September 6th, 2008
04:30 PM ET
12 years ago

Obama: Republicans must think you’re stupid

Sen. Obama mocked the McCain-Palin ticket for casting themselves as mavericks.

Sen. Obama mocked the McCain-Palin ticket for casting themselves as mavericks.

TERRE HAUTE, Indiana (CNN) – Since leaving their convention in St. Paul, Minnesota, John McCain and Sarah Palin have tried to cast themselves as mavericks, Washington outsiders, the real agents of change.

Barack Obama isn’t buying it and wants the label for himself.

“Everywhere I go we’ve been talking about change, that’s been the theme of this campaign,” Obama told supporters in a show barn in Indiana. “And we must be on to something, because I notice now everyone’s talking about change now.”

Watch: Obama jokes he's never been to Alaska

“Suddenly [McCain’s] the change agent!” Obama laughed. “He says, “I’m going to tell those lobbyists that their days of running Washington are over.” Who’s he going to tell? Is he going to tell his campaign chairman who’s one of the biggest corporate lobbyists in Washington? Is he going to tell his campaign manager who was one of the biggest corporate lobbyists in Washington? Is he going to tell all the folks who are running his campaign who are the biggest corporate lobbyists in Washington?”

“Who is it that he’s going to tell that change is coming?” he added, “I mean come on, they must think you’re stupid!”

Obama said Thursday that he’ll focus on McCain because he’s running against McCain and not his running mate Sarah Palin. But Saturday Obama singled out Palin for the first time for flip-flopping on earmarks while governor of Alaska.

“She is a skillful politician,” said Obama, “but when you’ve been taking all these earmarks when it is convenient and then suddenly you’re the champion anti-earmark person, that is not change, come on. I mean, words mean something. You can’t just make stuff up. You can’t just make stuff up.”

The McCain campaign shot back saying that Obama is all talk.

“Barack Obama has requested the equivalent of one million dollars in new pork barrel spending for every working day he's been in the U.S Senate,” wrote McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds in an e-mail to reporters. “While John McCain has never once asked for an earmark, and Governor Palin has vetoed hundreds of millions in government spending including killing the infamous 'bridge to nowhere'.

When a former Republican asked the Illinois senator if he would welcome ‘converts’ like him, Obama took the opportunity to accuse McCain of hypocrisy.

“I have to say, when John McCain says in his [acceptance] speech that he wants to reduce the rancor in Washington and I’m thinking, did you pay attention to the last two days of your convention?” Obama chuckled, “were you not watching? Did they not get the memo?”

“When it starts getting personal, when you start just focusing exclusively on trying to tear the other person down instead of what you are going to do on behalf of the American people to deal with this economy, then that’s not serving Democrats, that’s not serving Republicans, that’s not serving anybody.”

soundoff (177 Responses)
  1. Hanky

    People are increasingly acting like hypocrites.
    When Barack came out people were saying the catchphrase of the day, he is not ready, he is inexperienced, however, when Palin comes out and people want to know her experience, they run out this convoluted 18 month executive experience without reconciling the lack of foreign policy experience and national Federal experience. Obama has national Federal experience and some actual executive experience. Cancel them both out.
    He has judgment over McCain, has been the agent of change before McCain copied him, has opposed Iraq from the get-go and supported concentrating on Afghanistan.
    When people question Palin, whose views we know little of, they say sexism, hands off, ect.
    Its convenient when your candidate fits the bill, but when the opposition finds similar circumstances, the game is changed.
    When you have no economic plan, no great track record for Iraq, and say its not about issues, then you have no issue to stand on.
    Barack for president in 2008

    September 6, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  2. California Democrat

    Ouch! Obama is correct. I can't belive the Republicans are trying to spin the word Change into their corner. Don't worry Barack we are not stupid.

    BTW, Sarah Palin is such a puppy, keep following the old dog Sarah, keep marking your territory right behind him. LOL

    September 6, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  3. steve

    Go get them Obama.
    They are a pack of wolf with a credentials for falshood

    September 6, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  4. Larry Buchas

    McCain & Palin are the continuation of Bush-Cheney.

    They can't even face the press because they threw a convention of lies and distortions.

    It is time to put the Republicans feet to the fire.

    September 6, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  5. R.I.F.

    The do and it sad that their right. Why else would we re-elect Bush in 2004. Not this time.

    September 6, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  6. Bill

    Righ on Obama, those 2 are the greatest liars in america and think everyone is stupid and buy that garbage.

    Obama for President

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  7. lorenzo

    good call barack about time someone called mccain out on his bull

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  8. Bill From Florida

    The Republicians must think we are stupid if they think we believe
    in Palin. She has already been caught in a lie about the Jet she
    put on Ebay. What happens if this woman gets pregnant again,
    who is going to pay for the care of her children??We the taxpayers
    are, that's who. Is her pregnant daughter going to move in the White
    House with or without a husband. Soccer mom she may be ,VP
    she is not.

