September 16th, 2008
08:05 AM ET
14 years ago

McCain still backing away from 'strong fundamentals' statement

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="McCain appeared on CNN's American Morning Tuesday."](CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain continued to back away from his assertion that the "the fundamentals of our economy are strong" during a CNN interview Tuesday.

Watch McCain on American Morning

On Monday, after taking heat from Sen. Barack Obama's campaign for his earlier statement, McCain adjusted his language to say the American worker was the strength of the economy.

Watch: McCain's economy comment hammered

On Tuesday, McCain said the U.S. economy will rebound with the help of the American worker, which he called "the fundamental strength" of the U.S. economy.

The problems with the American economy are the result of rampant government spending and poor government checks on corporations, McCain said.

"I'll restrain spending. That's the reason our economy is in trouble today," McCain said.

McCain also said the U.S. is "the victim of greed, excess and corruption on Wall Street," and the senator said he foresaw the crises with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac two years ago.

"The Fannie and Freddie thing was a very serious problem and we had to work on it," McCain recalled saying then.

The regulatory agencies charged with monitoring Wall Street, which he called outdated, have been "asleep at the switch the last few years." Those agencies should evolve to the global economy, he said.

"We have to fix this alphabet soup of regulatory agencies that's left over from the 1930s," he said.

Asked if Obama's economic plan did more for the middle class than his own, McCain flatly said no. He also said one of the greatest hindrances to the middle class is its inability to get "affordable and available" health care.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. joey from nc

    John Mccain missed the civil rights movement due to him being a POW.
    John Mccain missed the civil rights movement due to him being a POW.
    John Mccain missed the civil rights movement due to him being a POW.
    John Mccain missed the civil rights movement due to him being a POW.

    September 16, 2008 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  2. Republicans Hate America

    Please McCain if you love American like you say you do do not be president to ruin it.

    September 16, 2008 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  3. Seth in Jacksonville

    I hope voters who are concerned with the economy are taking note. John McCain might be good with certain things, but the economy isn't one of them. I work hard and would like to see things improve, and I don't think they will if McCain is running the show. Obama has my vote.

    September 16, 2008 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  4. Bob Indianapolis, IN


    September 16, 2008 08:58 am at 8:58 am |
  5. carlo

    Let's also add how he ripped poor Mika into shreds on Morning Joe. I actually felt sorry for her.

    September 16, 2008 08:58 am at 8:58 am |
  6. Candy West Virginia

    Alan Greenspan said that Mccain's economic plan would further plunge this country into an economic disaster and essentially destroy it. Need I say more.

    Mccain/Palin = proven pathological liars

    September 16, 2008 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  7. John in PA

    He's been in the Senate for over 20 years. How is he not part of the problem?

    September 16, 2008 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  8. Bruce

    He does not ahve a clue. His interview on the Today show this morning showed how he is no ideas. All he did was repaet the old thire lines he has been, and claim that the "american worker is the fundamental of the economy"....he has no ideas, no clue.
    Now they are doing the usual thing that the repubs have done and are blocking the investigation of Palin in troopergate....this is not transparency....especially when the panel who voted was bipartisan and one of the voters for this was a repub...what are they hiding?

    September 16, 2008 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  9. White Mother for Obama!!

    Does it seem like Palin is wearing the same outfit day in and day out or is CNN using same pictures from same speech?? Maybe she is repeating her outfit just like she is her speeches LOL.

    And her deal about not working with the investigation into her abuse of power in the firings... that is just a cop out!! Trying the blame game now. She should have to do just what everyone else does!! She is not like normal everyday people. IF I were to not work with authorities into an investigation... I would probably be put in jail!!! Since she is running for VP and playing the blame game she gets off on it?? She should have to deal just like everyone else would if it was them. She is not normal she uses her powers to benefit herself. Its been proven a fact!!

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 16, 2008 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  10. Norcal

    Tell us again uncle John how far did you have to walk in the snow uphill both ways when you were a child and that we should stop whinning about our mental recession. I guess those failure on wall street are humdingers of a mental lapse.

    September 16, 2008 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  11. Lost in CNN Moderation AGAIN

    Now McCain is picking up on what Obama has been saying for 19 months when he is now saying that it's the American workers who keep our economy strong. There's only one problem. McCain has zero policies to help American workers. All this man does is lie. On CNN this morning he said,once again, that Obama would raise taxes on people making as little as $42,000 a year. THIS IS A LIE. CNN and every independent analysis has said this is a lie. There is absolutely no difference between McCain's policies and Bush's policies. NONE.

