Wednesday, February 28, 2007

McCain tells Letterman - Im Running

John McCain, appearing tonight on the Late Show with David Letterman, has declared that he will be a candidate for President of the United States.

Having told Letterman on his last appearance that he would declare on his show, he came back to do just that. Asked about the possibility of running against Rudy Giuliani, McCain said that he will be a formidable opponent, and that he is an American hero.

McCain said that he will be making a formal announcement about his run for the Presidency in April.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

McCain Attacks Rumsfeld

Campaigning in South Carolina yesterday, John McCain said that Donald Rumsfeld will go down in history as "one of the worst Secretaries of Defense..."

McCain said that America is paying a very heavy price for the mismanagement of the war in Iraq.

John McCain is a supporter of the troop surge proposed by President Bush, but has long called for more troops to be sent to Iraq. He has said that Rumsfeld didn't put enough troops on the ground to enable a victory in Iraq.

Mike DeWine Supports McCain

Former Senator Mike DeWine has announced that he will be supporting John McCain in his bid for the Republican nomination.

DeWine will head McCain's exploratory committee in Ohio.

"As a close friend and former colleague of John's, I can attest to his dedication and devotion to conservative values and the protection of our homeland," said DeWine. "Senator McCain is an American hero who will lead our nation with strength."

Monday, February 19, 2007

McCain Rejects Roe V Wade

John McCain has continued his appeal to the social conservatives in the GOP by saying that the Roe V Wade Supreme Court decision which legalized abortion, should be overturned.

McCain said yesterday in South Carolina that he does not support Roe v Wade and if he is elected President he will appoint judges who "...strictly interpret the Constitution of the United States and do not legislate from the bench.”

Last night McCain spoke at a rally which promoted abstinence. Over 1000 people were there to hear him speak.

Frank Keating Endorses McCain

Former Governor of Oklahoma, Frank Keating announced yesterday that he is endorsing John McCain for the Republican nomination for President.

Keating was himself considering a bid for the nomination, but pulled out in January saying that now was not the right time for him.

McCain also secured the support yesterday of Senator Phil Gramm of Texas.

Both Keating and Gramm were campaigning with McCain in Spartanburg, South Carolina, one of the strongest states for McCain.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Giuliani Leads McCain - USA Today Poll

Rudy Giuliani has extended his lead over John McCain as preferred Republican nominee in the latest USA Today Poll.

Giuliani, who declared last night that he was definitely running for President, leads McCain, 40% to 24%. In January, the same poll had Giuliani leading by only 4 points, 31%-27%.

The poll was conducted between 9-11 February and has a margin of error of 3%.

However, the poll does show that John McCain has a favorable rating by 57% those surveyed, up from 48% in January.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

McCain Working on Social Conservatives

John McCain has been working hard in recent weeks to repair the strained relations he has with social conservatives in the GOP.

This from AP today. (2/14/07)

WASHINGTON - To forgive is divine. To forget may be asking too much of religious conservatives when it comes to Sen. John McCain.

The Republican presidential hopeful is working hard to repair relations with conservative Christian activists, whose support could be critical to winning the GOP nomination. But they remain skeptical that he sincerely shares their values.

While McCain has managed to pry open some of the doors that slammed shut in his rift with the right during his bid for the presidency in 2000, conservatives' list of grievances against the Arizona senator is substantial:

-They are dubious about his opposition to a federal amendment to ban gay marriage. McCain opposes same-sex marriage, but says it should be regulated by the states.

-They still resent passages in the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law, which Christian broadcasters say limit what they can tell voters before elections.

-And they question the sincerity of his overtures. McCain condemned evangelist leaders Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell as "agents of intolerance" during his 2000 run.


Sunday, February 11, 2007

McCain and South Carolina

An article published this morning talks about John McCain and the work needed to be done to secure the support in key state South Carolina. Also makes an interesting reference to the dirty tricks employed during his campaign here for the nomination in 2000.

But it does say that McCain has done a lot of work in stitching up the support of local Republicans and he does lead in the polls as preferred GOP nominee.

BY JIM MORRILL McClatchy Newspapers
COLUMBIA, S.C. - Vietnam veteran John McCain waded into an ambush the first time he campaigned in South Carolina.

Fresh off an upset win in the 2000 New Hampshire primary, the Arizona Republican came under withering fire.

George W. Bush's S.C. allies questioned not only McCain's conservatism, but his patriotism. E-mails and fliers accused him of fathering illegitimate children, and his wife of being a drug addict. The night he lost the primary, Cindy McCain broke down in loud sobs.

