August 22nd, 2008
08:15 AM ET
12 years ago

Pawlenty defends McCain on homes


Watch Pawlenty's interview on American Morning Friday.

(CNN) – Less than a day after the Obama campaign put out a new ad about Sen. John McCain’s recent inability to state the number of houses he owns with his wife Cindy, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is defending the presumptive Republican nominee.

“Barack Obama made over $4 million last year, has his own million-dollar home in Chicago that involved some dealings with a pretty shady character,” Pawlenty said Friday on American Morning making a reference to Obama’s ties to convicted Chicago businessman Tony Rezko. “And now you have him saying he’s more in touch with the common person in the United States than John McCain?,” Pawlenty asked rhetorically. “I mean, give a break. Give me a break.”

Pawlenty told CNN’s John Roberts that McCain “was trying to be accurate” when he told journalists recently that McCain’s staff could answer a question about how many homes the McCains own. “He has a home he lives in Washington, two in Arizona and one in California.”

“But it gets more complicated than that,” added Pawlenty “because Cindy’s family has family homes.” “And some of those other homes are not for the exclusive use of Sen. McCain.”

Pawlenty also told Roberts that he did not think McCain had forgotten how many homes he owns.

The Minnesota governor is widely regarded as being on McCain’s short list of potential running mates.

soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. Biffington, Biff

    Guess the answer to the question wasn't on McCain's now famous cue cards he uses to "stay on message" .

    Credit that to the Bush campaign people now running Exxon-John's campaign.

    August 22, 2008 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  2. Ian MN

    God I can't stand pawlenty, I know you wanna be veep, but come on, a man who doesn't know how many million dollar homes he has? Be a real man, and do the right thing for once in your political career. And next time don't cut so many mental health budgets while your at it....fascist.

    August 22, 2008 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  3. Obama 08

    I cannot believe that in a time when thousands of people are losing their homes due to foreclosure McCain would say that he does not know how many homes he has and to ask his staff. I don't understand why anyone would want McBush to run this country he is seriously "out of touch" with the American people.

    August 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  4. Alan Boyer

    Pawlenty is a loser. He can't honestly believe the crap they tell him to say. Bill Gates doesn't have 10 homes. Funny how McCain didn't have the answer to that question, a much more personal one. But he was quick on the draw at Saddleback. Makes you wonder if he had the questions in advance.

    August 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  5. Abraham

    Obama made over $4 million last year.....this means, by McCain's standards, that he is not rich, right?

    August 22, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  6. marvinj

    His name say's it all Pawlenty ...... And he probably has plenty come on gang less vett this guy.....What is Mr.Plenty hiding, I'm sure he loves the Bush tax cut also..

    August 22, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  7. Chris

    What it seems we don't want to touch on this issue is, the fact that McCain is too old.

    August 22, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  8. al in memphis

    Okay, I did it too. I confess, my brother and I brought a land together because nether one of us to afford it separately. I did pay less than the total value– BECAUSE I BROUGHT LESS. Now if my brother doesn't pay his taxes, does that make it a shady deal.. Give me a break and stop insulting the voters with this garbage.

    August 22, 2008 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  9. AA

    I would really like to know how the GOP actually gets away with saying that their candidates are in touch with common people.

    It baffles me how the average person swallows this.

    Heir Bush comes from a family that has not only been the president, but has a multi-multi-million dollar net worth.

    The latest adopted child McCain spent 5 yrs as a POW, trashed his first wife, married an heiress, has 5+ homes (investments or not), and also has a net family worth in the 100's of millions of dollars.

    I personally do not know, nor "hang out" with people like that. If I did, I do not think you would consider me in touch with the average american.

    Just because someone drinks beer does not make them buds (pun intended) with the < 50k a year person whom they claiming they are akin to.

    Wake up citizens, wearing jeans does not mean that this person shares any of your views beyond wearing jeans.


    August 22, 2008 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  10. WeBoDave

    Was it so complicated that Senator McCain could not say something like Governor Pawlenty said? Oh, I'll have to check with my staff before answering that.

    August 22, 2008 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  11. Mike in Houston

    Uh Gov. Pawlenty, the whole issue came about when you and your buddies start calling Obama "Out of Touch". It's hard to convince the average American like myself that John McCain is just "a regular guy". Now do I care that he has 13 cribs, no not really. Do I care that he married a rich chick, no not really. Heck if I could, I would have also. The reason why we clown McCain is he and his staff are trying to paint this "all American regular guy" image and trying to paint Obama as and out of touch elitist. We know Obama has money just like McCain. What you are pissed about is you, the Repubs, started this nonsense and now you look like fools. I really like the fact how Obama is chosing not to play this game, although, he is on boderline of stupidity for even jumping this issue. And now with your silly new ad, it makes you look more of a fool. Mr. McCain I have been tradtionally a moderate Independent and I was happy when you won the nomination but you have serverly disappointed me and I just can't see myself supporting you. I lke the idea of a new and fresh view of governement that Obama is pledging, he has my vote.

    August 22, 2008 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  12. M&M

    yeah he is out of touch with America

    7 homes ? Obama has had his house since June 2005. Before that he lived in a condo. Obama went to school on scholarships and loans not paid for by his Admiral father. He only paid off his loans after he wrote 2 bestselling books. His wife doesn't own a plane is they are not worth over 100 million dollars.


