As far as I know, John McCain flew into town just for the fair. And it was a quick visit. He walked around a bit, checked out the State Republican Party booth, came to our booth and then stopped by the Des Moines Register’s booth. I think that was it. McCain really watches how much time he spends in the sun. Perhaps, that’s why his words were so few when he took the stage at our booth. He talked for one minute and 31 seconds. He made a joke about cutting pork after he saw “Big Red”, the big boar at the fair. Then he mentioned how he’s standing firm on supporting the efforts in Iraq. That was about it. McCain usually is pretty generous with him time to the media. He sure wasn’t this time. And to top it off, he didn’t even cast his kernel for himself at our booth. His jar could definitely use the help.
Bill Richardson seemed in no apparent hurry during his visit. He came by our booth and voted for himself by dropping a kernel into his Mason jar. He joked that the number of kernels in his jar looked pretty good (he’s been running third to Clinton, Edwards and Obama). He talked to dozens of people and then spent about 10 minutes in the blazing sun on our stage. It looked like his crowd was about two to three times larger than McCain’s. (btw, they spoke right after each other and some of McCain’s crowd was actually there for Richardson. McCain arrived about 20 minutes late).