General Question

BonusQuestion's avatar

Is this the new low for McCain?

Asked by BonusQuestion (1483points) October 18th, 2008

McCain campaign now makes automated phone calls in swing states and makes tough accusations about Obama. This is the same tactic used by Bush against his own campaign in 2000 primaries. It even seems the team that makes these automated phone calls is the SAME team used by Bush in 2000.

Even some Republicans condemned this dirty tactic.

What do you think?
Do you think it will hurt Obama or McCain?
Does it change your view of McCain even further?

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13 Answers

augustlan's avatar

It makes me sad. After this election is over, assuming he doesn’t win, how will he ever look at himself in the mirror again?

SoapChef's avatar

@ augustian
He’s had a lot of practice. He has a lifetime of reprehensible actions behind him. No conscience there.

BonusQuestion's avatar

The last 3–4 weeks has certainly changed my view of McCain immensely. I don’t think I can ever have any respect whatsoever for this man. Not anymore. And although I couldn’t disagree with him more, he was always one of my favorite politicians.

xgunther's avatar

The sad thing is that these dirty tactics work. People just love drama and fall for it. Pathetic.

jvgr's avatar

He’s turned out to be a sorry, pathetic old man. Not at all what he claims to be.

augustlan's avatar

Not at all what I thought he’d be.

jrpowell's avatar

I used to respect him. I might have actually voted for him in 2000. Now hearing him speak makes me ill.

dalepetrie's avatar

I guess it gives me a little pause. I’ve gotten a couple of these phone calls and 3 of their mailers, and I’ve seen GOP on my caller ID a few times prior to this where they didn’t leave a message. Part of me thinks if I, someone who has never voted for a Republican for President and hasn’t been anything but vocal about my support of Obama, is getting these phone calls, that means these aren’t targeted messages, they’re trying to blast this out, and I’m just not sure how effective a tack that is. I have to imagine if he’s calling people at random. From the Huffington Post:

“Reports came from Ohio, Colorado, New Mexico, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Missouri, North Carolina, Florida, Texas, West Virginia, Maine, New Hampshire, Indiana, Delaware, Illinois, Georgia and even Canada.

Several readers in Minnesota also reported receiving the call…”

Now look at where these states stand (based on the most recent update at

Ohio – Obama up 2.5%
Colorado – Obama up 6%
New Mexico – Obama up 6.4%
Wisconsin – Obama up 11%
Pennsylvania – Obama up 10.8%
Virginia – Obama up 6.5%
Missouri – Obama up 1.4%
North Carolina – Obama up 0.6%
Florida – Obama up 3.5%
Texas – McCain up 12.5%
West Virginia – McCain up 1.1%
Maine – Obama up 10.7%
New Hampshire – Obama up 7.6%
Indiana – McCain up 2.1%
Delaware – Obama up 20.7%
Illinois – Obama up 18.1%
Georgia – McCain up 6.1%
Minnesota – Obama up 7.5%
Canada – Not a fucking state old man.

So, let’s just use logic here. We’re now just over 2 weeks from the election. If McCain doesn’t win every state that he’s ahead in now, every toss up state, and pretty much every state Obama is up by less than 8.5% in, he loses the election. If McCain is up by more than 10% in a state, it will probably stay in McCain’s camp…sure, he’s now behind in some states that he was ahead by more than 10% in a few weeks ago, but if he bleeds enough to make states where he’s still ahead more than 10% in, he’s got no chance. He has to go with a strategy that says I may lose a “little” more ground if I do nothing, but you can’t just assume you’re going to lose EVERYWHERE and start making calls willy nilly. So, one could make a case that any state that is within 10% one way or the other should be on the target list. So, why in the WORLD would he call ANYONE in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Texas, Maine, Delaware or Illinois? And why would ANYONE in Canada get a call?

So, not only are about 40% of the calls he’s making (based on where he’s calling) wasted, but it seems that probably more than half the calls to these other states are wasted too if he’s not targeting Independents and GOPer’s! And in Minnesota, they can’t use a pre-recorded message, every call (like the hate filled ones left on my voicemail) have an actual person reading (awkwardly) from a script. These calls cost them TEN times as much each to place as robocalls.

Now the other thing to consider is that what candidates at this stage of the game really need to focus on is getting out the vote. Broad efforts which can be called “advertising” no matter what form it takes be it television (which is only necessary at this stage because of the tit for tat aspect) or phone calls are not NEARLY as effective as getting people to go door to door, or even to make personal phone contacts which are not simply a pre-recording or read of a script. The key to success in contacting voters at this stage is a) targeting the people who might actually be persuadable, and b) having someone well versed enough in the issues (and not a single talking point) to actually persuade.

Yeah, there will be people, maybe even several thousand people spread across the dozen states where it might matter could be swayed. Meanwhile, Obama is spending his money moving an army of volunteers onto the streets and getting tens if not hundreds of thousands of converts in EACH ONE of these states.

As my friend Al says “What? Me Worry?”

El_Cadejo's avatar

Off topic, but about McCain and hilarious. RAWRS

laureth's avatar

Is that what those phone calls are? As soon as I realize it’s a robocaller, I hang up. I didn’t realize that anyone actually listened to the whole thing.

BonusQuestion's avatar

Obama campaign asked people to report those calls. You may upload the audio file of those robocalls here on FightTheSmears website.

dalepetrie's avatar

laureth – they go to my voicemail. I listen to them for humor value. If it’s a recording and you answer it, no point in hanging on the line. If it’s a real person though, and you get it, don’t tell them right away you’re not on their side…let them think you are. Commisserate with them. Waste as much of their time as possible. And if you can, leave them with the impression that they should keep you on their call list. Time is money…waste as much of theirs as possible.

jvgr's avatar

McCain thinks he’s in a dance (Limbo Rock) to see how low he can go.

On an interview this am, he was asked about these robocalls in light of his documented statement that he would never resort to such tactics (after suffering from Bush’s use of them against McCain)

His defense: This issue is very important. American’s need to know…

As one who consistently speaks with forked tongue, I imagine he can and will go pretty low, just like the snake he is.

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