August 12th, 2008
03:45 PM ET
10 years ago

Lieberman suggests Obama has not always 'put country first'

 Lieberman campaigned with McCain Tuesday.

Lieberman campaigned with McCain Tuesday.

YORK, Pennsylvania (CNN) - John McCain used one of his largest and most ambitious town halls to date to brandish a pair of surrogates, Joe Lieberman and Tom Ridge, who may help him shore up support among independents in this fall battleground.

The Tuesday stop began with some campaign stunt work that turned the typically-mellow format into a lively Pennsylvania event that resembled one of the noisy rallies that characterized the Democratic primary.

The audience on hand - estimated by the campaign as north of 3,000 people - far exceeded the size of a standard McCain event. And the audience, who had been warmed up by a pair of television screens broadcasting a biographical film about the candidate, rose to their feet when McCain, Lieberman and Ridge arrived.

The trio entered the York Expo Center in the Straight Talk Express, which motored into the indoor venue under a massive American flag that was hoisted up to reveal the campaign bus, all while the theme from “Rocky” blared.

Lieberman then marshaled the audience by seeming to question Obama’s patriotism and commitment to bipartisanship in Washington.

"In my opinion, the choice could not be more clear, between one candidate John McCain who's had experience, been tested in war and tried in peace. Another candidate who has not,” Lieberman said to applause. “Between one candidate, John McCain who's always put the country first, worked across party lines to get things done, and one candidate who has not.”

For his part, McCain plugged the moderate records Lieberman and Ridge, and praised their commitment to keeping the country safe.

Though he made a strong push to attract independents in his town hall performance, demanding that congress work together to solve the country’s energy crisis, the GOP nominee for the first time acknowledged he faces a deficit of support among younger voters.

Responding to a former Hillary Clinton supporter who asked what McCain will do for younger Americans, McCain said: “I'll give you straight talk. I need to do a better job with young voters in America.”

soundoff (298 Responses)
  1. Mike from L.A.

    Tell Two Faced Sam Lieberman to to Shut It!

    August 12, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  2. dave from PA

    No matter how hard they try PA is staying blue trust me i live in the Philly region which makes up most of Pennsylvania and theres so much enthusiasm for obama. People who never voted in there life are registering expecially in the urban areas of philly. And also kerry won PA by a narrow margin but he still won even without the strong enthusiasm for him and obama has if not more support from the blue collar voters then did kerry. Lastly if you take a look at PA polls obama is a head by a heafty margin enough so that this state is less a toss up than a lean or likely obama state.

    August 12, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  3. rice, bryan

    wow does mcbush look like it hurts to smile? that smile is painful to look at.

    August 12, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  4. Lee from FL

    Leiberman is the real Judas.
    sell out your party in hopes of a nomination

    August 12, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  5. Peter of Oregon

    My friends, McCain is a typical politician. He very likely wants people to compare him to Reagan, but he's no Reagan. Let me give you some straight talk... The straight talk express ran off its tracks when McCain secured the Republican nomination. He lost his bearings on his positions. His train flipped, and then flopped toward G.W. Bush and the Big Oil elite, away from the maverick characteristics we had seen from him in 2000.

    He doesn't have the right temperement for the job. I don't know what Leiberman stands for besides his support of both Republicans verbally and Democrats financially during this campaign.

    August 12, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  6. Chris from NY

    Divide and conquer. That's the name of the game. It has worked well in the past. But not this time. If God is for us who shall be against us. You pick and choose who is patriotic and who is not, God knows the heart of each individual and will judge us better than any human being can. Man sees on the outside but looks on the inside. It is not those that claim patriotism that really live up to it. Anything you love best than God is idol worship. Remeber that. And who has ever seen God but through other human beings. If you don't care so much for one another please don't preach to me about knowing God. For the best way to demonstatre God's love is through service to humanity.

    August 12, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  7. Hawk, Texas


    August 12, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  8. Rick

    Hey Clinton/McCain, our fine state of Pennsylvania will remain blue if I have anything to say about it. It kills me that a person who at one time supported Hillary would now vote for a politician who is diametrically opposed to everything that she stood for (universal health care, gay rights, right-to-choose, energy, etc. etc.). I understand your anger-hell, if Hillary had won the nomination, I would have seriously considered voting for McCain. But, ultimately, I would have plugged my nose and voted for Hillary, even though her paranoia and "enemies list" mentality is literally Nixonian in scope. And to Clinton/McCain, I have three simple words that I ask you to take into the voting booth with you: Supreme. Court. Nominations.

    August 12, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  9. Katherine L Fujii

    Lieberman and McCain are a great pair. Both too old and both to unethical for serious consideration. Maybe McCain and Lieberman can look into the eyes of Putin and other world leaders and see their souls.

