October 31st, 2008
11:00 AM ET
14 years ago

Mike Ditka hits the campaign trail with Palin

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/10/27/palin.tension/art.palin.gi.jpg caption=" Sarah Palin is campaigning with Mike Ditka on Friday."]
LATROBE, Pennsylvania (CNN) - Barack Obama may be one of America’s most famous Chicago Bears fans, but the team’s legendary former coach Mike Ditka isn’t returning the sentiment - he’s campaigning with Sarah Palin.

Ditka, who also coached the New Orleans Saints and is now an analyst on ESPN, hit the trail with Palin on Friday in western Pennsylvania, where he was born and raised.

“Thing I know about Pennsylvania, you're great people, you're hardworking people,” Ditka said, introducing Palin in Latrobe. “No-nonsense people, and that's what this is all about. I'm not here because I'm a Republican, which I am, and I'm not here because I'm a conservative, which I am. I'm here because I am an American.”

Ditka proceeded to challenge Obama’s campaign mantra.

“We talk about change,” Ditka said. “Change from what, to what, and how? How you gonna do anything? Don’t talk about what you’re going to do, prove you can do something! If we're smart, the only option we have is to elect John McCain and Sarah Palin. Put ‘em in the White House, and let ‘em redirect where we're going.”

It's not the first time Ditka and Barack Obama have found themselves on opposing teams - the mustaschioed Super Bowl winner saw his name floated in the 2004 Illinois senate race as a possible Republican opponent to Obama.

Departing somewhat from John McCain's argument that failures on Wall Street and in Washington have imperiled the American worker, Ditka argued that anyone seeking employment can find a job - as long as they’re willing to make an effort.

“This is the land of opportunity,” he said. “It's not a land of handouts. If you’re willing to work, you can find a job. If you're willing to work, you can find a job.”


Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (506 Responses)
  1. JMac

    If Palin was not good looking, would she have been picked by McCain? She's an empty suit.

    October 31, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  2. Len Albuq New Mexico

    mikey just wants some eskimo pie

    October 31, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  3. Bridgette-PA

    "MIKE DICKA" Give me a break! This is becoming more and more of a joke. Four days to election day, and this is all they got. "BIG DOG" "MIKE DICKA". LOL, I'LL SICK KEITH OBERMAN ON HIM 🙂

    OBAMA/BIDEN -08!

    October 31, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  4. Tina

    Okay Mike Ditka, Joe the so called Plummber, Tito the builder, compared to Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Caroline Kennedy, Al Gore,
    almost all of HOLLYWOOD...........Actually you can't compare............

    October 31, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  5. Ditka

    I am here because I am a Multi Millionaire and do not want to pay a tiny increase in taxes even for the good of my Country. In other words , yes a Republican.

    October 31, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  6. Dealt, Portugal

    If Ditka doesn't know yet what voters want change from then maybe he should stick with the McCain/ palin ticket. They don't know either...

    As to how... well, I guess McCain/ Palin plan on doing whatever they plan to do by cutting on the White House budget for cutting drapes. They keep harping on that obvious lie. McCain sounds so very, very, silly...

    McCain picked Palin, then the picked Joe the plumber (a guy who apparently represents america and is behind on taxes? wow... ). A guy who doesn't know that the state (in each one of its many forms) has always redistributed wealth... after all he uses the same roads taxpayers use, demands ffrom the police the same protection that taxpayers do, etc.

    October 31, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  7. az voter

    This just proves that American heros of all walks can be led astray by the radical right agenda. First Sen. McCain and now Ditka. Who's next? Superman?

    October 31, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  8. Kina, A Veteran in NYC

    ok...i ain't really bothered by what Mike Ditka says...but i'm very concerned for the ppl who actually listen to him say things like that about Americans...wowww...and i thought picking Gov. Palin as VP was Sen. McCain's biggest mistake...i guess i was wrong...hahaha...way to go Mavericks...hahaha...

    Obama/Biden 08

    Kina.

