August 31st, 2008
01:14 PM ET
14 years ago

McCain: Expect major changes to GOP convention

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="John McCain, with VP pick Sarah Palin, visit a hurricane command center on Sunday."]

PEARL, Mississippi (CNN) - Presumptive Republican nominee John McCain told reporters Sunday there would be significant changes to the upcoming GOP convention, saying it would be inappropriate to hold a political celebration in light of the imminent arrival of Hurricane Gustav.

“We must redirect our efforts from the really celebratory event of the nomination of president and vice president of our party to acting as all Americans," said McCain.

The Arizona senator, who spoke after his tour of the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency in Pearl, Mississippi, did not elaborate on what those changes might be, instead saying the campaign will release a statement in the next few hours.

McCain did say the convention would need to transition from a "party event" to a "call to the nation for action": "I pledge that tomorrow night, and if necessary, throughout our convention if necessary, to act as Americans not Republicans, because America needs us now no matter whether we are
Republican or Democrat.’’

soundoff (92 Responses)
  1. Kevin

    McCain points to Palin's leadership in fighting the 'bridge to know-where.' Actually she had supported it until her state funds had to pay for part of it. It's poignant that when the funds were going to be given to help Katrina victims instead, Alaska Rep Stevens fought for the money. Palin was happy to take these pork barrel funds to spend to her liking rather than on the bridge or Katrina victims. Seems a bit disingenuous to want to help hurricane victims now that it benefits politically. Just thought people should know. Even though CNN never posts my comments anyway.

    August 31, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  2. Kerry Diehl

    This is an appropriate and “conservative” (meant as responsible) response regarding the current circumstances and impending emergency.

    We have all learned so very much about the seriousness and resulting damages from hurricanes via Katrina’s visit. Gustav may or may not be as bad, but this time we, as a Nation and the affected governmental agencies, are being completely pro-active to the best of their/our abilities.

    My question in return is – If this had happened to or during the Democratic Convention, would they have reacted in the same way? Especially in observation of all the monies spent for their spectacular Rock Star Extravaganza. (I’ve got to admit, when they party, they party!!)

    How about some CNN discussion on this perspective??

    kerry diehl
    grosse ile, mi

    August 31, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  3. Insulted Former Clinton Supporters for Obama

    McCain does not care about the country. Why else would he put someone on his ticket that could be President at any time. His pick knows nothiong about National Security. What would that 3am phone call sound like? He threw Romney under the bus just to pander to us, we are not amused and are insulted!!! Does he think we would follow him blindly just becasue he put a woman on the ticket? Sorry, it won't work wil only result in a more unified Democratic party.

    Obama/Biden 08/12

    August 31, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  4. John McShame, Obama Is Going to Tax You & Cindy, but Not Me & 95% Americans Making < $250,000/Yr

    Somebody needs to call this senile 72yr old wife cheater to order...he is about to steal another man's wife, an inexperienced beauty queen called Palin under the guise of making her a veepee.


    August 31, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  5. Dori in AZ

    McCain has NO executive experience. None. Zip.

    McCain has never been a mayor of any town or city. McCain has never been a governor....

    McCain needs to put Palin on the top of the ticket, and he should be the VP. According to his criteria, she is far better suited for the presidency than he himself is!

    August 31, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  6. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Palin is a fascist..... just like Bush, Cheney, Rice, and McBush

    August 31, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  7. B

    Obama has said he is checking into fundraising on his web for hurricane victims and asking his volunteers to help in any way they can. Fat chance I would send a penny to Repubs for that purpose. Did that when Katrina hit. People working for the Red Cross skimmed most of that money. I'll wait until Obama sets up a website, then I will contribute. At least I'll know the money is going to the intended victims.

    August 31, 2008 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  8. Vice-President Palin

    Never underestimate a woman!

    August 31, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  9. Vic

    McCain and his VP look so good together. They are so compatible. They are both republicans. They both want to drill in Alaska for energy. I'm guessing that McCain wants to do the

    August 31, 2008 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  10. gpmi

    We have already learned that old Mc Laim is making decisions day bay day. It was same with VP – over night he got idea- all i need is young beauty!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! mAY BE TRU FOR HIM BUT HOW ABOUT COUNTRY ???????????? Does he think about it at all. On other hand if he does is day by day- which is not sign of boldnes but dementia!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 31, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  11. ci

    Obama supporters are just talking all this trash about McCain because they are Dems – if this had happened during their convention they'ed be all over Obama doing the things McCain is doing. (but WOULD Obama do these responsible things.) Just admit it folks: You want to be able to kill your babies if you want to, be gay and tear the family down if you feel like it, and you don't want anyone opposing your party that doesn't believe the way you do. At least be honest about what this is really about....

    August 31, 2008 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  12. Darryl

    I think raising money on Obama's website for victims of the huracain is a good ideal. I think he need to check with his leagal staff to make sure it legal.

    I will volunteer for the recovery efforts.

    Can McCain and Palin help in some way?

    August 31, 2008 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  13. What?

    Mickey, NY August 31st, 2008 1:21 pm ET
    The only thing McCain deems "inappropriate" is that all eyes will be on Gustav, and not on the Convention.
    Thinking the same THING..........What about these people that will lose everything they have worked hard to keep during this lousy economy.......ops.......that's right, they will be to busy choosing between their 7 houses to live in............THIS convention is the last thing on their minds.


    August 31, 2008 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  14. Lynn Houston

    Sorry to ask.... But, can't you just see Palin standing in front of the Iraqi and Iranian leaders with those earrings on or with those red and black shoes she had on the other day??? I don't care if this sounds sexist or not... No matter how maverick we want to be, I still believe that there is protocol to consider!!!!!!

    August 31, 2008 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  15. What?

    TO: LU August 31st, 2008 3:16 pm ET............Did you miss this from CO-WORKER?......akwatcher August 29th, 2008 8:42 pm ET
    I live and work in Juneau, Alaska. I know Sarah and many others that know and work with her. We are shocked by this pick. She is an interesting person and did step into a difficult role as a new governor in a state being run by old boys that had lost touch with the people and were making deals behind closed doors. However, we also know this is over her head. She could learn to do the job but she doesn't have what it takes to do it from "day one." I say this as someone that knows her, voted for her and have voted for most of the republicans in Alaska for over 14 years. She is not as "perfect" as McCain will attempt to market her! There is meat on the bones of the mess she is in with the state trooper issue. We also wonder why she waited 7 months to even tell the public, including her staff she was about to have a baby. McCain will say she is popular and I know the numbers say she is. However, this is in part because she followed a governor that was out of touch and didn't care about us. She also just gave us all a $1200 energy dividend on top of our normal dividend. You will also hear that she cut the budget, but that isn't true. The total budget went up 30% this year and she did it by taking advantage of the higher oil revenues and a new tax on oil companies. This will appeal to some dems but I know personally local reps are not happy with it. There is just too many issues and questions that only we in Juneau know about to outline here but I must say knowing her like we do it likely has far more to do with her "look" and being a "women" and he thinks he can market her to win some votes. Bad pick from where I sit and right now that is looking out my window at her governor's house.

    Wow, more Bushian economics at play here. $20 million for 5,400 people is $3,700 per person.

    August 31, 2008 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  16. ran

    People it is so simple this time: Obama/Biden and other Democrats.

    DO IT!

    August 31, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  17. ellen leiken

    I was offended that Maccain was giving orders about what I should do,,, when he is not my President. Further, the vice presidential pick is keeping me up a night worrying for my grandchildren should she become President...

    August 31, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
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