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Local joins McCain campaign

Maria said she stayed on with Guiliani through his trip home from Florida, on Jan. 29, the day he endorsed McCain.

When she had applied for her position with Guiliani, Maria had also applied for a position with McCain. In early August, she got a call from people on the McCain campaign crew, telling her they wanted her to join their team.

"I guess it just got announced that I would be joining them," she said.

But according to her father, Maria sought approval, not only from him, before she accepted the job.

"She talked to the mayor about it," he said, referring to Guiliani. "He and McCain are pretty close."

According to Joseph Comella, Guiliani advised Comella to go ahead and join McCain's campaign.

"In a lot of ways, I already think I've had my dream job," she said. "You know, the title is one thing, but I've traveled the country, I've gotten to see all other parts of it, and it's fascinating to be so close and actually part of the process."

While she credits the campaigns she's worked on as increasing her interest in politics, her family, she said, has played an integral role in her success.

"I give a lot of credit to my parents, who always encouraged me and put up with me when I was moving all over the country," said Comella.

Her father said that even though he is unable to see his globetrotting daughter as frequently as he would like, he is pleased that she followed her dreams.

"I said to her, 'You know you enjoy the campaign trail, so I say you got to enjoy what you're doing.'" Joseph Comella said.

Comella's new position as press secretary for the vice presidential candidate will entail writing press releases and answering questions that have to do with the McCain's vice presidential candidate, who has yet to be announced.

"At this point, they've indicated that Sen. McCain will make the decision when he's ready," she said.

PHOTO CAPTION: Maria Ann Comella is presented with a birthday cake from Rudy Guiliani earlier this year. On Monday, Aug. 18, Comella began her position as press secretary for Sen. John McCain's vice presidential candidate.

(Submitted photo)

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