July 30th, 2008
06:16 PM ET
14 years ago

Obama: Don’t let other side scare you

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/29/art.obama.nevada.jpg caption="Obama criticized McCain's campaign tactics."]ROLLA, Missouri (CNN) - In the wake of John McCain’s new ad that paints Barack Obama as a global celebrity on par with Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, Obama told supporters at a rally Wednesday, “don’t let the other side scare you,” and said McCain is attacking him because Republicans know they don’t have the answers.

“He’s spending an awful lot of time talking about me. You notice that?” Obama asked a crowd of just over one thousand seated in a university gym. “I haven’t seen an ad yet where he talks about what he’s going to do. And the reason is because those folks know they don’t have any good answers, they know they’ve had their turn over the last eight years and made a mess of things."

“They know that you’re not real happy with them and so the only way they figure they’re going to win this election is if they make you scared of me,” Obama continued, repeating an attack from earlier in the day. “What they’re saying is ‘Well, we know we’re not very good but you can’t risk electing Obama. You know, he’s new, he doesn’t look like the other presidents on the currency, he’s a got a funny name.’”

Obama was more serious with a pool reporter at a diner stop on the way to Rolla when asked about McCain’s new ad, saying, “You need to ask John McCain what he’s for and not just what he’s against."

McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds responded in an e-mail to reporters entitled “Baseless.”

“This is a typically superfluous response from Barack Obama. Like most celebrities, he reacts to fair criticism with a mix of fussiness and hysteria,” wrote Bounds. “Barack Obama’s plans to raise taxes on energy and opposition to offshore drilling show that he fundamentally lacks judgment and experience, and is not ready to lead.”

After a question-and-answer session with voters at the town hall that included questions about Darfur and Cuba, the Illinois senator concluded by reminding his supporters to ignore McCain’s attacks.

“Don’t let the other side scare you away from what you know in your gut,” Obama said, “You know we have to bring about change. And this is our best chance to fundamentally change America so that Washington is working for you.”

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (248 Responses)
  1. Jonathan, Hartford, CT

    No, Obama, it is NOT the other side it is you. You have tons of money buy you are falling in the polls. You need to set aside your ego for the country and the party and put Hillary on the ticket.

    July 30, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  2. voter

    right on the dime. McCain has said nothing about what he believes in. What is his plan for the country? surge and more war. All he does is attack. When an individual attack it means that the person has no plan. go obama.

    July 30, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  3. wct

    Barack, the other side is not scared of you - the voters are!!! You also havent said anything of what you plan to do - but just the word "change, change, change" - but HOW??? we dont know and you dont know! words are so easy but its the actions that count!

    July 30, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  4. Todd in Texas

    "You need to ask John McCain what he’s for and not just what he’s against"

    I believe McCain has clearly stated that he is for offshore drilling, and Obama has stated he is against it.

    Will this shifty Obama guy continue to have no responsibiility? Where exactly are his policies? We all change our behavior and give all of our money away? No Thanks! I'll keep my money and the freedom to make my own choices. I refuse to learn Spanish, and it is my right as an American.

    July 30, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  5. sarah

    once again when faced with legitimate criticism sen obama howl that its because he's "different" which means everyone who criticizes the great ONE is a racist and hates him because he is black. how much longer will the media allow this mediocre, socialist, community organizer to get away with not answering for his actions in an effort to avoid the racist label he gives to anyone who questions him?

    July 30, 2008 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  6. Dec 25th 2012

    Obama is scary, People are identified by the company they keep.. look at
    Rev Wright
    Father Flagger
    Bill Aires
    Faraa khan
    Nancy Pelosi.

    Obama said Hillary would do anything to win the nomination.. if you look at his career, you can tell who is the opportunist.. he tied up with Rev wright to get a foot hold in south side of chicago..

    Used Tony Rezko to get a sweet deal on his home..

    is this 1 above politics .. is this the guy who wanted to bring change.. does record match is rehtoric..

