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

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

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/11/art.obama07.gi.jpg caption="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. fran

    I have been a resident of Arizona for 40 years! I have seen Senator McCain"s trials and tribulations with the "Keating Five" who he should have been slaughtered over. I saw his wife Cindy get in to deep trouble by stealing drugs from the very charity she was backing. Her father was a VERY wealthy man . At that time the State was Republican . Now we have progressed to having a Democratic Govenor for whatever praise she has gained.? I was here during the Barry Goldwater bandwagon that I did not believe one "whit"!

    My observations of the last debate just furthered my opinion on "What a small man MCCain is ." Truly, he is as big a Momma's boy, whiner and egomanic as his predecessor-George Bush that he desperately wants to divorice hi;mself from. He wants to be President no matter what it takes. You all remember when we all admired him when he was indeed a maveric. We also remember how he has "returned to Bushes ideas "to gain the approval of the "religious majority". It has crossed my mind that it would be a switch. He would be Cheney and Palin would be as dumb as George Bush!! It would indeed be "MORE OF THE SAME."

    It is an OLD WARRIORS –last stand! I don't doubt his devotion but I do doubt his abilities and mental acuity in these trying times. It is going to take a clear headed young and educated mind to be able to
    fully understand our options.

    For hi;m to send his wife out to complain about funding her son in Iraq and Palin to jump hi;m on Roe vs Wade hits way below any Presidential debate I have ever heard. And I am 82 and have certainly been around for many! It is a desperate ploy from a desparate man that desperately thinks he deserves to be President

    October 12, 2008 02:31 am at 2:31 am |
  2. Ronin O

    Wow thats really funny to hear that.. because im pretty sure we are all god's children.

    October 12, 2008 02:31 am at 2:31 am |
  3. Kayla W

    I am a 'Chrisitan'
    (which, I use that term lightly since it is so abused)
    and I am voting for Obama.
    And I am praying, to the same God as them,
    that he wins...

    This is such crap.
    Talk about right wing, fearful, republican, Crazy conservatives...
    absolutely ridiculous and Intolerant.

    Read your Bible.. Jesus didn't 'love' like this.
    This is hate and fear.
    The God I know, doesn't promote hate and fear.

    October 12, 2008 02:31 am at 2:31 am |
  4. Laura Paquian

    I love "Christians"! First, they prayed for Obama's outdoor acceptance speech in Denver to be rained out, now they're praying for an Obama defeat. Try this out for size "Christians".........I believe in God, I am on active duty in the U. S. Navy, and I PROUDLY support Sen. Obama and his change message.

    Laura Paquian

    October 12, 2008 02:33 am at 2:33 am |
  5. Rebecca Lehr

    My husband and I recently made a trip to Norway. We attended a music service in a small Anglican church there. After the service I had a conversation with one of the musicians, which turned to a discussion of US politics and the presidential election. She indicated to me that she prays every day for our election and her hope for a new direction. As I am an Obama supporter, we talked about how different things would be should he win the election. She also said that she will continue to pray for us, for our leader, and his safety. So you see, Christians also pray for Barack Obama.

    October 12, 2008 02:37 am at 2:37 am |
  6. Heff4444

    I feel sorry for the mininster if Obama wins. How crushed he will feel. But does that mean HIS God is lessor a God in his eyes? I wonder if there is a giant board of directors table in the sky where all of the Gods of the various religions sit and mull over the question "My god is the REAL God?"

    October 12, 2008 03:09 am at 3:09 am |
  7. Amsterdam

    3 more weeks to go and we will be hearing lots more of this kind of retoric. especially the religious kind. our god is better than yours? who is he? where is he? fiction , thats what it is .....use your common sense and vote OBAMA. ;;;HE HAS T ALL!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 12, 2008 03:13 am at 3:13 am |
  8. Kerry

    As a pastor what he should be doing is reaching out to non-believers and that is not the way to do it. I am a conservative christian and I pray daily for each candidate. Might I add I will be voting for Obama/Biden.

