October 25th, 2008
04:50 PM ET
5 years ago

McCain: 'I'm a fellow Westerner'

Sen. McCain got off his plane Saturday with the hills of Mexico in the background on his way to a campaign stop in New Mexico.
Sen. McCain got off his plane Saturday with the hills of Mexico in the background on his way to a campaign stop in New Mexico.

ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico (CNN) - At a rally in Albuquerque, New Mexico Saturday, Senator John McCain told the crowd that he was a neighboring Western senator who understood the Southwest and Hispanic culture and his opponent didn’t.

“My friends I’m a fellow Westerner, I understand these issues, I understand land and water and Native American issues and border issues and I understand the challenges that a great, great western states face with our growth and our needs and our challenges,” said the Arizona Senator as he courted voters key to the state’s five electoral votes.

“My friends, Senator Obama has never been south of our border, you know that? And he doesn’t know these issues. I know them, I know what the Southwest is, I know strength and the culture and our Hispanic culture and the strength of our great states."

While McCain has been dealing with southwestern issues for over 20 years as an Arizona legislator, an Obama spokesman said that in fact the Illinois Senator did visit Mexico when he was in college.

McCain added a new line to his comments about Congressman Barney Frank’s plans to cut the defense budget, echoing the lines of GOP presidential candidates in elections past.

“The Democrats answer to the challenges we face is to lower our defenses and raise our taxes. That is not the vision I have for America. I want to strengthen our defenses and lower our taxes.”

And the Arizona Senator emphasized that while Senator Biden told donors at a Seattle fundraiser that his running mate would be tested by America’s enemies in office, McCain would test them back.

“My friends, I have been tested,” said McCain. "They may want to test Senator Obama. I’ve been tested and I'm going to test them. They’re not going to test me.”

Obama also has events in New Mexico and Nevada Saturday. These are battleground states that Bush won in 2004 but have been favoring Senator Obama in recent polling.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain • New Mexico
soundoff (306 Responses)
  1. anyonmous

    ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico (CNN) — At a rally in Albuquerque, New Mexico Saturday, Senator John McCain told the crowd that he was a neighboring Western senator who understood the Southwest and Hispanic culture and his opponent didn’t.

    “My friends I’m a fellow Westerner, I understand these issues, I understand land and water and Native American issues and border issues and I understand the challenges that a great, great western states face with our growth and our needs and our challenges,” said the Arizona Senator as he courted voters key to the state’s five electoral votes.

    “My friends, Senator Obama has never been south of our border, you know that? And he doesn’t know these issues. I know them, I know what the Southwest is, I know strength and the culture and our Hispanic culture and the strength of our great states."

    While McCain has been dealing with southwestern issues for over 20 years as an Arizona legislator, an Obama spokesman said that in fact the Illinois Senator did visit Mexico when he was in college.

    McCain added a new line to his comments about Congressman Barney Frank’s plans to cut the defense budget, echoing the lines of GOP presidential candidates in elections past.

    “The Democrats answer to the challenges we face is to lower our defenses and raise our taxes. That is not the vision I have for America. I want to strengthen our defenses and lower our taxes.”

    And the Arizona Senator emphasized that while Senator Biden told donors at a Seattle fundraiser that his running mate would be tested by America’s enemies in office, McCain would test them back.

    “My friends, I have been tested,” said McCain. "They may want to test Senator Obama. I’ve been tested and I'm going to test them. They’re not going to test me.”

    Obama also has events in New Mexico and Nevada Saturday. These are battleground states that Bush won in 2004 but have been favoring Senator Obama in recent polling.

    October 25, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    And your whole reaction to being tested McCain is exactly the reason I am not voting for you. You are a war monger.

    October 25, 2008 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  3. S. Boatman

    I Can Hardly Wait To See You Ride Off Into The Sunset! Time To Hit The Dusty Trail!

    October 25, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  4. kristmas

    my friends....my friends.... i know..... i know......

    October 25, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  5. adg

    this is realy funny to me, Im from New Mexico and I have not seen or heard anything that would prove He understands... Anything!!! He always has the same line with nothing to back it up!!!!

    October 25, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  6. Dave, Houston, TX

    Sen McCain, I wouldn't make the connection that Obama's alleged (but not true) lack of travel means he can't understand the issues. You, sir, are computer-illiterate and there are many privacy and communications issues that require at least a basic understanding of computers. You want to open that can of worms?

    October 25, 2008 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  7. John in KY

    McCAIN says he knows about all our problems, he should he had a great deal to do with creating them! but he doesn't seem to be intelligent enough to explain to the American people how he is going to fix them. the only thing he talks about is higher taxes from the dems, and WAR,WAR,WAR. and added to all this he choses a VP candidate that is a JOKE to AMERICANS intelligence!
    OBAMA/BIDEN 08

    October 25, 2008 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  8. Maggie VT

    Maggie, VT

    Senator McCain keepa impling that he knows this, he knows that, but fails to say what he knows, how he is going to do it, and basically says nothing.

