From CBS News' John Bentley:
(NEW YORK) – After trading barbs last night at their final debate, John McCain and Barack Obama traded jokes at the 63rd annual Alfred E. Smith Dinner tonight. The dinner has always been a chance for the candidates to show their lighter and get in a few shots at their opponent.
McCain told the group that there are signs of hope in his campaign, even in a room full of Manhattan Democrats.
"I can't shake that feeling that some people here are pulling for me," McCain said. "I'm delighted to see you here tonight, Hillary."
He also pointed out Sen. Clinton's husband's lackluster efforts on Obama's behalf.
"Where's Bill by the way?" McCain asked. "Can't he take one night off from his tireless quest to make the man who defeated his wife the next president?"
McCain also poked fun at himself, saying he fired all of his senior advisers and replaced them with the now-ubiquitous Joe the plumber, who would also be doing some other work for the McCain's.
"What they don't know is that Joe the plumber recently signed a very lucrative contract with a wealthy couple to handle all the work on all seven of their houses," McCain said.
It may be the last time you hear such frivolity on the campaign trail. McCain heads down to Florida tomorrow, and it's doubtful he'll be making jokes about the seven houses he owns.