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.”
She can still win the nomination according to party rules. It's time for change - a change of the supers support over to Hillary.
GET OVER IT!!!
I'm not going to make fun of the way Lieberman looks, or the age of McCain. I don't have to know that i do not want them leading this country.
But McCain, please, tell me how Obama is not American enough?? Your an adult, explaing your reasons. Just because he doesn't agree with you on all issues does not mean he does not love and support this country.
Because when you say he does not put his country first, then you say the same about me. I do not appreciate that.
I'm a former Hillary supporter for McCain. Lieberman has it right and McCain is smart to be campaigning with him. Could you imagine Obama in charge of our foreign affairs and handling and emergency situation like what is going on in Georgia? I certainly can't and that's why this democrat will be voting for John McCain. Wake up America and realize Obama was a state legislator only 3 years ago. How in the world do you think he is qualified to be our president???
Liberman is awful he voted with demoncratic all the time he is sneaky
no more Bush and MCSAME VOTE for Obama
Seriously Mr Mccain i have this visual of you standing in a boxing ring with skinny, lily white legs,no rear end, little pot belly taking on russia. whose the celebrity now?
@ Steve: "I don't get the Clinton lost – I'm voting McCain mentality...He's Black"
....and you are a sexist. Your stategy is flawed; you can 'white-guilt' us into voting for your candidate.
Also, it's not about wanting McCain. We've had Obama forced down our throats for months now. You, the press, the DNC have all betrayed the democratic party and destroyed it's hope of the White House. All of you need to be told that we will not accept this; the DNC has no right to tell me who to vote for. It appears the Republicans are the only ones who run a fair election for the nominee...so they will get out support for truly running a democratic nomination process.
This is pathetic. I'm still trying to figure out two things: 1, why in the world would any person who voted for Hillary now decide to vote for McCain? 2, what makes John McCain qualified to be president? Have I missed something in the last 25 years since he took office or what? The only thing McCain has is ambition-raw, unadulterated, and shameless. And while he trashes Obama, and so many others join him, they need to remember 17 million things: He WON the primary. This is not a fluke. This election is finally about working families who are facing actual hard times, and Obama understands that.
McCain chooses to make light of Obama, and dismiss his supporters, and that's fine. Hillary did the same thing.
The only people dumber than McCain are the people voting for him.
If you want to know McCain's foreign policy. Follow the oil lobbyist in
his campaign or his contributors. There's a reason he backs Georgia.
The could been a dictatorship and he would still back him. One of McCain's oil lobbyist is working with the Georgian government.
At least we know, he's consistent with the Bush approach. McCain
knows that we invaded Iraq for oil and maybe to have a presence in the Mideast to protect the oil supply.
This guy is pro Israel..he needs to shut up.
Kiss the bus.
Lieberman is a Republican attack dog. The Democrats should strip him from the Committee leadership position.
Joe, what do you mean when you say Obama does not put country first? I do not understand. Wasn't he too young to fight in Vietnam?
Do the math.
Love that positive campaign you're running. Hope you enjoy a long retirement.
McCain is definitely not giving straight talk. He is consistently lying about Obama in an effort to make himself look better. He distorts Obama's message, feeds people soundbites and misinformation, and paints him as an empty suit. That's not straight talk McCain! It's smoke and mirrors. How many of you out there are going to blindly fall for it? Who knows.
His way of saying black folks ain't patriotic.
I guess Joe Liberman is the Senator Vice President Chaney can be pround of after all.
What is either candidate telling us, not much! But my belief is B. H. Obama does not meet the legal requirements to be President from what I have read. He has some excellent ideas as does McCain. But the worst fault I have against BH Obama is that he is not an American but a Muslim and I am afraid we will end up like France.
Lieberman will do for McCain what he did for Gore in 2000.
what a jerk loyal to ypur country is not always following the standard line that is why we are in the mess around the world today we are looked down on and you are part of that problem.
Obama only has one more step to the left before he is officially a communist.
Wake up, don't drink the kool-aide.
WHO CARES WHAT THAT OLD SENILE HAG HAS TO SAY ??
LIEBERSNAKE IS ALWAYS LOOKING FOR THAT CORNER.
When has Barak Obama not put Barak Obama first?
The guys wants our nation to fail in Iraq and Afganistan, that really says it all. Old Joe is just speaking the obvious about Obama, but facts always seem to p.o most liberal Democrats.
Why don't neo conservatives start war with russiaan federation because they know they will kick their ---–. MCJOE empty noise.as Joe is concerned what do expect from him he lives in USA but serves Israel who runs US foreign policy. Looks like US voters don't realize very small population of US hold everyone in the congress/senate by their ba--s.
THE ONLY LOYALTIES THESE TWO SLITHERING SLEAZY
MORONS HAVE IS TO THEIR EGOS & POCKET BOOKS.
THEY COULDN'T GET A JOB RUNNING THE KENNEL.