July 18th, 2008
10:00 AM ET
14 years ago

Will McCain stop criticizing Obama when he's abroad? No

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/11/art.mccainobama.ap.jpg caption="McCain is expected to continue criticism of Obama while he is overseas."]
(CNN)—Senator John McCain tends to follow the old adage “politics ends at the water's edge,” but his aides tell CNN they have every intention of continuing their attacks on Obama while the presumptive Democratic nominee is on his overseas trip.

When he was in Canada in June, McCain refused to talk about Obama - and CNN was told from top advisers that McCain got angry at campaign aides back at headquarters for sending emails hitting the Illinois senator while he was abroad.

But the McCain campaign considers Obama’s trip to Europe, Iraq and Afghanistan fair game. McCain aides says the Obama campaign and the DNC both set precedent for it, by attacking McCain while he was in Europe and the Middle East in March, and during his recent trips to Canada, Colombia and Mexico.

In an e-mail response to CNN, McCain spokesman Brian Rogers attached a list of quotes from Obama and DNC press releases during the presumptive Republican nominee’s trips, and said “we don’t feel there’s any restriction on drawing contrasts while he’s abroad.”

The trip has already drawn significant media coverage - so there’s no doubt the McCain campaign will be watching Obama very closely.

The campaign has already sharpened its argument in the past week, branding the presumptive Democratic nominee’s trip to Europe as a photo opportunity, and his visits to Afghanistan and Iraq campaign stops, not a fact finding missions, since Obama announced his policies before visiting.

“I was very interested that he articulated and announced his policies and approached Iraq before he went, not after. Remarkable,” Senator McCain told Missouri voters Thursday.

“I've been on a lot of trips around the world, usually at your expense, but I usually issue my policy statements when I get back.”

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (246 Responses)
  1. joe from NY


    McSame–what were you doing in Iraqi market some time ago surrounded by 5 Black Hawk helicopters proclaiming the Iraqi markets are safe places to be! Do you remember what you ate for breakfast this morning? You and your campaign should take a trip to Czechoslovakia!

    Is anyone else seriously worried this man might be our president in 3 months?

    Wake up America.

    July 18, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  2. D.

    Like Victoria's Secret shoe Obama has Flopped to Fit!
    Haven't we all changed somewhat at times- leave the man alone.
    Mc Cain has done likewise so it's the way it is.

    July 18, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  3. geen

    mccain calls himself a leader...what the hell has HE led? He got captured in another illegal war, spent 5 years in a POW camp after getting shot down flying over and dropping bombs on civilian populations, killing them before the Moron's father, in the first iraq war, saintized it to be..ummm...'collateral damage'! (oh, by the way, I am a veteran of the Vietnam War, although I subsequently became more involved with VVAW and, when i college, after realizing the immorality of that war which McCain happens to be so proud of (He,and everyone who thinks U. S. is ALWAYS right, should read the great historian, Barbara Tuchman's March of Folly...just exchange the word vietnam with Iraq, the Johnson and Nixon administratiions with the Moron's regime....nothing has changed....and, another thing....why is it that EVERY democrat who runs agains these reactionaries is portrayed as "the most liberal"–eight years ago, when McCain's master was awarded the presidency (he didn't 'win' it, we all know), Gore was 'the most liberal', when Hillary was running, she was 'the most liberal', when Kerry ran, he was the "most liberal'...now we have obama...and HE is the 'most liberal"...for those reactionary Fox listeners and viewers...once and for all...just who the hell is the most liberal??? (or is that subject to change too....hmmm....McCain is nothing more than the Moron's lap dog...

    July 18, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  4. Kyle Indianapolis, Indiana

    McCain needs to get a LIFE!

    Pathetic old man!

    July 18, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  5. Raymond Duke

    Why should McCain quite critcing Obama while he is abroad. Didn't the "BLACK MESSIAH" critice McCain when he was in Iraq. Lets face it Obama is only going to these countrys to try and make himself look as something he is not "PRESIDENTIAL". This man is nothing but a Joke and I can't stand JOHN McCAIN. As far as them "Lackey " news medias ABC , CBS and NBC why do you think they have the lowest ratings of all the news channels. CNN is getting there with their baises for OBAMA.

