McCain asks NH voters for 1 more comeback win
Posted: Wednesday, October 22, 2008 10:58 pm
GOFFSTOWN, N.H. (AP) — Republican John McCain today implored New Hampshire voters “to come out one more time” on his behalf, as the two-time primary winner tried to stave off a general election loss with sharp criticism of Barack Obama’s tax and spending plans.
“I love you. I love New Hampshire,” McCain told a rally crowd in a college hockey rink. “I know I can count on you again to come from behind and take a victory and bring it all the way to Washington, D.C., next January.”
McCain added: “I’m asking you to come out one more time. Get out the vote.”
Although McCain won the 2000 and 2008 New Hampshire primary, recent polls have shown Obama with a lead no smaller than 7 percentage points with less than two weeks until Election Day. That has prompted speculation McCain may have to surrender the state’s four electoral votes and focus elsewhere if he hopes to cobble together the 270 needed to become president.
Senior adviser Mark Salter dismissed such thinking Tuesday. He said McCain was visiting New Hampshire because “we get a charge out of it. We think we’re competitive there. They get it.”
The mutual affection was evident as McCain delivered his remarks at St. Anselm College, the scene of debates during both primaries. A group of eight students painted the word “M-A-V-E-R-I-C-K” across their chests and lined up next to each other atop the stands behind McCain, while others led collegiate cheers that substituted McCain’s name for the college.
The campus is at the center of the state the Arizona senator reveres for its tradition of retail politicking. He held more than 100 town-hall meetings in New Hampshire during this campaign cycle and was making his fifth visit to the state since securing the GOP nomination in February.
In a state with no income tax and a Yankee aversion to government spending, McCain tried to rally his supporters with a touched-up stump speech that focused on both issues. He accused Obama of favoring socialistic tax redistribution policies.