August 8th, 2008
02:35 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain visits the Iowa State Fair

McCain visited this giant hog, 'Freight Train', while touring the Iowa State Fair Swine Barn.
McCain visited this giant hog, 'Freight Train', while touring the Iowa State Fair Swine Barn.

DES MOINES, Iowa (CNN) – There were the familiar deep-fried candy bars, the colorful booths selling meats-on-sticks, and two hogs that weighed in at more than half a ton. But unlike the 2007 Iowa State Fair, which featured a posse of presidential hopefuls hunting for votes around nearly every corner, this year's event only saw one: John McCain.

The soon-to-be GOP nominee arrived in at the fair late Friday morning and first marched to one of his "favorite spots to visit in this whole fair," the vast and malodorous Swine Barn, where he observed "Freight Train," a champion Yorkshire boar from Webster City that weighs 1,259 pounds. The hog slept through McCain's visit.

McCain shook hands with Iowans and moved on to the fabled soapbox area of the fair grounds, a humble patch of grass surrounded by hay bales that's reserved for politicians, but which didn't actually feature a soapbox.

"This is what America is all about," he said. "This is the people I want to know and meet. And when the rigors of a presidential campaign, people talk about it, I get a chance to come here and meet and greet the real America. The people that are providing products all over this world, all over the world."

McCain's week has been built around similarly picturesque events that conjure Americana: he spoke at a massive biker rally in South Dakota on Monday, attended college football practice in West Virginia on Wednesday, and held a town hall meeting in Ohio on Thursday, during which he repeatedly praised the fortitude and optimism of the nation's heartland.

At the state fair, where corn takes center stage, McCain re-iterated his long-standing opposition to ethanol subsidies. But he did promise to "make sure that every market in the world is open to your products," taking time to heap praise on the state's pork industry.

"This agricultural products in the state of Iowa can feed the world and we're not afraid to compete with anybody in the world, my friends," he said.

McCain said we are facing an "energy crisis" and touted his plans for expanding nuclear energy and allowing offshore oil drilling, a pair of proposals that earned him loud applause from onlookers.


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (149 Responses)
  1. Dr.Mimi De La Cruz for OBAMA

    DOESN'T THAT HOG HAVE THAT MCSENILE LOOK

    ON IT'S FACE, KIND-OF DAAAAAHHHHH?????

    August 8, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  2. Nikki

    Reality hurts. John McCain and his campaign manager, Rick Davis, had helped facilitate a merger involving DHL that could result in the loss of thousands of jobs in Ohio.

    McCain supporters, like the candidate himself, do not want to talk about issues. They're full of distractions. Just look at the comments posted under that article. They're sulking in bliss of denial and delusion with comments like..."Obama can't blame McCain for this...talk about Kwame Kilpatrick.....Obama's going to cost Ohio more with his tax and spend policies.....Obama's an empty suit....."

    RUN FOR THE HILLS NEOCONS AND PUMAS....RUN!!!

    August 8, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  3. Lionel

    So Barack stutters, at least he doesn't lie. He can stutter til the cows come home, as long as what comes out of his mouth is the truth.

    John opens his mouth and Bush's words come out.

    O/08

    August 8, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  4. fairandstraight

    There are many people who are influenced by outrageous lie that Obama is tied to terrorists. I would like to for any one to tell me when have you seen a black man blow himself up for the sake of a religion.

    It really is silly season.

    Obama 08

    August 8, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  5. David Goldman for OBAMA

    THAT HOG WOULD MAKE A BETTER PRESIDENT THAN

    MCMORON. AT LEAST IT WON'T TELL US ANY LIES,

    OR START ANY MORE WARS. AND IT'S ECONOMIC

    PLAN WOULD RIVAL MCSENILE'S ANY DAY & TWICE

    ON SUNDAY. HE KNOWS MORE ABOUT THE ECONOMY.

    August 8, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  6. M. Winners, Mesa, AZ

    "Pig" rushes to meet pig at Iowa State Fair – how appropriate...

    August 8, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  7. Independent-Latina-for-OBAMA

    I do not care what McBush is up to today! All along I have been respectful of McCain because of his age and service to our Nation........ but when I say the article about the "Anti-Christ ad" ......... I AM DISGUSTED!