    OBAMA///Biden 08

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  9. John .A

    the truth hurt, and McCain is becoming a master of gimmicks, after 26 years in Washington, after voting with John Bush 90% of the time, the economy in tatters, George McCain is for change, well tell you what a lot of people are stack on stupid and will fall for that

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  10. Renee

    Obama, and your supporters – you must think WE'RE stupid. So... she changed her mind on an issue after first supporting it. Maybe she had a good reason. No doubt she will admit that she was wrong at first, unlike you (can you say SURGE). That one issue just makes her more like YOU, as you change your mind, flip-flop and re-issue statements, after your first dumb knee-jerk arguments are thought about for 15 minutes, by your gaggle of advisers. If we're calling Sarah "Barracuda", you should be known as "Mr. Flip-Flop" – traits which include: unsubstantial, goofy, and easy to shake off.

    Dare you to post this CNN.

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  11. Justin

    They sure do Barack, they sure do.

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  12. Obama 08.

    Palin did not oppose the Bridge to Nowhere until Congress disallowed it; however she did keep the money; Palin hired a lobbyist to secure earmarks for Alaska who has received more money this way per capita than any other state.

    She left her small town in debt for 22 million dollars...she is not a good money manager; she is a politcal opportunists who so easily delivers prepared smears and attacks with ease but refuses to speak directly to the American people.

    Why silence on the lobbyists on the McCain campaign, Tucker???

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  13. Ross in MD

    Alaska receives more earmark dollars per person than any other state. Nearly 20 times as much as Obama's state of Illinois!

    Obama is right, Republicans DO think you are stupid.

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  14. RL

    Give it up Obama!

    Go McCain/Palin 08

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  15. ryan

    good! make a stronger case about how Palin and McCain (funny how the order of those seems to get mixed up recently) are really just being told what to say by the brillian republican political minds that got that moron Bush elected twice...

    hopefully Biden will start the attack dog role stronger than he has

    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  16. Scott L


    JOB - LOSSES - UP - 6.1%


    September 6, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  17. Dill

    The voters in Ohio are not stupid enough to vote for someone just because they are pretty. In Ohio we want good paying jobs since most of the good jobs have been outsourced over seas. Pleas give us credit out here in voter land, we are voting so Americans can be first for awhile. What about our families? JOBS! JOBS! JOBS! Not just a bunch of talk!

    September 6, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  18. John

    Hillary doesnt want to help Obama because he is about to fall.

    this is the end of the obamanation!

    Mccain 08 + HILLARY 2012

    September 6, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  19. want answers

    Where was the experience, judgment and country first in picking her?
    Did I get it wrong or did Mcbush just do a cut and run on his “experience” platform?
    Who do Americans really want in The White House: The one that voted against the war to begin with, the one that said “set a time table”, the one who first had the common senesce to say it’s time for “a change in America” or the one that’s following Obama’s lead? I would call Obama a leader with good judgment.

    September 6, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  20. charles

    hit them hard. you have been talking about changing Washington for the last 18months. McCain 8weeks to the election suddenly he is for change how come. he real thinks people are stupid.what happened to his experience slogan. stick to your experience your not the change agency. 26 years is not change.

    September 6, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |

    Good ! The Republicans have gotten this far because they are so aggressive, it's time for Obama to fight back! You're not sexist for challenging issues, and if they say it than
    get aggressive and challenge them back.


    September 6, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  22. Debby

    Obama is right about Palin when she was a Mayor she had earmarks, but she had none as a Governor and John McCain none at all vs. Obama. So if Obama wants to talk earmarks he better be careful since he said he is running against McCain not Palin. He might shoot himself in the foot at the debates with this.

    As far as the economy Obama has yet to say how he is going to pay for his economic plan. At a rally in New Mexico he dodged a question from a man making 1200 a month on Social Security when the man said his morgtage is more than that a month. Obama talked for 10 min. and didn't answer the man and took the next question. Talking about the issues like he claims and actually having a solution to get them accomplished are 2 different things.

    September 6, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  23. RYAN kr Jr

    That is true Sen. Obama republicans think Americans 're stupid, sometimes i think that way too, and they will continue to think that way till Americans rise up and say enough is enough by voting against them this election include Lower House and Upper House.

    September 6, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  24. FlaDem

    Good for you Obama. It's about time they hear some truth for a change. Sarah Palin is not liked by all in Wasilla. Just google 'Sarah Palin Email' and you will find an interesting email from Anne Kilkenny of Wasilla, who has known Sarah since 1992. Interesting reading. This has been verified by snopes as real. GO BAMA/BIDEN.

    September 6, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  25. RuthieM

    Good for Obama. Let them know they're the copycats in this election. McCain has been 'following' Obama since the primaries and now he has his cronie Sarah girl in on it. Keep it up, Obama, and America needs to be wary of this McPalin Pigfest, she's like the snake with lipstick batting her eyelashes at you and you're all crooned and swooned up about her and then suddenly she bites you and you scream and ask her why she bit you and she turns with that smile and says, "You knew I was a snake."

    September 6, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
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