June 28th, 2008
11:52 AM ET
10 years ago

McCain speech disrupted by several hecklers



Sen. John McCain's speech to a Latino group Saturday was interrupted by hecklers. Photo credit: AP.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - John McCain has been taking most weekends off since effectively securing the Republican nomination, but the Arizona senator has a busy weekend, including a speech to a Latino conference where he was heckled several times.

McCain spent the morning speaking at the annual conference of NALEO, National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials. Sen. Barack Obama is scheduled to speak at the event after McCain.

Three hecklers from the anti-war group, Code Pink, disrupted McCain's speech at separate times and were later escorted from the room.

According to the group, Phoenix resident Liz Hourican, holding a camera aimed at the candidate, stood up when McCain said "I represent Arizona..."

Watch: McCain gets heckled

"John you do represent Arizona! And we want a peace candidate!," she yelled. "We want a peace candidate! Peace takes courage!"

McCain, laughing off the disruption, joked, "that's a long trip out," adding: "I'm sure you've seen the polls out now about trust and confidence in our government, and the one thing the American people want us to stop doing is yelling at each other."

Five minutes later, two more female protesters jumped up, yelling loudly.

"Your silence is consent to war crimes! War criminal!" one said. Another heckler carried a pink banner that read "McCain=Guerra" — or "McCain=War."

McCain, however, was met with a standing ovation by the audience at the end.

"Thank you very much," he said. "It makes me feel very wonderful to have such a wonderful reception."

NALEO expressed apologies to McCain just before the Obama speech. "The individuals were not NALEO members, they are not part of this constituency, and they do not reflect our values of engaging in dialogue and conversation with the next president of the United States."

Though much of McCain's speech focuses on the issues he has been pushing throughout the week - energy solutions and the lagging economy - McCain also touched on key issues among Latinos.

The senator paid his respects to "the contributions of Hispanic-Americans to the culture, economy and security of the country I have served all my adult life." He also emphasized that immigration reform begins with securing the United States border with Mexico.

"We must prove to [Americans] that we can and will secure our borders first, while respecting the dignity and rights of citizens and legal residents of the United States," he's said, adding: "We have economic and humanitarian responsibilities as well, and they require no less dedication from us in meeting them."

Before the NALEO conference, McCain met briefly with Iraqi president Jalal Talabani in Washington. Later in the day, he is scheduled to meet with the president of the Philippines, Gloria Arroyo. He then flies to Louisville, Kentucky this afternoon, where he will hold two fundraisers.

On Sunday, McCain will meet privately with evangelist Franklin Graham in Asheville, North Carolina.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (379 Responses)
  1. dc

    i wonder how cnn, gallup and rasmussen get their polls. from all across every one i have talk to, its very had for you to see who is mccain supporter and mccain camp keep pushing people to media pretending that their are hillary supporters that wont vote obama. is a big shame on the media, now there are trying to make bill clinton look like a hater.

    June 28, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  2. Bayou joe

    I wonder what would have happened to these 3 women had they disrupted Iama nut job in Iran. We have the freedom to protest only because young men and women (my son is a U.S. Marine) in uniform are willing to fight and die for this great country and the freedoms we enjoy as citizens. McCAin knows the price of that freedom. Does Obama know? I don't think so. Will he continue the fight against the Islamic Radicals? I don't think so.
    These Code Pink idiots need to spend a few days with our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and when they return, hopefully never, they will appreciate the country we live in and how fortunate we are compared to the Muslim world.

    June 28, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  3. Remy

    Bush & Co allowed McCain to cheat the Americans and continue the BUSH plans. I hope some citizens realised the facts and heckle. I hope this is a political expression for a politician who want to kill more young Americans at the expense of the same Americans to make profits to some WEALTHY people who never send their kids to any war zone.

    I expect the democrats are going to defeat this war monger McCain by more than 25 points in November.

    God bless Americans!

    June 28, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  4. Josh

    A third World Country??? You have got to be kidding me. Have you seen what a third world country looks like? Have you seen healthcare in a third world country? Have you seen a third world country government? You liberals spew out some of the most outrageous comments known to man. Comparing our country, the United States of America, a third world country? You have to be kidding me. If you want to see an even worse economy, an even worse healthcare problem then elect Barack Obama. His policies do nothing but increase taxes, increase the size and scope of government and he will not CHANGE one thing. He is a politician, they don't know how to change!

    June 28, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  5. Tejano

    Thank you John McCain for acknowledging the contributions we the Hispanics have made to this great country. Those of us who have been here since Texas became a country know the price of freedom.
    We have served in every war with honor and will continue to do so,
    to do otherwise is to be a traitor to our ideals of Freedom and Democracy.

    A Vietnam Vet and father of a United States Marine, Semper Fi.
    Keep up the good fight and defeat the forces of Al Qaeda in America.

    June 28, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  6. Kevin

    At least McCain has not changed his stance on the war, economy, taxes. His changes have been due to circumstances that need to be taken into account such as keeping tax cuts during down economic times and drill off-shore when oil is $140 a barrel. Obama just flip-flops when a poll tells him that his initial stance is not polling well. Then he comes out and tells voters what they want to hear followed up by a hope and change rendition. If you want to know how Obama really feels on issues, please look up his voting record in the Senate and in Illinois. Always has a partisan vote or does not vote.
    Vote for the candidate who has 20 years EXPERIENCE working with both parties!!!!!