    October 12, 2008 03:18 am at 3:18 am |
  9. Chris-n-San Jose

    This minister does not even know Jesus. If he did he would not be focusing on non-sense and speaking foolishly like he did. Those that truely know God are not concerned about an election. God's people are concerned about the poor, the widow, the orphan, things that relate to the Kingdom of Heaven.

    This is a good example of a person trying to use the term Christian to control peoples minds. Believe me when I say this, that minister does not know God. He has created a false god in his head that he attributes to Christianity.

    October 12, 2008 04:15 am at 4:15 am |
  10. doesn't matter

    The republicans / conservatives sound like modern day Pharisees and Sadducees! ~An intelligent Christian voting for Obama

    October 12, 2008 04:20 am at 4:20 am |
  11. mel

    i am a muslim and i am voting for mccain please dont think you know how any religion votes

    October 12, 2008 05:58 am at 5:58 am |
  12. Stephy

    I am a christian, I am active in the church and I believe in God Almighty. I am offended the because I support Obama my religous beliefs are in question. Doesn't the bible tell us not to judge others lest we be judged. well McCain/Palin apparently don't know it.


    October 12, 2008 07:07 am at 7:07 am |
  13. Dane

    Remember what happened the last time a pastor asked us to pray. he ask us to pray for heavy and unusual rain on Obama's acceptance speech...and what happened, God blessed us with beautiful skies and a large turn out....fast forward it a few weeks later when the RNC had their convention...do you remember the weather. I think you pastors need to be a little more carefull of what you pray for. I have seen Barack Obama preach sermons in several churches. I have yet seen Sen John McCain preach a sermon. I pray that God continues to bless him, and us in all of our endeavors

    October 12, 2008 07:13 am at 7:13 am |
  14. Can we please elect an intelligent person !

    I pray we change direction fast. We will have problems , serious problems if we continue with the same ideas and policy.
    I pray for an Obama/Biden win thank you

    October 12, 2008 07:15 am at 7:15 am |
  15. jd

    That's why I don't go to church anymore I guess you got to be white or GOD want let you in heaven. these people have no values they hold on to power scaring people with the bible. I refuse to listen to a 2 dollar preacher. who try to preach and be racist at the same time

    October 12, 2008 07:25 am at 7:25 am |
  16. Daniel

    I am a christian from nigeria and would like the rev. 2 know dat here in nigeria we pray 4 obama on a daily basis so dat he wins d election and put an end 2 d crises in iraq dat is threatening 2 birth d much feared III WORLD WAR.But if mccain wins he'l declare war 4 even a pick-pocket case.For me Obama means world peace.

    October 12, 2008 07:59 am at 7:59 am |
  17. 2XVET

    Obama teaches respect. McCain teaches hate.

    October 12, 2008 08:17 am at 8:17 am |
  18. C

    The McCain group is now sounds like an old soap opera. I am a Christian, and I most definitely will be voting for Obama. He and his family are in my prayers.

    October 12, 2008 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  19. Dev

    It seems to me that both Christians and non-Christians are praying for Obama win.

    October 12, 2008 08:48 am at 8:48 am |
  20. jeff

    Praying to an invisible man in the sky for an Obama loss just continues to show that McCain supporters bring down the national IQ level.

    October 12, 2008 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  21. DonnieJ

    Pastor Conrad, God thinks you're stupid.

    October 12, 2008 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  22. kevin heard

    The Good Pastor would do well to speak only for himself and not God. God does'nt preach the kind of hate and devisiveness that these "preachers" do. This country needs Barack Obama at this time in it's history. The timing is perfect and you can sense that it is God's will.

    October 12, 2008 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  23. ulric

    I am a believer not a so call christian, god create us all and gave us free will but the choices these christians are making violate the basic of the bible. judge not that ye may be judged, who are these folk saying that christian want mccain to win while other religion want obama to win? do these folk has any conscience left in there soul? it interesting to note how some blacks, whites, hispanics and other profess to believe god and spew hate more than those who they (christians) call pagan.

    October 12, 2008 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  24. king

    christianity is the most hipocritcal religion of them all

    October 12, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
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