertising on several pro-Hillary Clinton Web sites that have attacked Barack Obama for being unpatriotic and, in one case, compared the Democratic nominee-in-waiting to Adolf Hitler.

A spokesman for McCain said Monday the campaign was not aware their ads were running on the offending Web sites, and has taken steps to block those sites from their online advertising network.

"When we find stuff like this, we take care of it," said McCain spokesman Brian Rogers.

McCain has made it known he is reaching out to former Clinton supporters, and there are nearly two hundred well-trafficked blogs and online communities run by former Clinton supporters who refuse to support Obama. But the three sites on which McCain's ads appeared are particularly hostile to the Illinois senator.

One Web site, called Stop-Obama.org, is a group blog comprised of disaffected Clinton supporters, some of whom are now supporting McCain. Three different banners ads, one of which featured McCain standing side-by-side with Sen. Joseph Lieberman, were running on the site until Monday.

A recent post on the blog outlined the "simple parallels" between Obama and Hitler, and accused Obama's audiences of having the same cult mentality that characterized followers of the German dictator.

McCain's ads have also shown up on a pro-Clinton Web site named "Obama WTF" that accuses Obama of being "spineless," having "communist influences," "courting Jew haters" and being "in the pocket of America haters."

SavagePolitics.com, another anti-Obama site that has been targeted with McCain ads, has called Obama a "bold faced liar, a thief, a sexist and a racist."

The McCain campaign pulled the ads Monday evening after they were pointed out by CNN.

Rogers said the campaign often has no control over where their ads show up on the Web. That’s because the campaign uses a third party vendor - in this case, Google - to distribute their banner ads across a broad array of political Web sites by searching for certain key words.

When the campaign is made aware of ads appearing on offensive or irrelevant Web sites, Rogers said, they notify the ad distributor and have the sites added to a list of blocked URLs. He noted the McCain campaign has already blocked "tens of thousands" of such sites.

It's not the first time a campaign has been forced to remove ads from controversial Web sites.

Mitt Romney's campaign found itself in the politically awkward position of advertising on the Web site Gay.com in late 2007, prompting the Web site to pull the ad shortly after it was discovered.

Last September, Barack Obama's campaign removed a campaign advertisement that appeared on the Amazon.com page for the controversial book "The Israel Lobby," which asserts that a network of influential pro-Israel activists hold undue sway over U.S. foreign policy.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (231 Responses)
  1. Phil Newton Oregon


    July 1, 2008 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  2. Sue

    McCain, just let the Americans freely express themselves. They see Obama just like I do: a tragedy for America.

    July 1, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  3. Pro-choice, pro-dem

    You know how whacko and extreme the bitter Clinton-istas are if even John McCain is running away from them.

    They should all move to Canada. It's cold and bitter up there, just like the souls of the Clinton-istas.

    July 1, 2008 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  4. katiec

    Poor innocent McCain, he didn't know.
    One of his chief advisors is an expert on smear
    You would think after what Bush/Rove did to him with
    smears he would want to run a cleam campaign.
    Evidently not.

    July 1, 2008 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  5. Roofin Reality, Houston, Tx.

    Nice of Senator McCain to do so.
    Looks like Senator Obama was the trailblazer in this – he took very similar action 9 months ago.

    July 1, 2008 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  6. HH

    The McCain campaign is pure scum. I can not wait until election night when the votes come in and McCain gets pounded 49-40.

    This man is toooooooooooo old and senial. Did anyone every think he might have PTSD after his experience in Vietnam. This is one man whos finger should be no where near the red button. God help us all if he is elected, this country will be a third world one.

    July 1, 2008 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  7. Loretta from California

    This is good, for a beginning. Now maybe McCain can do something about all of the LIES that his surrogates are distributing. That "Rezko helped to buy his house" Lie for example. The whitey Lie. Unpatriotic Lie, the he's Muslim Lie. The GOP Lies are endless. I'm so happy that he has taken the time to clear up this misleading information on his website under fight the smears.


    July 1, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  8. AdamW

    These Obama haters who now support McCain are nuts. How do you compare Obama to Hitler? Why would you claim to be a democrat and than support a republican just to make a point Obviously they only liked Clinton because she was a woman. If they believed in her ideas they would vote for a democrat.

