August 5th, 2008
07:30 AM ET
11 years ago

McCain makes the rounds at biker rally

ALT TEXT

John McCain greets a group of bikers at the annual Sturgis Rally at Buffalo Chip campground in South Dakota, as Cindy McCain and Sen. John Thune look on. (Photo credit: Peter Hamby/CNN)

STURGIS, South Dakota (CNN) – Standing on the main stage at a world famous motorcycle rally in rural South Dakota on Monday, John McCain looked out on a sea of denim-wearing bikers and told them he enjoyed their company much more than that of the 200,000 Germans who turned out to see Barack Obama last month.

Watch: McCain addresses the crowd at Sturgis

“As you may know,” he told the tens of thousands gathered at the 68th annual Sturgis Rally at Buffalo Chip campground, “not long ago, a couple of hundred thousand Berliners made a lot of noise for my opponent. I’ll take the roar of fifty thousand Harleys any day.”

Bikers in the crowd, who had arrived from around the country to partake in the massive outdoor party, revved their engines numerous times in support of the presumptive GOP nominee. McCain said it was music to his ears.

“This is my first time here,” he said, “but I recognize that sound. It’s the sound of freedom.”

If McCain seemed more energized than usual, it might have been because the rally was one the campaign’s most colorful (and noisy) events in recent months. He even purchased four commemorative t-shirts.

As the senator made his way through a sea of motorcycle enthusiasts, shaking hands with the many veterans in attendance and accompanied by his wife Cindy and Sen. John Thune, he was surrounded by scores of beer drinking men and scantily clad women, many of whom were as thrilled to see the war hero candidate as they were to watch Kid Rock perform later in the evening.

Watch: McCain greets veterans, bikers at Sturgis

If there were any Obama supporters to be found in the vast Buffalo Chip campground, they kept quiet.

Indeed, McCain felt so comfortable at the event that he even volunteered his wife for the rally’s traditional beauty pageant, an infamously debauched event that’s been known to feature topless women.

“I encouraged Cindy to compete,” McCain said to cheers. “I told her with a little luck she could be the only woman ever to serve as first lady and Miss Buffalo Chip.”


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (327 Responses)
  1. Janet WV for Obama

    It is pathetic that this man cannot attend a single event without disparging Sen. Obama. His desperation shows!

    August 5, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  2. John

    "I encouraged Cindy to compete", ok sure you would love to see your wife take her top off in front of alot of strangers, this Tarzan really likes to make off-the-wall remarks. I can say this rider will not be voting for this chump.

    August 5, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  3. karen-phoenix

    If McCain gets in all those people will be in the next draft and off to Iraq for 100 years. Watch out people!!!! McCain is scary! McCain has had 26 years to change Washington? Did he? NOOOOO! Lets try something different and Obama just might work!!!

    August 5, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  4. James in NYC

    Aw come on McCain, the Sturgis Rally? I got excited for a minute when I heard that tens of thousands came out to see John McCain but I didn't know it was the Sturgis Rally.
    Do it like Obama Johnny and have your supporters come out when there are no free concerts or awesome festivals like Sturgis going on. Can you get 200k+ then?

    Still for Obama in 08!

    August 5, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  5. John Wilson

    That old sad pathetic man CAN'T ride.
    ...Wait, I saw recently a walker with wheels at the hospital !

    August 5, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  6. LOVE MY USA

    McCain loves this country and he is so proud of it... Now read below who BO is proud of, (HIMSELF) Why isn't the MEdia jumping on this??

    In a message dated 8/3/2008 9:12:13 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time, NPAries77 writes:
    the paint scheme of Air Force One be next??
    WHAT AN EMBARESSMENT THIS GUY IS…….

    This is verified by SNOPES! It is FACT! (CBW)

    Snopes.com/politics/obama/airplane.asp

    WHAT A DISGRACE!!! AND HE IS ALL AMERICAN????

    Obama The Patriot – Removes American Flag From His Plane

    The Patriot Room
    Posted on Tuesday, July 22, 2008 8:11:07 AM by Bill Dupray

    Barack Obama recently finished a $500,000 total overhaul of his 757. And as part of the new design, he decided to remove the American flag from the tail...
    What American running for President of the United States would remove the symbol of his country? And worse, he replaced the flag with it with a symbol of himself... Obama is such a despicable human being.