    August 12, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  10. SPARKY

    Joe Lieberman always puts his scountry first. The trouble is his country is Israel!

    August 12, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  11. Obama/Hillary 08

    not this jerk Joe Lieberman again talking.

    August 12, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  12. DAVID


    August 12, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  13. Tom

    Lieberman, you're a two-faced traitor, so what you say = meaningless.

    To the people of CT – how can such a great state stand having such a traitor repping you?

    August 12, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  14. fafa

    Exxon John with another old fool. With Exxon John America will be having another cold war. Even Pat Buchanan said Dick Cheney will look like a dove beside John McCain... Exxon John. PENSYLVANIA is Obama's country. Exxon John wont carry it. NO way. By the way this man Lieberman is playing his hand...He is bound to loose all come nov 4.

    August 12, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  15. Cathy

    McCain is now using the Rocky theme like Clinton...Oh my Lord.

    The disappointed Clinton supporters are playing right into McCain hands. McCain doesn't care about Clinton supporter or their issues. McCain is just using you for your votes. I understand the Clinton supports are disappointed...but don't be naive to McCain’s alterative motives. MCCAIN DOESN'T CARE ABOUT ANYTHING WE OBAMA AND CLINTON SUPPORTERS CARE ABOUT OR SUPPORT.

    McCain will use you on November 4th and throw you away on November 5th.

    August 12, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  16. Mat-Raleigh NC

    John McCain seems determined to return the world to the atmosphere of the Cold War. Thousands of S. Ossetians were killed by the Georgians before the Russians rolled in, but Sen. McCain conveniently omits this when trying to stir up pro-Georgian support. The Georgian government is just as culpable as the Kremlin for elevating the conflict.

    August 12, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  17. Kal

    Are you kidding me? Lieberman shouldn't be talking. This guy is nuts. I think he is confusing America with Israel. You see, Mr. Lieberman, Obama is running for the president of the United States, not Israel. Therefore, you cannot say that Obama has not always put the country first, because this is the U.S. we care about, NOT ISRAEL!

    Mr. Lieberman, it would be so much better if you just leave this great nation and go live in Israel. Don't worry, you'll still get a check. We send Israel enough money, don't we? You have no right to accuse ANYONE of putting any interest before AMERICA. You are a tool for the Zionist cause. Because of people like you, our country has a one-sided policy that promotes apartheid and terror against the Palestinian population. Shame on you Lieberman, you old hobbit.

    August 12, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  18. gasdocpol

    Lieberman ALWAYS puts Israel ahead of the USA.

    August 12, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  19. Bill

    Lieberman questioning the patriotism of an American. That is ironic!

    August 12, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  20. Josh in Denver

    Tammy From Cleveland, as a Hillary supporter, how can you possibly vote for McCain? What is it that you like about Hillary? Is it just that she is a woman, or is it that she believes in ending this war, fixing the economy, making healthcare affordable for everyone. McCain will do none of that!

    If you vote for McCain and he wins, YOUR state will lose more jobs, YOUR gas will cost more, YOUR healthcare premiums will continue to rise... You and all of the other Hillary supporters need to set the emotions aside and use your brain. McCain is a war monger who wants to get us into another Cold War, or worse, a real war with Russia. His top foreign policy advisor is a lobbyist paid by the Georgian government. Haven't you had enough with the wars and our soldiers dying in vain?

    Obama and Hillary have nearly identical plans on everything. This election is way too important to let your emotions get the best of you. This is not a popularity contest! We are electing the leader of the free world here.

    August 12, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  21. McCain holds fake townhalls

    It should be noted that McCain has taken to having a hand selected audience and scripted Q&A sessions a la President Bush now to keep damage to the campaign to a minimum when he can't do things like explain why he switched so many positions.

    August 12, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  22. Kelby from Houston, TX

    What about Songbird McCain? Everybody, the media, the GOP and even the people leave their comments on this website, thay are all talking about Barack Obama.
    WHAT ABOUT MCCAIN? Let's talk about his past, let's talk about his secret military records, let's talk about how and why he ditched his first wife, let's talk about his voting record on the vets. Let's talk about his ties with Bush, the good and the bad. Let's talk about his position on the issues?
    McCain, I know you need attention. Make this a 'ME' campaign dude. Because right now, all you are talking about is Barack Obama. And you are just looking for stuff to bring him down and it looks like you are reaching

    August 12, 2008 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  23. dormar

    Joe is a lying man did joe punt Israel first shame on him

    August 12, 2008 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  24. Joan

    And McCain has? I don't think so, he's put the oil companies first and his big business barons. Give me a break.

    August 12, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  25. anyomous

    if i was in peenslviania i wouldnt vote for mccain

    August 12, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
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