JIM LEHRER: The New Hampshire primary and beyond. The Democratic presidential campaign has changed geography and tempo, with seven states voting in just six days.
Sen. John Kerry, last night's winner in New Hampshire, briefly returned to his home state of Massachusetts this morning, before heading off to Missouri. His first public event today will be in St. Louis this evening. Last night in Manchester he thanked his New Hampshire supporters, and then turned his sights on the upcoming national campaign.
SEN. JOHN KERRY: I love New Hampshire … ( Cheers and applause ) and I love Iowa, too. (Cheers and applause) And I hope, with your help, to have the blessings and the opportunity to love a lot of other states in the days to come. I have a message, I have a message for the influence peddlers, for the polluters, the HMOs, the big drug companies that get in the way, the big oil and the special interests who now call the White House their home: We're coming, you're going, and don't let the door hit you on the way out. (Cheers and applause)
In the hardest moments of the past month, I depended on the same band of brothers that I depended on some 30 years ago. We're a little older... ( laughter ) ...and a little grayer, but I'll tell you this: We still know how to fight for our country. (Cheers and applause) And if I am president, I pledge... (crowd shouting) ...when I am president... (cheers and applause ) ...I pledge that those who wore the uniform of the United States of America will have a voice and a champion in the Oval Office. (Cheers and applause)
Together we can lift our country up, up to the America that all of us know that we can become. So stand with me. Stand with me, and together we are going to give America back its future by repealing the Bush tax cuts for wealthy Americans and investing in health care and education; children. (Applause) Stand with us, and together we will build a prosperity in this country where Americans are not just working for the economy, but the economy is working for Americans. (Cheers and applause) Stand with us and we will fight for an America where Medicare is protected, where health care costs are kept down, and where your family's health care is just as important as any politician in Washington, D.C.
I want to thank you, the people of New Hampshire, who voted for me today, who kept your minds and hearts open because today, you voted for new hope in the United States of America, and I intend to help provide it. Thank you, and God bless you all. Thank you. (Cheers and applause)
JIM LEHRER: North Carolina Sen. John Edwards, who finished fourth in New Hampshire, began his day in the state where he was born: South Carolina. He kicked off this next week of campaigning with a rally in Orangeburg.
SEN. JOHN EDWARDS: What a great two weeks we've had. We came out of absolutely nowhere in Iowa, from 5 percent to 32 percent , a great finish there. In New Hampshire, came from 20 points behind General Clark just ten days ago, to a tie for third yesterday: An incredible result. (Applause)
Now the job that all of us have to do is continue this momentum, this energy and this campaign here in the state of South Carolina, the state of my birth, where I'm very proud to be back today. You know, I've been out here on the campaign trial. Pretty regularly, I get questions from people. So I want to answer a couple of those questions that I get with some regularity.
Sometimes people will say to me, "You're talking about big things. You say you're going to change this country, we're going to America and change Washington together. But you've not been in Washington, D.C., for decades." Well, that's true. Then they say, "You haven't been in politics all your life." That's also true. Now I've got a couple of questions for you: Do you think we need real change in America and in Washington, do you? ( Applause ) Do you think we're going to get that kind of change from somebody who's been in politics all their life, and been in Washington for decades?
Well, if you do, you've got other choices. That's not me. I give you a different choice. I give you somebody who has a proven record of fighting and winning these battles my whole life. Sometimes you hear a lot of attacking and sniping among the other candidates. One of them will say "so and so said this," or "so and so said this last week," or "so and so said this five years ago or ten years ago."
Let me say this very simply: If you are looking for the candidate that will do the best job of attacking the other Democrats, I am not your guy. I believe this election is much bigger than that. This is about the future of America. It's about lifting up the American people and making them believe again that everything is possible.
Our campaign is not based on the politics of cynicism. It's based on the politics of hope. It's based on the politics of what's possible. You and I, what we believe, is that we never look down on anybody. We lift people up. We don't believe in tearing people apart. We believe in bringing people together. We believe, I believe, that the family you're born into and the color of your skin, in our America, will never control what you're able to do. I don't believe I can change this country by myself, but I believe that you and I can change it together, and the reason is very simple: It's because I believe in you and you deserve a president who actually believes in you.
Join me in this campaign. Join me in this cause. You and I together, we're going to change this country. Next Tuesday, get your family and your friends and neighbors to the polls. Thank you all very much. It is my honor and privilege to be here with you. Thank you. ( Applause )