    October 31, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  9. RS

    WOW!

    October 31, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  10. Nawlins Dawlin...

    Where is McCain's flag pin...???

    What if:

    Obama had a pregnant teenage daughter
    A wife with no degree (formal education)
    A child with downs syndrom
    Killed animals for fun

    October 31, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  11. GA for Obama

    Noah- Obama has 3. McCain has 4 HARD RIGHT-WING SECS OF STATE.

    October 31, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  12. norb

    Ditka needs to stay in Chicago slinging his pork chops.

    October 31, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  13. VA for Obama

    Oh great, another loafing millionaire for McCain/Palin, the super rich pair that think they know what its like for average americans.

    “This is the land of opportunity,” he said. “It's not a land of handouts. If you’re willing to work, you can find a job. If you're willing to work, you can find a job.”

    Look around you, Ditka. The wheels are falling off. And thanks to the economics of the GOP, nobody wants to hire because they are scared its going to get worse. Meanwhile, what do you do? Work in television? Star in Will Ferrel movies??? GIVE ME A BREAK

    these people dont know what its like to make their own way in the world. They all had something spoon fed to them. I dont see too many people around me with seven homes or hiring helecopters to shoot wolves from.

    October 31, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  14. J.P.

    Pete:

    And, Obama will get your friend his 85K job back? Wow, you drank more kool-aid than I thought.

    October 31, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  15. Ted

    Nobody will accept the fact that the Democrats caused most of the problem with the economy. The Congress has been controlled for years by the Democrats and they have none absolutely nothing. The Democratic controlled Congress had a chance to fix Fannie Mae years ago but they decided to ignore the problem. We need a Republican president or the Democrats will finish destroying this economy with big spending.

    October 31, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  16. keith-new haven

    Great, now we have Mike the Coach.

    October 31, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  17. Tim

    So Mike Dikta believes that the folks that are ourt of work can't find work because they don't want to. He is just as out of touch as John McCain is!!!!! Sorry Mike!! But you are no more help to McCain than Joe the Freeloader!!!

    October 31, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  18. Matt

    Mike Ditka says it is easy to find job. well, it used to be like that. Not anymore. The company that I work for, just announced 3000 more lay offs. I am not sure where he is getting his news.

    October 31, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  19. curtis

    Isn't using the bailout money to buy out failed mortages Socialism? It takes my tax dollars and gives it to Joe the malingerer down the street does it not? What a double standard.

    October 31, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  20. Lisa

    Another angry old man, yes that is just what that ticket needs!!!Go Mike, I am sure there is someone in the crowd you could beat up!!

    October 31, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  21. What a Dikta!

    So are we going to see Palin & Ditka in 2012? LMAO.

    October 31, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  22. Chi4Obama

    Barack Obama receives ringing endorsments from people like Colin Powell, Warren Buffet, and even top Republican leaders. Yes, key party leaders from "both sides of the aisle".

    Meanwhile people like Mike Ditka, and Joe the Plumber (who is not really a plumber) have endorsed McCAin.

    Hmmm,
    I wonder which endorsements have more credibility.

    October 31, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  23. jim

    Hey Ditka, I'm an American too. I don't appreciate you eluding to the fact that Republican Conservatives are the only few deemed worth of the title "American". You're insulting all of us. I'm not stupid enough to vote for McCain/Palin. Might be those head injuries you suffered during your career that brought you to their "Joe (actually not his real name) The Non-Licensed, tax evading, lean on his house, only making $40k a year and can't afford to buy his company, doesn't show up for campaign events when invited, the Plumber" ticket. Get a life, buddy. I'm voting for Obama.

    October 31, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  24. gl, Pittsburgh

    This is the land of opportunity,” he said. “It's not a land of handouts. If you’re willing to work, you can find a job. If you're willing to work, you can find a job.”

    Yea, for Wall Street but not for Main Street.

    October 31, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  25. RS

    Out of touch.

    October 31, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
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