    June 28, 2008 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  7. HEIDI



    June 28, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  8. Tejano

    To La Mabrisa,,,,, Those were not Hispanic Women shouting and disrupting McCain, Nor were they Latino Elected Officials. These Idiots got in because unlike your Idol Obama, McCain does not select his audience and they were allowed to come in and concealed their cameras and anti-war flags.

    This Chicano would round then all up and charge them with Treason.
    We are at War. A declared War by Congress. Until Congress says otherwise these people need to be tried for treason.

    June 28, 2008 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  9. Turnabout is Fair Play

    For those who are defending McCain in this blog, you obviously have not lost anyone in this stupid unnecessary war. I HAVE and those ladies probably have or will shortly. So unless you have someone over in Iraq fighting for his or her life while McBush takes the weekend off in his plush vacation retreat, safe and comfortable, shut the hell up. You have no right to put those women down.

    June 28, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  10. Ula Nejad- Sacramento Ca

    Immigration reform for Latinos. Obama will speak after McCain? How interesting. I will make suggestions after Obama speaks. I hate the fact that he likes to pick up after me.

    June 28, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  11. WBW OHIO

    McCain is nothing but a Lying POS

    One time opponent of the GI bill, Presidential candidate John McCain, has now taken credit and expressed approval of the bill at a recent town hall event in Warren, Ohio.


    June 28, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  12. Sensible Cape Coral Fl

    Hey: DrMan,

    Obama is over 40 years old. Had you somehow heard about Sadaam
    Hussein 40 years ago? I don't know anybody who did. Hussein is a very common name in the Middle East, much like John is here. Obama's middle name has NO polical significance as all intelligent people know. Buffoons, of course, are excepted.

    June 28, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    Stop coming to Louisville John!

    June 28, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  14. Mi Amigos

    I say both men, Mr Obama and McCain address this Latino group.

    Barack was well recieved while the group was highly suspicious of John McCain.

    Obama's much touted problems with hispanics would seem to be less than reported. Clearly he has work to do but the purported hold of Hillary Clinton on this constiuency was overstated.

    June 28, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  15. Dominic

    I'm a Latino and I'm actually happy they did this to him.....a lot of latinos lost loved ones in the war...John McCain just go home

    June 28, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  16. Dan Tana

    Looks like Barack Hussein's supporters came out from their holes to get some air.

    Keep it up kids, you're in for a surprise in November.

    June 28, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  17. Shiloh

    WAR IS NOT PRO LIFE – and when it is for oil it's murder.

    June 28, 2008 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  18. B Jiggy

    I was watching, it was pretty funny if u ask me 🙂

    June 28, 2008 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  19. G

    I don't support McCain and I think his positions and platform are the worst thing for our nation. However, heckling is rude and uncalled for.

    June 28, 2008 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  20. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Why won't Obama take questions from the audience? Why won't Obama debate McCain? Answer; he knows if he does he'll get creamed like he did against Hillary. Well he can't hide forever.

    June 28, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  21. Kim

    McBush better get used to it. This foolish war has cost thousands of young service persons to die needless deaths due to mismanagement by Bush. The war has ruined our economy. Put us a trillion dollars in debt. Made our dollar worthless. Driven up the price of gas by makeing the middle east unstable. Made Iran more powerfull by putting a Shiite Government in power. Wore down our military , both men and equipment. Caused our military to fall way behind in new equipment because all of the military budget pays for Iraq operations. Mean while, the real enemy, the ones who attacked on 911. Are still in Afghanistan and getting stronger every day. All this and McBush says we will stay in Iraq indefinitly. How stupid can one man be? We are just like the Soviet Union was in Afghanistan, Dumb!

    June 28, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  22. Please think

    When Cheney is told 2/3 of Americans disagree with the war in Iraq he responds "SO...?!". When McCain is asked as President when he would began to withdraw troops he responds "I don't think that's too important right now..." The mindset is similiar. The last time McCain was heckled ( uh...last week) he said "My friends, I will never surrender in Iraq, never!"). What is winning Iraq? Finding WMDs, Killing Saddam Hussein and his sons, yanking down that statue, 80% reduction in violence, Sunni and Shia huggin' it out, getting all of the evil doers, insurgents, and al-queda out of the country? What is winning? Oh!! that's right...a forced democracy and no American casualities!! Please think. John McCain is telling America that he will not surrender until the forced democracy is in place and US troops can freely travel Iraq with no fear of IEDs or suicide bombers. Now, is that change we can believe in?

    June 28, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  23. s.positive

    It appears the latinos are now waking up to find Mcbush and the RNC wanting...

    June 28, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  24. MLH

    Yelling at a senior citizen is bad manners. So is calling a former commander in chief a 'lousy president' and then making a cornball comment about said former commander in chief 'kissing' another statesman.

    Is it possible that we could all do with a deep breath and a step back?

    June 28, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  25. tom, boston


    June 28, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
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