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Press Release - What They're Saying About John McCain's Address To The Republican National Convention

September 05, 2008

John McCain -- "The Maverick"

Boston Globe: John McCain Accepted His Nomination "With A Promise To Shake Up Washington." "Senator John McCain, returning to the themes that saved his once flailing presidential quest, last night accepted the Republican nomination with a promise to shake up Washington with a bipartisan strategy and patriotic flair, warning political stalwarts that 'change is coming.'" (Susan Milligan, "A Pledge Of Bipartisanship," Boston Globe, 9/5/08)

The New York Post: "John McCain Last Night Returned To His Maverick Roots." "Having comfortably shored up the Republican base with Sarah Palin, John McCain last night returned to his maverick roots - accepting the party's nomination with an appeal to the moderates and independents outside the party who've been the foundation of his political career." (Charles Hurt, "Rebel Reaches Beyond Party Lines," New York Post, 9/5/08)

The New York Post: "And, equally incendiary among many conservatives, McCain regaled Republicans with tales of so many of his efforts at reaching across the aisle on thorny issues - which drove his colleagues bonkers." (Charles Hurt, "Rebel Reaches Beyond Party Lines," New York Post, 9/5/08)

CBS' Jeff Glor: "John McCain Is A Republican Who During A Lot Of His Speech, Sounded Like An Independent, Stressing Above All That He's A Reformer." (CBS' "The Early Show," 9/5/08)

CNN's David Gergen: John McCain Saying He Will Be "Your Warrior In Washington Worked For Him." "One, the recounting of his days in that prison. I don't think he's ever done it in quite so much detail before a large public audience. And it was moving and it helped set up very nicely the character point that Alex was making a few moments ago. People do vote to a significant degree upon the character of the candidates. And here, he was able to really underscore the argument. First I was a warrior overseas, now I'm going to be your warrior in Washington. And I thought that worked for him." (CNN's "CNN Election Center," 9/4/08)

Fox News'Juan Williams: "And when he spoke about bipartisanship, again he said, 'I have the scars.' And I think that was a shot at Senator Obama, saying, you know, 'I really have been in the pits battling for immigration reforms and scarred by his own party.'" (Fox News' "American Election Headquarters," 9/4/08)

The New York Times' David Brooks: John McCain's Passion For Change "Led To The Crescendo Of Raw Energy That Marked This Convention's Conclusion." "Through it all, he communicated his burning indignation at the way Washington has operated over the last 12 years. He communicated his intense passion to lift government to a plane the country deserves. He did note that he has fought to change the Republican Party during its period of decay. And he diagnosed that decay Thursday night (to the tepid applause of the faithful). And this passion for change, combined with his proven and evident integrity, led to the crescendo of raw energy that marked this convention's conclusion." (David Brooks, "A Glimpse Of The New," The New York Times, 9/5/08)

The Washington Post: Sen. McCain Offered Himself As An "Imperfect Servant Who Will Never Surrender In His Fight To Change Washington." "Sen. John McCain of Arizona completed a long and often improbable journey to the Republican presidential nomination Thursday night, offering himself as an 'imperfect servant' who will never surrender in his fight to change Washington and the country." (Robert Barnes, "'Change Is Coming,' McCain Says," The Washington Post, 9/5/08)

The Washington Post: John McCain "Burnished His Reputation As A Truth-Teller In Congress." "He burnished his reputation as a truth-teller in Congress, telling delegates he had 'fought corruption, and it didn't matter if the culprits were Democrats or Republicans. They violated their public trust, and had to be held accountable.'" (Robert Barnes, "'Change Is Coming,' McCain Says," The Washington Post, 9/5/08)

The Wall Street Journal: John McCain Pledged To "Rise Above Washington's Acrimony." "Sen. John McCain claimed the Republican party nomination he has sought for almost a decade by pledging to rise above Washington's acrimony as president and strike a new tone by reaching across partisan divides." (Gerald Seib and Laura Meckler, "McCain Vows End To 'Rancor,' Betting On Maverick Appeal," The Wall Street Journal, 9/5/08)

The Wall Street Journal Editorial: John McCain "Remains A Formidable Contender Because He Can Credibly Claim To Be A Reformer." "Yet Mr. McCain remains a formidable contender -- in part because of his opponent's weaknesses, but also because he can credibly claim to be a reformer who often fought his party's worst instincts, notably on spending and immigration." (Editorial, "The McCain Change," The Wall Street Journal, 9/5/08)

CNN's Anderson Cooper: John McCain "Offered More Specifics Than We Heard" From Barack Obama. "But certainly from John McCain, we heard in his acceptance speech, a lot of specifics, arguably more specific than we heard in Barack Obama's acceptance speech. After several nights, where many commentators said were lacking in specifics." (CNN's, "CNN Election Center," 9/4/08)

CNN's Campbell Brown: John McCain Spoke About The Economy "In A Very Personalized Way." "Yes, I think you're right. And there was all this talk I think before the speech about how much he needed to focus on the economy because that's perceived by many to be his weakness. And I thought when he went through it at the beginning, he did it in a very personalized way or a way in which he tried to say to people, telling people stories individually, I feel your pain, I connect with you, I hear you, which had been one of the criticisms going into those." (CNN's, "CNN Election Center," 9/4/08)

