My John McCain Cartoon Obit

I tell our cartoonists that if they draw urine in a cartoon, that editors won’t want to print it. Here I am, not following my own advice. I’m probably also inviting some angry mail.

I don’t think Trump shed any tears over McCain’s passing.

I didn’t agree with his politics, but McCain was an interesting and likable character and I usually drew him as a foil, suffering from events around him. McCain certainly suffered from his poor choice of Sarah Palin as his running mate. Palin, a hockey mom, made a joke describing the “difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull,” the difference was “lipstick.”

Obama picked up on Palin’s joke, and dissed McCain’s “change” mantra, calling it “lipstick on a pig.” We had weeks of lipstick cartoons, like mine …

The big thing I didn’t like about McCain was that he was a hawk, in favor of jumping into every conflict in the world. I remember him singing “Bomb Bomb Iran” to the tune of the Beach Boys’ “Barbara Ann.”  Obama warned Syria’s Assad that using chemical weapons was a  “Red Line”; when Obama didn’t attack Assad after the chemical weapons use red line was crossed, McCain fumed.

A big presidential debate was held on national TV at “Ole Miss,” the University of Mississippi; the university hired me to do art for the debate, for their program, posters and visual theme for the event. Here’s what I drew. It was fun to be a small part of this debate. (The art fades out at the top because that’s where the title graphics went.)

Palin liked to accuse Obama of “palling around with a terrorist,” at every opportunity. During the campaign in 2008, the economy crashed and we went into the worst recession ever as financial institutions failed around the world and threatened a second depression. Obama’s running mate, Joe Biden, described my cartoon below in great detail in multiple interviews for a news cycle, and Biden’s comments were spread all over the media. The economy suffered, but at least my cartoon had a good day.

McCain put Obama down for the fact that celebrities liked Obama, who had the support of Hollywood and rock stars and acted like a popular celebrity himself. the Republican base didn’t like Hollywood liberals, and didn’t like that Obama was perceived to be exciting while McCain was seen as dull. The cartoon below doesn’t make much sense now, but at the time Britney Spears had just shaved her head and was caught by a photographer getting into a car while wearing no underwear.

That sounds complicated now, but back then it was simple math.

I’ll miss John McCain.



Comments Off on My John McCain Cartoon Obit

McCain Obit Cartoons

Most cartoonists take the weekend off – but a bunch of Cagle Cartoonist went to work on Saturday night to draw memorial John McCain cartoons.

Here are my favorites that came in first …

By Ed Wexler



By David Fitzsimmons


by Sean Delonas

By David Fitzsimmons


By Taylor Jones

By Bob Englehart

By Dave Granlund

Comments Off on McCain Obit Cartoons

Help Needed

Next week’s news: Calling him “the right man at the right time,” President Obama today named Gen. David H. Petraeus commander of all U.S. operations in the Gulf of Mexico. Mr. Obama acknowledged that efforts to stop the Deepwater Horizon spill are “bigger than any one person,” yet expressed confidence that Petraeus could single-handedly win the war against oil in the Gulf.

Cartoon by Daryl Cagle - (click to reprint)

Cartoon by Daryl Cagle - (click to reprint)

Reaction came swiftly from Sen. John McCain, who said, “had Gen. Petraeus been in charge of Gulf operations from the start, the spill might never have happened in the first place.”

Next month’s news: Expressing dismay at the Senate vote rejecting Elena Kagan’s bid to join the Supreme Court, President Obama today nominated Gen. David H. Petraeus as the Court’s next Associate Justice. “The Supreme Court is bigger than any one Justice,” the president told reporters. “I have complete confidence that Gen. Petraeus will help guide our nation in the war against bad laws.”

In a hastily called news conference, Sen. John McCain applauded the nomination, adding, “I believe Gen. Petraeus will be confirmed with record speed, perhaps even during a coffee break. We’ve seen this man, and we like what we see.”

Rarely has an individual won such unanimous praise among Republicans and Democrats ““ especially at a time when the two parties can’t seem to agree on anything or anyone. It is therefore smart strategy for the president to seek nominees who: (a) have rousing GOP support, (b) will be quickly confirmed, and (c) won’t make the White House look bad if they fail, thanks to (a) and (b).

Regrettably, there don’t seem to be many candidates with these qualifications who aren’t named Gen. David H. Patraeus, which explains why the president turned to him after Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal went all Rolling Stone and revealed that when it comes to loyalty he’s one fry short of a happy meal.

Mr. Obama should immediately rank all members of his administration according to confirmability, and then nominate everyone with a passing grade for as many positions as possible. The list currently consists of: Gen. David H. Patraeus, Sec. of State Hillary Clinton, First Lady Michelle Obama, and Bo, the Obama’s Portuguese Water dog.

Clinton is the only female Democrat whom Republicans seem to swoon over almost as much as Sarah Palin, although the reasons remain unclear. It may be that Clinton is seen as the most electable Democrat on the national scene, which is why Republicans would speedily confirm her for any non-elective office ““ preferably a lifetime position.

Gen. Petraeus, meanwhile, continues to demonstrate his mastery of the Capitol Hill interview process. Just a few weeks ago he avoided a tough question at a Senate hearing by fainting in his chair. He later claimed to have been dehydrated due to heat, yet it’s unlikely that any senator will ask him at his next confirmation hearing if he realizes that Afghanistan’s temperature averages 117 degrees, even inside taverns where Gen. McChrystal used to hang.

