GOP Leaders Worried About McCain

Discussion in 'Politics & Religion' started by ZZZzzzzzzz, Oct 12, 2008.

  1. October 12, 2008
    Concern in G.O.P. After Rough Week for McCain
    By ADAM NAGOURNEY and ELISABETH BUMILLER

    After a turbulent week that included disclosures about Gov. Sarah Palin and signs that Senator John McCain was struggling to strike the right tone for his campaign, Republican leaders said Saturday that they were worried Mr. McCain was heading for defeat unless he brought stability to his presidential candidacy and settled on a clear message to counter Senator Barack Obama.

    Again and again, party leaders said in interviews that while they still believed that Mr. McCain could win over voters in the next 30 days, they were concerned that he and his advisers seemed to be adrift in dealing with an extraordinarily challenging political battleground and a crisis on Wall Street.

    The expressions of concern came after a particularly difficult week for Mr. McCain. On Friday night, new questions arose about his choice of Ms. Palin as his running mate after an investigation by the Alaska Legislature concluded that she had abused her power in trying to orchestrate the firing of her former brother-in-law, a state trooper.

    “I think you’re seeing a turning point,” said Saul Anuzis, the Republican chairman in Michigan, where Mr. McCain has decided to stop campaigning. “You’re starting to feel real frustration because we are running out of time. Our message, the campaign’s message, isn’t connecting.”

    Tommy Thompson, a Republican who is a former governor of Wisconsin, said it would be difficult for Mr. McCain to win in his state but not impossible, particularly if he campaigned in conservative Democratic parts of the state. Asked if he was happy with Mr. McCain’s campaign, Mr. Thompson replied, “No,” and he added, “I don’t know who is.”

    In Pennsylvania, Robert A. Gleason Jr., the state Republican chairman, said he was concerned that Mr. McCain’s increasingly aggressive tone was not working with moderate voters and women in the important southeastern part of a state that is at the top of Mr. McCain’s must-win list.

    “They’re not as susceptible to attack ads,” Mr. Gleason said. “I worry about the southeast. Obama is making inroads.”

    Several party leaders said Mr. McCain needed to settle on a single message in the final weeks of the campaign and warned that his changing day-to-day dialogue — a welter of evolving economic proposals, mixed with on-again-off-again attacks on Mr. Obama’s character — was not breaking through and was actually helping Mr. Obama in his effort to portray Mr. McCain as erratic.

    “The main thing he needs to do,” said Vin Weber, a former Republican congressman from Minnesota, “is focus on a single message — a single, concise or clear-cut message, and stick with that over the next 30 days, regardless of what happens.

    “He’s had a lot of attack lines. But it’s time to choose.”

    John C. Danforth, a retired Republican senator from Missouri, said Mr. McCain should turn his attention mainly to drawing contrasts with Mr. Obama and “essentially go back to the basics.”

    “I don’t think it’s enough to talk about earmarks incessantly,” Mr. Danforth said. “He’s made that point. You’ve got to get beyond that and talk about the very dramatic taxes and spending in the Obama program.”

    Even that might not be enough, Mr. Danforth said. “This is a year where everything that could go in Obama’s favor is going in Obama’s favor,” he said. “Everything that could go against McCain is against him. It’s absolutely the worst kind of perfect storm.”

    Mr. McCain’s advisers said they remained confident of victory.

    “My sense of where things are: John McCain beat back what was a political climate that would have snuffed out any other candidate in the Republican Party,” said Nicolle Wallace, a senior adviser. “He’s beat back every hurdle that was ever placed in front of him.”

    Mr. McCain acknowledged the challenge Saturday as he campaigned in Iowa, where President Bush won narrowly in 2004 but where polls show Mr. Obama with a healthy lead.

    “I’d like to remind you that the political pundits have been wrong several times,” Mr. McCain said, “and they’re wrong because we will win the state of Iowa in November.”

    Yet there were continued signs of confusion and turmoil in the McCain campaign, as his aides wrestled with conflicting advice, daunting poll numbers and criticism from state party leaders increasingly distressed with the way the campaign has been run.

    Republicans said he had been damaged by several rallies last week in which supporters shouted insults and threats about Mr. Obama, prompting Mr. McCain on Friday night to chide audience members. His aides suggested that they were trying to find a balance between attacking Mr. Obama and painting him as untested and risky without stirring unruly crowd reactions.

    Emotions are raw in the campaign, where Mr. McCain’s top advisers have voiced frustration at what they said was an unfair focus by the news media on the rowdy crowds.

    “I think there have been quite a few reporters recently,” said Mr. McCain’s closest adviser, Mark Salter, “who have sort of implied, or made more than implications, that somehow we’re responsible for the occasional nut who shows up and yells something about Barack Obama.”

    The difficulties of the McCain campaign have led some Republican leaders to express concern that he could end up dragging other of the party’s candidates down to defeat. “If Obama is able to run up big numbers around the country,” said Mr. Anuzis, the Michigan party chairman, “the potential for hurting down-ballot Republicans is very big.”

    One sign of that has emerged in Nebraska, where Representative Lee Terry, a Republican, ran a newspaper advertisement featuring words of support for him from a woman identified as an “Obama-Terry voter.”

    In this churning environment, Mr. McCain was getting conflicting advice from party leaders about what to do. Former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts, who was a rival of Mr. McCain for the Republican nomination, said Mr. McCain, who has offered scattershot proposals on the economy, should present a broad vision of how he would lead the country through the economic crisis.

    “I’m talking about standing above the tactical alternatives that are being considered,” Mr. Romney said, “and establish an economic vision that is able to convince the American people that he really knows how to strengthen the economy.”

