Attacks give McCain a taste of celebrity: Now he’s back for more

August 8, 2008

John McCain got his own taste of celebrity last week and evidently liked it — he’s back with a new ad ridiculing Barack Obama‘s fame. rtr20efd.jpg

The Republican candidate got a huge boost from accusing Obama of being a big celebrity like Paris Hilton and acting like some sort of political messiah.
Until his spate of negative attacks, McCain had been languishing ignored by the media while Obama triumphantly toured the world.
But last week McCain nearly tied Obama in the battle for media coverage — the first time that has happened since the start of the general election, according to the Project for Excellence in Journalism.
So the Arizona senator is returning ahead of Obama’s weeklong vacation in Hawaii with another advertisement ridiculing his fame. It also paints him as a big-tax Democrat.
“Life in the spotlight must be grand,” an announcer says as a camera pans over images of a smiling Obama on the covers of GQ, Vanity Fair and other magazines.
“But for the rest of us, times are tough,” the announcer says. “Obama voted to raise taxes on people making just $42,000. He promises more taxes. On small business. On seniors. Your life savings. Your family.”
“Painful taxes. Hard choices for your budget. Not ready to lead. That’s the real Obama.”
Scary stuff, but…
A study in mid-July by the Tax Policy Center — a venture of the Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution — found that Obama’s tax proposals would lift the after-tax income of the poorest 20 percent of Americans by 5.5 percent.
McCain’s plans would provide the poor with “virtually no benefit,” it said.
Nearly everyone else does better under Obama’s tax proposals as well.

Only the top 20 percent of U.S. wage earners would do better under McCain than Obama. The richest Americans would see after-tax income rise by 5.9 percent under McCain’s plans, while under Obama their after-tax income would drop by 2.8 percent, the study found.Click here for more Reuters 2008 campaign coverage.

Photo credit: Top: Reuters/Bryan Snyder (McCain appears with former President George Bush in Maine July 21); Bottom: Reuters/Rebecca Cook (Obama at a speech in Michigan Aug. 4)


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This is the sort of campaign article I am glad to see. Not just a “he said, she said” piece, but reporting that gives one some context from reputable sources to help the reader judge the validity of the campaigner’s claim.

We’ve too long put up with leaders who would tell any lie to the American people when it suited their purposes. We can’t let ourselves be further exploited by more of the same.

Posted by Donna H. | Report as abusive

Do conservative republicans respect the moral foundation of this country? The U.S. Constitution was designed, among other things, to protect the people of America from misguided government. Let’s take a look at how Conservative Republicans treat the U.S. Constitution:

U.S. Constitution: Amendment I – Freedom of Religion
Because of conservatives, for the first time ever, your tax dollars are funding religious groups you may not agree with. Conservative judges have ruled that taxpayers do not have a right to challenge this expenditure. This eradication of the first article of the U.S. Constitution is actually touted as a good thing by Conservatives.

Amendment IV – Search and seizure
Under the guise of court action against abortion, Conservative republicans had John Ashcroft subpoena all the medical records of literally thousands of women just like you and members of your family. Note that this occurred before the Patriot Act was even passed, and displays the Conservative Republican mindset. Conservative republicans invade your privacy every day. Unfortunately for all of us, they don’t appear to care about our U.S. constitution.

Amendment X – Powers of the States and People
Conservative republicans have tried consistently to overturn States Laws. They used your tax dollars to destroy the will of the people of Oregon, and the famous “Death with Dignity” law; they lost, but undoubtedly will try again. Conservative republicans do not respect States Rights.

Amendment VIII – Cruel and Unusual punishment
Would you rather die, or support a government which supported and sanctioned torture? The founding fathers would rather have died, and in fact they were proud to fight and die for our government: A government which specifically outlaws cruel and unusual punishment for very important reasons.

It is clear to all that Conservative Republicans would simply like Amendments I, IV VIII and X eliminated from our Constitution. Conservative republicans are destroying the moral foundations of our country. By supporting the destruction to our beloved Constitution they are destroying this country.

