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. Susan, PA

    Won't it be easier to say that Senator Clinton campaign was negative enough to cause all these bitter supporters of hers.

    I for one, was her supporter till PA voting but then realised that for her its all about her. no Country,nothing.

    anyway, the country won't worse than it did in last 8 years or will it? we have to think ............

    July 1, 2008 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  2. Miko Kansas City

    OLD dirty man playing OLD dirty politics!!! can't teach an old dog new tricks thats why Obamas hitting him so hard.

    July 1, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  3. Tommy

    Folks these so called former HRC supporters now for McWhine are really rethuglican operatives, ala Rush Limpyouknowhat. They are doing the same job that Bush did on McSame in S.C. in the 2000 primaries. Sad. These simple idiots comparing Obama to Hitler need stronger anti-psychotic medication to bring them back to reality so that they can tell that the real comparisons to Hitler are Bush, Cheney, Rove! And they want McBush as president? Give me a break!

    July 1, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  4. susie

    McCain will lose the election if he doesn't start playing dirty like Obama's camp.

    July 1, 2008 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  5. LET IT GO

    Obama a tradey american? HuH in what way sue, It's one thing not to like Obama postions but to say his a tradey to american it's just ludacris, and it shown you how stupid people really are.

    July 1, 2008 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  6. Al, NY NY

    Good for JM, although the 527s that will perpetuate the falsehoods and innuendo will go unabated. Obama need to make sure he follows thru and deals with this stuff or he is no better

    July 1, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  7. vjh

    I don't buy the fact that McCain's campaign was unaware of these websites spewing hatred towards Obama. Don't they vet first ?
    It is very scary that there exists such hatred and ignorance towards Obama, comparing him to Hitler ? Insanity at its best. And to Mike who questions Obama's patriotiosm because he did not serve in the military....did you ? I didn't, doesn't make me any less patriotic than anyone else in this country. However, I think Obama has shown his patriosm, serving within this country as a public servant, his service to Chicago and in the Senate. I show my patriosm by being a part of society every day. Patriosm is reflected in many ways.

    July 1, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  8. S. Boatman Warrensburg Mo.

    More Lies From The Crooked Talk Express!

    July 1, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  9. ms.sims

    I think instead of the media giving these groups exposure...they should be EXPOSING them for what they are. A number of these groups are ran by republicans whom claim they are lifelong democrats!! Recently the founder of Puma Pac was exposed for donating to McCain's 2000 presidential campaign and voting for him in the primaries. But claims to be a "lifetime dem" Barack wasn't around then so what was your excuse? Oh wait her excuse was she was doing 'everything' in her power to prevent GWB from getting the nomination. But she never says that she supported Gore financially or by voting for him once his nomination was secured...and they call Obama the wolf in sheep's clothing. Please dems look at who you are supporting when your joining these groups!! The vast majority of Hillary's supporters are behind Barack, most of the others were Repubs anyways who crossed over just to vote for a women candidate and now they're tip toeing back over to their side and trying to take the real "lifelong" dems with them...NOt This Time..RUSH!

    July 1, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  10. Michael Lorton, Virginia

    The hardcore Hillary supporters are not supporting McCain......they are just voing against Obama. Birds of a feather flock together. Amazing how hypocritical humility works.

    July 1, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  11. ANGIE

    so i guess that is where we can find the PUMA website on mccains smearing site for obama i agree with most you think mccain would learn after what BUSH KARL ROVE ETC did to him i thought john mccain said he wanted to run a clean campaign well looks to me not so clean lobbisit smear sites wheres the clean john oh thats right you flip flop so much or did you forget what you said mccain you are pathetic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 1, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  12. Independant Woman, Texas

    I'm glad McCain is doing this, but it is truly a shame that Obama has to deal with smears from the GOP and from Clinton supporters. I know that some of her more hateful supporters are Republicans but some of them really are Democrats. It is disgusting that they are resorting to spreading these lies and rumors.

    The Republican Party is now marketing itself to African Americans on the basis of some of the things Clinton and her supporters have said and done in this campaign. You know it is bad when Black Republicans start running ads about how racist the Democratic party is, especially when the Republican Party has done NOTHING to level the playing field for minorities in the last 150 years!

    July 1, 2008 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  13. Yes we can, PA

    Sen. McCain,
    You are a day late and a dollar short. How timely that your campaign issued this declaration on Monday AFTER Sen. Obama spoke out against questioning anyone's patriotism. Sure you didn't know your ads were running on anti-Obama sites. Sure you are distancing yourself from calling him (and his wife) unpatriotic and comparing him to Hitler....NOW!

    You are a war hero, but with regard to this election...You're also a phony.

    July 1, 2008 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  14. Phil, FL

    Release all 600 pages of your military record – we have a right to know.

    You demanded it of Kerry, now it's demanded of you.

