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Senator Claire McCaskill (D) at a “Vets for Claire” tour event at VFW Post 7356 in Parkville, Missouri this afternoon.

Senator Claire McCaskill (D) held three veterans’ events today. We were able to attend a noon event in Warrensburg and an early afternoon event at VFW Post 7356 in Parkville. In Parkville Senator McCaskill sat at a table with five veterans, surrounded by media, and spoke with them, listened to their comments, and took and answered their questions. Senator McCaskill took some time to read a lengthy list of Congressman Todd Akin’s (r) House votes against veterans’ issues.

After her conversation with the veterans in attendance Senator McCaskill took questions from the media outside the VFW hall.  

Question: Senator, so, since we last spoke to you there have been all kinds of rumors floating out there about Congressman Akin’s, uh, press conference coming up. Uh, what does that say to you? In your mind how much does this race depend on who you’re running against, whether it’s Todd Akin or it’s someone else?

Senator Claire McCaskill (D): Well, um, you know, the, the Republican view of, uh, privatizing Medicare and taking the money they save, the expense of the Medicare system, and giving another tax cut to multimillionaires, um, privatizing Social Security. I mean, many of the views that Congressman Akin has are views held, that are held by many of, of the people in the other party. But, I think all of this speculation, frankly, doesn’t do much for Missourians.  [cell phone ring][inaudible] What I want to do is focus on Missourians right now and their pain and what they need. Um, this economy to get better, they want to make sure that Social Security is there for them and their kids and grandkids. Same thing with Medicare. That’s what I’m focused on and I think all of the, uh, processy political stuff is probably, um, irritating to most of them.

[immediate] Question: But you go out, and you, and, and, uh, are sending out, and, uh, funding, fundraising solicitations saying we gotta get this guy…

Senator Claire McCaskill (D) (left) in conversation with veteran Lloyd Lapore (right) in Parkville, Missouri.

Senator McCaskill: I’m sending fundraising solicitations because in, in case Missourians missed it, there’s been about fifteen million dollars worth of negative advertising run um, by outside money in Missouri trashing my record and distorting my record, uh, since last October. [crosstalk]

Question: But, Senator…

Senator McCaskill:  So, unfortunately, I have to raise a lot of money. I wish I didn’t. [cell phone text tone] I’d love to just be doing this all day every day. Uh, this is a part of the job I love, sitting down and having real conversations with people that need real help. And that’s my favorite part of the job. My least favorite part of the job is calling complete strangers and asking them to send me checks for my campaign.

Question:  But, Senator, you…

Senator McCaskill:  In fact, my staff, right now, wants me to leave here to go do call time [fundraising calls].

Question: Right.

Senator McCaskill:  I don’t want to go do call time.

Question: Sen, sen, Senator, you complain about the process but, ye, but, but yet, you’re, you’re using it for that. You know, you take [crosstalk]…

Senator McCaskill:  Of course.

Question: You know, so, I mean, you can’t have it both ways.

Senator McCaskill:  Well, I , I do, in that, um, this is the system I’m saddled with. I have to raise money from as many different places I can to try to keep up with an unprecedented flow of outside money into Missouri. And we don’t even know where it’s coming from. [crosstalk] Uh, these…

Question: And does Congressman Akin’s decision today to remain in the race affect your ability to run this race? How does it affect it?

Senator McCaskill:  Uh, I, I, don’t, I think that we, um, since the day that Congressman Akin won the primary we’ve been working to contrast our records and make sure Missourians know where the differences are between Todd Akin and his beliefs and my beliefs. And so we’ve planned that campaign and we’re gonna execute that campaign. And it’s gonna be all about, um, student loans and veterans’ benefits and Social Security and Medicare, uh, accountability, uh, being careful with taxpayers’ money. And we’re gonna keep doing that week after week after week for another seventy-some days and then the voters will have a chance to decide.

Question:  [crosstalk][inaudible]

Question:  And, and reproductive rights?

Senator McCaskill: Uh, all of it. Um, there’s contrasts on many, many subjects and so that would be one of the things that we have a difference on. But, um, it’s a long list of things that we have difference of opinions. Todd Akin’s, um, views on many subjects are outside the mainstream. And we want to focus on all of those, um, because many of them are very important to Missouri families. And I want to make sure that while he is a pleasant and sincere man, us, his views are not pleasant, uh, for most Missouri families. And that’s what I want to focus on.

Staffer: Time for one more. [crosstalk]

Question: if you had a vote would you prefer that he stay in or stay out?

Senator McCaskill: I don’t have a vote. Um, the people have a vote. And the people have voted. They have voted by a very comfortable margin that, um, they want Todd Akin to represent them in this election. And so he and I will have this race, and we will discuss the differences we have, and then the people will have another vote and they’ll decide whose voice they want in the United States Senate.

Staffer: Thanks everyone.

Voice: All right.

Senator McCaskill: Thanks everybody.

Question: Thanks Senator.

Voice: Uh, huh.