October 11th, 2008
09:30 PM ET
2 years ago

Speaker at McCain rally says non-Christians want an Obama win

A pastor at a McCain rally said non-Christians are hoping for an Obama win.
A pastor at a McCain rally said non-Christians are hoping for an Obama win.

DAVENPORT, Iowa (CNN) – A minister delivering the invocation at John McCain’s rally in Davenport, Iowa Saturday told the crowd non-Christian religions around the world were praying for Barack Obama to win the U.S. presidential election.

“There are millions of people around this world praying to their god—whether it’s Hindu, Buddha, Allah—that his opponent wins, for a variety of reasons. And Lord, I pray that you will guard your own reputation, because they’re going to think that their God is bigger than you, if that happens,” said Arnold Conrad, the former pastor of Grace Evangelical Free Church in Davenport.

The remark was made before McCain arrived at the rally but the Republican nominee's campaign quickly put out a statement distancing itself from the remarks.

“While we understand the important role that faith plays in informing the votes of Iowans, questions about the religious background of the candidates only serve to distract from the real questions in this race about Barack Obama's judgment, policies and readiness to lead as commander in chief,” said McCain campaign spokesperson Wendy Riemann.

This incident comes a day after a Minnesota voter asked Senator McCain if Barack Obama was an Arab at a town hall in Lakeville, Minnesota and just three days after Lehigh GOP County Chairman Bill Platt made a speech at a McCain rally in Pennsylvania where he refered to the Democrat nominee for president as Barack Hussein Obama.


Filed under: Iowa • John McCain
soundoff (1,974 Responses)
  1. Derik

    Hey, I m chirstian too! veto Obama. reason i need got Job. and I know most christian not understand About R party support rich people. As In bible said God forbid and not allow ladies to become head of rule, pastors and president and vp too.

    when mccain dead give her become? then God anger and curse at america!

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  2. LeAnn

    WOW!! I just can't believe GOD needs to guard his own reputation! WOW that's deep!! Can you say dictatorship!!

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  3. Alfredo Espinoza

    They're back! The crazies are back!

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  4. SC

    His middle name is Hussein, which doesn't mean anything. If you think that means something, hypothetically speaking, would you worship Osama Binladen when he comes into the U.S with the name John McFalin? According to your standard, would you consider a random Arab guy with George as a native American? Obama was just born in the US and it just happened that he ended up having a middle name Hussein, which is not selected by him but given to him by both of his parents. Go read something. Don't just spend all day in the corn field. Sorry!

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  5. Lee

    Got news for you. This Christian prays that Obama wins too.

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  6. Michael

    This is simply DISGUSTING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This man should be removed from the Cloth!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  7. mccain/palin = bush/cheney

    so now mccain has pastors stirring up hate and division ?? wow, mccain that is one way to put country first. the mccain camp seems to be more about division than bringing the country together.

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  8. Mike

    That's some minister. He knows how the whole world is praying. He must be the real thing. If ignorance is bliss, I'll bet be overjoyed.

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  9. sean from ohio

    These McCain-Palin rallys have become so cultish and mean spirited. And these people claim to be Christians! hipocrisy!

    October 12, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  10. Jeffery

    I would have to guess that most conservative fundamentalists are really scared about if their going to make it to "heaven" if they don't bring this country along with it to "heaven". Well really, i just think they dont figure they will make it and their concience begs them to do more of the idiotic same. Blog on Dobson's puke:
    Well all you conservatives who now support the NEW "save our a.." religion with 5 star general James Dobson as “Jesus Christ Vicegerent” has now accepted fornication as a way to being elected to the vice-presidency. Conservatives have now said it is ok to tell the daughter of VP electoral Palin that fornication is ok, as long as you do not abort the fetus. This is not the Sunday school lessons of 35 years ago. ALL SIN IS PUNISHABLE BY GOD. Please be careful as the bible says of sheep in wolves clothing….
    Jeff

    October 12, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  11. Stephen in Red Bluff

    It's not enough for the McCain campaign to "put out a statement"; he needs to immediately denounce such comments (be they introductions, prayers, or the opening act)–loud and clear–from the dias.

    The fact is, McCain and Palin have spent the last week delivering caustic rheotric that only served to incite this ever-increasing level of hate among rally participants.

    McCain finally standing up to it in Minnesota last night ought not necessarily be applauded. Sure, he has an obligation to curb such sentiments and lies, but rarely does the arsonist get praised for putting out the fire!

    Everything that comes out of those rallies are controlled by the campaign. McCain and Palin have the power to set forth the basic standards as to what is discussed or mentioned by ANYONE taking the microphone.

    This is squarely on John McCain and Sarah Palin.

    October 12, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  12. Ivan

    “There are millions of people around this world praying to their god—whether it’s Hindu, Buddha, Allah—that his opponent wins, for a variety of reasons. And Lord, I pray that you will guard your own reputation, because they’re going to think that their God is bigger than you, if that happens,”

    Uhh, isn't Allah the same God that Christians worship

    October 12, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  13. Abdul Olufowobi

    Kilo de ooooo "Oju lokan omole ti o dajo tani komo pe owun na loma koje" That's insane John McCain and rest of his followers running negative campaign trying to make citizens fear Barack Obama as terrorist which is erratic message from so-called minister of God preaching wrong gospel to all american people. Definitely, we're tired of cynics saying our future is impossible with a lot of things at stakes we all can't afford another (8)yrs of Bush-Dick policies anymore.

    Yes.We.Can
    Team Obama '08

    October 12, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  14. Mike

    That's some minister. He knows how the whole world is praying. He must be the real thing. If ignorance is bliss, I'll bet he's overjoyed.