    July 18, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  6. Joshua

    Did he visit before voting for the wars?

    July 18, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  7. Kathryn Irby - Metairie, LA

    Why, no! He's just jealous because Obama is far younger than he, and far more of an intellectual than McBush ever would/could be in his wildest dreams! Obama in '09!

    July 18, 2008 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |

    McCain please give us a few titbits of what your administration would be about when you get elected will you still be attacking Obama? You better have a backup plan of what you are going to do because all you know is to attack Obama... this is becoming an Obsession...

    July 18, 2008 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  9. Independent in Iowa

    CNN you make me sick. "Will anyone stop picking on our messiah?"

    July 18, 2008 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  10. georgia

    Mcdesperate is looking & sounding more & more Mcpathetic

    July 18, 2008 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  11. gary


    July 18, 2008 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  12. Tina

    The news media in the United States is amazing. No matter what television channel you watch, CNN, FOX, MSNBC, CNNI, NBC, ABC, or CBS, it appears there’re all reading from the same script. Same photos and same verbiage, same coverage, same talking points, it truly disgusting. This is also true of the print media. The McCain camp is complaining about the coverage he is getting, sound familiar (Hillary Clinton in the primaries). McCain call the news media his base and for good news coverage you can move to the front of his Straight Talk Express Bus. There has been a lot of coverage of Obama most manufactured stories by the media.

    This morning, all I’ve heard on every channel is Obama’s trip abroad, and how so much media, including three network anchors are following him and did not reciprocate the same for McCain when he was traveling abroad. It is my understanding that Obama invited them and McCain didn’t.

    Finally, this is not the 2000 or 2004 election. The people of the United States will not be bamboozled by the media, not this time. We realize the media is corporately owned. We get the accurate news else where. We are sick and tired of tabloid politics and stories. Most American don’t need pundits to translate what is being said. We want the media to to report the news, not to create it.

    July 18, 2008 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  13. Marie Ontario

    Why would McCain supporters keep harping on Experience without putting any thought into what kind of experience the person brings to the table.

    McCain's experience on the Iraq war is he voted for it with inside knowledge about why as he openly stated it was for oil.

    McCain went to Iraq dressed in a flaq suit surrounded by the military and then lied to everyone when he came home saying you could stroll to the market without any problems or fears. This statement was quickly denounced by Michael Ware who said you wouldn't last a minute if you went outside the green zone.

    McCain has never one a war but insists he knows how but fact shows his experience is limited to being shot down and surrendering and becoming a prisoner of war. Not intened to diminish his military record just reiterating his experience in this area.

    Continually votes against all women's rights issues and doesn't have a very clean record on how he personally treats the women in his life as well.

    Brags about the surge but the facts are they are paying their enemies not to fight against them as well as giving them arms without any concern about what these people will do when they feel they have enough of a stockpile.

    Has shown in speeches he has absolutely no idea about modern day geography as doesn't know the difference between the religous sects in the middle east.

    Could go on forever but anyone with a modicum of intelligence should be able to get the message.

    July 18, 2008 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  14. Rick FL

    Criticisms seem to be a large portion of McCain's campaign. Substance over rhetoric please.

    Obama '08
    Si se puede!

    July 18, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  15. Lauren

    Are you kidding? What else has McSame got to do, but twiddle his thumbs? He'll rag on Barack like nobody's business. That's all his campaign has to offer–talk about what Obama won't do. Someone said on television the other day that McCain can't get news converge unless he's talking about Barack. So his ticket to the news media is Barack Obama. Let's see, this may be a clear sign of who's going to win in November.

    Barack, Barack, Barack 24/7 = New Democratic Administration, Yes.

    July 18, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  16. Brian in Bethesda

    Obama IS a socialist, no question. It appears that the press already elected Obama president though.