    October 25, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  9. DeVone

    Senator McCain keep saying he has been tested, but on what?
    he has been in a senator for eight years side by side with
    President Bush and look at were we are. I have heard him
    in the debates his speaches and he must not be able to hear
    because someone says onething and right behind their words say you said something all togather differant he did this allso to Brian Williams in an interview this makes him all so disrespectful
    yes Senator John McCain has been tested and he has failed
    the test let us bring honor back to America

    October 25, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  10. No Country For Old Men

    Joe the Plumber, meet Joe NoMoe
    NoMoe Home
    NoMoe Use for Joe the Plumber
    NoMoe Money
    NoMoe 401K
    NoMoe Car
    NoMoe Credit Card
    NoMoe Bush & McCain!
    NoMoe BS so vote for Obama & Biden '08

    October 25, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  11. sneaky pete

    I have a question:

    I see more and more posts everyday about Obama not being elgible to run for president because he supposedly is not a U.S. citizen because he was born in Kenya not Hawaii. Aside from the fact that Factcheck.org and other independant agencies have stated his Hawaiin birth certifiate is legit- wouldn't he still be a U.S. citizen, even if born outside of U.S. territory, since his mother was a U.S. citizen?

    I know that if you are born on U.S. soil, whether your parents are citizens or not, you are considered a U.S. citizen. So wouldn't it make sense that the child of a U.S. citizen born in another country while their mother is vacationing would still be a citizen since their parents are?

    Some one please clarify if you could. I think its a dead issue anyways since I believe he WAS born in Hawaii, but if my logic is correct then it wouldnt matter anyways.

    October 25, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  12. judy, Wisconsin

    "My friends, I am begging for votes. Please elect me and Carabou Barbie. We are liars. Thank you, my friends."

    October 25, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  13. MARILYN

    Actually, the mountains in the background are called the Sandias – Indian for Watermelon Mountain – they change color with the sun setting in the west each evening (dark pink, orange). It's not in Mexico (as the photo caption states), it's in Albuquerque, NEW MEXICO. And we use real dollars here – not pesos!

    October 25, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  14. Jason

    This is funny, McCain has no idea what Albuquerque is like. The speach he gave makes it sound like everyone is living on a ranch and is worried about water and immigrants. I doubt he knows that Albuquerque sits on top of a giant underground lake and has no major fears of running out of water. He should stick to what he knows best, lies, deception and the promotion of fear. Vote for Obama/Biden in 08.

    October 25, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  15. Alison B

    All this fear mongering that the Republicans want to do do they really think people are that stupid it was done twice before this is the third time come on McCain we are people have sense give us some credit why don't you.

    October 25, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  16. John from out West

    Senator McCain you don't know squat about ordinary people so save your speeches for the country club crowd or your wall street friends.

    the economy is tanking and you don't have a clue about what to do except tax cuts for the rich and your tried and failed trickle down economy.

    Senator McCain, go out to your ranch and retire.

    October 25, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  17. SOUTHERN HOTTIE

    Senator McCain picked the wrong running mate, Governor Palin, then abandoned his honor and integrity (robocalls, mailers, et. al).

    His actions are not presidential; rather, they are actions of a man who is finally desperate and at last just old.

    October 25, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  18. John in Gig Harbor

    You've been tested John, and you have given the wrong answer.

    OBAMA '08

    October 25, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  19. bill

    if you know south of the border sooo well mccain JUST GO THERE

    October 25, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  20. INDEPENDENT

    THE ONLY FELLOW MCCAIN IS TO IS THE RICH AND BIG CORPORATIONS. CHECK OUT HIS 7 HOUSES, 13 CARS AND PRIVATE JET HIS WIFE OWNS.

    GIVE ME A BREAK!!!

    WE NEED SOMEBODY FOR AMERICA AND THE PEOPLE!!

    OBAMA 08

    October 25, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  21. Murf, Jackson, NJ

    Uuuhhhmmm, don't look now but has John the Westerner managed to solve the immigration problem? His positions have been rejected by his own partisans. Too Mavericky maybe? Hispanics are supporting...uuuhhhmmm...Obama.

    He was supposed to be interested in uniting people, now he is trying to mount sectional appeals.

    He was critical of robocalls and negative campaigning until he decided to use them.

    He was interested in reaching across the aisle, until he decided that democrats were dangerous socialists.

    This campaign has made history. McCain is history. Obama represents our future.

    October 25, 2008 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  22. DeVone

    for you McCain /Palin folk ,Governor Palin is trying to run the show
    say McCain aids if this man can not controll his camp, and he has become the running mate, do you realy want him to be your
    president he talk about rocky waters he have rocky waters
    in his own campagin

    October 25, 2008 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  23. Gracie

    WOW.... now he's calling himself a "Westerner"....just a few days ago he was calling himself "The Underdog".....and stating how much he loved being the underdog.

    I wonder what NAME John McCain will be using NEXT week.....

    October 25, 2008 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  24. Erik

    While the mob screams "socialist" at Sarah Palin rallies, we take note the increasing irrelevancy of McCain. This "socialist" label is simply the latest scare tactic of the Republican desperation machine. It's a powerful propaganda word, gets the low-info voters all riled up. Unfortunately for the Republicans, taxation does not equal socialism, and only fools will believe them.

    October 25, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  25. Jeanine G

    Hawaii has a very large and active native culture, they are also Americans, and Obama lived and interacted in that enviroment of diversity most of his childhood...so excuse me if I have a hard time believing that Obama just doesn't understand native americans as well as *coff-coff * McCain.

    BTW...."our Hispanic culture", pardon me?

    October 25, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
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