“The time for choosing is drawing near,” said Cindy McCain, at a rally at the National Constitution Center yesterday.
McCain, the wife of Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, appeared with former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani and First Lady of Louisiana Supriya Jindal in front of a few hundred supporters.
McCain praised her husband’s attributes. She said a good president needs experience, leadership and character, and he has those characteristics. McCain added her husband has been serving his country since he was 17 years old and noted his prisoner of war experience in Northern Vietnam.
“It takes a man like that to be a president,” McCain said. “It takes a man like that to give us what he has, and my husband is that man.”
Giuliani introduced McCain at the rally and said America has challenging times ahead and the country needs a man like her husband.
“John McCain is a great man. He’s a great man by the things he’s done for our country,” Giuliani said. “He’s proven that his country comes first.”
Jindal said America is the greatest country in the world with the hardest working and the most caring people. She said the presidential nominee is a great American to serve the country.
The crowd cheered as McCain called her husband a reformer who is more than talk and will bring change to the nation.
“Only my husband is offering change and can bring us change,” McCain said. “We need a president who will stand up for the interests of Joe the plumber, and this is John the reformer.”
She discussed her husband’s plan for energy independence, the need for more off-shore drilling, nuclear and solar power and clean coal technology.
“Thousands of Pennsylvania jobs depend on clean coal technology and our opponent is against it,” McCain said. “John McCain and Sarah Palin have a different view and you can count on them.”
Republican vice presidential candidate Gov. Sarah Palin and her family received high praises from McCain. She said Palin’s family is refreshing.
“Isn’t Sarah Palin a wonderful choice for vice president?” McCain said. “She is the perfect choice. She is a reformer and a maverick.”
McCain said between her family and the Palins they have three sons serving currently in the military.
She said she never had been prouder and more honored to be an American than when she saw her son leave for deployment. McCain thanked Pennsylvanians who have children serving all over the world.
Janet Burleigh, a Republican supporter, said she attended Monday’s event to learn more about the McCains. She said she thought Cindy McCain was wonderful.
“She really emphasized the need for someone with John McCain’s experience, and how he physically served our country,” Burleigh said.
The man known as “America’s Mayor” discussed the importance of taking care of the country first and McCain’s charitable works.
“She’s a woman who has given back so much to the United States and the world,” Giuliani said.
Before the rally began, a presentation featured photos and videos of McCain’s humanitarian efforts. In 1991, during a trip to Bangladesh, she met a baby girl who needed medical treatment and later adopted her. Photos of McCain’s childhood and marriage to the senator were also shown.
Jonathon Jacobs, on vacation from Lansing, Mich., said he attended the rally to learn more about the political process.
“I’m not really sure if I’m for or against her,” Jacobs said. “But I wanted to know about what she’s going to do because I want to be proud to be an American.”
McCain’s closing comments focused on her husband’s determination and love of his country.
“This is the man who said he would rather lose an election than lose a war. He is the man I want my sons serving under on active duty,” McCain said. “I am proud and honored to call him my husband, the father of my children and my best friend.”
LeAnne Matlach can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.