September 4th, 2008
10:40 PM ET
4 years ago

'U.S.A.' chant is code to drown out protesters

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McCain worked to calm the crowd after protestors interupted Thursday night.
McCain worked to calm the crowd after protestors interupted Thursday night.

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (CNN) – In response to early rumors that demonstrators might try to interrupt Republican presidential nominee John McCain's acceptance speech Thursday night, a number of delegations agreed to chant "U.S.A." in order to quell the sound of protesters.

"There's word of a possible demonstration coming. If it does, the chant is 'USA, USA'," a floor whip was overheard telling members in the New York delegation.

Similar whispers were heard from the Alaska delegation clear across to the Louisiana delegation on the other side of the hall only moments before McCain began speaking.

On at least three occasions during the early part of his speech, members of the audience began chanting "U.S.A." in response to protesters, who were then escorted out of the hall.

In one such case, McCain weighed in telling the crowd not to be distracted “by the static…Americans want us to stop yelling at each other.”

soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. Obama Hockey Mom

    I want to know why these peaceful protestors that were just holding a sign, maybe a little different from those "homemade" signs on the floor, but no bad language. Weren't they expressing their freedom of speech.

    The whole night was a contrast to its theme "Peace". I heard nothing but negativity and war. Another quote of the evening:

    "Fight with me, Fight with me, Stand up to defend this country from it's enemies, Stand up and fight, We never hide from history, We make history." – McCain

    September 4, 2008 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  2. ChangeWeCanBelieveIn

    I am so happy the protester came in and let them know whats in her heart. CNN, why wont you tell the truth and stop playing games? They are using fear tactics and cold false lies about Barack to scare Americans. People are so upset about what they are doing. The fact that they are parading around a down-sydrome baby, making sure the camera catches his face, or picking a woman who is not qualfied at all to V.P. is simply absurd! Cindy Mccain said she is qualified because she is a pistol-packing hockey mom, while laughing and smiling? Are you kidding me? This is not a joke CNN. People are suffering everyday and this is what the republicans are doing? They make fun of people working in the communities and CNN you wont do anything but say oh what a homerun speech Palin made or Campell Brown, you saying how much you relate to her parading around her baby. Well I have a friend who has a special needs daughter and she was simply outraged and simply offended about how Palin was showing off and using her child. CNN tell the truth! This is ridiculous. Do not lie like these republicans are doing! People are writing in from your blogs so upset, so tired, and you pay them no attention! If you want to know the truth, listen to what we are saying! STOP THE LIES CNN AND TELL THE TRUTH!

    September 4, 2008 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  3. Joe

    Of course... they cant take the heat.

    The funny thing is that these people were able to get in because they had room and no one else wanted to.

    Apparently one was a delegate on the floor who had credentials.... hmmm which party is split?

    September 4, 2008 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  4. Norma

    Having distractors at the convention and acting out during Palin and McCain's speech is telling. Nothing like that happened at the DNC, and no one was tear gased and arrested.

    John McCain is not the person for this country following a horrible
    Bush Presidency. He picked Sarah Palin as his running mate and she showed us last night that she is more of the same.

    No McCain/Palin... we deserve better !!!

    September 4, 2008 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  5. Isaac

    When I was watching, I heard the chant about 5 times in 15 minutes.

    ...lol?

    September 4, 2008 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  6. desertique

    USA is my home. My country. And my childrens. Let them try to drown out the revolution. It is upon them.

    Obama/Biden

    September 4, 2008 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  7. Evan

    Why is USA used? Interesting how there weren't protestors in the the hall for Obama. But why use USA? Does that mean that if you protest that your un-American?

    September 4, 2008 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  8. Nick

    Dems will jump on that "static" remark. :o

    September 4, 2008 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  9. FactCheck

    No, actually it was what the audience had to do to keep themselves awake through this snooze fest. Does he even have a plan?

    September 4, 2008 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  10. Andy

    Haha this just keeps getting better and better. Just donated another 100 bucks to Barack Obama. More coming tomorrow, you cant silence that.

    /grabs his popcorn and watches the madness of what has become the republican party.

    September 4, 2008 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  11. Dan

    Unfortunate that his speech was interrupted. Although, I thought the USA, USA chants did more harm than good as I coudln't really hear the protestors and probably wouldn't have known what was going on if not for the repeated chants. Really made it hard for McCain to get into a rhythm early in his speech.

    September 4, 2008 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
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