March 17th, 2009
11:55 AM ET
12 years ago

Ingraham to Meghan McCain: You’re a ‘useful idiot’

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Meghan McCain and Laura Ingraham are in a war of words."]

(CNN) –– Laura Ingraham is calling Meghan McCain a "useful idiot" and a "flavor of the month" - the latest salvo in the war of words between the conservative radio host and the daughter of former Republican presidential candidate John McCain.

"Memo to Meghan McCain: Enjoy the media coverage while it lasts, but know you're being used," writes Ingraham, in a blog post titled "'USEFUL IDIOT' WATCH." "You are the flavor of the month in left-wing media land because you are a Republican bashing the GOP. Likewise, your dad is most popular among the same people when he is slamming his Republican brethren in full-blown 'maverick' fashion. At least he backs up his views with a lifetime of sacrifice and public service.

Ingraham says liberals are taking a single satirical comment out of context "to paint Meghan as the victim of a right-wing hate crime" and "malign outspoken conservatives."

The radio host mocked McCain on her show last week over comments urging Republicans to seek compromise with Democrats. She referred to McCain “a Valley Girl gone awry” and a “plus-sized model.”

Ingraham calls the furor over her remark "manufactured and totally phony."

"This comes from the same playbook responsible for the ongoing demonization of Rush Limbaugh," she writes.

"If any off-the-cuff remark about a woman's size was condemnable, then where was the outrage when President Obama made a passing reference to Jessica Simpson's 'weight battle' during his Super Bowl interview with Matt Lauer?" she asked, referring to a headline the president noted on a magazine cover during his interview with the NBC anchor.

Ingraham pointed to digs Rush Limbaugh has gotten over his weight, and references to herself and Ann Coulter as "peroxide blondes."

(Update: John McCain responds after the jump)

"I laughed it off. If you can't stand the heat...get out of the punditry business," she writes. "Next time, just for fun, Meghan should pretend that she's had a change of heart and is now a pro-life conservative. Then she'll really see how the Mean Girls treatment feels."

Meghan McCain has taken aim at both Ingraham and Coulter over the past week during a media blitz that's included blog posts and appearances on network television.
On The View yesterday, she said she felt like model Tyra Banks, who “went on her show in her bathing suit and said, ‘Kiss my fat ass.’”

“That’s what I feel right now,” McCain said. “I’m like, ‘Kiss my fat ass!’”

Update: In a Tuesday afternoon interview with ABC's George Stephanopoulos on Twitter, Sen. John McCain repeated what seems to be his standard response to his daughter's string of headline-grabbing statements. "I'm proud of my daughter and she has a right to her opinions," he said, adding that "like any family we agree on some things and disagree on others."

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soundoff (257 Responses)
  1. Anonymous

    Meghan is enjoying all the publicity, bad or good! She's in with the big league now so, if you can't take the heat, as they say – get the hell out of the kitchen. The libs are using the hell out of her.

    March 17, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  2. Laurel F.

    Meghan McCain is saying things that need to be said, speaking up for the moderate, centrist Republicans and against intolerance. She doesn't deserve to be insulted or attacked. I support Ms. McCain 100%!

    March 17, 2009 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  3. Jason B.

    Personally, I find Meghan McCain very attractive! My advice to her would be to be the bigger person, take the high road and don't let these hate filled fear mongers drag you into the mud.

    Now with that out of the way, I agree with earlier comments that some in the GOP seem very irked that the country is gearing towards the center instead of cowering in fear and going to the right. "Think like us or you're wrong" seems to be the current mantra. It's stuff like this that is causing the GOP to implode!

    March 17, 2009 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  4. Dan is right

    I agree with Dan:
    Ingraham got caught using personal insults as a rejoinder to a political debate, got called on it and is now trying to cover her slippery tracks by implying that she was "just teasing."

    March 17, 2009 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  5. Rick

    The McCains need to go back to Arizona and be quiet. True conservatives are taking the party back and the McCains & Spectors of the world are in the way.

    March 17, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  6. Makes U Wonder

    Never heard of Ms. Ingraham, but I sure like her. Thanks CNN for the information.

    March 17, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  7. Scott Martin

    As is typical of Republicans like Ms. Ingraham, she revels in personal insults instead of debating issues and facts. Exactly why I quite this party. They really need to return to addressing this countries needs and back out of peoples personal lives.

    March 17, 2009 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  8. barry

    Megan is still too young. She didn't know what she did. Need more than 10 years for all teenagers to really know what politics is.

    March 17, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  9. John

    Meghan McCain is a conservative, and on many political issues I disagree with her.

    But unlike most of the Republicans, she's not an insane religious lunatic. So I can work with her. She is what the Republican Party needs to be in order to survive, and if they can't change, they will collapse as soon as all the angry old dittoheads die of old age or congestive heart failure. My generation, and the one before, and the one after, is solidly progressive liberal Democrat. We're the future.