The Wall Street Journal Editorial: "Moreover, Mr. McCain Is Proposing A Policy Agenda That Really Would Shake Up The Status Quo." (Editorial, "The McCain Change," The Wall Street Journal, 9/5/08)

The Wall Street Journal: John McCain "Spoke Bluntly And At Length Of The Economic Concerns Of Middle-Income Americans." "Substantively, Sen. McCain, whose strength as a candidate is his national-security experience and expertise, spoke bluntly and at length of the economic concerns of middle-income Americans -- directly taking on the theme Sen. Obama increasingly has made the centerpiece of his campaign." (Gerald Seib and Laura Meckler, "McCain Vows End To 'Rancor,' Betting On Maverick Appeal," The Wall Street Journal, 9/5/08)

Rich Lowry: John McCain Is "Exactly Where He Heeds To Be." "But as a basis of the fall campaign, it puts McCain exactly where he needs to be - Johnny the Fighter, on a last mission to protect the people's interest in Washington." (Rich Lowry, "The Right Themes," New York Post, 9/5/08)

The Denver Post Editorial: "As McCain Left The Stage, He Left A Republican Party That Was Not Only United Behind His Candidacy But Suddenly Thrilled By It." (Editorial, "McCain Reaches To The Middle," Denver Post, 9/5/08)

NBC's David Gregory: "Senator McCain Emerges From This Convention The Head Of A More United And Enthusiastic Republican Party." (NBC's "Today," 9/5/08)

Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol: "I Would Say They Have Come Out Of These Two Weeks In Pretty Good Shape Going Into The Final Two Months." (FOX News' "On The Record," 9/4/08)

John McCain Energizes

FOX News' Megyn Kelly: "Intense Reaction" From The Crowd. "I'll tell you, watching this crowd during John McCain's speech, they had an intense reaction to him, Brit. They were very focused on every word he said. You got the sense that they wanted to love him. It wasn't the kind of love that may have been there initially, but they were rooting for him, and I tell you what, as the speech went on, he got them." (Fox News' "American Election Headquarters," 9/4/08)

The New York Post: John McCain "Had The GOP Faithful On Their Feet." "McCain had the GOP faithful on their feet when he vowed to wean America off foreign oil." (Carl Campanile, "Fierce War Cry For McChange," New York Post, 9/5/08)

The Denver Post Editorial: John McCain "Brought The Crowd In St. Paul To Its Feet." "But toward the end of his speech, as he implored delegates and Americans to stand up and fight with him to fight 'for what's right for our country .. for our children's future' McCain brought the crowd in St. Paul to its feet." (Editorial, "McCain Reaches To The Middle," Denver Post, 9/5/08)

John McCain's Powerful Life Story Of Serving This Country

Boston Globe: John McCain "Spoke Movingly" About His Life Story. "McCain spoke movingly about his years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, and how it changed him from a selfish and brash young man to a mature 'servant' of his country. 'I've never lived a day, in good times or in bad, that I don't thank God for that privilege,' he said." (Susan Milligan, "A Pledge Of Bipartisanship," Boston Globe, 9/5/08)

Larry Sabato: "The strength of that speech was the biography part of it because it's so powerful, that story about his time in the prisoner-of-war camp. I thought he was also very credible again in his role as a maverick. That's the real John McCain. Look, do you know, this is the first time ever that I can remember or know about in history that a party nominee condemned in part his own party? He went after congressional Republicans in particular for overspending. That was all very credible." (FOX News' "America's Newsroom," 9/5/08)

The New York Post: John McCain "Ended In A Patriotic Flourish." "McCain, sounding Churchillian, ended in a patriotic flourish. He mentioned the word 'fight' or 'fighting' 24 times, with activists so fired up, they drowned out some of his lines. 'Fight for what's right for our country . . . Stand up, stand up. We're Americans and we never give up,' he said." (Carl Campanile, "Fierce War Cry For McChange," New York Post, 9/5/08)

Rich Lowry: John McCain "Joined His Traditional Theme Of Patriotic Service To A Message Of Change." "McCain joined his traditional theme of patriotic service to a message of change and work-a-day populism given new oomph by his pick of the GOP's new popular hero, Sarah Palin. He buttressed these themes with his personal narrative, of sacrifice in Vietnam and of service to country rather than party in Washington." (Rich Lowry, "The Right Themes," New York Post, 9/5/08)

The Rocky Mountain News Editorial: "Most Memorable, Deeply Felt And Authentic Moments Of His Speech Occurred When He Spoke Of His Love For His Country." "Without a doubt, though, the most memorable, deeply felt and authentic moments of his speech occurred when he spoke of his love for his country and dedication to the concept of service. And the reason is obvious: his utterly compelling life story, defined by captivity and torture in Vietnam." (Editorial, "McCain Brings Back The Maverick," The Rocky Mountain News, 9/5/08)

Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol: John McCain "Moving" At The End. "McCain's life speaks for itself, in the sense that the eloquence at the end of the speech was not eloquence in a way, it was just the facts of what had happened, narrated by McCain in a pretty straightforward way. It wasn't an artificially eloquent way, but it was moving." (FOX News' "On The Record," 9/4/08)

John McCain, Press Release - What They're Saying About John McCain's Address To The Republican National Convention Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/292140

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