April 21st, 2008
12:00 PM ET
7 years ago

McCain launches outreach effort

,
 McCain campaigned in Selma Monday.
McCain campaigned in Selma Monday.

(CNN) – John McCain launched a tour designed to appeal to moderate voters Monday at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, a landmark of the civil rights movement.

"There must be no forgotten places in America, whether they have been ignored for long years by the sins of indifference and injustice, or have been left behind as the world grew smaller and more economically interdependent," said the presumptive Republican nominee.

The trip will take McCain to areas far from the standard GOP campaign trail, including hurricane-ravaged New Orleans, the Appalachian region of Kentucky, blue-collar Youngstown, Ohio.

Several weeks ago, the Arizona senator drew boos at his address in honor of Martin Luther King’s birthday from protestors angry over his long-ago vote opposing a federal holiday in honor of the slain civil rights leader. He has since said that decision was a mistake.

The tour’s inaugural event may have shown how long the journey may still be for the Republican senator: in a state where nearly half the voters are African-American, and in a city where 7 in 10 residents are, there were few black faces in the audience Monday.

Asked about their absence, McCain acknowledged the challenge ahead. "I have had long and varied experience with people from all communities and all ethnic backgrounds in America, and I will continue to work," he said. "And I'm aware of the challenges, and aware of the fact that there will be many people who will not vote for me.

"But I'm going to be the president for all the people, and I will work for all the people and I will listen to all the people whether they decide to vote for me or not."

The Selma appearance was intended to send a new signal of unity. McCain praised Georgia Rep. John Lewis, who was beaten by Selma police in the famous 1965 march in that city.

Lewis is an Obama supporter. His congressional office said Monday he had not seen McCain's speech.

"John Lewis took the first blow, a baton thrust to the stomach that shoved him back on the marchers behind him. He took the second blow, too, a hard swung club to his head, leaving a permanent scar where it struck," said McCain, who used the congressman’s example to make the case that Americans can overcome any obstacle.


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (120 Responses)
  1. Simp FL

    Ok, so now great grandpa is trying to get the african american votes, what a hugh joke he is. This person is a racist and has been every bit of his 71 years. Nobodys falling for it ole-timer. If Hillary wins the nomination,( WHICH SHE WON'T) and you and Hillary are all that's left to vote for, I won't be voting this year. Why should I, McCain can't remember what day it is, and she is a pathological liar.

    Obama 08

    April 21, 2008 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  2. 58 old white ladies for OBAMA

    IF YOU ARE HATEFUL, RICH, OLD AND WHITE MCWAR IS YOUR MAN.

    WE ARE MOST PROUD TO REPORT MOST OF US DO NOT QUALIFY.

    April 21, 2008 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  3. Stacy Clarks, TX

    all of a sudden when he is running for president?

    why didn't he reach out to those "forgotten" people before he was trying to run for president? before he needed their votes?

    he'll go right back to forgetting them IF he is nomiatted, and ro right back to pleasing the conservative right nuts, who do not give a crap about the average americans!!!

    GO AWAY MCCAIN, THANKS FOR YOUR EFFORST AS A SOLDIER, BUT THAT DOES NOT MEAN WE SHOULD ELECT U AS PRESIDENT

    DEMOCRATS IN 08!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 21, 2008 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  4. Mike

    Hamas will be voting for McLame. They being Sunni will love the fact that McLame will probably nuke the Shiites of Iran.

    April 21, 2008 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  5. seattle sue

    John McCain, With Bush tax cuts still in effect, why is our economy in such bad shape. I just don't understand the reason. Could it be that tax cuts wear out and has to be replaced similar to a auto wearing out and you have to get a new auto? Bottom line, why such a lousy economy with the tax cuts still in effect?

    April 21, 2008 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  6. John

    As a black man I have gotton no help from the Dems... ever. Now I vote on what makes sense.

    April 21, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  7. Alfredo

    Obama not only think but sure that Pennsylvannnians are stupid and that's why Obama mocked them. This is so irresponsible and very degrading to the Pennsylvannians and all Americans. Don't get fooled again by Obama. He is outspending in advertising of 5 to 1 against Hullary and he would use this to pursuade young voters to vote for him and will say anuthing but. The true CHANGE we need is to bring back the prospery during the Clinton years. Obama only have pursuasing words but Hilkalry has the solutions. Don't get fooled again by Obama. Wake up America.

