And now we're going to take a couple of summer journeys, a musical road trip with songs for the car, after we hear about one man's political journey.


His name is Eric Melder, and he won an all-expenses-paid trip to the Democratic convention.

Mr. ERIC MELDER:: Oh man, fabulous. It was simply thrilling to be here.

INSKEEP: Barack Obama's campaign sent an email to supporters this summer. It said people had a chance for a trip to the convention. They just had to donate $5 or more and write an essay explaining why they backed Obama. The campaign chose a number of winners, including Mr. Melder, after he contributed a hundred bucks.

MONTAGNE: Maybe it's no coincidence that the Obama campaign chose a man from the swing state of Pennsylvania. Eric Melder has also traveled a noteworthy political path. He's a born-again Christian who initially supported Republican candidate Mike Huckabee.

Mr. MELDER: I'm drawn more to Barack, as an evangelical Christian. I like his family values. They're real. They're tangible. You can see them. I believe him to be a committed Christian.

MONTAGNE: Melder is opposed to abortion, but says he likes what he calls Obama's intelligent response.

Mr. MELDER: I don't see myself as a one-issue Christian. All our talk about faith doesn't mean a thing if we're not feeding the hungry, helping the homeless, helping single-parent families. And how we treat the elderly and how we treat the young in this country has everything to do with what kind of integrity we have as Americans.

INSKEEP: That's Eric Melder, one of the voters who traveled to Denver courtesy of the campaign of Barack Obama.

Mr. MELDER: When he shows up, the masses show up. And when it's time to work with Congress, I really believe they're going to follow his lead. And we haven't had that in a long time.

INSKEEP: And that Pennsylvania voter will be following Obama's lead backstage before Obama gives his acceptance speech tonight. It's a meeting meant to be the highlight of his journey to Denver.

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