September 28, 2007

John McCain Conference Call

John McCain conducted another in his series of blogger conference calls this afternoon, and I had the chance to participate. It took a few minutes to get the conference going, but he did make it from his Detroit speech to the Hispanic business community. McCain talked about entrepeneurship and the need to get government out of the way of private enterprise.

He said that he's still pleased with the status of his candidacy. He's even more pleased that the leading Democrats would not commit to a date certain for withdrawal even before 2013. He says that General Petraeus gave a good case for continued commitment, and took the fight out of the Democrats over their demand for a withdrawal timeline. Ryan Crocker represents "the best" of what we have have to offer in the foreign service.

McCain also came out in favor of the new sanctions from George Bush against Burma. He wants ASEAN to expel Burma, and he wants to press China to isolate Burma as well. McCain keeps a picture of Aung Sang Suu Kyi on his wall to remind him of the need for action to defeat the "thugs" who run Burma.


Jennifer Rubin - Looking at the polls, New Hampshire looks good, Iowa not so well. How's the money going? -- Money is good, but budgeting is better. "A comfortable amount to do what we have to do" is how he characterizes it. Iowa is a tough fight, but he plans on contending for it.

Dan - Next month marks the 40th anniversary of McCain's shootdown over North Vietnam. Will he do something to commemorate it? -- "Maybe I'll fly over Hanoi and see if they want to shoot at me." He doesn't plan on anything else.

James Joyner - On Burma, what sort of action do you have in mind? -- Tell the Chinese to stop supporting the regime and do it publicly. Call on ASEAN to throw Burma out of the group. It has failed to affect the regime's policies, and they should not benefit from membership. Get the UN to start putting pressure on the regime. He doesn't mean an invasion of Burma.

Me - On the Morgan College/PBS debate -- McCain really did have a schedule conflict, he would have wanted to negotiate another debate. He will rest on his record on his efforts to make all Americans, including blacks, successful, especially in the military. He will continue his advocacy for all Americans; he has championed Martin Luther King day in Arizona, for instance. Republicans need to keep hammering the themes on free markets, punishing discrimination, and so on.

Jim Geraghty - None of the top three Democrats would guarantee a withdrawal of combat troops by 2013. Is this the Petraeus effect? -- It's "absolutely" the Petraeus effect. We have troops all over the world, and Americans don't mind that. The key is having the chance for success. We need to have the combat under control. McCain says he's encouraged.

Philip Klein - Hillary proposed giving a $5000 check to every baby born in America -- McCain would be interested in knowing how to pay for it. Why not $100,000, McCain says, as long as we're talking government largesse? That's not a harsh or cruel question to ask.

Fausta Wertz - As a Hispanic entrepeneur herself, how would you lower the barriers in the marketplace, especially government costs? -- McCain says we need to get rid of excess spending, and the corruption it brings. If we can get spending under control, then we can hand off a decent economic situation to future generations. We need to re-establish the credibility of Congress. There's been a tremendous erosion of trust from the American people in Congress.

McCain has really set the bar for blogospheric engagement in these conference calls. I'd like to see more of these from other Republican candidates.


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Senator John McCain held one of his regular conference calls with bloggers. McCain’s prepared remarks focused on a speech he’s making today in Detroit to the Hispanic business community, his satisfaction in having beaten back Democrats in t... [Read More]

Comments (7)

Posted by Carol Herman | September 28, 2007 1:22 PM

First, the GOP senators need to get rid of Larry Craig.

When they do that, then, maybe, I'll think any one of those dodo birds makes presidential timber.

Posted by mrlynn | September 28, 2007 5:58 PM

Did anyone ask McCain if he's had any second thoughts about McCain-Feingold?

Would he offer legislation to repeal it?

/Mr Lynn

Posted by Rose | September 29, 2007 1:47 AM

Posted by mrlynn | September 28, 2007 5:58 PM

Did anyone ask McCain if he's had any second thoughts about McCain-Feingold?

Would he offer legislation to repeal it?

/Mr Lynn


He expressed disappointment over the part the Supreme Court struck down to give us back a TASTE of Freedom of Speech.

I'm sure if HE does ANYTHING in THAT neighborhood, he'll tell the Dims he's ready to sign another "Fairness Doctrine"!!!

Posted by Rose | September 29, 2007 1:56 AM

I've seen nothing of McCain that makes me think the Arizona GOP Caucus has any regrets for their UNANIMOUS CENSURING of him at the time of his last re-election race for the Senate, which required the DIMS to put him over!

And because I live near enough to the Mexico border in Texas, I have a lot of reason to agree with them.

He can dream on!

Posted by hilltopman | September 29, 2007 3:52 PM

Re: Hillary's $5,000 per birth proposal. We shouldn't be so quick to criticize. Now, when we look at all the scare about the baby boomers retirements, Social Security, etc., an increasing population of taxpayers is the obvious solution. Think of it: With a $5,000 bonus for each new baby, our annual birthrate should climb by about 20%. Then, after a few years, we could compete with China on cheap goods, not worry about immigration reforms (who would want to come?) etc. Give Hillary a break. Just because she didn't observe all these practical benefits...

Posted by Brad Marston | September 30, 2007 3:16 AM

Mr. Lynn and Rose,

I was also on the call and actually no one did ask Senator McCain about McCain-Feingold. However, if they had I think he would have answered the same way he did at a recent Town Hall meeting in Merrimack NH. "After the bribery and corruption scandals of the last few years, is anyone really arguing that there is too LITTLE money in politics?"

No one asked him about McCain-Kennedy either. If they had I am sure he would have said that "There are not 20 million pairs of handcuffs in the United States."

We are never going to deport all the illegal aliens. So let's secure the borders, secure the airports and ports, crack down on people overstaying their visas, identify them and then give them an opportunity to gain legal status and/or citizenship.

I think Senator McCain believes that the people of the US are great enough to absorb and assimilate immigration both legal and illegal and he believes we need to stop the illegal immigration and deal with those already here in a reasonable way.

Posted by Seattle | October 1, 2007 1:15 AM

I second what Brad has so eloquently written above. McCain's making a comeback, and as he does, a lot of GOP-leaning Independents will be taking another look. I think they'll see the same guy they supported in 2000, and will get get behind him again this time around.

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