August 16th, 2008
09:49 PM ET
12 years ago

Crowley: McCain talks his way into a 'lightning round'

LAKE FOREST, California (CNN) - Asked whether he believes in merit pay for teachers, McCain said yes - and let's find the bad teachers other jobs. The crowd loved it.

Warren pointed out to the staccato McCain - who was reeling off short, direct responses - that he was answering the questions so quickly he might face a few more (or, as Warren called it, "the lightning bonus round.")

Like Obama, McCain uses the "define rich" question to talk about taxes - where there is a very real, very big difference between the two.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (207 Responses)
  1. eye's of the wise

    Candy Crowley really dissappointed me tonight, she is really bias against Obama, it is showing more and more

    August 17, 2008 01:05 am at 1:05 am |
  2. JOHN

    Thats all Mccain wanted was a town hall meeting so conservatives and compare him with Obama. This whole thing was a hoax. I didn't see anything special about Mccain and he didn't say anything different than he said before. He's a war monger and the conservative base didn't trust him then and all Mccain did was make democtats and independents angry because were not going to allow him to sure up his base with their agenda.

    August 17, 2008 01:07 am at 1:07 am |
  3. ellen

    Wow! After tonight I know I will vote for McCain. He blew Obama away.
    I'm glad he finally got the chance to show how sharp his mind really is.
    I know he is not a great speaker and it is almost painful to listen to him
    making a speech but that is one smart man and I will be proud to
    vote for him for president. Also shows what a huge gap there is between
    youth and experience. Obama has a long way to go. No to Obama, yes to

    August 17, 2008 01:10 am at 1:10 am |
  4. Mike

    Haha, has anyone else noticed how positive McCain comments are always from "Mother in Colorado" or state something like "He's such a maverick!". I bet half of the comments in his favor have already been written and the republican party hired some poor soul to sit and refresh the ticker until something comes up so they can post their comment. What a joke. I'm so happy a democrat will be in office next year.

    August 17, 2008 01:25 am at 1:25 am |
  5. In awe

    We have suffered 8 years of the most horrific policies foreign and domestic,and we still can not decide strictly by contents of ones ideals,but by which whom seem more conventionally correct to sit in the white house for the next 4 years. We will never get to a new beginning, if we keep up the some ole' stuff. Mccain has been in service for several years,and all the answers I receive from him as been the same as, that great orator who has singlehandledly rip apart this country for the past 8 years.So, people ask yourself "Are you better off now than you were 8 years ago? How about this can you stand another 4 years of this?!

    August 17, 2008 01:26 am at 1:26 am |
  6. Wishing I could vote for Obama

    Question 1-Vietnam
    Question 2-Vietnam
    Question 3-Vietnam
    Question 4-Vietnam
    and so on and so on....Everyone know you served in Vietnam...Would somebody tell him to pick a new topic?

    August 17, 2008 01:29 am at 1:29 am |
  7. mike

    OBAMA KOOL-AID. Some of you must have had an IV of this stuff while you were watching. According to you IT IS BAD IF YOU...
    1) answer questions directly and quickly
    2) answer questions clearly with no room for Interpretation
    3) served in the military
    4)have experience and are old
    5) tell true stories (THE KEY WORD IS TRUE)

    OBAMA LOST THE ELECTION TONIGHT...I'm really sorry. In 4 years he will be back to try again...but can now...can he beat Hillary??

    August 17, 2008 01:30 am at 1:30 am |
  8. chuck k

    Cindy, how many times did he say Cindy. My Lord, this was a campaign speech and set up. He reminds me of Rove/Bush in the early debates. How silly the News Media can't divide the truth to a REAL question answer, and a story. McCain was playing to the clients in the seats. I'm glad to see intelligent comments here, I mean most are right on about how McCain really is just a Republican, like Bush ..MOre deaths, more wars and he surely knows how to Win a War, give me a break

    August 17, 2008 01:31 am at 1:31 am |
  9. Marj,Paso Robles, Cal

    Uhbama looked like a lost little boy. No teleprompter, just his usual 'UHH UMMM UHHH WHAAAA UHHH HUH? BUSH LIED' Uhbama showed his total lack of knowledge and displayed the arrogance he is known for.

