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. louise`

    MCain and Palin have stretched the truth sooooooo much, they have lost a lot of credibility............McCain's wife is worth over 100 million.....of course they can't keep track of the number of cars and houses they have......yet he keeps repeated the same lies about the Democrats.............
    Not honorable McCain........not honorable at all!

    September 21, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  2. Oliver-Canyon Lake

    How many lies can this man get away with. 13 cars and seven houses and he is like the average American. Already in my neighborhood alone I am starting to see McCain Palin signs go up. I live in Texas and the neighborhood only has few minorities living in it. Mostly retired ..... folks.

    September 21, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  3. Joyce in Florida

    McCain is more than out of touch with reality. Every day he keeps looking older and older. From this picture, he looks like his height is shrinking. His V.P. pick still scares me. Democrats MUST win back the White House. Still a Hillary Clinton supporter who finally made up my mind to vote for Obama/Biden.

    September 21, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  4. Gary Chandler in Canada

    Who needs SNL, I am watching 5 former Sectr of States, "World of Challenges", and canNOT stop laughing.
    They were asked how America could regain some respect in the World and NOT one of them came up with the answer AND showed WHY you have lost stature.
    (Take leadership in Global Warming, get all the countries together)
    Not of the 5 geniuses on the stage brought up this MOST IMPORTANT point! Lower your crime from the #1 status amongst developed countries! Raise your education standard from # 20! Your United Nations HDI rating is #12 and DROPPING.
    Get OFF the world stage until you win a Standards War in your own country!!! Don't be thinking the world thinks or WANTS you as our leader, WE WANT YOU TO BE A ROLE MODEL, which you are NOT!

    September 21, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  5. Republican Supporters in the Dark

    McCain is trying to sell himself to the American people as a regular Joe, which he IS NOT!!!. John McCain was ALWAYS for deregulation in the financial sector and was more interested in protecting the interest of the wealthy – that's his party's mantra. John McCain is no 'man of the people'. John McCain belongs to the 20% (or less) of Americans, who own 80% of the wealth of the country, and he and the Republicans want to keep it that way. WAKE UP AMERICA. How much more lies will you buy from the Republicans (John McCain will continue the failed policies of Pres. Bush and the Republican party). John McCain is out of touch with most of America. He wants to be President because it is a long held ambition, not because he cares deeply about the American people. And by the way, he is not the only POW in America – that does not give him or anyone else the right to be President.

    September 21, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  6. DESPERATION.........

    McCain said he only buys cars MADE in the USA. Many foreign car companies have factories in the US and the workers at these facilities are Americans. So they are made in the USA by Americans.

    And when was the last time Obama drove his hybrid? Seems like on the news they only show him driving around in gas guzzling limos and SUVs.

    Obama's campaign sounds pretty deperate to me.

    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  7. joyce


    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  8. Tired of Non-issues

    Because this is what really matters during a campaign?

    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  9. roryryn

    SAD SO SAD. The writing is on the wall. McCain has a whole bunch of cronies that need a puppet in Washington to continue the Elitism that has dogged U.S. politics for at least 8 Years. Now no one is perfect and the race is one that has turned into a grade school scrap, but when it comes right down to it the republicans are fighting like a bully fights. They pick on, they lie and then they cry foul when they are losing.

    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  10. maynard hopkins wi




    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  11. Alan Boyer

    It's time for Obama to lower the hammer. He's been playing around with McCain and his soul mate.

    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  12. Army LT

    Liar Liar McCain's Depends are on Fire!

    How can America appoint a LYING commander-in-chief for me and my fellow troops?

    What a disgrace McCLiar is to the uniform he wore!

    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  13. Alissa in Kansas

    Hmmm... It's 7 houses and 13 cars? No wonder he thinks the fundamentals of our economy are strong. How could he say otherwise? =P

    Obama/Biden '08

    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  14. Peter

    Who cares! So what if he has 13 cars or that Obama has only one, in his name, no one ever said if she had any under her maiden name. Besides its a stupid thing to even consider that it will make a difference and even more so it shows how the media like Newsweek is undermining the election process by looking up and writing articles on such inconsequential topics.

    September 21, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  15. Ken

    I own 2 Toyotas and I'm proud of that. Proud that I'm American enough to make an informed, smart consumer choice. And if McCain owns 11 American cars and 2 foreign cars, he has still supported the American auto industry more than Obama's 1 American auto purchase. But I guess the larger point is that McCain doesn't know his own self well enough to avoid being a liar. And that's a good point too.
    – An Obama supporter in Charlotte, NC

    September 21, 2008 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  16. Marie

    Seriously, could the Obama campaign become any dumber. This is an issue when the country is in the mess that it is. How can anyone vote for this man.

    September 21, 2008 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  17. Julie

    "My Friends, says McCain, I know Americans are hurting...."

    September 21, 2008 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  18. Billy

    13 cars!???

    And lies about buying American....

    McCain, you suck.

    September 21, 2008 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  19. Mike

    So lets see if I have this correct. McRich owns seven luxury homes. Is married to an heiress worth over one hundred million dollars. Loves custom Italian nine hundred dollar shoes. Has thirteen cars half of which are foriegn even though he has stated that he buys American cars. Owns a large Private Jet. AND. McBush is one of 'US' and Obama driving around in his Ford Escape, is an Elitist ?
    What are these Republicans smoking?

    September 21, 2008 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  20. Lydia

    If there are any Americans who do not know by now that John McCain is a liar, they have been in a coma for the past 20 weeks or they are too stupid to be allowed to vote.

    September 21, 2008 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  21. Rob

    Well, so much for the Obama camp focusing on the "big issues"...more of the same. Sigh...

    September 21, 2008 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  22. ran

    I know this is not part of the topic .The 700 billion should go to the people not to bail out the CEO'S and their share holders. When are we going to make people take responsibility for their action?

    September 21, 2008 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  23. ricardo williams

    I guess as we get older we tend to forget things. That's why McCain will be president in a retirement home. Sorry Mccain your time is up. Sarah Palin and Cindy will look after you in a nursing home. You served your country well but now it is time to take a bow out.

    September 21, 2008 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  24. Toyin

    Each donated by a campaign advisor? I mean lobbyist?

    September 21, 2008 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  25. Former Repub

    8 houses
    13 cars
    $100 million net worth
    1 beer hieress

    of course he's in touch with regular everday americans!

    OBAMA 08

    September 21, 2008 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
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