John McCain Quotes

"I owe America more than she has ever owed me."

"Fortunately, Senator Obama failed, not our military."

"We are Americans first, Americans last, and Americans always."

"We're Americans. We're Americans, and we'll never surrender. They will."

"It is a terrible mistake to raise taxes during an economic downturn."

"To love your country, as I discovered in Vietnam, is to love your countrymen."

"Our purpose is to keep this blessed country free, safe, prosperous and proud."

"I am a Republican. I'm loyal to the party of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt."

"I am fully prepared to be commander in chief... I don't need on-the-job training."

"For me, that cause has always been our country, and the ideals that have made us great."

"We make the future better than the past. We don't hide from history. We make history."

"I don't doubt the sincerity of my Democratic friends. And they should not doubt ours."

"Our nation was founded on Judeo-Christian values and principles. I'm happy to be here in a church."

"We must learn from our mistakes, improve on our successes, and vanquish this unpardonable enemy."

"In wartime, judgment and experience matter. In a time of war, the commander-in-chief doesn't get a learning curve."

"We must win in Iraq. If we withdraw, there will be chaos; there will be genocide; and they will follow us home."

"We learned through the tragic experience of September 11 that passive defense alone cannot protect us."

"Our Judeo-Christian principles dictate that we do what we can to help people who are oppressed throughout the world."

"Iíve been an imperfect servant of my country for many years. But I have been her servant first, last and always. And Iíve never lived a day, in good times or bad, that I didnít thank God for the privilege."

"I did not grow up with the expectation that my country owed me more than the rights owed every American. On the contrary, I owe my country every opportunity I have ever had."

"There is a mysterious cycle in human events. To some generations much is given. Of other generations much is expected. This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny."

"I believe in evolution. But I also believe, when I hike the Grand Canyon and see it at sunset, that the hand of God is there also."

"We have to love our freedom not just for the material benefits it provides, not just for the autonomy it guarantees us, but for the goodness it makes possible."

"Our adversaries are weaker than us in arms and men, but weaker still in causes. They fight to express -- they fight to express a hatred for all that is good in humanity. We fight for love of freedom and justice, a love that is invincible."

"And, if we lost, then who win? Did Al Qaida win? When on the floor of the House of Representatives they cheer - they cheer - when they pass a withdrawal motion that is a certain date for surrender, what were they cheering? Surrender? Defeat?"

"Do not yield. Do not flinch. Stand up. Stand up with our President and fight. We're Americans. We're Americans, and we'll never surrender. They will."

"The most important obligation of the next President is to protect Americans from the threat posed by violent extremists who despise us, our values and modernity itself."

"I have a 25-year pro-life record in the Congress, in the Senate. And as president of the United States, I will be a pro-life president and this presidency will have pro-life policies. That's my commitment. That's my commitment to you."

"America is, after all, the country of the second chance, and we need to stay true to that creed. I've had a few extra chances myself along the way. They made all the difference, and those opportunities belong to everyone."

"Glory is not a conceit. It is not a decoration for valor. Glory belongs to the act of being constant to something greater than yourself, to a cause, to your principles, to the people on whom you rely and who rely on you in rerun."

"When I was in prison in Vietnam, I like other of my fellow POWs, was offered early release by my captors. Most of us refused because we were bound to our code of conduct, which said those who had been captured the earliest had to be released the soonest."

"Long ago, something unusual happened to me that taught me the most valuable lesson of my life. I was blessed by misfortune. I mean that sincerely. I was blessed because I served in the company of heroes, and I witnessed a thousand acts of courage, compassion and love."

"I said earlier that the sacrifices in this war will not be shared equally by all Americans. The president is the first to observe, most of the sacrifices fall, as they have before, to the brave men and women of our armed forces. We may be good citizens, but make no mistake, they are the very best of us."

"I am an idealist, and I believe it is possible in our time to make the world we live in another, better, more peaceful place, where our interests and those of our allies are more secure, and American ideals that are transforming the world, the principles of free people and free markets, advance even farther than they have.

"I fell in love with my country when I was a prisoner in someone elseís. I loved it not just for the many comforts of life here. I loved it for its decency; for its faith in the wisdom, justice and goodness of its people. I loved it because it was not just a place, but an idea, a cause worth fighting for. I was never the same again. I wasnít my own man anymore. I was my countryís."

"Seventeen years ago, Cindy was in Dacca, Bangladesh. She went to Mother Teresa's orphanage. The nuns brought her two little babies who were not going to live. Cindy came home. I met her at the airplane. She showed me this five-week-old baby and said, "Meet your new daughter." She's 17, and my life is blessed. And that's what adoption is all about."

"I'm not the youngest candidate. But I am the most experienced. I know what our military can do, what it can do better, and what it should not do. I know how Congress works, and how to make it work for the country and not just the re-election of its members. I know how the world works. I know the good and the evil in it. I know how to work with leaders who share our dreams of a freer, safer and more prosperous world, and how to stand up to those who don't. And I know who I am and what I want to do."

"It took thirteen years for Roy Benavidez to receive his Medal of Honor. But it didn't seem to matter to him. He stayed in the Army. The war, and his forgotten heroism never embittered him. He spent his retirement counseling troubled kids, encouraging them to stay in school and off drugs. "I'm proud to be an American," Roy Benavidez said as he lay dying in a San Antonio hospital ten years ago. May God bless his soul. And may Americans, all Americans, be very proud that Roy Benavidez was one of us. I wouldn't want to live in a country that didn't recognize how much we needed such a good man."