    October 12, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  15. WesinSC

    It is true. Obama stands for everything that is not Christian. He has been involved with shady, racist, terrorist-connected individuals since the inception of his political career. He has the most liberal, anti-God, voting record in the Senate. He was raised in the most populist Muslim county in the world, Indonesia. He has a univeralist idea of religion and is very friendly toward Islam. He would be a heavily taxing, socialist leader as President and would make the current situation much worse. The Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 (Carter) and the Mortgage Act of 1995 (Clinton) demanded banks to give loans to people who were higher risk, causing the mortgage and bank failures, and thus the stock market crash we see now. Barack Obama would continue this kind of politics which is anything but Christian-like. In 2005 McCain tried to regulate these irresponsible mortgage lending practices before the bottom fell out. But Barack Obama helped block this. We need someone who is against the terrorists and against irresponsible lending – pray that Obama does not become the President of the U.S.

    October 12, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  16. Wahid

    I was born in NY, a real American and its unbelievable how IGNORANT the people at McCains camp are.

    UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!!!!! how can people be so ignorant! They taught me in school in america about tolerance, education and not to be so ignorant yet they are so IGNORANT!!!!

    October 12, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  17. Ricky

    Talk about strange!!!! It comforts me to know how loving, forgiving, and accepting the christian far right is................

    October 12, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  18. GOD

    "I Can't Hear You, I Can't Hear You, I Can't Hear You"

    October 12, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  19. maurice

    typo on post. that man should have never said that and the same as i said about people in philly hating on palin. its time to quit hating on all parties and do something to possitivly help this country. and please dont respond by saying ya vote for mcain or vote for obama. personal resposibility. demanding american made goods instead of imported and demand that our goverment tax companies that send our jobs over seas twice as much as americans can build it. then the question is would you rather pay a few more bucks for american made goods or not have the money because you wanted a cheaper less expensive item made in a foriegn country. i think i`d spend the extra few bucks and have a job. wake up people . as it may already be to late. and no 1 man can fix what is wrong it will take 300 million americans to fix america.

    October 12, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  20. T. Mckinley

    As someone who believes in Jesus Christ, (not the so-called "Jesus" of "the Davinci Code" or the "Jesus Seminar,") but the true Jesus Christ of the Bible and historic orthodox Christianity, I am deeply appalled and ashamed by the behavior of some of my "brethren."

    One of the Ten Commandments is "You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor." This means that it is absolutely wrong to publicly accuse someone of something they are not guilty of.

    It is one thing to have legitimate disagreements with someone over their positions concerning issues and policies.

    It is another thing altogether to accuse someone of being a "foreign-born Arab Muslim radical who pals around with terrorists, etc..." when none of these accusations are true.

    Many of my "brethren" may find themselves in for a very hard and difficult lesson on Nov. 4, if the God they believe to be supporting John McCain actually allows Barack Obama to win.

    Lying and bearing false witness about someone is still a sin, especially when it's Christians who are doing it. Christians, of all people, should know better.

    May God have mercy on us all.

    October 12, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  21. Denise

    This is getting beyond ridiculous. Republican freaks. And by the way....the lastest comments John McCain has made at his rallies where he 'sticks up' for Barack Obama are sooooo obviously set up to make McCain look better. One guy even read off a piece of paper for goodness sakes. It's pathetic and it won't work. People are disgusted by the actions of Republicans. John McCain stood by and smiled as crowds were shouting out 'terrorist' and 'kill him'. He is only now 'standing up' against it because it is hurting him in the polls.

    Too late McCain...and Palin.
    Oh ya...and if other countries are happy that Barack Obama will be President is because he will bring PEACE to the world and improve the image of the US and restore it's reputation as a world leader. John McCain is a war monger....he will only add to the strife that is already causing the US harm.

    October 12, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  22. mh

    This guy (Arnold Conrad) is actually pretty smart . . . . . by Davenport standards.

    October 12, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  23. Kristin

    Wow! These Joe-six packs are really spewing hate. I think people who demonstrate this kind of hate, clearly do not represent Christianity. McShame is to blame for all this. He has destroyed the GOP image and it will be hard to repair. I am a Independent supporting Obama because he has a message and vision for America...McCain does not...We have to come together because the divisiveness is going to ultimately destroy this great country.

    October 12, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  24. concerned!

    “There are millions of people around this world praying to their god—whether it’s Hindu, Buddha, Allah—that his opponent wins, for a variety of reasons. And Lord, I pray that you will guard your own reputation, because they’re going to think that their God is bigger than you, if that happens,”

    Jews, Christians and Muslims all believe in the same god you moron! Only their prophets and their methods of prayers are different. FYI, THERE'S ONLY ONE GOD. You would think a priest would have enough knowledge at least about religion. But this kind of rehtoric is becoming dangerous and I don't know why this campaign is involving religion in this. Hey McShame, you know you've orchestrated this strategy. Come clean and put a stop to this. Where is this Mcpalin campaign going with this hatred? I'm seriously concerned about the near future of this great nation. God help us! Nov. 4th can't come soon enough so we can put this god awful duo out of their misery for good.

    Obama/Biden 08

    October 12, 2008 12:26 am at 12:26 am |
  25. lorene

    John McCain and Palin has incited their crowds by the language that they used. They both encouraged this bad behavior, and never said anything until they saw that the American People would not support this behavior. McCain then set up this town hall meeting, and scheduled this people to speak so that he would seem like he is changing his tune. At the same time he was pulling on this little stunt, he had an ad running on TV, telling that same Lie. So while he was pretending to calm everybody down, he was still stirring them up with this ad. He is so fake and dishonest.

    October 12, 2008 12:26 am at 12:26 am |
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