July 31st, 2008
04:19 PM ET
13 years ago

McCain says 'race card' charges are fair

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/31/art.mccainint.cnn.jpg caption="McCain talked with CNN's John King Thursday."](CNN) - John McCain told CNN Thursday it is fair for his campaign manager to claim Barack Obama is playing 'the race card.'

Watch McCain: Obama's playing the race card

"I'm sorry to say that it is. It's legitimate," McCain told CNN's John King. "And there's no place in this campaign for that. There's no place for it and we shouldn't be doing it."

Earlier Thursday, McCain campaign manager Rick Davis lashed out at the Democratic presidential candidate over his comments that Republicans are making an issue of his race.

"Barack Obama has played the race card, and he played it from the bottom of the deck. It's divisive, negative, shameful and wrong," Davis said in a statement sent to reporters.

An Obama spokesman immediately denied the assertion, but noted that the presumptive Democratic nominee believes that the McCain campaign was “using the same old low-road politics to distract voters from the real issues.”

At three stops in the battleground state of Missouri, Obama told audiences that his opponent is trying to make voters “scared” of him because he doesn’t look like past presidents – an apparent reference to being black — and has a “funny name.”

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (526 Responses)
  1. Peter

    Sure McStupid, we definetly think obama is playing the race card..

    July 31, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  2. Rodolpho from Brazil

    Please vote Republicans. The best thing happened to Developing countries is a Repub. presidency.

    While you guys are busy with other things, we (Brazil/India/China/Russia, the BRIC ) prosper economacilly.

    July 31, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  3. Latinos for Obama

    McCain hears what he wants to hear! Sometimes that is worrisome.

    July 31, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  4. clara

    McCain is right all the way that oboma is playing the race card one would have to be blind to see it and that is wrong on oboma's part he is suppose to be an all american president white ,yellow, brown, or what ever color he even acts like a celebrate like a real actor maybe he is an acter but he sure isn't running for the president more like an actor for a part in a movie

    July 31, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  5. Hannah Stevens

    Well, well, karl rove is back. you would think that McCain would not use his tactics since he was roved in 2000, when the bush campaign spread lies about McCain fathering a a black child in Alabama and the south. but McCain has not scruples, no values. He cheated on his first wife and divorced when she was ill and married Cindy who was younger, richer and better looking. What an opportunist.

    July 31, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  6. Claudia Kremer

    Perhaps when Sen. Obama stated that he didn't look like the presidents who are currently on our currency he meant that he wasn't wearing a powdered wig or that he was thin or maybe that he had big ears! Why did McCain automatically think he meant race!!!

    July 31, 2008 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  7. adam

    Pretend Obama was white for a minute.... think of the rumors that he wouldn't have to deal with...

    then ask where do these rumors come from? and Who benifits most from these rumors

    July 31, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  8. Hannah Stevens

    I saw a piece about how older women do not like Obama. Well if they vote for McCain they are voting against themselves. McCain is anti choice and against equal pay for women in the workplace. In addition Obama has promised to roll back taxes on social security recipients who make les than 50 K. I am an older women and I think Obama is the answer to our problems in this country.

    July 31, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  9. Rapha TEXAS

    Without a doubt Obama has been playing the race card. He used it against Hillary and now he is using it against McCain. How quick people forget about Obamas mentor Rev. Wright.

    Remember Obama is half white and half black. He plays both sides of the aisle depending who his audience is. Ive never seen a bigger hypocrite in my life.

    Do not be fooled by a man who bases his decisions on what is going to benefit him the most on that paticular day.

    Go McCain

    July 31, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  10. Marilyn

    When Obama's people do everything they can to get black people registered so they can vote for him because he is black, then they definitely are playing the race card. And it should be called what it is - racism.

    July 31, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  11. Ron democrat turned independent

    obama as pulled this kind of stunt since the primaries. he accuses the opposition of what he himself brings up. nobody as said anything about obama except how they differ on policies, the rest is made up by obama just like he did with hillary. he keeps talking about what they will probably say about him, not what they say about him. i think his problem is he knows his background will come up and he is trying to soften the damage by making the public think what they say won't be true. myself i still would like an explanation on why he doesn't buy his kids christmas and birthday gifts.

    July 31, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  12. Jody Monroe

    A person who points out the obvious is "playing the race card"? I think McCain needs to know what that really means - ala Jesse Jackson's blame / victim mentality!