    WHY IS MCCAIN SINKING TO SUCH A LOW? AS A CHRISTIAN, IAM SICKENED BY THE GOP BELIEVING THAT THEY ARE THE OLNY ONES WHO KNOW AND LOVE CHRIST!

    I PRAY, WITH ALL MY HEART THAT THIS AD WILL BACKFIRE ON MCBUSH....... YES, MCBUSH........HE IS NO DIFFERENT THAN BUSH/CHENEY WHO ARE EVIL MEN!

    SHAME ON YOU, GOP!

    August 8, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  8. Matt

    More juvenile, ignorant Obama supporters remarks.

    Is Obama proud to be propped up by a bunch of derelicts???

    August 8, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  9. bob in LA

    I like the picture! the caption should read-
    "McCain at the state fair bores his audience, as usual"

    August 8, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  10. Lesley

    McCain visits the swine barn and says this is what America is all about? Priceless!

    August 8, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  11. jason, tx

    That pig isn't flying, so it appears that I'm not voting for this knob.

    Um, Matt, we are far from ignorant.

    August 8, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  12. Brian, Quad Cities

    Not mentioned in the story, the hog OWNED McCain't on energy policy almost as thoroughly as Paris did.

    August 8, 2008 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  13. Sean John

    I like how he just had to add the "my friends" in at the end of his sentence. I feel like he's a spokesman or something that is contractually obligated to use the phrase a minimum of 10 times. Like "Do the Dew".

    August 8, 2008 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  14. a southern bell for OBAMA

    MATT,

    LISTEN DARLING.

    YOU SHOULD PICK UP A NEW HOBBY, THINKING.

    READING WILL HELP YOU A GREAT DEAL WITH THAT

    NEW ADVENTURE. I AM SURE YOU WERE BORN THINKING,

    THEN SOMETHING JUST PUT OUT THE FIRE.

    OBAMA STATISTICALLY ATTRACTS MORE THAN 65%

    OF EDUCATED PEOPLE. AND YOUR CANDIDATE

    MADE PUTIN PRESIDENT OF GERMANY. EVEN YOU

    WILL HAVE TO ADMIT, HE IS A MORON.

    August 8, 2008 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  15. Foreign Observer

    Another populist moment brought to you by the guy who claimed that the sound of "50,000 Harleys" running high on idle is "the sound of freedom" (rather than the sound of gas wasted, air polluted, and stupidity rampant).

    August 8, 2008 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  16. Reality Check Richmond Virginia

    looks like the fat pigs that the GOP is always bending the rest of America over for.

    August 8, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  17. DAN

    Just saw the McCain ad where you see all these democrats praising him, his campaign might not have the money Obama has but he does have smarter ads. But then again Obama is a fake and there's nothing much he can do but lie about everything, while McCain has dems praising him on how honest he is.

    August 8, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  18. Snerdboy says

    Good name"Freight Train McCain".

    August 8, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  19. DR. YES

    cnn!why no story on DHL, and mccain and rick davis?not news?10,000 jobs are going to be lost in ohio,because mccain and davis lobbied for foreign sale of company!and cnn says nothing.you are no better than FOX!

    August 8, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  20. Dee, Tx

    Did you see the opening of the Olympics? America needs to step up her game. I don't see the wrinkley, grey-hair dude setting a new and exciting course for America. For goodness sake he's just learning how to use the internet.

    August 8, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  21. kennywest

    Obama makes me think, McCain makes me think about being old.

    August 8, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  22. Fed up with the lies

    What a fitting photo to go with the article. You've added Karl Rove trying the view from behind bars. Kudos to your photo editors.

    August 8, 2008 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  23. Vicki, MS

    Bill Clinton is upset with Barack because Barack's followers listened to him (Bill). So don't blame Barack for the race card, that's racist to think that Barack supporters can't think for themselves.

    We listened to you Bill, and we concluded that your words were racist. So if you want to blame someone (which is a lot of nerve), blame the ones who heard you loud and clear, not Barack.

    Are you a racist? Who knows, who cares? Most of us are judging you on your actions, not your words.

    August 8, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  24. Travis

    Tell me it's not true.....is that McWar having a nap?

    August 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  25. mike

    good for you? but where your piture with the....

    August 8, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
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