    Hilary was the best bet. And we would have got Bill with Hillary , the good old days...

    I dont like Mccain's policies but i dont like Obama either.. i know how lot of us feel we are in bind.

    July 30, 2008 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  7. Jonathan, Hartford, CT

    Also, we thought you were the peace candidate. that is not true. You want to expand the war in Afghanistan, run attacks over Pakistan's border, phase out troops in Iraq over 16 months, and use confrontational language against Iran. You are not an advocate of peace. We no longer know who you are. You scare us.

    July 30, 2008 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  8. Gary from Madison, WI

    C'Mon, fear tactics are all the Republicans have. While Obama was away, McCain had a real chance to steal some media. Instead, he chose to rant that every problem in America is Obama's fault. The best example is when Obama was told he could only visit troops in Germany with his Senate staff. He was given one day prior notice and had already sent his staff home as the official visit was completed. McCain & the GOP jumped all over it (with false information) and ran with it. In reality, it is Obama with an 80% approval rating from the D.A.V. (Disabled American Veterans) regarding veteran and troop issues. McCain has a 20% approval rating from the same group.

    Who really supports the troops and will be the one to get things done?

    The answer is simple: Barack Obama

    July 30, 2008 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  9. Marina

    Speak for yourself John. Barack hits the nail on the head every time. He has a gift to ascertain the BS and right now McCain is GRASPING at nothing. He has to try to make Barack look bad to make himself look good. Its the oldest game in the book......Oh yeah, he knows how to play the game because he's ancient.

    Go Obama 08-16

    July 30, 2008 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  10. Fred

    Im afriad of Paris Hilton.

    July 30, 2008 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |

    MR AMERICA points out that Obama's opposition to those things mean he is a Democrat.

    And his responses are courteous and smart, not fussy and hysterical.

    McCain will lose badly this fall.

    July 30, 2008 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  12. Tony, Miami

    My friend is throwing rock on Obama because he saw in front of him a superb tree with lot of fruits and he is a stunted one.

    July 30, 2008 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  13. The Lady

    Cindy McCain scares me.

    July 30, 2008 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  14. Jim

    I think that when Republicans say Obama is "risky," it is just code for "he's black and different."

    July 30, 2008 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  15. NoMcSame

    It does not matter what you do they are looking for a reason not to vote for you. Hang in there because they are just getting started. Those people are wicked and vile like snakes. They are going to play the you are not one of them cards and every other racist card that they have. We black people are dreaming, those good white people would not do a thing like that is what they love to say. The CNN special Black In America was not true, all of that racist stuff just don't go on they say. My father, brother and I are all veterans but it doesn't matter because if I don't see something that I don't like in the country that I swore to defend they like to tell me to go back to a place that I have never been. We black folks just won't let go of the past because it is a new day they like to say. Well guess what people racism is alive and well in America. Obama could be in Washington for 30yrs and they still would not know him good enough.
    Where were they when Mrs. Obama racist roommate from New Orleans asked for another room because she didn't want to room with a black girl. White folks are not racist. It is all in our minds. Obama and the rest of us are dreaming if we think that a black man can move into the White house. That would really be a new day in America.
    Obama08 a dream

    July 30, 2008 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  16. Alice in Florida

    The other side doesn't scare me, Bam Bam – YOU scare me!

    July 30, 2008 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  17. CM

    Seems like some people who comment on here have already fallen victim to the fear factor....always talking about scary Obama.

    Here's what you guys need to do...get a blanket for safety and hide under your beds. Come out in the next 4 years after the rest of the nation works with Pres Obama to return the US to its former glory.

    July 30, 2008 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  18. Can'tabideidiots

    Tucker Bounds must think Americans can't read or think. Obama's stance on off shore drilling is that he opposes giving big oil NEW leases when they haven't even used the leases they now hold. Bush and McFossil only want to insure that their oil buddies are taken care of. More Repub BS!

