John McCain came to Philadelphia for lunch today. He flew into the airport at 2 p.m., motorcaded into the Down Home Diner in the Reading Terminal Market, ate with seven working women, made a statement, and went back to the airport.
This was a strange event. The candidate's lunch with the women was private. So we have no idea what they talked about. And the statement he made when it was over was largely drowned out by several dozen supporters of Barack Obama chanting "O-ba-ma, O-ba-ma!" They were in the main part of the market, out of sight but certainly not out of earshot.
As best I could hear, McCain said he was glad to have the chance to meet with these women, saluted the role of small business in the economy, and said that his policies were the ones that would help the economy grow.
"Sen. Obama will raise taxes on small business and refuses to drill off-shore...We'll provide a tax cut for every family with a child. We're going to fix the economy and clean up the mess in Washington."
The senator was accompanied by his wife, Cindy, though not by his running mate, Sarah Palin. Earlier in the day, after a rally in Fairfax, Va., Palin left for Alaska; her son is to be ship off to Iraq tomorrow.
McCain shook off the Obama chanting: "We had a great time in Philadelphia. Pennsylvania's a battleground state, as you can tell."
And then he was gone.
Later, Gov. Rendell appeared and vehemently protested McCain's campaign ads. Inquirer staff writer Lisa Helmreich reported:
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