The race card: Did Obama play it or is McCain playing games?
John McCain thinks Barack Obama is playing the race card.
The Republican presidential candidate and his staff were upset by a comment Obama made on the campaign trail.
During a campaign speech, the Illinois Democrat told supporters Republicans were trying to make voters scared of him.
“What they’re saying is, well, we know we’re not very good, but you can’t risk electing Obama. You know, he’s new, he’s — he doesn’t look like the other presidents on the currency. He — you know, he’s got a — he’s got a funny name. I mean, that’s basically the argument, he’s too risky,” Obama said.
McCain’s campaign manager, Rick Davis, jumped on the comment.
“Barack Obama has played the race card, and he played it from the bottom of the deck. It’s divisive, negative, shameful and wrong,” Davis said in a written statement.
McCain agreed with Davis, telling reporters he was “very disappointed” that Obama had used the race card.”Race will not have any role in my campaign, nor is there any place for it. I’m disappointed that he’s used it.”
The back and forth came a day after Davis unveiled a new McCain attack ad comparing Obama to Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, insisting in a conference call with reporters that Obama was the biggest celebrity in the world.
A report out the same day said about a third of McCain’s advertisements are negative attacks on Obama, while 90 percent of Obama’s ads don’t even mention McCain.
Obama spokesman David Plouffe told reporters Obama in no way used race as an issue and that McCain’s camp was trying to distract voters from larger issues.
“Folks ought to just buckle up their seat belts,” he added. “We assume this is what the campaign will be like.”
McCain dismissed Democratic charges he was taking the low road, saying Obama had “run negative ads on me continuously, and I might point out for the record that his was the first.”
So what do you think? Does the McCain campaign have a legitimate complaint? Or is this just part of a strategy of using negative attacks erode Obama’s standing with voters?