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The regulatory agencies charged with monitoring Wall Street, which he called outdated, have been "asleep at the switch the last few years."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. McCain for Pres.

    He is explaining his statement, not backing away from it. You know the difference CNN.

    September 16, 2008 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  2. Nurse Ratchet

    Not even a coherent thought from McCain:

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

    The reason our economy is in trouble is because he'll restrain spending? Get him his meds!

    September 16, 2008 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  3. Country Club First!

    Back...back...back, it up!

    Obama 08

    September 16, 2008 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  4. Tony

    When you own 9 homes, have a wife who is worth well over $100 million dollars, are wealthy in your own right, and want for nothing, does McCainr eally expect anyone to believe that he understands what the average, hard-working man or woman goes through?

    If you believe that, I have a bridge to sell you in Alaska and all the Kool-Aid you can drink. Seems that a large majority of white women across the country are asking for refills.

    September 16, 2008 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  5. Kevin, TN

    Biden's right, the ship has run aground, and the captain in charge is at fault. The Rethugs are running like rats, but they caused this disaster, and John wants to continue the same policies.

    Wake up America-vote smart.

    The party for the Republicans is finally over.

    September 16, 2008 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  6. Paul C. Palmetto Bay, FL

    With 7 homes and $100 million in the bank I can understand how he would think everything is fine.

    September 16, 2008 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  7. We love Sarah

    Mr. McCain,

    It is not government spending that got us into trouble, it corporate spending!!!

    Why punish the people for what greedy corporations did????

    September 16, 2008 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  8. lindsey

    of course the fundamentals of our encomony are strong. we wouldn't be a westernized country if they weren't. go to zimbabwe or myanmar and check on their economic fundementals. obama wants people to think they're really suffering because they don't have money to put gas in their car. those "poverty stricken" americans obama talks about still have indoor plumbing and a refrigerator. maybe we should ask the other 85% of the world if the average american lives in poverty.

    September 16, 2008 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  9. Orlando

    John. Are we in a ditch? Are is it to deep for you to know becuase you have been riding in the front seat for so long you wouldn't know either way?

    September 16, 2008 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  10. Donna

    McCain is not very bright...

    September 16, 2008 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  11. The Bottom Fell Yesterday


    It's the economy stupid. Something John McCain knows nothing about.

    September 16, 2008 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  12. caron

    He said it because it was a talking point for so long that it just came out - at exactly the wrong time! That's what happens when you're talking from what someone else tells you and not from what you really feel – But then again, maybe he really does feel that way.

    Either way – OUCH!

    September 16, 2008 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  13. Case

    What a joke McCain is. He said yesterday that the fundamentals of the economy are strong while major investment firm in the U.S were taking severe hits, from bankruptcy to being sold. Everyone heard it!!! I am convince he is worst than Bush. Now he’s trying to back peddle from his comments because we all realize how out of touch he is. His VP choice will not take any questions from the media. What kind of campaign joke is McCain running and what are they hiding.

    September 16, 2008 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  14. RB from NH

    McCain make Rove look like a saint.

    My Friends, he has no plan, no clue.

    It's ok to vote for the black guy. Really! He's only half black. He's got a plan to help the country.

    Is your prejudice worth losing your job, your retirement, your womans rights?

    September 16, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  15. Independent

    The American Worker is the fundamental strength!!!! Then please tell me Senator why were you and some of your five aides, including former finance chair and your finance director were registered lobbyists for EADS who were behind the bad tanker deal....It was stated that you Senator was trying to jam and bully the Pentagon to make sure there was competition by giving EADS an advantage....If you are so interested in the American worker, why were you backing this project to go Airbus instead of Boeing??? The contract would of meant 44,000 new and existing US jobs....

    Please answer that Senator....oh, I'm sure you will deny all of this...but, it is fact....

    September 16, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  16. JDOD

    McFinance-OUT of TOUCH for sure.

    September 16, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  17. The Crisis Behind The Curtain

    This was a "mission accomplished" moment for John McCain. Once again he got it wrong.

    John is basically telling us to "pay no attention to the economic crisis behind the curtain".


    September 16, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  18. Rave

    McPain is Bogus with his cock and bull war stories.
    Thousands like him served in the army and many didn't make it back to home? What is so special about this idiot? He is a total nut case, who left his wife to marry a richer women, doesn't remember how many houses he owns, he thinks American Economy is fine, Americans are just whiners, He wishes for an other terrorist attack to boost his points in this election
    This guy belongs to a MENTAL INSTITUTION. Send him there, not to the WHITE HOUSE. We had enough circus for last 8 years
    OBAMA (2008 -16)

    September 16, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  19. Henry

    OH McMadfellow. You are a Mcmoose. Mcpig.
    Any idiot who votes for you in this election is as stupid as you are.
    God save America

    September 16, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  20. John, Brooklyn, NY

    What do you call this one...a flip flop, a waffle, more "truthiness"?

    Nope...this one, Mr. McCain, was just simply a big fat blunder – and it demonstrates your clear lack of understanding about the economy and your inability to understand its immediate impact on the American people.

    September 16, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |

    My Friends,

    I have no plan, but if I smile and lie you won't vote for the black guy!

    September 16, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  22. Jaki Maryland

    I wholeheartedly agree with you Maureen. McCain scares the daylights out of me and I wonder what kind of world we will leave for my grandsons when he can't see the forest for the trees. People are hurting badly - I hope America won't be dumb again and vote for this insane ticket of McCain/Palin.

    I don't understand people who won't cooperate with the law and who simply can't recognize truth when they see it. If McCain/Palin get in, then America deserves what it gets. This is a very scaring time.

    September 16, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  23. Me-Ohio

    I still fail to understand why Americans love those that lie, don't understand what the average American is going through, and can't see that the party is the same as the one in office for the past 8 years and they are running on nearly the same policies. I guess I will never understand the voter who throws their vote to the person that has the same hobbies as them but not with the person they know and agree with (policy wise).

    September 16, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  24. Cynthia

    He said what he meant the first time that he thinks the economy is fundamentally sound. It is for rich people like him but not for your everday average citizen who is struggling from paycheck to paycheck, losing jobs, losing their homes.

    September 16, 2008 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  25. quent97

    And again I say that if the American Worker is the strength of the American Economy and the American Economy is so weak, what does that say about the American Worker? Not trying to paint a negative pix of the American Worker, because after all how can the American Worker be strong if he/she can't work? The Lehman disaster is going to put thousand more American Workers out of work, so what does John have to say about that? How is he going to create more jobs for those who need them? He is really out of touch with reality.

    This is the second time he has stated that the Economy is strong and once again the Economy has proven him wrong. These companies have been allowed to run amuck for too long and the Bush administration needs to take responsibility for this tripe. This is proof that we need more Gov't involvment. Not a take over but some watch dogs that will actually WATCH.

    September 16, 2008 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12