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. tim


    OBAMA '08

    (Bring back the Sedition Act?? Are you serious?)

    June 28, 2008 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  2. Carl

    If you vote for Obama I am sure that things WILL CHANGE.
    P.S Juan McAmnesty isn't any better.

    June 28, 2008 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  3. Jerry Carrier

    Go Swift Boat yourselves you pius pretenders. Every act against the Conservative Republican War shoudn't be blamed on Liberals or Democrats. Live by the sword, die by the sword.

    June 28, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  4. Nikhil from Maryland

    Im an obama supporter and all i can say is, i wish i could have been there to help those women out. Kinda funny isnt it, how McCain is always heckled but Obama loved, but hey McCain deserves it, he probably needs to retire instead of running for president.

    Si se puede.

    June 28, 2008 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  5. Debo

    Let's get to the coverage of the Obama presentation before this group: that the audience was in rapture, because Obama talked about real problem solving not game show solutions nor patriotic platitudes. Obama will get at least 70% of the Latino community vote.

    June 28, 2008 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  6. jimntat

    I find it so funny how Republicans call Obabam...B.Hussein Obama, like DrMan did in an above post. They don't get that their scare tactics don't work anymore. Turn on FOX News and hear at just about any given moment how Obama isn't like "us." It were not so scary, it would be entertaining. These tactics did work in the past and brought us Bush for 8 years. They must think we are as stupid as they are!

    June 28, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  7. Rich

    I'm glad Bush/Cheney/Rove didn't think about reinstating the Sedition or Alien Acts because probably we couldn't be talking about Obama or the next president. They would silence all talk against the war as disloyal. As they insure the dictatorship they wish they could have installed. Sorry, but I think free speech should allow dissenters to come forward. I'm a loyal American, but think the 'war' in Iraq was a crazy idea that Cheney/Rove thought up (Bush isn't bright enough to come up with something this dumb). Too many lives have been lost on made up claims without any thought to what to do when you've won. Even in WWII, the government had a government (albeit military) to run Germany and eventually hand it back. It worked fairly well. But did our great leaders think this through? Nope, Rumsfield though we would be greeted with flowers.

    Time for change, Time for REAL change. Obama '08

    June 28, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  8. Eccles

    @ Last Honest man

    I hope your joking.

    While those statements were rude, they do have truth to them.

    June 28, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  9. OBAMA 08


    Apparently you need to do some research on Code Pink. This anti-war group has been known for these tactics way before Obama.

    June 28, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  10. Rob indetroit

    John MCCain is a sellout.

    June 28, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  11. Mike in NYC

    (Moderators: Are you content with a flame war between BO and McCain partisans? A more nuanced viewpoint would round out the discussion, so I'd appreciate being let out of moderation.)

    June 28, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  12. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    It you haven't seen through John McCain by now you never will. Think about it because McCain attempts to talks about issues of concern because Obama does. McCain's only interest is to continue war and if for one moment you think on Day 1 if he were president he would revert right back to the same and nothing, absolutely nothing will be done to improve Americans lives. McCain will shut Americans up just like Bush did because he is Bush all over again. Don't let McCain fool you.

    June 28, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  13. TIM

    Crazy people give democrats a bad name. just like in high-school a few people gave teenagers a bad name but the majority are nice, respectful people.

    June 28, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  14. Gail

    I'd say they're losers who rode the short bus to school. Next one who tries that should have his teeth knocked down his throat.

    June 28, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  15. MaryL- Ca

    There is a lot of frustration with McCain's views on the war. If McCain wants to excel in the election, he needs to change direction on critical issues and listen to the people.

    June 28, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  16. ReAnna

    Mabey there is no point in shouting your opinion? It may not change anything, but every person in this country is entitled to his or her own opinion. I commend those women for their courage! I am a nutural party, I am choosing to vote for Obama because he is the better candidate in my"opinion" On the other hand I am an Arizona resident, and i support McCain, I belive he is a very geniune and kind person, he is an excellent senator! But I feel he will not be a suitable president.

    June 28, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  17. Rob indetroit

    DR. man you are a fool MCcain was heckled for not changing his diaper.

    June 28, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  18. Sue in Fl

    I am an Obama supporter. I watched this on CSPAN. I felt sorry for Senator McCain. He should be allowed to speak so everyone can understand where he stands on the issues. I only want informed voters this year. After both candidates speak, the choice would be clear.

    June 28, 2008 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  19. Obama: 2nd Term Carter

    Vaughn June 28th, 2008 12:27 pm ET

    Weekends off? Hiding from the voters,


    Hiding??? Obama has done how many town halls??? Done Q/A with without prescreening the questions???

    June 28, 2008 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  20. john williams san diego, ca.

    typical liberal fascists tactics..the only way these cowards can win a debate is by shutting it off...shun them as i do.

    June 28, 2008 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  21. Nancy, Oklahoma

    McCain has lost the Latino vote. As a Latino I greatly respected his stance on immigration. Now I only have disgust.

    June 28, 2008 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  22. Neil

    DrMan, are you Ann Coulter?

    June 28, 2008 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  23. Code Blue

    McCain should have a townhall debate with representatives of code pink.

    June 28, 2008 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  24. I agree Charles

    It's not enough anymore to just vote. Seems like if you aren't obnoxious or unruly, you aren't part of the process.

    June 28, 2008 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  25. ?????

    Bring back the sedition act? why the hell wuld u say that. I'm sure bush and all his republican buddies would love to do that. Dumb the people down. Frighten them. Im sure you are going to love it when obama wins and you are whining about it. You wouldnt support the sedition acts then would you.

    June 28, 2008 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
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