July 31st, 2008
11:10 AM ET
12 years ago

Obama says McCain ads show he has no new ideas

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/31/art.obama.ap.jpg
caption="Sen. Barack Obama says Sen. John McCain offers a continuation of failed policies."]

(CNN) - Barack Obama is charging that rival John McCain doesn't have any new ideas and that's why the Arizona senator's campaign is focusing its energy on anti-Obama ads.

"You haven't heard a positive thing out of that campaign in a month. All they do is try to run me down," Obama said while campaigning Wednesday in Union, Missouri.

The accusation came the same day that the Obama campaign released an ad comparing McCain to President Bush, and the McCain campaign released one likening Obama to Britney Spears and Paris Hilton.

"Since they don't have any new ideas, the only strategy they've got in this election is to try to scare you about me," Obama said.

Obama said McCain and Republicans are trying to paint him as a candidate who is "too risky."

"Basically what they're saying to you is, 'We know we didn't do a good job, but he's too risky.' Well let me tell you something. When we are in such dire straits economically, when our foreign policy has gotten so messed up, what's the bigger risk: choosing change, or choosing to do the same things that got us into this mess in the first place?"

As McCain campaigned on Wednesday, he stressed his independence from Bush and highlighted times he's spoken against the administration.

"My independence hasn't always made me friends in Washington. I was not elected Ms. Congeniality in the United States Senate," he said at a town hall in Aurora, Colorado.

McCain praised Obama for his speaking abilities and success, but said "my concern with Sen. Obama is - that on issues big and small - what he says and what he does are often two different things."

McCain said Obama's solution is to raise taxes and promised that he would not do the same.

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (206 Responses)
  1. Right Angle

    If Obama didn't chicken out of the town hall meetings, maybe he'd know McCain's ideas. Obama talks tough like he did yesterday, saying he wants to take on McCain but then he chickens out.
    He's all talk and that's all he is.

    July 31, 2008 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  2. Rocky

    It really doesn't matter what ideas either one of these guys have with the gridlock in Congress I doubt either one can anything done. We are doomed unless Congress realizes the seriousness of the Energy problem before it's to late. These high energy price will slowly destroy our economy if action isn't taken but these bozo would rather pander to the extremists on both sides instead of working together to solve the problem.

    July 31, 2008 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  3. Brian

    Hey CNN, how about a different headline for this piece, "Obama Incorrect on McCain Ads". McCain has released plenty positive campaign ads touting his positions on energy, offshore drilling, winning the war in Iraq, keeping taxes down, creating jobs, combating global warming, keeping the nation safe, etc. Its the fact that Obama won't agree to townhall debates that forces McCain to run these ads showing Obama for who he really is. Obama would rather not have to answer for his unpopular positions on the issues.

    July 31, 2008 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  4. California Gold

    That sums it up. Voters buy into Republican scare and fear mongering so the country can stay on the same track. Makes perfect sense (if you have the consciousness of a table grape). Oh yea, I'm sure millions of voters have a lot more to left to lose or put at risk by voting 4 more years of Republican leadership (an oxymoron).

    July 31, 2008 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  5. carlo

    The media doesn't force McCain to be specific, that's why he isn't specific. Sure, Obama gets more coverage, but the media is much harder on Obama than McCain. McCain should stop complaining. Does he really want the media hanging on his every word?

    July 31, 2008 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  6. J

    I used to think that McCain was an alright guy, not my choice but as decent human. What a jerk, it really does show that he has nothing... NOTHING! If he did he would use that money to make points and make up garbage that anyone with 5 minutes and google could figure out.

    July 31, 2008 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  7. Jermaine from SC


    July 31, 2008 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  8. barbaraNj

    well that paint has stuck...he is too risky.
    I'll take a possible 3rd Bush term over a definate 2nd Carter Term

    July 31, 2008 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  9. Bart

    John McCain hasn’t had a new idea about anything in years.
    He is not offering anything new or inspiring about anything. It is all about
    Negative,Negative, and Negative "My Friends"....

    July 31, 2008 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  10. vw

    Yes, John is true, Obama is a simple and pure empty box.

    July 31, 2008 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  11. skh4450IL

    Now that's what I'm talking about! Hit em' back Barack and hit em' hard. Do not back down!

    Obama 2008

    July 31, 2008 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  12. hrsc

    Anyone who says they do not know what Sen. Obama is about and stands for, doesn't want to know.

    And any one who says they know all about Sen. McCain is fooling themselves. Nothing Sen. McCain use to stand for is the same. The maverick has been put out to pasture and the Grand good old boy club are running things,Republican business as usual the rich get richer.

    Waste your vote on NO CHANGE McCain!!!!!

    July 31, 2008 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  13. Debby

    Obama has no new ideas either. Its raising taxes and his lowering gas price proposal is idiotic.

    July 31, 2008 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  14. Michelle, PA

    McCain is desperate – but unfortunately, fear sells. All I can say is this is the country that elected Bush twice. If we fall for fear and smear again, our decline will be no more than we deserve.