    April 21, 2008 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  8. ***AMERICAN***

    Once again, as a retired military member, I would follow John McCain. I would also follow HC & BO only out of morbid curiosity.

    April 21, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  9. Frank, Denver CO

    Well, I'm sure glad that we've decided to spit in the guys face for trying.

    April 21, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  10. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    WHAT A JOKE, MCCAIN REACHING OUT TO PEOPLE WHO HAVE SUBSTANDARD LIVING WHEN HE HIMSELF SPOKE NEGATIVELY ABOUT NOT HELPING PEOPLE IN THE HOME FORECLOSURE CRISIS, THEN HE BACK TRACKED. HE DIDN'T CARE THEN AND HE DOESN'T CARE NOW. MCCAIN IS OLD AND COLD.

    April 21, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  11. Pam

    McCain = Draft

    So goodbye to your children if he wins! Bomb, Bomb, Bomb, you know the story.

    I don't think this is a fear tactic I'm using, it is a fact. Search the latest draft changes. Please, do your homework on this topic before you vote!

    April 21, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  12. Different Mike

    So sad that this man fought to preserve the freedom most of you are bashing on this thread. A bunch of college age Kool Aid drinkers who think this is some sort of popularity contest. I love the one from Penn State who was interviewed for the Situation Room, " I just love Obama, he has the solutions to all problems and he is just cool. Besides all my friends really love him"! HUH!!!! This is the well thought intellect we have to look forward too for the next 6 months, God help us. As a sidenote would Penn State please initiate some english and grammer courses as the Penn State sophmore they interviewed last evening was an idiot.

    April 21, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  13. Obama Laden

    Obama and Bin Laden- both masters of hateful spin.

    Both with a cult-like, never question but blindly obey following.

    Both manipulate the populace for their own purposes.

    Both dangerous men.

    April 21, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  14. Bitter Woman in NYC

    To All the Obama Haters -

    It seems that all of you guys on this board that criticize Obama and praise McCain or Hillary are so uneducated and ignorant.

    Why can't you guys just do a simple spell check before posting a message? It's no wonder that Hillary has a lead among the less educated.

    Go Obama!!!!

    April 21, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  15. Mike D

    War-mongering jerk who voted against MLK. Yeah, right, I'm sure he is sincere doing this too.

    April 21, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  16. MOBILE251

    I think he is crazy for trying something like this, the only reason he spoke at MLK day was for the media. He has never talked about bringing people togather just the dem and rep party. He would have never came to the bridge if it wasnt for the media. Lets be real he is feeding us with a long spoon. He dont want goverment health care but he has had it all his life. He didnt want Mlk day or a raise in min. wage.

    April 21, 2008 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  17. MC, Maryland

    McCain is going to say and do anything to get the Repiblicans back in the White House. He is going to give Barack a run for his money and unfortunately most people are going to fall for it "hook, line and sinker".

    I guarantee you by the time the General Election rolls around, he will be promising to bring the troops home in some form or another. Watch.

    April 21, 2008 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  18. Foreign observer

    The best way to reach out to forgotten places would be to donnate 90% of his and his wife´s owning towards the people who really need that money.... !!!!

    April 21, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  19. tell the truth

    Sorry Mccain. The straight talk is starting to turn. Do anything say anything is starting to shown. Peopel wake up. Do not get tricked by this man. You must vote Obama or Hilliary. Vote with facts not your heart. Please I do not want another 4 years of Bush. Obama support and Hilliary support please come together.

    April 21, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  20. Alfredo

    No matter how much Obama raised in his campaign and spend (overspent HIllary by 5 to 1) Obama is still loosing. It means he is not effective. Obam is just wasting you money. Hillary will still win as she is the most qualified candidate.

    April 21, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  21. Jed in Texas

    he most look pretty funny in a pointed hat and robe.

    April 21, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  22. KC for Obama

    Ace show us your Medical records.

    April 21, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  23. we wanh hillary, not mccain...screw him.

    McCain is an Al-American war hero. Respect him.

    April 21, 2008 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  24. Brenda

    He needs to lay off using his war record as to what will make him a good choice. He already sounds too much like Rudy Giuliani who used 9-11 as the one and only reason he should be electable.

    Issues, issues, issues. Get with the program.

    April 21, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  25. oh no, how sad

    WE ACCEPT THE APOLOGY....GOOD TO SEE PEOPLE CAN CHANGE...

    STILL DONT WANT TO AS A PRESIDENT.

    BYE

    April 21, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
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