October 20th, 2008
05:35 PM ET
14 years ago

McCain camp ‘rethinking’ Wright issue

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/05/02/art.wright0502.ap.jpg caption="The McCain campaign may be 'rethinking' it's decision not to discuss Rev. Wright."]
(CNN) - John McCain’s campaign manager Rick Davis suggested in an interview that the campaign may be "rethinking" its decision not to use Barack Obama’s relationship with his former pastor Jeremiah Wright in the campaign.

McCain himself has not responded to questions about why he might be reluctant to cite Wright. During the primary season, Hillary Clinton had predicted that Republicans would use the controversial minister to attack Obama, if he were to become the Democratic nominee.

Now – in a new interview being circulated by the McCain camp – Davis is pointing to recent comments by Obama supporter John Lewis as a reason some in the campaign are weighing a shift in that policy.

Lewis had compared the atmosphere at some McCain-Palin rallies to coded racial appeals by late segregationist George Wallace during his own presidential run.

“Look, John McCain has told us a long time ago before this campaign ever got started, back in May, I think, that from his perspective, he was not going to have his campaign actively involved in using Jeremiah Wright as a wedge in this campaign,” Davis told conservative commentator Hugh Hewitt.

“Now since then, I must say, when Congressman Lewis calls John McCain and Sarah Palin and his entire group of supporters, fifty million people strong around this country, that we’re all racists and we should be compared to George Wallace and the kind of horrible segregation and evil and horrible politics that was played at that time, you know, that you’ve got to rethink all these things,” he added. “And so I think we’re in the process of looking at how we’re going to close this campaign. We’ve got 19 days, and we’re taking serious all these issues.

Prominent conservatives – including McCain’s own running mate Sarah Palin – had questioned his decision not to raise the Wright issue in the campaign’s waning days.”

Filed under: Jeremiah Wright • John McCain
soundoff (132 Responses)
  1. Griff

    This Photo makes it look like, he's eating his own words anyway..
    Obama should do that too..

    October 20, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  2. President George Hussien Washington

    You'll see this ahh around October 31st

    October 20, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  3. CR

    Yeah because all of McCain's other brilliant other ideas have worked so well. OBAMA!!!

    October 20, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  4. White Christian Mother for Obama

    Wouldnt suprise me I was wondering how far in the polls he would have to be... before he stepped the low of lows.

    I am begining to not like McCain with a PASION!!

    I voted for Obama/Biden today and I must say... I am glad I did and nothing McSame can say will ever make me regret my decision!

    October 20, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  5. mama sue

    People are already sick of his negative attacks, and they are doing him more harm than good. Every attack he tries to make just seems to backfire, and he ends up energizing the Obama supporters.
    I was actually impressed by his restraint on this topic – not enough to vote for him, but enough to think he might have some useful life left after the election.

    October 20, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  6. Christian Democrat from Florida

    Here we go again... Now the nuts are really going to come out of the woodwork–or should I say–"their hoods"..... I'm beginning to think the McCain/Palin campaign would love to incite a race war at this point.

    October 20, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  7. Carmelita

    Can you say desperation!

    October 20, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  8. Steve

    who cares?

    October 20, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  9. BBOvenGuy

    It's too late. McCain already looked desperate with William Ayers, and the line of attack went nowhere. What makes him think Reverend Wright is going to do any better?

    The only people who will be interested in Wright are conservatives who won't vote for Obama anyway. Independents will be too busy listening to Colin Powell.

    October 20, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  10. Hope LV,NV

    ayers didn't work go to the old Wright standbye.

    October 20, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  11. dEMOBRAT

    Yeah, we know Obamabots....he's desperate.

    October 20, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  12. Shaun

    Here comes that kitchen sink everyone keeps talking about...

    October 20, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  13. BK

    Idiots. After every negative thing you have done has backfired, you are thinking of using a negative thing like this? The only thing that could work of this nature is if something ~new~ came out that people weren't already tired of hearing about.

    October 20, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |


    October 20, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  15. Catholic-mom-4-OBAMA

    The Republicans will stop at nothing! More lies, fear and hate! They couldn't get us to believe them on Ayers.

    They couldn't get us to believe them about "socialist".........so now they are scrapping the bottom of the barrel with Wright!

    So more hate, more LIES, more FEAR-mongering!


    October 20, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  16. Maya Lawrence

    These people are downright disgusting. Have they no shame?

    October 20, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  17. Enough Already!

    Oh, the smell of DESPERATION! The McLame camp might wish to consult with Hillary on that one...just to gage how well that strategy worked.

    October 20, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  18. Mike

    And while we're at it let's talk about the minister that shaped Palin's beliefs...now that's scary.

    October 20, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  19. mitch

    whatever. rev. wright has more integrity and honor than mccain, anyday. and im white!

    October 20, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  20. Noah, MT

    Next they'll be rethinking the kindergarten issue where Hillary accused Barack of "planning to become president someday". Give it up John, it's over. You can bring up Reverend Wright and the whole Wright family, but Barack Obama will be the next president.

    Obama/Biden 08

    October 20, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  21. MD

    I thought the endorsement of Barack Obama was the final nail in the McCain/Palen coffin but if they start up again with Rev. Wright I would have to re-think that statement. To bring up Rev. Wright again after Senator Obama had to go as far as to leave his church (Something no other Presidential candidate has ever had to do.) would surely send the rest of the undecideds into the Obama column. They need to stop. It simply will not work. Obama/Biden "08"

    October 20, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  22. The Truth

    Do it at your own risk and watch this country be torn apart at its seems. Thats how you sew the seeds of hatred Johnny boy. Oh, and grow a pare and take back your camp. Seems you are not in charge anymore

    October 20, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  23. Lesley

    This is absurd. They are desparately trying anything to bring up Wright, over McCain's objections. John Lewis never called McCain's entire group of supporters racist, only that the comments coming from the McCain campaign trail were urging some people to make over the top comments toward Obama. Perhaps they don't read the news, their negatives are on the rise big time and they are trying to put out more negative ads. Whatever.

    October 20, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  24. No McPain

    How many times does the McCain campaign have to be hit over the head before they learn?

    Voters do not want negative attack ads. We want facts about the issues facing us – the economy, the war, health care.

    The Ayers thing didn't work; the terrorist thing didn't work; the socialist thing didn't work. Stick to the issues affecting the citizens.

    October 20, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  25. rys

    way to go mccain!!! bring up the rev wright so obama/biden can receive more votes and donations!!! you big idiot. those things aren't working. people are losing their jobs, houses & cars. their retirements and savings account and the worse has yet to come. nobody cares about bill ayers or jeremiah wright. get a clue and start talking about what really matters to the american people. and everybody (republicans) are wondering why Gen Powell and Chris Buckley and other republicans are jumping ship!!!

    October 20, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
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