"Could I also mention very seriously about this issue -- my friends, you know that this is a national security issue. We're sending $700 billion a year to countries that don't like us very much, that some of that money is ending up in the hands of terrorist organizations. We cannot allow this greatest transfer of wealth in our history when our national security will continue to be threatened."

"Long ago, something unusual happened to me that taught me the most valuable lesson of my life. I was blessed by misfortune. I mean that sincerely. I was blessed because I served in the company of heroes, and I witnessed a thousand acts of courage, compassion and love."

"On an October morning, in the Gulf of Tonkin, I prepared for my 23rd mission over North Vietnam. I hadnít any worry I wouldnít come back safe and sound. I thought I was tougher than anyone. I was pretty independent then, too. I liked to bend a few rules, and pick a few fights for the fun of it. But I did it for my own pleasure; my own pride. I didnít think there was a cause more important than me."

"Then I found myself falling toward the middle of a small lake in the city of Hanoi, with two broken arms, a broken leg, and an angry crowd waiting to greet me. I was dumped in a dark cell, and left to die. I didnít feel so tough anymore. When they discovered my father was an admiral, they took me to a hospital. They couldnít set my bones properly, so they just slapped a cast on me. When I didnít get better, and was down to about a hundred pounds, they put me in a cell with two other Americans. I couldnít do anything. I couldnít even feed myself. They did it for me. I was beginning to learn the limits of my selfish independence. Those men saved my life."

"I was in solitary confinement when my captors offered to release me. I knew why. If I went home, they would use it as propaganda to demoralize my fellow prisoners. Our Code said we could only go home in the order of our capture, and there were men who had been shot down before me. I thought about it, though. I wasnít in great shape, and I missed everything about America. But I turned it down."

"A lot of prisoners had it worse than I did. Iíd been mistreated before, but not as badly as others. I always liked to strut a little after Iíd been roughed up to show the other guys I was tough enough to take it. But after I turned down their offer, they worked me over harder than they ever had before. For a long time. And they broke me."

"When they brought me back to my cell, I was hurt and ashamed, and I didnít know how I could face my fellow prisoners. The good man in the cell next door, my friend, Bob Craner, saved me. Through taps on a wall he told me I had fought as hard as I could. No man can always stand alone. And then he told me to get back up and fight again for our country and for the men I had the honor to serve with. Because every day they fought for me."

"I fell in love with my country when I was a prisoner in someone elseís. I loved it not just for the many comforts of life here. I loved it for its decency; for its faith in the wisdom, justice and goodness of its people. I loved it because it was not just a place, but an idea, a cause worth fighting for. I was never the same again. I wasnít my own man anymore. I was my countryís."

"Iím going to fight for my cause every day as your President. Iím going to fight to make sure every American has every reason to thank God, as I thank Him: that Iím an American, a proud citizen of the greatest country on earth, and with hard work, strong faith and a little courage, great things are always within our reach. Fight with me. Fight with me."

"Fight for whatís right for our country."

"Fight for the ideals and character of a free people."

"Fight for our childrenís future."

"Fight for justice and opportunity for all."

"Stand up to defend our country from its enemies."

"Stand up for each other; for beautiful, blessed, bountiful America."

"Stand up, stand up, stand up and fight. Nothing is inevitable here. Weíre Americans, and we never give up. We never quit. We never hide from history. We make history."

"It was long ago and far away in a prison camp in North Vietnam. My father was a high-ranking admiral. The Vietnamese came and said that I could leave prison early. And we had a code of conduct that said you only leave by order of capture. I also had a dear and beloved friend who was from California named Ev Alvarez, who had been shot down and captured a couple of years before me. But I wasn't in good physical shape. In fact, I was in rather bad physical shape. And so I said no. ... But I said no, and I'll never forget sitting in my last answer, and the high- ranking officer who offered it slammed the door and the interrogator said, "Go back to your cell. It's going to be very tough on you now." And it was; but not only the toughest decision I ever made, but I'm most happy about that decision than any decision I ever made in my life. Could I finally say, it look a lot of prayer. It took a lot of prayer."

"The Vietnamese kept us imprisoned in conditions of solitary confinement or two or three to a cell. They did that because they knew they could break down our resistance. One of the techniques that they used to get information was to take ropes and tie them around your biceps, pull your biceps behind you, loop the rope around your head, pull your head down between your knees, and leave you in that position. You can imagine, it was very uncomfortable. One night I was being punished in that fashion. All of a sudden the door of the cell opened and the guard came in; a guy who was just what we called a gun guard. He just walked around the camp with a gun on his shoulder. He went like this and then he loosened the ropes. He came back about four hours later; he tightened them up again and left. The following Christmas, because it was Christmas Day, we were allowed to stand outside of our cell for a few minutes. In those days, we were not allowed to see or communicate with each other, although we certainly did. And I was standing outside for my few minutes outside of my cell. He came walking up. He stood there for a minute. And with his sandal on the dirt in the courtyard, he drew a cross. And he stood there, and a minute later he rubbed it out and walked away. For a minute there, there was just two Christians worshiping together. I'll never forget that moment."

"Because for my entire adult life, in war and peace, nothing has ever been more important to me than the security and well-being of the country I love. Thank you."


Compiled by Thomas George