    March 17, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  10. Roger

    If Rush, Sean, Ann Coulter, Dr. Laura, etc. would just go away what a wonderful world this would be! Their hate filled rhetoric is as tired as the current Republican party. Good for you Meghan! Stand your ground against these hypocrites who use the media to promote their hate filled agendas.

    March 17, 2009 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  11. mp

    even if I am not Republican, (how could I be these years ?),
    Meghan McCain sounds a well balanced person in her thinking and acting.
    Brava !

    March 17, 2009 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  12. N, Saint Louis, MO

    Hey Laura Ingraham, Please keep your infighting in the GOP. Don't drag the president into this. We all heard what the president said during the super bowl interview. he was just reading something that was in the cover of the magazine.

    March 17, 2009 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  13. Andi

    oddly, I had never even heard of Ingrahm until this came up

    March 17, 2009 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  14. jummai

    wow!i am beginning to respect this McCain Girl!

    March 17, 2009 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  15. Rachel

    The weight comment *was* out of line. But, to hear the "Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot" crowd, who *never* abstain from throwing out digs about personal appearance, crying about it is just a little sickening. Manufactured rage and pretend indignation...that's all it is...

    March 17, 2009 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  16. John

    "Meghan is roughly my age and I think it is fantastic she has the guts to throw the BS flag and say Republicans simply cannot keep going down the same road that is obviously a dead end. As a Democrat I hope she fails miserably but I love that she is trying."

    Actually, as a progressive liberal Democrat, I hope she succeeds. Our political system needs a variety of political viewpoints and positions, a whole spectrum of parties and opinions. One-party government is not healthy. However, the Republicans are stubbornly refusing to be a viable party, they are completely subservient to that 23% of the country that is dittoheads. Makes good ratings for the talking heads, but it doesn't win elections. And it's never healthy for any political system to only have one viewpoint in power, whether its ours or theirs. I may be a Democrat, but I'm in this game for the country, not for my party.

    March 17, 2009 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  17. baker

    I'm sorry, but when is making a derogatory comment about someone's physical appearence acceptable, let alone considered humorous? Is Ms.Ingraham a judge on "America's Top Model"? No. I don't think it was intended as a compliment when Ms. McCain was referred to as a "plus size model". Ms Ingraham, are you trying to cut in on the whole McCain v. Coulter kerfuffle to keep your name in the news?

    March 17, 2009 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  18. Cindy Nelson

    Go Megan McCain you rock! I never thought much about this, but the more I Hear about you, the more I Like you!!
    Put those extremist neo cons in their place!!

    March 17, 2009 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  19. Debi

    Oh the game of eating their own.

    Meghan is trying to made the GOP realize they need to grow-up. This is how she is repaid.

    I guess the truth hurts when you are in the republican party. When it hurts, they attack with hate.

    March 17, 2009 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  20. P. Y.

    Hang in there Megan ! Laura Ingraham has " bit off more than she can chew " in this fight. Ha ! Ha !

    Why is it that the Repugs REFUSE to support their own who try to make sense of the mess they are in ?

    By the way, Obama was just reading the cover of the magazine – he was not implying Simpson had a weight problem. Laura Ingraham is too stupid to check out things before she says them. This statement was checked out long ago by others who take the time to check their facts..

    March 17, 2009 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  21. In Houston, TX

    and this is how the GOP pushes out independents, moderates and progressives. This is how the GOP maintains its base, by excluding all others.
    Does anybody remember the old Republicans? You know, with ideals that were different for mine but able to have a healthy exchange of ideas? People who could tolerate and listen to opposing view points? Yeah, those guys are Dems now.

    March 17, 2009 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  22. Joanna

    Megan is the most reasonable one of the bunch! They should listen to her and maybe they would actually get some support than!

    March 17, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  23. nann

    congrats to Meghan. People should be able to share their ideas without being called names. The Republican party will die if the pundits that profess to be on their side continue to voice this anger and ignorance.

    March 17, 2009 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  24. patNY

    The economy, global warming, terrorism, health care, education....remember those things? How about we get back to the real issues. Let these two cat-fight it out on Pay-per-view.

    March 17, 2009 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  25. CSD

    Why normal "republicans" (if there are any left, doesn't appear so) aren't taking back their party from these diseased private parts that now act as the voice of the GOP is just beyond me.

    Talk about a vacuum of ideas, decency and common sense, talking about eating your own young, this is a disgrace even for the GOP – and that says a lot.

    The GOP is one major election away from irrelevency, from joining the Whigs and the Free Soil Party. And it is WELL deserved.

    March 17, 2009 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
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