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McCain envisions room for Democrats

By Jason Szep
Reuters / September 8, 2008
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ALBUQUERQUE - Republican nominee John McCain said in an interview aired yesterday that he would bring Democrats into his Cabinet and administration as part of his attempt to change the political atmosphere in Washington.

"I don't know how many, but I can tell you, with all due respect to previous administrations, it is not going to be a single, 'Well, we have a Democrat now,' " McCain said on CBS's "Face the Nation."

"It's going to be the best people in America, the smartest people in America," he said in an interview taped Saturday.

Both McCain and Barack Obama, his Democratic rival in the Nov. 4 presidential election, are claiming to be the agent of change needed to fix problems in Washington.

Obama has been running on the change theme for more than a year and a half while McCain, a four-term Arizona senator, has come it to it more recently after mostly campaigning on his experience.

Obama, in an interview also taped earlier and televised yesterday on ABC's "This Week," said McCain spoke of reducing the rancor in Washington but the Republican convention that nominated him last week was a highly partisan affair.

"How you campaign I think foreshadows how you're going to govern," the first-term Illinois senator said.

With 58 days to go until the election, the two candidates took a rare day off yesterday before plunging back into the fray.

Since he accepted the presidential nomination at his party's convention Thursday, McCain had been campaigning with his choice for vice president, Alaska's governor, Sarah Palin, and attracting enthusiastic crowds. Palin was scheduled to start campaigning on her own today.

At the convention, Palin and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani appeared to mock Obama's youthful background as a community organizer in Chicago. The Republican crowd loved the comments.

Obama said in that job he worked with churches, set up job training for the unemployed, and developed after-school programs for youths "community service work - which John McCain has been talking about, putting country first and extolling the virtues of national service."

"It's curious to me that they would mock that, when I at least think that that's exactly what young people should be doing," he said. McCain said he did not think being a community organizer was a negative and in fact was quite honorable.

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