Industry News | May 19, 2008

From the Floor: John McCain Speaks at NRA Show

Bookmark/Share this post with:
Email this story Email this story
Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version

Read More About

Before a packed ballroom, Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.), accompanied by Senator Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.), addressed industry insiders at the 2008 National restaurant Association, Restaurant Hotel-Motel Show today.

Touching on topics ranging from his democratic opponents to commodity prices, McCain seemed to fair well in Obama’s home state, despite an interruption from several protesters wearing aprons reading “Cooking up War with John McCain.”

“You know a thing or two about competition and job creation,” McCain told the audience.

He went on to emphasize that the potential two million jobs the restaurant industry could create next year are dependent on “decisions made in Washington.” Of those decisions, McCain emphasized to the crowd that the democratic nominees would allow the existing low tax rates to expire, saying “You’re plans for growth and their plans for taxes don’t fit. As president I would keep the existing low tax rates.”

One of the largest rounds of applause came when McCain explained his plan to end the alternative minimum tax, saying, “Sometimes it feels more like a maximum tax.”

McCain ended his speech by promising those in attendance that he would “end all forms of farm subsidies that are not based on need,” a factor McCain blamed for the skyrocketing commodities prices experienced by the industry over the last year.

Although the crowd seemed overwhelmingly pro-McCain, demonstrators interrupted the speech about five minutes in, chanting anti-war slogans and holding homemade signs.

The crowd quickly drowned out the chants with boos, and the group was immediately escorted out of the ballroom. McCain did not acknowledge the interruption.

To find out where the candidates stand on the issues most important to the quick-service industry, read QSR's January feature "A Vote for Quick-Service."

By Blair Chancey

Blair Chancey is QSR's associate editor and is reporting straight from the floor of the 2008 NRA Show.