    But no subject has more divided Republicans than the one that has been a matter of disagreement in the McCain camp: how directly to invoke Mr. Obama’s connection to his controversial former minister, the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., and William Ayers, a former member of the Weather Underground who has had a passing association with Mr. Obama over the years.

    In Colorado, a traditionally Republican state that Mr. McCain is struggling to keep in his column, the party chairman, Dick Wadhams, urged Mr. McCain to hit the issue hard, arguing that it was fair game and could be highly effective in raising questions about Mr. Obama in the final weeks of the campaign. He said he was surprised Mr. McCain had failed to do so in the debate last week.

    “I think those are legitimate insights into who Senator Obama is,” Mr. Wadhams said. “I do not think it is irrelevant to this election.”

    But Fergus Cullen, the Republican chairman in New Hampshire, said Saturday that he thought it would be a mistake for Mr. McCain to go down that road, warning that it would turn off moderate voters in his state who have a history of supporting Mr. McCain.

    “I don’t think he should be giving into elements of the base who have been asking him to be going after, using Wright, using Ayers,” Mr. Cullen said. “Think about it as an undecided persuadable voter.”

    Although Mr. McCain has declared Mr. Wright off limits, the campaign has brought up Mr. Ayers. But the campaign appeared to step back a bit in raising that relationship Saturday. At a rally in Iowa, Mr. McCain stuck to his usual attacks on the Democratic nominee on taxes, the financial crisis and housing.

    For her part, Ms. Palin appeared to pull back on the sharp jabs at a fund-raiser in Philadelphia.

    “We just want to make sure that in this campaign, that we uphold the standards of tolerance and truth-telling,” she said. “There have been things said, of course, that have allowed those standards to be violated on both sides, on both tickets. We want to uphold those standards, and again it’s not mean-spirited, it’s not negative campaigning, when we call someone out on their record.”

    Mr. Cullen said he still thought that Mr. McCain could win his state but acknowledged it would be difficult. “The national news has not been politically favorable for us in the last two or three weeks,” he said. “He either has to come up with a way to make the discussion on the economy reflect better on the Republicans or change the subject to something else.”

    Mr. Romney referred to his own defeat at the hands of Mr. McCain in arguing that Mr. Obama should not be packing his bags for the White House quite yet. “Never count John McCain out,” he said. “Who knows? He has ground to make up. But he makes up ground in a big hurry. He did it in the primary.”

    Michael M. Grynbaum and Jim Rutenberg contributed reporting.
     
  2. ZZZZZZzzzzz get a life man. You almost have 19,000 posts. If your so obbsessed with politics than why don't you actually do something related to politics instead of posting on this forum all day long because face it none of the stuff you post will change anyone's mind because undecided voter's don't go to shit show forums like these.

    Pitiful.
     
  3. A new Alaska legislative report finding that Gov. Sarah Palin abused her power and violated state ethics laws spells new trouble for the McCain campaign. Special counsel Steve Branchflower's report could lead to fines or legislative action to censure Palin. It also directly challenges the vice presidential candidate's credibility on key points related to the "Troopergate" controversy. Palin has said she fired Walt Monegan, Alaska's public-safety commissioner, last summer solely because of budget disputes and "insubordination" by Monegan. But Branchflower found that a likely "contributing" factor was Palin's desire to fire state trooper Mike Wooten, her ex-brother-in-law. While Palin had the right to fire Monegan, Branchflower found that she allowed her husband and top aides to put "impermissible pressure" on subordinates to "advance a personal agenda." The report also questioned Palin's public contention that her family "feared" Wooten, noting that shortly after she took office she ordered a sizable reduction in her personal protection detail.

    McCain campaign spokeswoman Meg Stapleton dismissed the report as the product of "a partisan-led inquiry run by Obama supporters." But there could be more land mines ahead. Some weeks ago, the McCain team devised a plan to have Palin file an ethics complaint against herself with the State Personnel Board, arguing that it alone was capable of conducting a fair, nonpartisan inquiry into whether she fired Monegan because he refused to fire Wooten, who had been involved in a messy custody battle with her sister. Some Democrats ridiculed the move, noting that the personnel board answered to Palin. But the board ended up hiring an aggressive Anchorage trial lawyer, Timothy Petumenos, as an independent counsel. McCain aides were chagrined to discover that Petumenos was a Democrat who had contributed to Palin's 2006 opponent for governor, Tony Knowles. Palin is now scheduled to be questioned next week, and the counsel's report could be released soon after. "We took a gamble when we went to the personnel board," said a McCain aide who asked not to be identified discussing strategy. While the McCain camp still insists Palin "has nothing to hide," it acknowledges a critical finding by Petumenos would be even harder to dismiss.
     
  4. Pabst and him, eh?

    Too funny.



     
  5. Oh shit she fired someone. That is definitely worse than all the shit Obama is connected with.

    Just keep on living in denial about it.

    ZZZZzzzz your almost to 19,000 posts! Congrats, You are officially unofficial at everything except spouting worthless shit all day long. If I was close to 19,000 posts than i would want welfare too considering there is nothing else for me to do with my time because all i do is obbsess about having people glance at what i have to say for 5 seconds all day long thinking that i am making some type of impact when really i am hugely in denial about no one giving a shit or even a second thought.
     
  6. <img src=http://www.mediabistro.com/prnewser/original/Please+don%27t+shoot+the+messenger.jpg>

     
  7. To be called a messenger you have to deliver something of value. So unfortunately i will not allow for you to be shot.
     
  8. It is no problem, you have nothing but blanks in your gun anyway....

    LOL!!!

     
    #10     Oct 12, 2008