Posted by Frank US | Report as abusive

McCain’s ad talks of “life being hard for the rest of us”. At last look, most of the rest of us aren’t traveling the country in private jets or staying at an extensive network of vacation homes. The McCains make more per year than Obama has made in his life.

Posted by bob | Report as abusive

We need more reporting like this. Will the inaccuracies of this ad be picked up by the MSM as part of their “increased McCain coverage?” These are blatant lies and such total false claims should be illegal.

Posted by MaggyMay | Report as abusive

What appalls me most is the cable channel talking heads who will sit feebly by and let the surrogates (or even the candidate) spout the lies without confronting them. And I’m not talking “now, now… you know that isn’t entirely true…” kind of confrontation.

I’m talking “Hey, that is a LIE.” kind of confrontation. “Hey, you KNOW that is a LIE, how can you repeat it over and over KNOWING it is a LIE?” or “That is a LIE. If you keep repeating it, that makes you a LIAR. Are you OK with being a LIAR?” type of confrontation.

I know that these so-called news people are trying to keep their ratings up, but don’t you think that the ratings would go through the roof if they simple called BS on bullshit?

I’d like to see McCain’s anger and outburst or the look on Brad Blakeman’s face if someone like Dan Abrams or Wolf Blitzer just went ahead and did it, wouldn’t you? Now THAT would be a story.

Thank goodness for analysts and pundits like Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow. I miss Tim Russert. Now there was a man who knew how to call BS!

McCain = BUSH = More of the SAME

Posted by Casey | Report as abusive

I read political blogs run by the mainstream media on a daily basis, and this is the first time a McCain ad was posted while at the same time, reporting on its inaccuracies.
Thank you.

Posted by euisan | Report as abusive

McCain has embraced Bush/Cheney on the Iraq war. A war that started out on a lie since there were no weapons of mass destruction. Over 4,200 US Troops dead and over 30,000 US Troops wounded paid for this. Over 500,000 Iraqs civilians are dead. Americans are so far removed from this war it doesn’t even seem to exist in our day to day lives since less then 1 percent of Americans serived in this war and there is no draft. Just Stop-loss – The Republicans think they are so clever that they can spin anything? Now McCain is also trying to paint Obama as the anti-christ in his latest ad. How unchristian of the Republicans to kill and displace so millions Iraq civilians. Even the Fox news who helped create the conditions for us getting into Iraq seem like a Republican killing machine without a heart still beating the drum for this war. Even Bob Brooks is getting a free ride after also beating the drum for this war. Most Americans know this war is wrong and have the courage to stand up to the Republicans this time around. Even our media, military and intelligence community have the courage to make sure Bush/Cheney don’t cause more trouble by starting a war with Iran. So McCain in his 500 dollar shoes will lose this election because he is out of touch with our times and the mood of the American. It might just end up being a close election. But the 3rd time will be a charm. Our nightmare will be over. Obama will be like Reagan. We can all have hope again come November.

Posted by Bobby | Report as abusive

“For the rest of us times are tough” says McCain. He used the word us, when he should have said you. John McCain, the original “celebrity” should have been featured in ” The Lives of the Rich and Famous” He does own 9 mansions so he doesn’t have any problems paying the mortgage.He does wear 500 dollar shoes,
so you know that he won’t go barefoot any time soon. He flies around in a jet that he owns…. actually his wife owns, they have separate financial accounts so that his ex-paraplegic wife doesn’t get more spousal support. Never ever had to pump gas for himself in the last 20 years. He still has the nerve to try and paint Obama as a celebrity. John… I have a news flash for you… Get rid of the idiots running your campaign.

Posted by Ron | Report as abusive

No One really cares about the American Politics. Its dirty like everywhere else. The world has bigger things to worry about and it’s too bad the republican politicians in the US dont address the real problems facing the country. All they care about is the pockets of the big business. Everyone is getting sick and tired of this method but the mindless people of midwest and south dont know any better so they keep voting against their own interest. What a shame

Posted by Rony A | Report as abusive