September 21st, 2008
08:50 PM ET
12 years ago

Dems seize on McCain's 13 cars

Democrats are seizing on a report the McCains own at least 13 cars.

Democrats are seizing on a report the McCains own at least 13 cars.

(CNN) - Democrats eager to portray John McCain as out of touch with average Americans and as a flip-flopper seized on a report Sunday the Arizona senator and his wife, Cindy, own more than a dozen cars - including several foreign-made automobiles.

A Newsweek article published on the magazine's Web Site Sunday said registration records show the McCains currently own 13 cars - two of which are foreign-made: a Honda and a Volkswagen. That appears to contradict the Republican presidential nominee's past statements he only buys cars made in America. (Cindy McCain also drives a Lexus and daughter Meghan owns a Toyota Prius, but neither are registered to the McCains.)

Newsweek also reported Barack Obama owns one car: a Ford Escape Hybrid.

In a quickly-arranged conference call organized by the Democratic National Committee, United Auto Worker Union President Ron Gettelfinger - an Obama supporter - said the registration records show McCain is not being truthful with Americans and undermining autoworkers.

Listen: Gettelfinger blasts McCain on conference call with reporters

"The last thing we need is a presidential candidate who undermines autoworkers, and these days it seems that John McCain is doing just exactly that," he said. "When he's in the Midwest, he tells voters he supports the industry, when he is in other states he brags about buying a foreign car, as he did with the Prius." (It is not clear if McCain or his daughter bought the Prius)

Gettelfinger also pointed to comments McCain made in an interview with Detroit TV station WXYZ, saying, "I've bought American literally all my life and I'm proud."

"That's really a nice campaign line," Gettelfinger said of the comments. "But it turns out that John McCain wasn't being straight with the people of Detroit, or the state of Michigan, or our country as a matter of effect," adding later, "The American auto industry and the American voters deserve a president who will be straight with them.”

For the record, Honda has four major automobile and engine plants in the United States employing more than 25,000 Americans, according to its Web site. Volkswagen is scheduled to open a plant in Tennessee in 2011 that is expected to employ 2,000 people, the AP reported in July.

Brian Rogers, a spokesman for McCain, said "Barack Obama is more interested in childish political attacks than confronting the reality that his plans to raise taxes and close off trade will kill our American auto industry and the jobs of hardworking folks in Michigan and all around our nation."

Rogers also said McCain was referring to his own car in the WXYZ interview:  "He drives a Cadillac today and has always driven American cars," Rogers said.

Newsweek's report comes a month after McCain now-infamously could not name how many houses he owned in an interview with Politico. The publication later reported he owns at least eight properties.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Extra • John McCain • Popular Posts
soundoff (196 Responses)
  1. Alex

    why are dems going after him on cars? Republicans don't care... all they have to keep repeating POW POW POW POW and everything just fades away... thats the truth

    September 21, 2008 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  2. hurriCAIN PALIN

    do anything – say anything – win at all costs – pandering dems

    September 21, 2008 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  3. mitchell


    September 21, 2008 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  4. BJGT

    Yeah... but Obama is still the "elitist", right? McCain is the most hypocritical, lying, sleaziest politician I've ever witnessed. I'm still dumbfounded why anyone with the least bit of intelligence would vote for him. Do the Republicans even deserve another chance after the mess that Bush made in the last 8 years? No, of course not. What is the real answer? People just won't vote for a black man, is that it? That must be the answer since Obama is far and away the more qualified person for the job.

    September 21, 2008 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  5. Lisa, MD


    September 21, 2008 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  6. Nickel and Dime Me

    Oh come on Obama....Jay Leno also owns a bunch of cars, since when is this a crime.

    How is your buddy Rezko doing?

    September 21, 2008 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  7. Pennsylvania Mary

    Democrats are ridiculous people

    September 21, 2008 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  8. Scott

    How in the world can someone with 13 cars, and more homes then HE CAN COUNT, be responsible for the economy at a time like this. If he understood the economy, which he has gone on record and said he does not understand, I would be more apt to not be so much against him. However in a week where he said that the FUNDAMENTALS, NOT THE PEOPLE, ARE STRONG how can anyone in their right mind think of voting for him? Even the right wing is starting to turn on him. Should we even take McCain seriously anymore?

