March 17th, 2009
11:55 AM ET
14 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. Andy

    Hey Laura, trust and believe, "fat" Meghan got you beat by a mile sweetie!

    March 17, 2009 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  2. Marcia, Marcia, Marcia in CA

    Some useful idiots are temporary unitl they grow into strong, resourceful, mature women.

    Then there are the permanent idiots that remain in the same stupid placed being used by the equally, stupid old white men of society, Laura.

    March 17, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  3. Paul

    So suggesting that Conservatives and Liberals should compromise on issues is a BAD thing? No wonder the GOP sucks! The GOP mouths can do no more than throw insults because can't come up with anything intelligent to say. If more Republicans were like Meghan McCain, maybe I'd vote for one sometime!

    March 17, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  4. Simmy

    Ingraham is helping M. McCain achieve her goals. She (McCain) wants to use the spotlight for her personal and or political aspirations. Palin is enough from Republicans. No more distractions please. Take your fight to Springer.

    March 17, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  5. miken

    Laura is terrific and tells it like it is!

    March 17, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  6. Reader

    Like anybody outside the radical faction of the GOP had ever even heard of Laura Ingraham before this...sounds like she is benefiting from the conflict with Meghan McCain, too. Ingraham should be thrilled with the publicity–even if it shows how contemptible she is.

    March 17, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  7. Ohio Man

    so i guess when 1 does not agree with the Rebubs.. they are idiots or not smart.. or just not American .. or dont have a clue as to what americans want....hmmmmm is that so? .... well shoot me now and call me a moose i guess most of American's these days have a problem with the in fighting among the Rebubs and dont agree with more than half of there views on life and how goverment should be ran

    March 17, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  8. California Gold

    What happened to the American mature professional adult woman? What happened to restraint from grade school playground name calling? What happened to setting an example for young people? I don't know this Ingraham woman but her behavior is unacceptable. Shame on her.

    March 17, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  9. Janie

    Hey Laura,
    When you can't think of anything intelligent to say, just attack. You've learned your lessons well from your fellow Republicans. Why should I expect anything different from you?!

    March 17, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  10. ladyelementa

    This Laura Ingraham is as un-American as they come, thinking her Party's opinion is the only one that counts. Get over it honey, this country is made up of more than people like you!

    March 17, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  11. dft

    Ingraham's comments are more than satire, they were an attack on McCain because she disagrees. This is clearly shown by Ingraham's defence of her statements that made additional attacks. By the looks at the polls lately, Ingraham, Rush and Sean and the incompotent GOP leadership are lossing the moderates and inciting the nutcases. Great strategy to continue to lose more elections.

    March 17, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  12. Jim

    Please... There's as much intelligence in this argument as there was in relation to WMD in Iraq.... that is to say, none! Ms. McCain, while speaking her mind, is still very young, and learning the ways of the world. Ms (Mrs? Mz?) Ingraham is just looking to plaster someone because her beloved Republican Party is no longer in power. She never learned how to take disappointment. While I am a Democrat, I think this country is served by some adversarial rhetoric, but we all want the same thing... to see the country succceed in it's efforts at recovery. I just think CNN needs to find better places to spend their considerable resources than reporting ont his stupid, childish argument between two women whose voices are being amplified too much...

    March 17, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  13. Steven

    I think it is a extremely inappropriate to be using your position in the media to make such harsh personal attacks against Meghan McCain because she made some personal political observations on her blog that Laura disagreed with. I mean come on, she has a radio show that has an audience of 5 million and she uses her power of audience to attack a 24 year old that has a blog with a very small fraction of Laura's audience. Grow up and stop bickering, Laura Ingraham is just ridiculous.

    March 17, 2009 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  14. Trent

    We would all be better off if people like Laura Ingraham would go away forever... Republicans and Democrats.

    March 17, 2009 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  15. Ken from VA

    Meghan McCain does not deserve the lambasting she is taking from these so called conservatives. I think it only highlights the fact that conservatives do not really support the constitution and free speech. It's become more and more evident that conservatives are more like a communist regime than a democracy. They obscure the truth, smear anyone with opposing views, and seek to destroy anyone not like themselves. Isn't that what Hitler did?