    Hey, CNN. His records would keep you all in headlines for weeks. Why can't you go after it?

    Bye bye, McCain

    July 1, 2008 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  15. Joe the Troll

    So now it's McCain who sends his minions out to attack and then denying it so he'll look better. Isn't that what the Repubs have been accusing Obama of?

    July 1, 2008 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  16. Mike - Texas

    Let's face facts.

    McCain is trying to run a "FAR CLEANER" campaign than Obama is.

    Obama has his cronies come out a make false statements and the comes out 2 – 3 days later to refute those statements just to make himself look above the fray.

    July 1, 2008 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  17. al





    July 1, 2008 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  18. karen-phoenix

    I am sooo sick of McBush!!!! He's sleezy and his "hit men" are not much better!!! I live in AZ and He could not get elected here today. He has NOTHING for the people of AZ–do you think he is going to do anything for the American people? Ha!! I want some one new, fresh and clean in the White HOuse to at least give us an fighting chance and Obama is that man!!!! GO OBAMA!!! AND I was a republican!!

    July 1, 2008 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  19. Mike - Texas

    .Hey Joe the Troll

    Those were Hillary sites that McCain was pulling his adds from.

    Go and check out Stop-Obama.org it is a Hillary supports site.

    July 1, 2008 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  20. Sharon Minnesota

    What ever happend to free speech? There just might be a grain (seed) of truth to the accusations and you all know what a small seed can produce when planted in the right soil.

    July 1, 2008 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  21. Readpeople

    Anyone familiar with how Google ads work? It's not McCain's campaign paying these websites to advertise. It's google placing his ads on certain sites based on key words. According to the article, even Barack Obama has had problems with google ads when his ad appeard on a page for an anti Israel book. If that wasn't his fault then this isn't McCains. It's sad how certain people will react to any story about John McCain with insults and rude comments while claiming to support the candidate who wants to "change" the way politics is done in this country.

    And those websites you want to blame him for? They are run by Hillary Clinton supporters who are bitter and angry about the fact that she was beaten by a man.

    July 1, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  22. Pumas are Now Republicans

    Hey Hillary Democrat, there is NO SUCH THING SHE ISN'T RUNNING ANYMORE!

    Listen, seriously, REAL Democrats, we need to start paying attention to this, I'm starting to realize a pattern. I think some people are having seriously mental issues, because they still think the primary season is still here; like January 2008, they think she still has a chance of clinching the nomination. They are stuck in the past, and can't move forward and it angers them that some people have moved on (like most of her 18 million supporters). What do they call people in total denial... a PUMA.

    So these People Under Mental Anguish, don't deserve our ridicule, they need our help. We should all donate money for their therapy (instead of Clinton's campaign debt) and medication because obviously, this is some type of condition. I am starting to feel badly for you because you are stuck in this grieving process; stuck between denial and anger. I swear I think some of you wake up in the morning being mad about the primary still! I think we should start booking up therapy sessions now, before January 2009, when they are swearing him in as POTUS. We can't have them showing up all crazy a YEAR later, with signs that say "Hillary for President" and "I'm always going to be bitter about something" trying to ruin it for the rest of the country. I think we should be pro-active and help mentally ill citizens. Who's with me?

    July 1, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  23. Jackie - NYC

    I find it rather shocking that these pro-HRC websites accuse Obama supporters of being cult-like when it is actually the HRC supporters who are acting cult-like. There is no reason for these sites to compare a good man to Hitler. Come on that is just crazy!!!

    I've said it before and I will say it again this election has really shown what the we the American people are; and I wouldn't call us open minded and progressive. The ignorance is astounding!!

    July 1, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  24. Were NOT your friends!

    To Democrats that supported Clinton that now refuse to support Sen. Obama, I have one thing to say to YOU. You are SPINELESS!!!! You guys are a worse flip-flopper than your new guy McCain. I fail to see why you supported Hillary in the 1st place, you obviously don't care about the issues she cares about because Sen. Obama has ALMOST THE SAME EXACT VIEW ON THOSE ISSUES. I just don't understand, he's not a Muslim, he is an american and he came from NOTHING and to be where he is today is amazing. Gotta love this country!

    Obama '08 + '12

    July 1, 2008 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  25. Dan, TX

    It is a good sign that the people who don't want another republican in the White House can only think of nonsense as an argument against Obama. Obama's policies are good for business, good for trade, good for America and good for the world.

    Look at these comments ... release his birth certificate – he did. So why keep some rumor alive. It is just like Obama said. They just want to try to make people afraid of him. Sorry, McCain is 100 times more scary than Obama.

    Who wants someone who was tortured for five years to be president. What does it do to someone to endure torture, what is the psychological impact. McCain is scary. We can't afford the risk of electing McCain.

    July 1, 2008 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
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