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Obama to fete McCain before inauguration

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Obama to fete McCain before inauguration
Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain, R-AZ, speaks to the National Federal of Independent Business' national summit in Washington on June 10, 2008. (UPI Photo/Roger L. Wollenberg) | License Photo

WASHINGTON, Jan. 10 (UPI) -- The Presidential Inaugural Committee said Saturday it will honor Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., with a dinner in Washington the night before Inauguration Day.

In a statement posted on its Web site, the committee said former Secretary of State Colin Powell and Vice President-elect Joe Biden will be honored at separate dinners the same night. The events are intended to honor McCain, Powell and Biden for what the inaugural committee called their lifetimes of public service, "enhanced by a dedication to bipartisan achievement."

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The posting included a statement by President-elect Barack Obama emphasizing the importance of bipartisanship "in these times of great challenge and great change."

"Each of these distinguished Americans has spent his life in service to his country, at each and every moment placing the interests of America before issues of political party," Obama said. "That is precisely the spirit of common purpose we need as we begin the work ahead."

McCain, the Republican nominee in the 2008 presidential election, Friday urged other Republicans to work closely with Obama.

"There are not many times in history," McCain said during an appearance on Fox News Channel, "that a president has come to office with as many challenges as the president-elect does and that's incumbent then upon all of us to try and do all we can to work with him."

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