    Obama, on the other hand, advocates taking personal responsibility. He doesn't say that his race should be used as a weapon to gain favorability. Instead, he is honest and forthright about who he is and what he believes in.

    July 31, 2008 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  13. Ryan - Tampa, Flordia

    John McCain hasn't said a non political, decent, honorable thing since Tim Russert died.

    Lets talk about risk, Obama at lease offers high return, McCain just offers the same steady declines. We've had two wars, two recessions, MULTIPLE crises, and have swiftly been loosing our standard of living, our liberties, and our peace of mind. Why isn't it time for a different course of action?

    July 31, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  14. This is outrageous

    I am getting disgusted with all of this. It is a shame that people are dragging Obama in the dirt like this.

    I am giving up on all of this politic stuff. Too much stress for me. This will be my last blog. My vote is what counts – not this blogging crap.

    goodbye CNN.

    July 31, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  15. A recovering Republican

    Numerous press has found that McCain has repeatedly made false accuastions against Obama. What does he do when he gets caught? He blames Obama and then shifts to a new negative tactic. He can't take on policy issues as the difference, he has to go ad homenen and even if he does address a policy issue, he can't do it without commenting on how Obama is wrong. Doesn't he trust the public to figure it out for himself?

    10 years sober and discusted with myself over my past weakness.

    July 31, 2008 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  16. Ellie, MD

    McCain is proving to be an idiot just like his buddy George W. Bush currently in the Oval Office. How scary is that?

    Okay we'll let's label McCain as an 'OLD GROUCHY MAN" as having repeated "SENIOR" moments in his speeches and comments.

    I think this is another one of these "senior moments".

    July 31, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  17. nola

    It is so so sad that a man that has earn a reputation for being fair, honest,and an honorable military person would allow it to be destroyed by a bunch of low lifes. It is also so so sad that this man has reach a level that he cannot comprehend when he is is making statements and saying things that is so so fair off the scale.

    McCain knows like the nose on his face that Obama never made a statement implied a race statement. The statement was they are making me scary – apply to the rumor of Obama not being a christian, of him being (like Paris Hilton-rich little air-heads) , that Obama is an Each of these issues would make most folks not aware of the game too believe McCain statement.

    Obama, please please change this game – let's leave McCain out their with his no brains and child like mentality – let's start please please turning the page, and start ADDRESSING THE ISSUES – ECONOMIC, EDUCATION, WARS, HIGH GAS PRICES.

    May God keep McCain, a confused, dumb man out of the White House

    July 31, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  18. real dem

    LOL, what cards have the republicans been playing the last 8 years? For those that put bush in office and now maybe McCain should listen to this...and this is very true.....The Bigger the Lie, the Easier they will believe it. (IRAQ of course and add everything else)

    O'bama 08-16

    July 31, 2008 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  19. Listen Up...

    Well aren't the rethugs trying to appeal to that deep down fear in certain key battleground states that Obama does not have a similar value system or morals. McCain makes me sick!

    July 31, 2008 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  20. McCain Is This the Best You have to OFFER?

    McCain's strategy – Anything but reality. Smokescreens & Mirrors. Don't worry about that man behind the green curtain.

    July 31, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  21. Canuck

    dems play this card every election. what else is new. but to be fair, using paris and brit in the add was stupid.

    July 31, 2008 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  22. McCain We Want More than You Are Offering!

    norml "green people should be outraged!' Lol!!!!

    What DO you mean by race card McCain? I believe McCain is dissing about 1/3 of the country here.

    July 31, 2008 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  23. leon

    Please can Obama go back to Europe so he can have anohter 200,000 people adoring him. But please keep him there make him a German citizen and maybe he can run for presiendt there after all he is doing better there than in USA. He is so arrogant ane full of himself. He has played the race card fro, the very beginning an also he like to paint himself of being a new kind of politician. And yes he is he is a new generation of corrupted politicians frm the school of Chicago.

    Hillary supporters please stay home of write her name in.

    PUMA here

    July 31, 2008 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  24. yala

    McCain i really like you but it seem you've got no original idea. All you do is talk about Obama. It is begining to look pitiful.

    July 31, 2008 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  25. vince

    Of course Obama played the race card. In the game of politics it's the only card he is holding. He can't really play " the things I've done" card or the "things I stand for card" ( seeing as how no one knows what he stands for). He is playing the hand he was dealt. A bunch of nothing and one smiling race card. It won the primary for him, why not whip it out again?

    July 31, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
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