Huffpost Politics

McCain On Obama: "Clear Who Hamas Wants to be the Next President"

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From The Weekly Standard's Michael Goldfarb:

McCain spoke with bloggers this morning on a number of issues ranging from William Ayers to Rev. Wright to Tony Rezko. Jennifer Rubin noted that Hamas had endorsed Senator Obama and asked McCain whether Obama might have given "an unhelpful signal" to the terrorist group. McCain's response:

All I can tell you Jennifer is that I think it's very clear who Hamas wants to be the next president of the United States. So apparently has Danny Ortega and several others. I think that people should understand that I will be Hamas's worst nightmare....If senator Obama is favored by Hamas I think people can make judgments accordingly.

Huffington Post's Will Thomas breaks down the truth behind McCain's fear mongering claims that Hamas supports Obama:

John McCain has repeatedly insisted in public that he wants to run a respectful campaign, but a recent fundraising email from his campaign suggests there will be nothing revolutionary about the Republican nominee's tactics this year.

McCain's deputy campaign manager, Christian Ferry, sent an email to donors today with the subject line: "Hamas Weighs In On U.S. Presidential Election." The email, which attacks Obama over his foreign policy stances, includes these paragraphs:

Barack Obama's foreign policy plans have even won him praise from Hamas leaders. Ahmed Yousef, chief political adviser to the Hamas Prime Minister said, "We like Mr. Obama and we hope he will win the election. He has a vision to change America."

We need change in America, but not the kind of change that wins kind words from Hamas, surrenders in Iraq and will hold unconditional talks with Iranian President Ahmadinejad.

The letter comes in response to this report of a Hamas leader speaking favorably about Barack Obama. The article -- though not the McCain campaign -- notes that Obama has condemned Hamas, repeatedly said that he would not meet with the terrorist organization, and also condemned former President Carter's decision to meet with Hamas leaders.

Contrast the fundraising letter to the praise McCain has won for statements about running a respectful campaign:

Sen. John McCain called Saturday for a presidential campaign that is more like a respectful argument among friends than a bitter clash of enemies, and said he is better able than either of his Democratic rivals to govern across party lines....

"It is more than appropriate, it is necessary that even in times of crisis, we fight among ourselves for the things we believe in," McCain said. "It is not just our right, but our civic and moral obligation."

"Let us exercise our responsibilities as free people. But let us remember we are not enemies," he added.

And speaking of former Rep. Morris Udall, McCain said:

"I intend to wage this campaign and to govern this country in a way that they would be proud of me."

McCain, in April, on running a "respectful campaign":

The subject arose when a questioner at Episcopal High School asked McCain whether the prospect of two senators running against each other in the fall might lead to less negativity.

McCain said he hopes so, adding that he respects both Obama and Clinton, and believes they respect him. "Americans want more respectful campaigns," he added.

And in January, a respectful McCain said:

"I'm going to raise the level of political dialog in America," McCain, R-Ariz., said at a campaign rally in central Michigan, "and I'm going to treat my opponents with respect and demand that they treat me with respect."

***UPDATE***
Spokesman Hari Sevugan responded to McCain's insinuations about Obama by pointing out that McCain may be going back on his pledge to run a positive campaign:

"We want to take Senator McCain at his word that he wants to run a respectful campaign, but that is becoming increasingly difficult when he continually tries to use the politics of association and makes claims he knows not to be true to advance his campaign."

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