Now, seven years later, he's counting on many of those former adversaries as he mounts another presidential bid. No Republican has lost the S.C. primary and gone on to win the nomination.

A January poll showed McCain leading the field with support from 29 percent of likely primary voters. He's won endorsements from 40 of 73 Republican legislators and dozens of other officials, including Sen. Lindsey Graham. He's recruited most of Bush's top fundraisers.

"There's no doubt in my mind that John McCain will continue the Bush legacy," says Bob McAlister, a Columbia consultant who worked for Bush. "He's the conservative who can win."
Some have their doubts.

"He's emotional; I think he would act on impulse," says Katrina Shealy, treasurer of the Lexington County GOP. "I don't want to say 'button-pusher,' but that's the way I feel."
For others, there's almost an inevitability about McCain, 70. In their eyes, he's paid his dues. Neil Thigpen, a political scientist at Francis Marion University in Florence, calls it a "right of inheritance."

"That's why a lot of them have moved toward McCain," he says. "It's his turn."

McCain's challengers in the February 2008 primary include former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who campaigns in Columbia Wednesday. Many rivals tout themselves as the conservative alternative to the maverick McCain. His backers don't buy that.

"When I start lining up his conservative positions, they line up with South Carolina conservative positions," says House Speaker Bobby Harrell, a Bush supporter in 2000.

Red Sox's Schilling Backs McCain

Pitcher Curt Schilling who helped take the Boston Red Sox to the World Series win in 2004 has publicly backed John McCain for the Republican nomination.

Schilling supported the election of President Bush in 2004, might have been expected to support fellow Massachusetts resident, Mitt Romney.

But Schilling said that McCain was the man he was going to back.

John McCain Seeks Donors

A Washington Post article published this morning talks about how John McCain has been working hard to mend bridges with those he has maligned in the past - big campaign donors.

John McCain has long supported campaign finance reform - in fact it was one of the key issues he ran on when seeking the 2000 Republican nomination. In 2002, McCain helped push through the Congress, The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act, which amongst other things, sought to curb unlimited donations to political parties.

The fact that McCain is heading to major donors now means he recognises that it is going to take an enormous amount of money to be competitive in both the primary, and if needed the Presidential race.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

McCain Votes Against Casey

John McCain was one of 14 Senators yesterday to vote against the appointment of General Casey to become the Army's chief of Staff.

McCain has been critical of the role of Casey during the Iraq war, and last week told him that while he doesn't question Casey's honour, he does "...question some of the decisions you've made in the past two and half years."

Casey's appointment was approved by the Senate today, although 10 Republicans including McCain and 4 Democrats voted against it. One of the Democrats was another Presidential hopeful, Hillary Clinton.

McCain Tied for Lead in New Hampshire

A new poll in New Hampshire has John McCain tied with Rudy Giuliani as the preferred Republican nominee for President. They are both on 27%.

The poll was conducted by the University of New Hampshire late last week, and surveyed 311 likely Republican voters.

Mitt Romney was supported by 13% of respondents, with Newt Gingrich on 9%.

A poll of this size has a margin of error of over 5%.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

John McCain's Campaign Finances

Congressional Quarterly have conducted an analysis of the finances of John McCain's exploratory committee which he launched last November.

The analysis shows that the committee has receipts of $1.7 million, with expenditure at just over $1.2 million, leaving $472,000 in the campaign account at the start of the year.

The figures come from the campaign finance report McCain lodged with the Federal Electoral Commission last week.

Some notable contributors to McCain's campaign were Former Secretary of States Henry Kissinger, Roger J. Enrico of Dreamworks and Theodore Roosevelt IV - Great Grandson of the President.

Check out the report here.

Sunday, February 4, 2007

McCain on This Week

Well, it sounded too good to be true, and it was. John McCain appeared this morning on ABC This Week to discuss the Iraq war, but was interviewed separately and prior to his Senate colleague, Chuck Hagel.

A debate would have been nice!

Watch the video here.

Saturday, February 3, 2007

McCain on "This Week" with Hagel Tomorrow

John McCain will appear tomorrow on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos.

And also appearing will be Chuck Hagel. Yes, this is going to be quite an event.

McCain has been a strong supporter of the escalation plans for Iraq. Hagel on the other hand is a staunch opponent of the war, and recently co-sponsored the non binding resolution to oppose the President's new plan for Iraq.

This may well be the first debate between the two Vietnam Veterans who may both be seeking the Republican nomination for President.

And if Hagel's performance in recent weeks on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and on other TV shows is anything to go by, he will certainly be fired up.