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McCain Talks About His Temper


From CBS News' Andante Higgins:

ROCHESTER, MICH. – An energetic crowd at Oakland University here grilled John McCain on his temper and on the war in Iraq.

A young man told McCain his temper was of concern to him, to which McCain joked, "How dare you ask that question?"

"Take that microphone away from him," McCain continued, to laughter from the audience. The questioner began to read a quote from Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., who said that McCain "worries" him because of his temper.

"I'm familiar with the quote," McCain said. "But if you'd like to repeat it again, please do so."

The man kept reading, which prompted another audience member on the other side of the room to call out, "He's passionate!"

"Look, I will confess to you that I get angry," McCain said. "I get angry when I saw a guy named Abramoff that ripped off Native Americans for millions and millions and millions of dollars and people ended up, including him, in federal prison. I get angry when I see 233 million of your tax dollars going to a bridge to an island with 50 people on it. And that's your dollars."

"And you know something? The American people are angry too and they're not going to take it anymore," McCain continued. "They're mad and they've lost their temper." The crowd cheered and applauded as McCain became more and more energized. "These town hall meetings, ask them if they're not mad! Ask them. Ask them the way their tax dollars and spending has gone completely out of control," he said.

There were also questions about the war in Iraq, particularly why the U.S. got involved in the first place. "It was my belief that we thought there were weapons of mass destruction, and Saddam Hussein was a brutal dictator that he had used them on his people twice," McCain said. "The oil for food program had broken down and all of these reasons – along with the weapons of mass destruction – were my reasons." A Kurdish-American member of the audience stood up and thanked McCain for removing Hussein from power.