Test your John McCain IQ

How well do you know the Republican candidate for president? Test your knowledge here, with questions presented in rough chronological order, and then take our quiz. Comments? Contact us.

Quiz tools

  • 1. What historic event did John McCain's grandfather witness firsthand?

    • A. Japan's official surrender aboard the USS Missouri

    • B. Gen. Douglas MacArthur's famous return to the Philippines

    • C. The Bataan Death March

    • D. The liberation of prisoners from Nazi concentration camps

  • 2. Where was John McCain born?

    • A. Arizona

    • B. California

    • C. Panama Canal Zone

    • D. Maryland

  • 3. Where did McCain graduate in his class at the Naval Academy?

    • A. In the top 10

    • B. In the top 25

    • C. Fifth from the bottom

    • D. Last

  • 4. What was the nickname of the
    North Vietnamese prison where McCain was held?

    • A. Spa Hue

    • B. The VC B&B

    • C. The Saigon Sheraton

    • D. The Hanoi Hilton

  • 5. What is McCain's religion?

    • A. Methodist

    • B. Baptist

    • C. Roman Catholic

    • D. Episcopalian

  • 6. Before his election to Congress, what job did McCain hold?

    • A. Chief of staff to Sen. Howard Baker (R-Tenn.)

    • B. Undersecretary of the Navy to President Gerald Ford

    • C. The Navy's Senate liaison

    • D. Phoenix Suns general manager

  • 7. McCain defied President Reagan by refusing to back what?

    • A. Funding of the Nicaraguan contras

    • B. Approval of an arms control agreement with the Soviet Union

    • C. A War Powers Act to keep Marines in Lebanon

    • D. Robert Bork's nomination to the Supreme Court

  • 8. On what other issues has McCain at times broken with the Republican establishment?

    • A. Immigration reform

    • B. Global warming

    • C. Campaign finance reform

    • D. All of the above

  • 9. What tax plan has McCain proposed in the current presidential race?

    • A. Tax breaks for the middle class but canceling those aimed at the wealthiest 5 percent

    • B. A federal flat tax

    • C. Extension of Bush's tax cuts, including investment tax breaks he once believed would have little economic benefit

    • D. A national sales tax

  • 10. How did McCain, a victim of torture, vote on a bill to require the CIA abide by torture bans outlined in the Army Field Manual?

    • A. He voted for it.

    • B. He sponsored an amendment to clarify what techniques are allowed.

    • C. He missed the vote.

    • D. He voted against the bill.

  • 11. What is McCain's position on abortion?

    • A. Overturn Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that made abortion legal.

    • B. Make the procedure legal but rare.

    • C. Allow the procedure only in cases where childbirth would endanger a woman's life.

    • D. Arrest doctors who perform abortions.

  • 12. How has McCain traveled during his 2008 campaign?

    • A. On a plane paid for by his campaign.

    • B. On an Amtrak train.

    • C. On a jet owned by a company headed by his wife.

    • D. Southwest Airlines.

  • 13. McCain has jokingly described himself as older than:

    • A. Methuselah

    • B. Sen. Robert Byrd

    • C. Barack Obama's grandmother

    • D. Dirt

  • 14.
    What is the name of McCain's
    current campaign bus?

    • A. Straight Talk Express

    • B. No Retreat

    • C. No Surrender

    • D. Born to Run

  • 15. How did McCain help Donald Diamond, a wealthy Arizona real estate developer, close friend and political donor?

    • A. Let Diamond drive the campaign bus

    • B. Wrote to local officials in California to help Diamond develop a stretch of virgin California coast

    • C. Introduced him to Charles Keating, who was investing in a Phoenix golf resort

    • D. Inserted an earmark in federal legislation that benefited a Diamond commercial real estate venture

  • 16. What is NOT one of McCain’s health-care proposals?

    • A. Give tax credits to individuals and families to offset the cost of insurance.

    • B. Encourage re-importation of drugs and faster introduction of generics.

    • C. Stop government subsidies for smoking cessation programs.

    • D. Limit medical malpractice lawsuits through "tort reform."

  • 17. What is NOT part of McCain’s economic plan?

    • A. Institute a summer gas-tax holiday.

    • B. Reduce subsidies to the Medicare drug program.

    • C. For one year, freeze everything but military and veterans spending.

    • D. Subsidize beer purchases to his wife’s brewery company.

  • 18. What is NOT one of John McCain's positions on Second Amendment rights?

    • A. Opposes holding gun makers liable for crimes committed with their products.

    • B. Supports restrictions on assault rifles.

    • C. Opposes waiting periods for firearm purchases.

    • D. Supports requiring instant criminal background checks at gun shows.

  • 19. In 2001, McCain allies set up a think tank, the Reform Institute, to promote transparency in government. What has the institute done since then?

    • A. Stretched and possibly broken rules governing charitable organizations.

    • B. Omitted the names of donors in IRS filings.

    • C. Collected six-figure contributions from telecommunications firms with business before a McCain-led Senate Commerce Committee.

    • D. All of the above.

  • 20. Before he quit in 1980, how many cigarettes per day did John McCain smoke?

    • A. One pack

    • B. Two packs

    • C. Three packs

    • D. Trick question. He never smoked.

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