The Republican senator from Arizona was one of 11 presidential candidates -- Democrat and Republican -- to address the annual gathering of the firefighters union. But he was the only one to risk making a passionate case before the left-leaning group about why the war in Iraq must continue.
Reading his speech and stealing quick glances at his listeners, he continued. "The hour is late, but we must try, we must!" Beefy firemen, arms folded on chests, stared back silently.
"We do have some evidence that the new tactics . . . have begun to make progress," he pleaded. Audience members whispered. Some shook heads. One raised the comics section in front of her face.