    July 31, 2008 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  15. Chut Pata

    The only risk to American National Security is 4 more years of Oil Mafia rule via McBush. Screw beaches, screw Alaska echo system, wage war in oil rich countries to raise gas prices, and refuse to invest in alternate energies. That is National Security risk.

    July 31, 2008 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  16. David, Silver Spring, MD

    John McCain may talk of his "independence," but we know he hugs George Bush's miserable trickle-down economic policies as much as he hugs George Bush himself.

    And he shouldn't confuse being independent with being belligerent. His failure to make friends in Washington has less to do with his stand on the issues than it does with his abrasive, abusive personality.

    Lastly, how does McCain say on the one hand that what Obama says and what he does are two different things and on the other say that Obama hasn't done anything?

    July 31, 2008 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  17. Charles of NC

    Senator McCain is completely out of sorts with the steps of the rest of America. I recall once McCain speaking of morality and dignity. Seem like he has flip flopped on that issue as well. Although he is attepmpting to make Britney Spears and Paris Hilton look like dumb blondes, I get he would gladly accept their endorsment of him.
    He attacks Senator Obama because he fears him. Let us not forget, come August, McCain will be 72 years old. Surley senility is setting in. You can tell by him not knowing who the Iranians were training as he spoke while in Iraq with Liberman. And he is suppose to be this big foreign policy expert...LOL!!!

    July 31, 2008 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  18. Ken

    Now that I am reading that Hillary Clinton is probably not going to be on the ticket, I am going to try and move as many voters that I can to move over and vote for McCain. Instead of not voting, I am urging ALL of the Hillary Clinton voters to vote for John McCain. We the American people want a President that will look and work for the America people. Obama is only working for himself!

    Obama should not even had made it this far, He has no talent, skills, experience to even run this country.

    WAKE UP AMERICA! I want a President that believes in the United States of America and not for himself!

    McCain 2008

    July 31, 2008 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  19. tony

    Barack–you don't get it-
    Your an empty suit–
    I went on your website and you periodically take things off that don't help so your supporters can contribute-
    You haven't agreed toi a debate–
    Because there are no teleprompters to guide you-
    You might give your audience "Breathalizers" instead of inhalers and I'm going to trust you to overhaii the Healthcare system-
    Your a flamboyany man but your time is not now-
    We can't have on the job training in these times-
    BTW - have you noticed how good the Irag war is going-
    Don't hear a word from the media about that-
    It doesn't fit their agenda-

    I'm telling you -A lot of people will say they will vote for Barack just to be" in vogue" but when it's them in the booth by themselves just like in the primaries–they will not pull the lever for him-
    Hell-he lost Penn, WV and and number of states by over 30 points to Hillary-
    Now if she were the nominee–I think she would have beaten McCain–

    July 31, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  20. David Goldman for OBAMA









    July 31, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  21. jfs Memhis, Tn

    Frankly ....McCain has NO IDEAS !!!! For someone with 35 yrs experience ....and a MAVERICK.... sort of disappointing !!! Wish he would give us more information reguarding his blueprints of programs of Change....not just negative stuff. I can be swayed from Obama...give us substantive reason to switch to your side....not silly negative stuff. Be a problem solver not a problem finder. Seems all of Washington can find PROBLEMS...few....can solve them. You have been given plenty enough time with 30 yrs tenure to do better than a new guy. You tell us we will not get anything from him, but what will we get from you ??? SHOW WHAT YOU HAVE...give us middle of the roaders a reason take McCain over OBAMA. WE HAVE NOT SEEN THAT YET. I think that your Poll numbers against Obama are in serious error.......truely negative is not the way to go .

    July 31, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  22. VON BISMARK,Vienna.

    The only new idea he has is his doubtful "experience" and high taste for war "blood?"

    July 31, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  23. Donna in ID

    At least McCain knows about building National Security. I do not believe he is going to give or sell out our America. Some times the old ways prove to be better than off the wall ideas that will cost Americans even more in taxs in these times and give more Government control over the citizens of this USA.

    July 31, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  24. janet Barnes

    isn't it interesting that as Obama accuses McCain of not having any new ideas and "only talking about me" which apparently proves his point.... that I haven't read anything that Obama has said in days.. except to continually talk about McCain.
    Does that mean that Obama doesn't have any new ideas either????
    I haven't EVER heard Obama say anything that has ANY substance. He just keeps repeating the same vague, touchy-feely phrases that "we need change".. what does that MEAN???
    On the other hand he keeps trying to lump McCain into a Bush third term, that's not even possible. Like it or not McCain is no George Bush, they have completely different ideas, policies and plans.
    Obama, tell us, please, what are you for and how will you implement your plan... how much will that cost taxpayers? Stop talking about how someone else is trying to portray you and just tell us who you really are... we're smart enough to sort through the 30 second ads and the campain speeches to find the truth.
    Don't tutor us in reading between the lines or tell us what to think about what someone else says... just tell us about what you really plan to do, in detail, put it in writing, speak plainly, not in meaningless platitudes... What is your PLAN? We can sort through that too and decide if it's true and if that's what we want our President, our country to do. We are the American people, we are your equals, we are intellegent and capable and we will decide how we want America to be governed for the next 4 years and into the future.

    July 31, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  25. PAT


    July 31, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
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