    July 18, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  17. laxraddad

    If I thought I could get away with it as a member of the military and met Mr. Obama in person while he was in Iraq, I'd spit in his face! He believes America is the source of all the worlds problems. God help us if he's our next President.

    July 18, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  18. MM07

    Socialism or Capitalism which ever nonsense you believe in or follow know this.

    Healthcare: is for the rich
    Social (Security): doesn't exist
    Industry: is overseas
    Economy: is on the ground
    The Rich: are richer
    The poor: can't feed their families or drive a car
    The Earth: Is being destroyed
    The war: will never end
    So instead of bickering with each other, why don't we all really do something, because if this continues none of your theories or disses or remarks will matter.

    July 18, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  19. Angus MacGuyver

    Attack, counter-attack, attack, counter attack....

    Iraq or McCain/Obama?

    this shows character of both.

    July 18, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  20. Leslie

    I think it's funny because Barack is forcing his opponents to tell us the truth. After 7 years of lies, lies and more lies, it's refreshing. I think we're going to have a wonderful concept in Washington. Tell the truth or get out of town.

    Now if Congress can just get their act together.

    July 18, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  21. Proud American

    Shut up McCain you do nothing but flip flop on every single issue. Your record speaks for itself.

    July 18, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  22. Chi-Town Cheryl

    Of course McCain and the Republicans will keep up the attacks. That is how the Republicans have always operated. BUT NOT THIS TIME. Obama is weathering the storm and doing a heck of a job at it. The Clintons literally through the "kitchen sink" at Obama. Now, the Clintons have no kitchen sink and Obama is on his way to the White House. McCain and the Republicans are scared, desperate, dazed and confused. They don't know how to handle this guy Obama. They cannot understand why "nothing sticks to him." Nothing sticks because Obama is the finest, most intelligent presidential candidate this country has ever seen. He is more than qualified to be president of this country. He is going to be an outstanding president.
    OBAMA '08

    July 18, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  23. Steve

    McCain can attack Obama all he wants. It just makes him look like a whiner. I think it's interesting that he's been going after Obama like the family dog for months, but then when he gets in front of the NAACP, he calls Obama "an impressive fellow". The countries McCain will be visiting are solidly pro-Obama. Pretty much everyone in the world is tired of Bush and his surrogates. My dog could run against McCain and probably win. No one is listening, John. Attack all you want. It just makes you look vindictive and petty. Keep it up. Your attacks do nothing but make you look worse than you already look, politically.

    For those of you whining about socialism, please find a book and read what socialism is all about. And no, socialism is not aligned with Facism. The Nazis called themselves socialists, but that doesn't make them socialists. Socialists protect their populations, not put over 10 million people to death for being "different".

    READ people. READ. And read something besides your own blogs.
    Obama is not a socialist. That's just a tag the Republicans have put on him to scare you. In the Republican mind, if you are not pandering to corporations and filling CEO's pockets with money, you're a socialist. What a load of crap!

    July 18, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  24. Mark, B'ham., Al.

    McCains criticism of Obama's Policy Speeches will not make the Network New since all the Anchors will be travelling and cheering for Obama overseas.

    July 18, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  25. Tess

    Obama was right about setting a withdrawal timetable from Iraq, focusing on Afghanistan, and not being afraid to have tough, diplomatic talks with our enemies. Bush, McCain, and the Republicans call(ed) Obama naieve. Next, what do we hear? The Bush administration talks with North Korea, the Iraqi government wants a timetable for US troops withdrawal, the Bush administration is planning to meet with Iran, etc. McCain and the republicans criticized Obama for not going to the middle east, then, criticize him now that he's going. McCain has absolutely no idea about the economy, healthcare, social security, etc. but will talk war anytime of the day. Let's face it, McCain and Company are desperate and seethingly jealous of Obama because he's shown a tendancy to be right. Of course, instead of focusing on his bumpy campaign and shoring up on his economic propsals, McCain and the republicans will continue to criticize Obama on all fronts (did I mention jealousy?). In contrast, Obama will continue to take the high road and focus on the issues that matter to the majority of people.

    July 18, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
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