NEW YORK (CNN) – Standing at home plate in the House that Ruth Built, John McCain put running for president in perspective: “It is like being in Double A and then all of a sudden you’re in Yankee Stadium.”
McCain attended Sunday’s Yankees-A’s game with former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Before the game, the two went down on the field signing autographs posing for pictures and chatting with New York manager Joe Girardi and Oakland skipper Bob Geren.
The GOP presidential candidate wore his blue Navy hat, while Giuliani sported the traditional Yankee NY cap. They talked sports with the managers, with McCain telling them, “I really am a big sports nut because I was a mediocre high school athlete.”
Before settling in to watch the game, they toured the legendary Monument Park in left center field, with tributes to the greatest Yankee players.
McCain, an Arizona Diamondbacks fan, talked of watching his team in the 2001 World Series against Yankees with Giuliani, just a month after the 9-11 attacks. He often tells the story on the trail of being moved by the cheers Giuliani received from fans.
He told the YES Network as he sat in the Yankees dugout “it was an emotional time," saying, “I’ll never forget it as long as I live. Such an incredible time in our history.”
Giuliani told reporters before the game, “we have great memories, and very, very difficult memories of that period of time... Then I went out to Arizona with him for two games, and it was a very emotional World Series, that particular one. He's a good friend. We've also been to the Fiesta Bowl together, and I've gone to sporting events with John throughout the years. So, it's a little different now that he's a presidential candidate, but it's the same John McCain."
Asked whether runs for vice president or New York Governor might be in his future, Giuliani said, "I'm not thinking about any of those things. I'm thinking just about – I know you are! You have a right to think about it. And I have a right not to think about it because we've got an election right now to think about and get it done right."
McCain flew to Portland, Maine after the game where he has campaign events Monday.
(CNN) - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said she knows who she’s voting for in the presidential election, but she’s keeping quiet about her pick.
“Have you decided who to vote for?” CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked in an interview that aired Sunday on “Late Edition.”
“Wolf, uh, yes,” Rice said.
Asked if she wanted to share her decision, Rice simply responded, “No.”
In the wide-ranging interview, Rice praised Sen. Barack Obama’s campaign and said having him as the Democratic presidential nominee has been “great for our country.”
“I do think it says that we've come a long way,” she said when asked to respond to comments from her predecessor Colin Powell, who congratulated Obama for knocking down barriers for African Americans.
“It's interesting that it's from Colin Powell. He knocked down a few barriers of his own. He knocked down the barrier of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He knocked down the barrier to the first black Secretary of State.
“Yes, I've knocked down a few too. It just shows that our country has been doing this for a while, and it's great that this last barrier, perhaps, has also come down.”
Rice also made clear that she has no desire to be vice president.
(CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama’s overseas trip has created more buzz than Sen. John McCain’s foreign travels because the storyline is more interesting, according to Michael Crowley, senior editor of The New Republic.
“When McCain goes overseas, it's sort of ‘dog bites man.’ There's not really that much of an interesting angle to it,” Crowley said Sunday on CNN’s “Reliable Sources”.
“This is an incredible story, the first African-American nominee going abroad after a long period of anti-Americanism, promising a new start and a new direction for the country. There's so many fascinating angles, whereas McCain is sort of offering somewhat more of a continuation of what we already know.”
Obama left Afghanistan Sunday to travel to the Middle East and Europe. He’s also expected to travel to Jordan, Israel, Germany, France and England.
Katie Couric, Charlie Gibson and Brian Williams will all cover Obama from overseas.
“What that means, of course, is that the ‘CBS Evening News,’ ‘NBC Nightly News’ and ABC's ‘World News’ will be broadcast from Europe and the Middle East this week, throwing an even brighter spotlight on Barack's (Obama’s) excellent adventure,” said Howard Kurtz, host of “Reliable Sources.”
McCain, however, was met by zero anchors on his foreign trips since he became the presumptive Republican nominee, Kurtz pointed out.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson assured CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Sunday morning that the stimulus tax rebate issued to millions of Americans this year is working.
“When you look at the consumer data we have for the second quarter; you look at retail sales, the stimulus package is working,” Paulson said. “And it's coming at a time when it's very much needed.”
But Paulson rejected the idea of a second stimulus package of $50 billion, which has been proposed by Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other democrats.
“We put it together so it would be big enough to be meaningful to the economy today, and not so big that it was going to jeopardize our fiscal responsibilities and some of our longer-term priorities,” Paulson said.
He stressed that the focus needs to be on the stability of our capital markets, energy prices, and the housing market.
(CNN) - A roundup of quotes from the Sunday political talk shows, as compiled by the CNN Wire:
"I think that the U.S. government provides an awful lot of aid to Pakistan, provides a lot of military support to Pakistan. And to send a clear message to Pakistan that this is important, to them as well as to us, that I think - that message has not been sent."
-Sen. Barack Obama, on how to engage Pakistan to help improve security in Afghanistan, speaking to CBS' "Face the Nation"
"I think the consequences could be very dangerous in that regard. I'm convinced at this point in time that coming - making reductions based on conditions on the ground are very important."
-Adm. Michael Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, on the possibility of a timeline for U.S. troop withdrawal from Iraq, speaking to "Fox News Sunday"
"I think it sends a signal that there is one, that eventually we do want to bring our troops back, and that... with where we are, conditions are improving in Iraq."
-Mullen, on President Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's talk of a "general time horizon," speaking to "Fox News Sunday"
CRAWFORD, TX (CNN) - An embarrassing slip up for the White House press office Saturday, when an aide hit the wrong button and mistakenly sent to the news media a Reuters article saying Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki backs presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama's troop withdrawal plan.
White House spokesman Scott Stanzel says, "It was a mistake. Clips list for staff was supposed to be the addressee."
The Obama campaign quickly took advantage of the mistake, forwarding an ABC report detailing the incident to its press list.
This is not the first time the White House has emailed in error. But its timing is particularly embarrassing as the Bush administration's recent agreement with al-Maliki on a "general time horizon" for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq is being cited by some as resembling Obama's proposal that U.S. forces should leave within 16 months.