SEN. JOHN MCCAIN: Tonight, I have a privilege given few Americans: the privilege of accepting our party's nomination for president of the United States. (Cheers, applause.) Rare privilege. (Cheers, applause.)
AUDIENCE: (Chanting.) USA! USA! USA! USA!
SEN. MCCAIN: And I -- and I accept it with gratitude, humility and confidence.
In my life, no success has come without a good fight, and this nomination wasn't any different.
That's a tribute to the candidates who opposed me and their supporters. They're leaders of great ability, who love our country and wish to lead it to better days. Their support is an honor that I won't forget.
I'm grateful to the president of the United States for leading us in these dark days following the worst attack on American history -- (extended cheers and applause) -- the worst attack on American soil in our history and keeping us safe from another tack -- attack that many -- many thought was inevitable; and to the first lady --
AUDIENCE: USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA!
SEN. MCCAIN: -- Laura Bush, a model of grace and kindness in public and in private. (Cheers, applause.)
And I'm grateful to the 41st president and his bride of 63 years for their outstanding example -- (cheers, applause) -- for their outstanding example of honorable service to our country.
As always, I'm indebted to my wife, Cindy, and my seven children. (Cheers, applause.) You know, the pleasures of family life can seem like a brief holiday from the crowded calendar of our nation's business. But I have treasured them all the more, and can't imagine a life without the happiness that you've given me.
You know, Cindy said a lot of nice things about me tonight. But, in truth, she's more my inspiration than I am hers. (Applause.) Her concern for those less blessed than we are -- victims of land mines, children born in poverty, with birth defects -- show the measure of her humanity. And I know that she will make a great first lady. (Cheers, applause.)
My friends, When I was growing up, my father was often at sea, and the job of raising my brother, sister and me would fall to my mother alone. Roberta McCain gave us her love of life, her deep interest in the world, her strength and her belief we're all meant to use our opportunities to make ourselves useful to our country. I wouldn't be here tonight but for the strength of her character. (Cheers, applause.) And she doesn't want me to say this, but she's 96 years young. (Cheers, applause.)
My heartfelt thanks to all of you who helped me win this nomination and stood by me when the odds were long.
I won't let you down. (Cheers, applause.) I won't let you down. (Cheers, applause.) I won't let you down. (Cheers, applause, chants of "John McCain! John McCain!".)
To Americans who have yet to decide who to vote for, thank you for your consideration and the opportunity to win your trust. I intend to earn it. (Cheers, applause.)
And finally, a word to Senator Obama and his supporters. We'll go at it -- we'll go at it over the next two months. You know that's the nature of this business, and there are big differences between us. But you have my respect and my admiration. Despite our differences -- (applause) -- much more unites us than divides us. We are fellow Americans, and that's an association that means more to me than any other. (Cheers, applause.)
We're dedicated to the proposition that all people are created equal and endowed by our creator with inalienable rights. No country -- no country ever had a greater cause than that. And I wouldn't be an American worthy of the name if I didn't honor Senator Obama and his supporters for their achievement.