    September 21, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  9. Meka




    September 21, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  10. Steve

    John McCain has always been out of touch with the needs of the American people. He 'drives his cars' on the wrong side of the reality road. One thing I am MOST sure of, the more of the same... is proved every day when I hear John and Sarah copy the 'phrases' from the Obama ticket... They picked up and began using the word 'change'.. 'this is the moment' and ' it right... he got it wrong...' and there are many other examples. Point of this is... Let me 'drive it home' in my vehicle.. John needs to stay off all roads because he's on a road to nowhere...

    September 21, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  11. linda from South Dakota

    well there ya go folks,, mccains told another lie,,, need more keep lisenin or watch tv,, hes done nothing but lie to mareicans and its time the people undertand that hes no canidate for my president,,,, he has this talent for turnin things around to his advantage,,,, how can this man sleep at night???? lord only knows, but what goes around will come around to bite in come election time,,, americans arent stupid,,, and whats with is "13" cars??? lol, again hes lied to automakers, and americans,, IS THIS THE MAN YOU WANT TO VOTE FOR????,HES MORE OF THE SAME(BUSH)...obama/biden 08 and beyond,,,,

    September 21, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  12. larry in Chillicothe OH

    My god how rich is this guy. Want to talk about an elitist. I wonder how many cars Cindy has! It seems everyday things get better for Obama! Can't wait till the investagation in Alaska is out and we can find just how much Sara and Dick Channey have in common.

    Teamsters for Obama

    September 21, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  13. mitchell

    why is it that almost every fact check that cnn does ,obama is being the most truthful, and almost every fact check on mccain is lying? cnn is THE most fair and balanced ,but,republicans still vote for the guy that lies about it all?

    September 21, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  14. Roger

    The Obama campaign is up to its old fashioned politics again. I don't see no change.

    September 21, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  15. ZYEDCO D


    September 21, 2008 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  16. Matt from Oregon

    haha, yeh ok Barack Obama's an elitist no you John "Money-bags" McCain,

    September 21, 2008 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  17. renee

    Is anyone actually surprised!!!!!!

    September 21, 2008 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  18. D&D

    McCain had his way, he won't do much for America! Unless to be blind and/or deaf, there is no way not to see t!

    There is only one choice in this election, whether you like it or not, that's choice, it's Obama/Biden ticket!

    God bless America!

    September 21, 2008 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  19. The World is Watching.

    Americans, McCain Does not care about us. It is all about him and the family, but many Americans will not see it because of racism(Fear) towards Obama.

    September 21, 2008 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  20. mitchell

    every fact check cnn does mccain is lying and misleading. why do folks like presidents who consistently lie to win?

    September 21, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  21. Donna

    The McCain campaign's latest slogan is "Country First." This is an example of how empty his rhetoric is.

    As for his running mate, would Sarah Palin treat the country like she treats Alaska? Taking per diems intended for travel to stay in her own home? Using personal email to avoid transparency in government? It certainly has not been "Alaska First" and there is no reason to believe that her statements have any more subtance than do McCain's.

    September 21, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  22. Independent Voter

    Why am I not surprised? McCain is really just too out of touch with the everday American that gets up in the morning and tries to make an honest living. I am disgusted!

    September 21, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  23. emily

    WOW!!! Can McCain go any low???

    September 21, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  24. Don from California

    I wish he would have been asked how many cars he owned.

    McCain: I think twelve or thirteen... um.... there are investment cars..... from Japan... um... would it be cool if I have an aide answer that question.... he knows how many things I own better than me.

    haha YIKES!!

    September 21, 2008 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  25. Gigi

    Im voting for Obama..but really, i have family (AMERICAN) who work for toyota corp- Does it really matter that he bought a foreign car.?

    September 21, 2008 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8