McCain Addresses a Rally in St. Charles, Mo.

CQ Transcripts Wire
Monday, October 20, 2008; 2:06 PM

MCCAIN: ... 84 percent of Americans. We need to support small businesses, not tax them.

(APPLAUSE) After months of campaign trail eloquence -- and you certainly saw the eloquence -- but the fact is we finally learned what Senator Obama's economic goal is. As he told Joe, he wants to spread the wealth around.

He believes in redistributing wealth, not in policies that grow our economy and create jobs and opportunities for all Americans. Senator Obama is more interested in controlling who gets your piece of the pie than in growing the pie.

You know, that's helped explain big problems with my opponent's claim that he will cut income taxes for 95 percent of Americans. You might ask, how do you cut income taxes for 95 percent of Americans when more than 40 percent pay no income taxes right now? How do you reduce the number zero?

Well, that's the key to Barack Obama's whole plan. Since you can't reduce income taxes on those who pay zero, the government will write them all checks called a tax credit, and the Treasury will cover that by taxing other people, including -- including a lot of folks just like Joe.

In other words, Obama's plan to raise taxes on some in order to give checks to others, it's not a tax cut. It's just another government giveaway that the liberals have been trying to push on America for a long time.

The Obama tax increase would come at the worst possible time for America, and especially for small businesses like the one Joe dreams of owning. The small businesses Senator Obama would tax provides 16 million jobs in America and a sudden tax hike, but those businesses will kill jobs at a time when we need to be creating more jobs.

I'm not going to let that happen, my friends. And neither are you.


You know, America has an alternative to the phony tax cut my opponent started talking about only months ago. The McCain-Palin tax cut is the real thing.

We're going to double child deduction for every family. We'll cut the capital gains tax. We'll cut business taxes to help create jobs and keep American business in America.


As Joe has now reminded us all, America didn't become the greatest nation on earth by giving our money to the government to spread the wealth around. In this country, we believe in spreading opportunity for those who need jobs and those who create them.


And that's exactly what I intend to do as president of the United States.

My friends, the next president won't have time to get used to the office. Our economy is in crisis. I'll give you some straight talk.

Americans are fighting in two wars. My friends, we face many enemies in this dangerous world and many challenges here at home. And I want to tell you, in Iraq, in Afghanistan, I'll bring our troops home, but I'll bring them home with honor and victory, and not in defeat. Not in a defeat, as Senator Obama would have for them.



MCCAIN: I would like to ask our veterans in the audience if they would raise their hands so we could say thank you to them. And I see "World War II." I see every war.


Thank you, sir. Thank you. Thank you.

We can't spend the next four years as we have spent much of the last eight waiting for our luck to change. We have to act immediately. And as I said at the last debate, I'm not George Bush. If Senator Obama wanted to run against George Bush, he should have run for president four years ago.


We need a new direction now, and we have to fight for it. I've been fighting for this country since I was 17 years old. And I have the scars to prove it.


If I'm elected president, I'll fight to shake up Washington and take America in a new direction from my first day in office until my last. I'm not afraid of the fight. I am ready for it.


I'm not going to be spend $750 billion of your money just bailing out the Wall Street bankers and brokers who got us into this mess. I'm going to make sure we take care of the people who were devastated by the excesses and greed of Wall Street and Washington.

I'm going to spend a lot of that money to bring relief to you. And I'm not going to wait 60 days to do it. I have a plan to protect the value of your home and get it rising again by buying up these bad mortgages and refinancing them, so that if your neighbor defaults, he doesn't have to bring down the value of your house with him.


My friends, it was the housing crisis that began this cataclysm, and it will be the housing values coming back up so that you can stay in your home and realize the American dream. I promise you that should be our priority, keeping Americans in their homes.


I have a plan to let retirees and people nearing retirement keep their money in their retirement accounts longer so they can rebuild their savings. I have a plan to hold the line on taxes and cut them to make America more competitive and create jobs here at home.

Raising taxes makes a bad economy much worse. Keeping taxes low creates jobs, keeps money in your hands, and strengthens your economy.

Senator Obama voted 94 times to raise your taxes or against tax cuts. Twice this year he voted to increase taxes on individuals making $42,000 a year. That's not what America needs.

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