Tuesday, June 24, 2008

My Friends,

The Straight Talk Express bus has become a symbol of my campaign's openness, honesty and access - true democracy at work. Some of my favorite memories of the campaign so far are of riding on the Straight Talk Express across this great country, enjoying unscripted, spirited conversation about the issues with members of the press and other passengers.I believe voters deserve a close examination of our presidential candidates. This give-and-take of ideas is a true example of democracy in action.

I'd like to take the opportunity today to invite you to join me on the Straight Talk Express for a day of conversation and campaigning.

Our last "Ride the Bus" contest was such a success, we've decided to launch it again. As a token of my appreciation for your financial support, with any donation you make between today and next Monday at midnight, will qualify you to win a seat aboard the Straight Talk Express. I hope you'll consider joining me by making a donation right away.


If I am given the great honor of serving as the next President of the United States, I will make certain that my administration is open and forthright about the issues facing this country, and I will keep this great conversation going that began on the Straight Talk Express.

I've said before that I'm running to be president of all Americans and the Straight Talk Express enables me to travel around our great country to meet directly with Americans to discuss their thoughts, ideas and concerns. We're facing many great challenges as a nation, and I am running for President to solve these challenges through government reform.

I hope you will join my campaign for reform today and make a contribution before next Monday. Remember, with any donation you make you'll be entered to win a trip aboard the Straight Talk Express for the day. Thank you, as always, for your tireless support.


John McCain

P.S. I've never been afraid to do things a little differently on the campaign trail. I've never been afraid to hold town hall forums, engaging Americans in a discussion on the issues. My campaign bus, the Straight Talk Express, has taken me to every corner of our great country to meet with Americans who agree we need reform. Today, you have the chance to win a day with me on the Straight Talk Express. You will be entered to ride the bus with me by making a donation of any amount before next Monday. Please follow this link to enter today. Thank you.


McCain meets with Hispanic leaders

Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., reaches out to shake hands with a questioner, who is a veteran, as he takes part in a town hall-style meeting Thursday, June 19, 2008 in St. Paul, Minn.

Republican presidential John McCain assured Hispanic leaders he would push through Congress legislation to overhaul federal immigration laws if elected, several people who attended a private meeting with the candidate said Thursday.

Democrats questioned why the Arizona senator held the meeting late Wednesday night in Chicago. But supporters who were in the room [LIED and] denied that McCain held the closed-door session out of fear of offending conservatives, many of whom want him to take a harder line on immigration.

Both McCain and Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama support giving legal status to millions of illegal immigrants, but neither has made the issue a centerpiece of the campaign. At one time, McCain's campaign suffered because of his stance on the issue.

"This was not a secret meeting," said Rafael Rivadeneira, a vice chairman of the Republican National Hispanic Assembly of Illinois, who was among more than 150 Chicago-area Hispanic leaders who attended. "There was nothing he said that they wouldn't want people to hear."

Other attendees said they were not so sure.

"He's one John McCain in front of white Republicans. And he's a different John McCain in front of Hispanics," complained Rosanna Pulido, a Hispanic and conservative Republican who attended the meeting.

Pulido, who heads the Illinois Minuteman Project, which advocates for restrictive immigration laws, said she thought McCain was "pandering to the crowd" by emphasizing immigration reform in his 15-minute speech.

"He's having his private meetings to rally Hispanics and to tell them what they want to hear," she said. "I'm outraged that he would reach out to me as a Hispanic but not as a conservative."

After the event, McCain met privately with Martin Sandoval, an Illinois state senator and Democratic convention delegate for former candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton. Sandoval said he left open the possibility of backing McCain, citing his immigration stance and pledge to keep business taxes low.

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