    August 17, 2008 01:32 am at 1:32 am |
  10. Ivan, Chicago, Illinois

    Tax Cuts verses Tax Inceases.Read the book "The Politics of Bad Ideas" by Jones and Williams. In it they show that since WWII that income taxes have been changed in four major stages.
    The Kennedy tax cut, enacted in 1963; the two Reagan tax cuts, 1981 and 1987; and the GW Bush cuts in 2001 and 2003. Rates have been raised twice, in 1991 and 1993, under GHW Bush and Clinton respectively.
    The health of the nation was damaged by each tax cut except the Kennedy cut, because of the booming economy which of course the supply-siders always cite. In all the other tax cuts, they quickly brought large yearly budget deficits that future generations had to pay back. The national debit rose with each tax cut after the Kennedy tax cut, and fell after each tax increase.
    If you all you Republicans handled your personal finances the way you handle the Country's you all would be in bankruptcy court.

    August 17, 2008 01:33 am at 1:33 am |
  11. LaTrice

    Candy Crowley needs to stop drinking the McCain Kool-Aid because it's severely messing around with her brain! THANK GOD the "intelligent viewers" don't take her analysis reports seriously. John McCain was dodging most of the questions including his position on HIS faith, taxes and who HE considers to be rich people. Where were the clear explanations here? Ninety-five percent of the time, his direction in answering questions went straight to National Security and stories even when it was irrelevant. NO REAL ANSWERS – NO SUBSTANCE. Candy Crowley is a joke. CNN – it's really time for some new blood to take over. A lot of us are tired of her Anti-Obama views. We need to start seeing more integrity and balance please.

    August 17, 2008 01:34 am at 1:34 am |
  12. True Life Candidate


    So, you're confused about how someone can support war and be pro-life on the issue of abortion at the same time and be considered truly pro-life. Well, if you life in black and white terms, then I can see how you would be confused. However, the "pro-life" McCain was referring is better defined as standing up for the defenseless. That's why you go to war (there was genocide in Iraq with the Kurdish people ... ok, and oil, too) and you do what you can to overturn the unconstitutional debacle that is Roe v. Wade. You're sticking up for people who have no voice or power to defend themselves.

    Obama said he shares that perspective, too, but his actions betray his words.

    August 17, 2008 01:38 am at 1:38 am |
  13. druid

    I respect McCain but he did poorly on the debate. All his answers he quote from other president or tell stories. Is this the way he is going to run the country when he meet other heads of state? Tell them stories about other people instead of dealing with the issue that is on table at that time. When I look at McCain I see someone who never forgive or forget. He is someone who holds on to grudges. He can talk all the straight talk he want's but he never stated the reason why his first married fail like the Obama did on the same question. As for Crowley I'm sure you know that when someone comes across the crowd as aggressive that does not tell well on person character. American better have a thoughtful president than an aggressor. By the way McCain should think before he speak.
    by the way McCain should think before he speaks

    August 17, 2008 01:39 am at 1:39 am |
  14. McCain stump speech

    Crowley where were you tonight printing up all this McCain build up which never happened ?
    Cnn are you lacking news Martin was the only truthfull person on the panel.
    McCain just proved again his time frame thinking is from 1800's ,he thinks ,sleeps war ,he knew what the next question was before it was asked ,he rambled off all night for self pity ,it was a stump speech the pastor may as well have left the stage he had no control and perhaps never wanted any ,war, war his opinion is the only opinion ,woman have no say according to McCain.,would not answer what rich was.
    If t this was an interview between 2 people then betterv change the meaning of interview.

    August 17, 2008 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  15. Larry

    I will vote for Obama so our children can look at a role model and feel free to experience drugs. Go Obama !!!!!!!