    July 30, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  19. E. Elliott, Orlando, FL

    Ahem, John. Since the GOP, party of Bush, Chaney, Rove, Katherine Harris (ad nausium) who sold the nation's future to the Chinese have realized the old strategy of guns god and gays will not work this time, they use the fear tactic that they sold to the nation in 2004. It is so pathetic. Every breath Bush takes while pretending to serve the nation is a lie and sells out every sacrifice ever made by any American, in uniform or not. And the newest sell out? Mc Cain. He once was a man of character. He once opposed torture, knowing even more about it than Bush knows about booze. He used to give it straight on the far out religious right. Now he sucks up to each of these groups. It is required of the GOP candidate if he wants to get the main party support, just like bending over in front of the oil lobby. He has no shame and lost his honor.

    July 30, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  20. Phil, FL

    But the other side does scare me – they promise more wars, longer wars, tax breaks for Big Oil and wealthy, AND they will draft men and WOMEN for the wars McSenile wants to start to prove he knows wars.

    Wake up people.

    Kool aid not offered – and buy your own coffee – he can afford starbucks with Cindy's money, can you?

    Doubt it.

    July 30, 2008 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  21. linda from South Dakota

    umm seems this is turnin into a slam this and slam that deal,, time to get down to issues,,,,, obama,,, dont play that game,,, stick to the issues andyou have it 100%.. mccain is playin a game and dont go there,,,,,,, my vote still goes to obama!!!!08

    July 30, 2008 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  22. JIM...TX

    If 7 years of the Republicans tearing down this country doesn't scare you...you are mental! Obama might make you wonder but that trumps running scared another 4 years easily. Remember...the sky isn't really falling as the McSames want you to believe.

    July 30, 2008 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  23. Nancy

    Who hired this Tucker? He is a ruthless jerk without any morals. What happened to running a respectable campaign?? I can't believe McCain is stooping this low. I will never vote for him after watching all of this happen...... They almost seem to be enjoying it, that is the sick thing..... What a low campaign, it is disgusting and it will backfire because it is so obvious. Those of you who do not see them playing right into your fear and racism are totally out of touch with what is going on.

    July 30, 2008 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  24. Mark

    You notice that every speech Obama gives he keeps saying that the Republicans are going to make "us" scared of him, infering over and over that they're going to use the race card. Yet the Repubs didn't, don't and I suspect won't. Obama has implanted it in the heads of his fans and they actually believe him. He has them mesmorized. It is scary that his followers are almost like a cult. They believe everything he says, even when proved incorrect.

    The republicans scare me, but I wonder where did the great democratic party go? We had Kerry, now Obama, not to mention Clinton. Don't we have anyone qualified and capable to lead us out of this mess?

    Obama, you scare me, not because of anything McCain or the repubs said (or didn't say, that you say they're going to say), but because I don't think you are up to the job, and are way too far to the left, I smell higher taxes, government intervention into my personal life (mandatory health care, other forced government programs), etc.

    McCain, you scare me because you are likely a mellower extension of Bush's policies and out of touch with the new world.

    So what is a guy to do? I hear Peru is nice this time of year.

    PS: I find it interesting that in these blogs all the obvious democrats/liberals accuse the repubs/right wingers of being attack dogs and negative, etc, yet I only see the Obama supporters attacking and being mean-spirited. This is driving me away from the Democratic Party, they are being taken over by extremists and fundamentalist leftists. We need a third party, one that is focused on a centrist, moderate platform that will bring the most to the most, not force one extreme or the other upon the whole.

    July 30, 2008 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  25. kate in nc

    McCain's campaign is becoming exactly what he swore it wouldn't be. He's going beyond the kitchen sink to the outhouse. Barack's responses aren't superfluous, they are simply responding to the trite logical the McCain camp is throwing out. My response is, I wish Obama wouldn't waste his time on the innanities of the McCain camp, and instead focus on the issues at hand, thus thwarting their arguments.

    July 30, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
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