Michelle Obama now has an approval rating 13 points higher than her husband, according to Pew Research, and she has already proved herself to be more than capable in waging war against gophers in the White House garden.

Bo, too, has maintained a low profile despite a seemingly endless run of bad news at the White House, and clearly deserves more responsibility.

The president must take decisive action before it’s too late.

Next year’s news: After thanking Joe Biden for his service to the nation, President Obama today named Gen. David H. Patraeus to be his running mate in the 2012 election. “Governing the nation is a job too big for any one person,” said the president. “Gen. Petraeus is the right man to help win the war against those forces who might vote against me.”

John McCain was not available for comment.


Peter Funt writes about newspapers at: and can be reached at

©2010 Peter Funt. This column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons, Inc. newspaper syndicate. For info call Cari Dawson Bartley at 800 696 7561 or e-mail [email protected]

Peter Funt is a writer and public speaker. He’s also the long-time host of “Candid Camera.” A collection of his DVDs is available at

Comments Off on Help Needed

A Love Letter to Arizona: Your Appointed Governor is a Coward

An hour south of Tucson you’ll find deserted silver mines used to make Confederate bullets in the latter days of the Civil War. The settlers of the region tried and failed to gain the federal government’s protection for their business interests. They were at war with the Apache tribe and desperate to have federal troops present so they could excavate in a place named after the Aztec word for “silver-bearing.” The feds ignore them.

arizona immigration law

Cartoon by Mike Keefe - Denver Post (click to purchase)

The then-residents, numbering in the thousands, probably by counting everyone twice, decided to secede from the Union. So when Arizona cries foul at the federal government’s shortcomings, this time it’s not new territory.

In fact, everything about SB 1070, Arizona’s new ruthless immigration law signed last week seems refried. It’s the same bill Governor Janet Napolitano vetoed twice. It’s a three-peat of a bad idea. And it’s a political cliché: when the economy is struggling, scapegoat “illegals.” In 1994 California’s then-Governor Pete Wilson knew the drill: His notorious re-election commercials showed immigrants running over the border like invading pathogens and he got to appear responsive to voters’ fears.

What happens to illegal immigrants when the economy is thriving? Business owners adore them. They don’t have to pay them the whopping federally mandated minimum wage. Undocumented workers will never unionize. They will never sue. They are the perfect employees from a business owner’s perspective and that is why they continue to be employed in this country. They increase profit. They’re an endless resource – an exploitable subclass. Their legality is only an issue when attention needs to be drawn away from something else. Then “illegals” are a moral outrage. A sudden threat to national security! Why haven’t we had immigration reform since Ronald Reagan’s 1986 amnesty? Because in the boom times we love all the cheap labor.

But now it’s lean for Arizona. The recently appointed Governor Jan Brewer needs to (gulp) raise taxes. So in a cowardly kowtowing act of desperation she gave the rabid of her base what they want ““ a dramatic crackdown on the-people-easy-to-point-a-finger-at.

So the same people whose sweat and sacrifice assists the booms are going to get busted after the bust!?
Using vague and coded terms like “reasonable suspicion” the law enables police to pick up people who don’t look a certain way. What way? Governor Brewer told reporters after the signing ceremony she doesn’t know what an illegal immigrant looks like. Of course, she’s federally obligated to say she’s against racial profiling, which she offered like a disclaimer before realizing the opposite.

The next time you need a definition for the word “disingenuous” use the example of a governor of a state bordering Mexico creating a law to arrest those without proper identification being coy about what Mexicans without papers look like. The kicker was the Governor stating, “We have to trust our law enforcement.” The signing was spineless as it was witless. It’s like writing a law to ban teenagers but not having the cojones to define who they are. They wear different shoes. We’ll let the police just sort it out.

This isn’t leadership. It’s pandering. It’s vilifying the voiceless while setting up the police to catch blame for implementing an ambiguous decree ““ all the while terrorizing a third of Arizonians who are Latino. Weak. Cheap. Sniveling. Sycophantic.

As a state Arizona has always been a little kooky. It’s all personality: From Barry Goldwater to John McCain from Wyatt Earp to Sylvestor Mowry. The state is infamous for being the backdrop of the most romantic of American lore – the outlaw, the cowboy. It’s a state of unprecedented beauty with goofy politics and sun-baked passions. It’s all woven through with this defiant libertarian-leaning credo of letting people do their own thing.

Arizona hasn’t been a police state since the California Column confiscated all the land from the Confederate sympathizers. Way to break that run.

Unlike most who are calling for a boycott, I had two trips to Arizona planned this year. Regretfully, I have canceled them both. I would happily have paid the one percent increase in sales tax but I won’t give my tourist dollars to state sanctioned harassment. I hope the voters get better leadership but until that time, I’ll vote with my pocketbook.


Tina Dupuy is an award-winning writer , a columnist for Cagle Cartoons and the editor of Follow Tina on Twitter @TinaDupuy.

Want to run Tina’s column in your publication? Contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail [email protected], (800) 696-7561.

Comments Off on A Love Letter to Arizona: Your Appointed Governor is a Coward