    August 5, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  7. Veterans For Obama

    He has to look under rocks to find his base.

    August 5, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  8. Trever

    Panderer...

    August 5, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  9. Capt. Smash, Salt Lake City, Utah

    We need to get people regestered to vote, everyone should make a commitment to at least register 10 people. Time to put your time and money where your mouth is. I have regestered 17 new voters, lets move people.

    We have to save America from another 4 years of GOP garbage.

    Obama 08/12

    August 5, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  10. BJGT

    McMisogynist strikes again.

    August 5, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  11. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    Senator McCain, two questions:

    1) When does your wife, Cindy McCain, release her tax statements?

    2) When do you detail your last two years at Annapolis and how that qualified you to get straight into flight school, notwithstanding the fact your father was a standing, 4-star Admiral at the time?

    August 5, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  12. Mike

    What the? that story was sooooooooooooooo boring, I can't believe I just read it.

    August 5, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  13. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    Senator McCain, two questions:

    1) When does your wife, Cindy McCain, release her tax statements?

    2) When do you detail your last two years at Annapolis and how that qualified you to get straight into flight school?

    August 5, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  14. Rob - WA

    That guy shaking McSames hand is clearly looking straight at Cindy. LOL

    August 5, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  15. Uncle Quilly

    Andy,

    I live in Germany, and no one here can tell you what band performed that day. They came to see OBAMA.

    August 5, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  16. Trish Hussein - PA

    Yeah, just what I want for our next president. Another hick who has the "special" skill of being able to relate to bikers. Geez! Nothing against bikers, but "no thank you!" Can't this old fart do anything but pander? Where is his energy policy? Oh, wait! McCain just released his energy policy:"My friends, we will drill offshore and fix all of our energy problems. Thank you, my friends."

    August 5, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  17. TX for Obama

    Some of these States in the South like Alabama, Oklahoma, Kentucky etc must be full of Stupid Idiots. I don't know how they are voting for John McCain. Can't they see the difference in the Quality of the Candidates....

    OBAMA '08

    August 5, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  18. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    Let's see, Obama is building an international coalition of countries by visiting those countries and gets received lustily for his efforts.

    McCain's hanging out with bikers.

    By the way, Senator, we're waiting for you to detail your last two years at Annapolis and how that qualified you to get straight admission to flight school ahead of others with substantially better credentials.

    August 5, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  19. Kevin from California

    This is very dangerous for McCain. It is not wise to sing songs about bombing other countries, and to dismiss the people of Berlin in order to win points with a biker convention.

    Imagine if you will, if McCain is having a meeting with a foreign leader and he allows for such a slip, how are they going to react? It boggles my mind how people want a president who will just bomb and insult people, just because he isn't paying attention, or doesn't care.

    If he can't respect his own word to maintain civility during an election, how can he respect the American people? 1984. Think about it.

    August 5, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  20. S. Boatman

    Talk About The Issues Mccain!

    August 5, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  21. McCain’s PHONY EXPRESS

    Bikers Watch Out, here comes McCain’s PHONY EXPRESS!!!!

    August 5, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  22. mayahh

    MY Friends, RIDE TO BURGER KING, AND PICK UP THE EXCESS OIL...

    August 5, 2008 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  23. AL

    Tony, Powell, OH.... you forgot one: McClueless

    August 5, 2008 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  24. Steve

    Why does Mcpander wife always seem to be on standby almost everywhere he goes? Is that in case his depends need to be changed? She scare the hell out of me.

    HE'S 72 YEAR OLD MAN COLLECTION SOCIAL SECURITY WHO'S CONFUSED ABOUT HOW THE SYSTEM WORKS. NOT PRESIDENTIAL MATERIAL.

    August 5, 2008 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  25. proud army and navy mom

    mccain is a lying old geezer who is going down real soon.

    Look at how Cindy is looking at that guy in the photo.....hummm...no wonder she always by his side, where mcwar can see her.

    August 5, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
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