    August 22, 2008 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  13. The Oracle

    Hey, I think if they want to rehash Tony Rezko; then Obama should bring up the Keating 5. The way I hear and see it, Obama was cleared of any wrong doing. If we all couldn't get jobs because of who we knew, America would be right along with North Korea in terms of significance. But McCain from what I know only beat the rap because he was in Congress. Everyone else involved went to jail. Tell me what you think.......

    August 22, 2008 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  14. Nunya

    Give me a break... Obama commenting on this at all is motivated by previous accusations of elitism by the Republicans – the point being that accusations of elitism coming from someone who has multiple homes is downright absurd. That does not translate into him claiming that he is 'the common man'. Stop twisting people's words.

    So... if McCain said he didn't remember and you say you don't think that he 'forgot', does that mean you think he's a liar? Is being a liar somehow better than being forgetful or ill-informed?

    August 22, 2008 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  15. Vivienne

    Has anyone noticed that the John McCain's bunch now thinks that having a mansion and 4 million dollars is now rich. Oh, and Barack Obama has never been implicated in doing anything wrong when it comes to Tony Rezko. Believe me they did try to find something but, there was nothing to find. On the other hand, John and Cindy Sue were both involved in the Keating affair. In fact, John McCain was one of the Keating Five. I suspect that his relationship with Keating was far more involved than Baracks relationship with Rezko. Finally, John McCain's Bush administration is one of the most corrupt in recent history – Beats Nixon's admin hands down.

    August 22, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  16. 2pacolypse Now

    McLame is a McLush. He could answer every question at Saddleback when it was clear his questions and answers were prepared in advance but you hit him with something where he has to think (yes, actually use his limited knowledge), then he gets tongue tied or has to refer the question to his campaign staff. Like the Viagara question in why men are covered by all insurers for Viagara but women aren't covered for birth control, a bill he actually approved in the Senate, he just sat there with a strawberry red look on his face and basically never answered the question. Obama has to step it up and make McCain play ball by his rules by debating him on things that aren't prepped for. The $5 million dollars being rich and the "I don't know how many houses I have" is a start and actually is showing McCain's age and mental accuteness more than anything. Keep hammering away from now until November.

    August 22, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  17. Brian

    What Obama has made is peanuts compared to McCain. In addition, he has made it only relatively recently, mainly off his book sales.

    Nobody is saying you don't have a right to become wealthy in this country... but when you look at the sheer volume of wealth of McCain and how long he has had it... it begs the question, "Does he really understand what is happening to ordinary Americans? Is he going to respond as earnestly as possible to help?"

    If you want to ask him, you might have a hard time getting ahold of him, since you'll have to call SEVEN HOUSES before you get an answer.

    August 22, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  18. Tony

    Of coure he does. He defends him on the economy, the war, taxes, etc. Just like McCain defends Bush.

    Why is this news?????????????????????????????

    August 22, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  19. BR

    Look at the socialist crybabies whining McCain has more than them. How many homes do your liberal socialists like Kennedy and Pelosi have?? The Messiah has a brother living in a shack in Kenya. Do you see him sending money over?? Keep drinking up the Messiah kool-aid.

    August 22, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  20. RDS

    Good way to try and deflect attention away from McCain on the housing issue, but you're a little too late. First, Rezko has been fully investigated and convicted. Throughout all this investigating Obama was found to have done nothing wrong. Besides the public has been beat to death about Rezko, in essence we don't care anymore. McCain and his wife both have various shady dealings in their past. Trips, property, banks with convicted felons as well. So were exactly is this going?!

    August 22, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  21. Tony

    Why do republicans have so much trouble with teh TRUTH?

    Pawlenty says he doesn't think McCain had forgotten how many homes he has.

    Give me a break!!!!!!!!!!! Anyone who heard mcCain's response to the very direct question, "How many homes do you and your wife CIndy own," he had no clue, and now we have a potential V.P. candidate already covering McCain's butt!

    August 22, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  22. M. Winners, Mesa, AZ

    Give ME a break Pawlenty. With all this real estate and family money McLame is the very elitist he's trying to say Obama is.
    And guess what? Even with all his multi-millions McLame still cashes his Social Security checks! Can you believe this old geezer?
    Bottom line: The only thing McLame has in common with me (I only make $70K a year) is that we both live in Arizona. He's the rich, out of touch, saber rattling "old dude" that we here in Arizona have come to know him as.
    This lame response from Pawlenty is the typical "fear, smear, mock and lie" response McLame always has besides "noun, verb, POW"...

    August 22, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  23. Sandy

    Obama made 4 million because he wrote a best-selling book. Until then, he and Michelle were still paying off their student loans. McCain came from a privileged background, then divorced his disabled wife to marry into a beer fortune. Quite a difference.

    No, Gov. Pawlenty, knowing how many homes you own is not that complicated. McCain should have had a much better answer to that question, but he simply can't think quickly. I'm not a young person either, so I have no qualms about stating McCain is a little too old to be taking on the most powerful and demanding job in the world. He can't think on his feet and often sticks one of them in his mouth. I don't trust his judgment, his finger on the button, or with the lives of my grandchildren.

    August 22, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  24. Tony

    McCain cheated on his first wife, divorced her, and married his fortune, just like so many others.

    August 22, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  25. Venus

    He,he,he! Trying to clean up grandpa mess?

    It's funny because the GOP is trying to make Obama look like he is too rich!!!

    Hit him hard Obama!

    August 22, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
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