Sunday, December 21, 2014

McCain and Palin in Lancaster

The GOP ticket headlines a rally at Franklin and Marshall College

McCain and Palin in Lancaster

The big new star in American politics came to Lancaster. And she brought John McCain along with her.

The Republican ticket drew a frenzied crowd of several thousand to the Alumni Sports & Fitness Center at Franklin and Marshall College, chanting "Sar-ah, Sar-ah" and a few other things. Looking over the throng, McCain declared: "You convinced me, more and more. We will win the state of Pennsylvania."

Recent polls show Barack Obama leading McCain in the state by 5 to 7 points. But all of those polls were taken before the conventions and before the national movement toward the Republicans. So they may well be out of date. McCain continues to devote a tremendous amount of time and effort to Pennsylvania. He has an economic summit planned Wednesday afternoon in Philadelphia. And the tenor of this rally left little doubt that the Republican base in Pennsylvania is now truly energized.

Both McCain and Sarah Palin continued to push their change theme. Said McCain, "We're the ones who will change Washington. She's the one who changed Alaska."

Despite news reports indicating that Palin once supported the infamous Bridge to Nowhere in Alaska, a project which McCain has said is the prime example of wasteful government spending, Palin repeated her statement that she helped kill it. "I told Congress, `Thanks, but no thanks on that Bridge to Nowhere. If the state wanted a bridge, we'd build it ourselves."

Said Obama campaign spokesman Tommy Vietor: “On the same day that dozens of news organizations have exposed Governor Palin’s phony Bridge to Nowhere claim as a ‘naked lie,’ she and John McCain continue to repeat the claim in their stump speeches.  Maybe tomorrow she’ll tell us she sold it on eBay.”

In his speech, which was no longer than Palin's, McCain made constant references to her, concluding, "With the help of this running mate, this stalwart and great Americans, we will always put our country first. I will never let you down!"



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The Inauguration: Jan. 20 blog brings you coverage of President-elect Barack Obama's transition into office.

It's written by political journalists from the Philadelphia Inquirer. Send us your comments -- and news tips -- at this address.

Thomas FitzgeraldThomas Fitzgerald joined The Philadelphia Inquirer in 2000, and has covered Harrisburg as well as city, state and national politics for the newspaper. He was a “boy on the bus” in the 2004 presidential campaign and during primary contests in 2000 and 1996.

Nathan Gorenstein has covered politics and government in the city, state and nation for the Inquirer. He's worked in the city hall bureau, had a stint on the business desk, and once covered the suburbs. After serving as assistant regional editor, he was named editor of the "Politics" web site.

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