    July 1, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  9. Bulldog

    Glad to see McCon pulled his ads, but just like most other things his upfront judgement was bad and he had to go back and correct his actions. Just like New Orleans and the latest Midwest floods, McCon is a day late and a dollar short.

    July 1, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  10. Lisa

    No more speeches for Obama only debates.

    July 1, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  11. Vote Nader

    How come everytime there is a political ticker entry about Sen. McCain it is about action, policy or leadership. But most of the one's about Sen. Obama are about having shirts offered to him, riding a bike, talking to someone on the phone, about how uninteresting he is or something trivial like that? Kind of makes you wonder, doesn't it?

    The only "anti-Obama" website you need to visit is vote nader (dot) org. Check it out. It's more useful than any of the ones mentioned above.


    ** Nader/Gonzalez 2008 **

    July 1, 2008 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  12. bob

    ya, you thought you could keep saying Obama this Obama that and you won't be attacked or swiftboated? Now I am thinking what makes you more qualified to be a commander in chief. Being a POW, or riding 35000 feet as a pilot doesn't mean you are more patriotic than Obama or more qualified than Obama. He is has a more compelling story than you do!

    July 1, 2008 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  13. BlayzeKohime

    I do not like John McCain, but at the very least he has a more civil tone than George W Bush ever has.

    July 1, 2008 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  14. KMAN

    Any group claiming to be pro-Hillary while trying to slander Obama never were truly Hillary supporters ... they are simply self-serving foolish and without the mental compentancy to see that McCain in no way actually represents their self-serving agenda! Hell hath no furry like self-serving middle-aged women scorned!

    July 1, 2008 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  15. Danny in Ohio

    McWho cares... I don't even read these articles when they have his name in them because the topics are always the same... he's just so... BLAH.

    July 1, 2008 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  16. Charlie

    Man, some Clinton supporters are a bunch of crybabies. What's going to really be fun is when they vote for McCain, he wins, and then they realize that they just earned themselves at least four more years of Bush.

    July 1, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  17. paul

    "A spokesman for McCain said Monday the campaign was not aware their ads were running on the offending Web sites"

    What a crock. When McCain's campaign does stuff like this, they are patronizing the American public – they think we actually believe this?

    Same old tricks...

    July 1, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  18. Dave P

    If there are Democrats that used to support Hillary that feel Obama is like Hitler and now want to support McCain then I say let him keep them! We do not need people like that in the Democratic Party. Our country needs help. It isn't getting it from the Republicans, actually the opposite. We need to get behind Obama and support him and the Democratic Party.

    Iowa City, IA

    July 1, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  19. T GUY


    July 1, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  20. pam Eugene OR

    I am sure McCain stopped right away and never knew it was anti Obama. NOT!

    July 1, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  21. Down with Obama

    CNN you are dirty and in the pocket of Obama....how are your ratings?????

    July 1, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  22. Hey Clinton Supporters!

    Why are you crazy? Are your feelings hurt enough to where you would donate money to attack your fellow democrat, Senator Obama? Is it b/c you're all sore losers? I'm beginning to think they're a bunch of republicans saying they were former Clinton supporters and are now against Obama.

    PS Don't call yourself democrats anymore

    July 1, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  23. mike

    A constitution scholar and a pow, who is more patriotic?

    July 1, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  24. GG NYC

    These websites are offensive and, thankfully, according to the most recent polls, aren't working!!

    If you participate in any of them and you "claim" to be a Hillary Clinton supporter you must be lying. If you care at all about politics or the world, you would not support McCain after supporting Hillary.

    -What about protecting (rather than destroying) a woman's right to choose?
    -What about ending the senseless war in Iraq?
    -What about the economy? Do you think McCain has a plan other than a "gas tax holiday"? He doesn't.
    -What about the supreme court justices to be nominated by the next president?
    -What about social justice and repairing America's damaged image and connections abroad?

    OBAMA /BIDEN '08

    July 1, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  25. Peter

    He could just have removed the ads without telling us what they said or what they are. This is another way to swiftboat Obama. I see you through your lenses Mccain. You are going to loose and loose big!

    July 1, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
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