    Please people, stop believing McCain's lies.

    September 16, 2008 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  12. mitchell

    he doesnt have a clue. all he did was lie about the bridge and make false claims that obama wants to raise taxes. even when told that independent experts found his claims untrue, he maintained his lie. he has become a dishonest man , and lost his honor.

    September 16, 2008 09:03 am at 9:03 am |
  13. Deb, Allentown, PA

    I'm sorry, Senator McCain, but you let the cat out of the bag yesterday. You can backtrack all you want, but we all know that you were not originally referring to American workers and American ingenuity as the fundamentals of the economy. Couple that with the fact that Phil Gramm – he of the "nation of whiners" and "mental recession" comments – is still advising you and will more than likely be your Secretary of the Treasury and anyone who cares about their economic situation should run screaming away from your ticket.

    You want to privatize Social Security. Can you imagine the elderly dealing with a precipitous drop in their income-producing portfolios of the type we've seen over the last two months? My husband and I have lost 25% in that time. It represents at least two years of retirement income. We have the time and income to make it up, but I would guess we're in the minority.

    September 16, 2008 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  14. Ron was a REP now a DEM

    Not another non-flip-flop for the GOP .

    Country first

    September 16, 2008 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  15. Tired of W, OH

    If anyone believes that McCain was talking about the American worker when he said the economy's fundamentals are strong, they're lying to themselves. You see, the American worker is only strong if they have WORK. McCain will keep encouraging corporations to out-source and put more workers out of work, like he did here in Ohio with his DHL deal.

    Someone needs to put training wheels on the straight-talk express. It's not designed to do all this back-pedaling.

    September 16, 2008 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  16. Carl from MI

    I bet he can't back away fast enough!! Why in the world would he make a statement like that in the middle of such an extreme economic crisis such as the one our NATION IS CURRENTLY IN THE MIDDLE OF?? HELLO??? McFLY????????

    Maybe because he and Graham just don't have a clue what's going on in the world of the rest of us that don't live in the world of the RICH AND WEALTHY!! REMEMBER.... WE'RE A NATION OF WHINERS???


    September 16, 2008 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  17. Freedom Lovin Patriot

    McCain's mistake is sexist.

    September 16, 2008 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  18. Linda from Prescott AZ

    McCain has no health care plan.

    September 16, 2008 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  19. politicjock

    Why does a so called "maverick" like John McCain need to embrace the tactics of distortion, of outright lies in the current political race that looks as if it has become as down and dirty as any election in recent years? Doesn't a maverick refuse to join the herd, to march to a different drummer? If John McCain has already employed the tactics of the last eight years of the Bush administration (lies and deceit as in Iraq's WMD or that Iraq was responsible for 9/11), hasn't McCain already shown that his administration (should he win the election) will simply be a continuation of the untruths and distortions that are a hallmark of George Bush and Company?

    September 16, 2008 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  20. TREY

    what an idiot

    September 16, 2008 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  21. j.h

    Is he serious? How can you be in touch with America's economic problems if he believes that in these difficult economic times the economy is sound. PLEASE SPARE US.

    September 16, 2008 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  22. George

    This guy is so out of touch its not funny....and this country is doing everything in its power not to elect a black man. This is not a news shocker its obvious and I hope thsi nation gets called out on this...its not a Dem vs Rep issues at all. If Obma were white with a name like John Smith this race would be over! Even GOP voters would agree because they know their candidate has no clear change policy in mind. I can't believe we are going to vote Bush a 3rd term in office....simply amazing....all because white males are entranced by this soccer mom! Wake up people! Can you picture her in the Whitehouse? She cant even filed interviews let alone run anything....refuses to cooperate with authorities..whats she hiding?

    Veterans for Obama

    September 16, 2008 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  23. Chris in Nebraska

    Of course he's running away from that statement, who wouldn't be? McCain's new slogans involve "Change," but whereas Obama is fighting to change the direction of the nation, McCain/Palin are fighting to change their stories.

    September 16, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  24. Jake145

    He said it.
    I saw it LIVE!!!
    This man does not tell the truth. I heard his speach...and he's flat out denying this!!
    It's a darn shame that this man has no shame!!

    September 16, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  25. John in Ohio

    Senior moment.

    Won't it be fun to have a president for whom every day is a sequence of senior moments?

    September 16, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
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