    August 17, 2008 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  16. moonmaiden from lake michigan

    Same old Bushie politics. McWar had rehearsed and was prompt so well just like the debates with Kerry and Bush with Bush's little box tucked in the back of his suit jacket. Repuke tricks. Well Obama is on it and we are ready for the change.
    Obama 08

    August 17, 2008 01:53 am at 1:53 am |
  17. jane in CA

    At least McCain did not get his from Wikipedia like the story of Georgia this time. Obama was humble.

    August 17, 2008 01:55 am at 1:55 am |
  18. Shirley-Ohio

    He was clearly given the questions ahead of time and he talked of nothing but the wars. Trust nobody Obama, they tried to set you up but you held your own with a variety of answers. McCain has nothing other than the fact that he was in the military. You just got to have more than that.

    August 17, 2008 02:04 am at 2:04 am |
  19. Michael

    It is obvious to me as a teacher that John McCain has no idea about the education system. First of all, charter schools are FOR PROFIT schools. A school's main priority is to provide the students with the best possible education, and not to make money. Secondly, the biggest challenge to the education sytsem is the LACK OF FUNDING. Only Barrack Obama talks about providing more funding to schools. If John McCain had a clue about how to fix education, he would talk about providing the necessary funding that has been lacking for so long. Thirdly, who is John McCain, or any politician for that matter, to accuse any teacher of being a bad teacher? A person who goes to college for four or five years, goes into a profession that gets paid so little and gets even less respect, should never be judged by anyone but another teacher. Teachers all over this country perform miracles every day, and do more good for the world than John McCain has ever done. Lastly, the idea of school vouchers is a joke. Instead of fixing a school, lets pick a handful of students to go to a "better school". So by John McCain's plan a couple of children are lucky enough to leave a "failing school" and hundreds of other students get stuck in a "bad school". Only someone who knows nothing about education would propose such an awful idea. While Senator Obama's education plan isn't perfect, it is a step in the right direction, and far superior to McCain.

    August 17, 2008 02:10 am at 2:10 am |
  20. Shirley-Ohio


    Everything Obama said I heard him say it in his speeches and McCai spoke of nothing but the war. He had to have known what he wsa going to be asked because he turned towards the audience with some much confidence. We all know McCain is not that quick on his feet.


    August 17, 2008 02:10 am at 2:10 am |
  21. Cali

    They both did well. Depends on how you like questions answered. If you like short, simple and decisive punch-line answers you would have liked McCain better, if you like answers that are thoughtful and have explanation and conversation you would like Obama better. An example, the question about rewarding teachers according to merit. Both agreed and had the same opinion but Obama explained his position, talked about some of the grey areas and how they could be handled while McCain said, "Yes, yes and find the bad teachers another job" and then he talked about education in America in general. I imagine this is what the debates will be like too though this wasn't supposed to be a debate but a conservation on their beliefs. I tend to like the more thoughtful detailed answers but thats me, now what the rest of America likes, I guess we will see in November =)

    August 17, 2008 02:13 am at 2:13 am |
  22. Nija

    Tedious898 you just nailed it. We are not far from 1964.

    August 17, 2008 02:18 am at 2:18 am |
  23. shay

    Pastor said no stump speeches to Obama but not to McCain. I thought this was going to be Apples with Apples instead it was Apples and Oranges.

    One with fresh ideas and the other with the same old stories to tell.

    August 17, 2008 02:20 am at 2:20 am |
  24. John G

    Oh for the love of....

    These comments are ridiculous! The Democrat loses (clearly) so obviously the Republican had the questions before hand (holy conspiracy theory Batman!)

    My personal favorite comes from our good friend tedious898 though when he says:

    "white america would never support Barack. I think its racism"

    You are correct sir! You believe that white people cannot support a (half) black man for the presidency because you are racist.

    August 17, 2008 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
  25. Jackie C

    Hey Rebecca Rose, why don't you vote for Obama?

    August 17, 2008 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
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