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. bo

    my god is bigger than your god?????
    Can believe these peoples arguments...

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  2. CO

    Is it a surprise that Americans of different races, ethnicities and religions don't feel an affinity for the Republican Party? Just look at those rallies and ask if they represent the diversity of America.

    The outside world is looking at America and its ideals as a big farce– so much for the melting pot, the great American Dream, America as custodians of democracy, and champions of Freedom.....

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  3. Kevin in Rockford IL

    Who are these freaks? John McCain and Sarah Palin are two scary people who are bringing out the Worst in People!

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  4. David

    Again McCain playing dirty politics. I pray and ask God for the best. I pray and ask God to bless Barack Obama.

    Obama 08

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  5. dd11

    I wish this idiot knows that rhetoric like his is putting xtian brothers and sisters in 1raq and other parts of the world in trouble.

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  6. Jeff Edwards

    Rev. Conrad needs to stop advising God about his reputation. God can take care of himself. That is truly pathetic. God is way bigger than Rev. Conrad's insecure little god.

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  7. HumanBeing

    GodForbid...If anything happens to Barack Obama...
    I cannot imagine the repurcussions....
    Why is he allowing this White Supremacist Palin to fuel anger and hatred among human beings just to win an election. If you can't win on issues, you are not fit to be the president of the country.

    Everyone please save yourselves. Don't be surprised if economy takes a back seat and Law & Order becomes an issue.
    STOP McPain from insinuating Violence.

    Ohh dear God please stop them. I can't believe what these people are coming up with...

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  8. Hillary Supporter Jan

    This is very pathetic, Hate is not a christian, God is love and to know God is to love.

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  9. Jen

    How hypobrat american people can be! america should declare itself as christian coutry. not need to tell the world how tolerant and secular is america. coz they are NOT. why is the question of religion is coming at first place in this election? why any candidate has to defend his faith for christanity so much in america? this all shows how hypoccratic american people are. just give up and label yourself as christian country. coz its disgusting when religion plays importance in any politics of any country.

    and really really? come on now. How insulting is it to obama that he has been quesioned about his patriotism. macain should be ashamed of himself for portrayin obama as muslim,terrorist and what not. enough is enough. seriously its disgusting to watch it.

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  10. Barbara Curry

    Barack means – Blessed One
    Hussein meand – Handsome One

    "No weapon formed agaist Barack Obama shall prosper and any tongue that rises up against him in judgement shall be condemned." Isaiah 57:14

    Palin/McCain – you better keep your hands and your mouth off of God's anointed one.

    Barbara Curry – Atlanta, GA

    October 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  11. adele

    And they call themselves Christians. LOL. Who do they worship? The devil. Republicans are a disgrace.

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  12. Suzy of MI

    Looks like McCain is declaring JIHAD on Obama!

    McCain, sleaze you can depend on!

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  13. Independent Voter

    Minister do you mean all the people who are supporting Obama in the USA are non-Chrisrian? Try to be respectiful to other religions.... that is avery offensive statement.

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  14. Obama is at teacher and bullies hate school

    Wow, how awfully looney. Does this man truly believe that God is concerned about his "reputation"???? And McCain is a representative of Christianity and Obama isn't? And that no one from any other religion might possibly support McCain? And that somehow his god is superior to Buddha or Allah? Wow.
    This country is heading for a civil and religious war thanks to John McCain and Sarah Palin.

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  15. PUMBU

    John McCain is going to cause catastrophic disaster in this country. We have enough problems caused by poor republicans adminstration, now McCain is dividing us. McCain is very dangerous, very erratic with the poorest judgement ever!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  16. Barbara Howell

    This is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. I am very much a Christian and I am most certainly voting for Barack Obama. You know what get me, is for the past 2 election the democrats have lost. Well, Gore really won , but circustances beyond our control it was GIVEN to Bush.
    We have lost twice and never did we cry like these Republician are crying. They are so afraid that Barack is going to win this race.
    They are the biggest cry babies. Just like the one gentleman that spoke at one of the Mccain rally said " I am really mad, mad. Well guess what I have been mad for 8 years so join the club mister.

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  17. Harmony


    I'm a Christian and I want Obama to WIN and I know of Millions in America just like me. We are praying that Gods Will be done. Wow

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  18. Hot Rod

    I've had enough of these RADICAL RIGHT WING EXTREMISTS!!!!!!!!!!!

    I'm A Christian and I'm voting for Obama.

    These people are starting to show their true colors!!!!!

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  19. nganenu

    And where is obama's fault/ MacCain saw the seed of hatred and now it is backfiring? Whatever happens to Obama is the fault of Maccain and her histerical Palin. God save America from this couple of radical Ameicans. When I hear Palin and MacCain, I say kkk leaders are "good people". God protect America. There is no place for erratic kkk.

    October 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  20. McCain/Palin is the real bridge to nowhere

    u know. i thought there was this thing. what was this thing called? something like seperation of church and state. so leave the religious stuff out of it. Obama's clearly gonna win. simply because he is better. argue about it all u want to but we all know im right

    October 11, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  21. Farrell, Houston, Tx


    October 11, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  22. jo

    I am christian and I am voting fo Obama.......

    October 11, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  23. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    Mr. Conrad, since when is Hindu a "god"?! Nice having the facts; and you lead a congregation?!

    These are the people I feared would come out of the woodwork!!! Just wait until they point out that Obama is, dare I say it, Black?!?!?!

    October 11, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  24. Anonymous

    I'm a Christian and very much for Obama!

    October 11, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  25. Walt

    WOW!!! I am not even sure what else to say...., but I will try!!! America are you really, really this racist, narrow-minded, and ignorant?

    You went from "kill him" to "non-christians" are praying for his victory. The worse part is the media and McCain's people will treat this as one individual talking crazy. But, I live in AL, and I am here to tell you this is the mindset of the American idiot.

    Sir, the rest of the world already knows of America's ignorance. They do not need Obama to win to confirm it. Obama's loss would only solidify it!!!

    October 11, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
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