    Why is it so sacreligious for a republican, moderate or otherwise, to have and express a different view about their party. Meghan is the future of this country and the republican party. She represents the change that Obama has put in place. That change is, regardless of your party affiliations, we should be able to work together.

    These older republican conservatives feel threatened and rightly so. Their time has come. Soon they will have to change their tune or close down their airwaves because America are tired of hearing the same old song, "Crush, Burn, Destroy".

    March 17, 2009 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  16. Ron L

    Ms. Ingraham is a LIAR. She MEANT to insult Meghan, when she brought up her weight. The ONLY reason she is now attempting to spin it another way is because 80% or more women felt it was totally uncalled for and inexcusable. I just wonder, "Why are so many of the Republicans, so mean spirited?" So many of them claim to be Christian, and yet most of their actions are in direct contradiction with the faiths teachings. I just don't get it.

    March 17, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  17. Common Sense

    The difference with President Obama's comment with Matt Lauer is that he was reading a headline from a magazine, he wasn't actually calling Jessica Simpson fat; People Magazine called her fat. Laura Ingraham, on the other hand, did call Meghan McCain fat.

    March 17, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  18. Kirkes, Maryland

    Laura is just jealous. She is attacking Meghan simply because she has nothing better to do. Laura use to energy to better serve the people. You are wasting your time and the people's time.

    March 17, 2009 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  19. Charlie in Maine

    I expect the right wing-nuts to attack the people I like. After all I am a progressive rural, middle-aged, white guy (the probably think I am some kind of traitor to attach progressive to the other three descriptors). Truthfully though having them attack each other is nowhere near as satisfying as you might think. Please GOP stop the nastiness and just go back to being wrong 80% of the time.

    March 17, 2009 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  20. Tom

    Hey Meghan, shut up! Hey Laura, shut up! Hey Rush, shut up! Hey Hannity, shut up! Hey Olbermann, shut up!

    Go back to your luxury cars, your mansions, your maids. These pundits/celebrities don't have to worry about feeding their families or paying bills. They all make me sick. Don't pretend you feel the pain of the common man.....................You don't!

    March 17, 2009 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  21. Mel

    lol. What a bunch of children these people are being. I agree with Ingraham about McCain but Ingraham isn't behaving much better.

    March 17, 2009 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  22. Fred

    John, Rochester MN March 17th, 2009 10:25 am ET

    There's an excellent line in here that shows just how much the right wing doesn't get it: "You are the flavor of the month in left-wing media land because you are a Republican bashing the GOP." It isn't because she's a Republican bashing the GOP, it's because she's a Republican that isn't caving in to extremism. She speaks her mind. She's open to discussion. I know these are foreign concepts to the right, but freedom doesn't mean everybody thinking the same way you do.

    LOL, now isn't that the pot calling the kettle black. Insert your foot in your mouth often, John?

    March 17, 2009 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  23. Expat American

    Why is Ingraham attacking Meghan McCain over her weight?. Is the United States not the country where 2/3 of its population is overweight and obese...? Is it not the country where you find overweight poor/homeless people? Is it not the country where a 250lbs woman can freely display her sexuality in public and a 350lbs man is considered a 'great athlete'?

    Mon Dieu.

    March 17, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  24. John

    As a liberal, I like Meghan McCain simply because she actually recognizes that the Republican Party is going to have to change and grow to stay viable. The Democrats do not remain controlled by segregationist Dixiecrats. The Democratic Party of today is not what it was 50 years ago, or 100 years ago. The Republican Party has this fanatical adherence to obsolete issues and ideals that the new generation, my generation and Meghan McCain's generation, just don't care about. It plays great with 23% of the country, but they're just not going to win elections outside of the South, the Bible Belt, and rural areas.

    March 17, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  25. John

    The problem the Republicans face is that they've hung their hats on Christian religious extremism, and it is not a viewpoint that allows for a variety of goals and beliefs under one big tent. The Democrats welcome both liberal Democrats, conservative Democrats, moderate Democrats, and anybody else. The Republicans have made it clear that unless you toe a right-wing religious conservative line, and pay homage to the correct talking heads, you're a tool of the liberal media, a traitor to the Party, and not welcome among the Republicans.

    March 17, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
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