Thursday, August 30, 2007

Analysis: Text of McCain's statement, naming former Commerce Secretary Mosbacher as General Chairman

On Monday, August 27, the official campaign released the following release, announcing that Robert Mosbacher - among other things, Commerce Secretary under the first President Bush - would become the new campaign chairman.

The central point of Mosbacher’s arrival had become public several days earlier. At the time, it indicated - and will likely continue to indicate - that the former President was offering a tacit endorsement of McCain’s candidacy. At approximately the same time, it became public that former Secretary of State Colin Powell had “maxed out” to McCain’s campaign. Likewise, it was short of a formal endorsement, but the overtures by two very respected members of the GOP establishment was a significant coup by McCain.

The complete text of Monday’s release is below:

ARLINGTON, VA — U.S. Senator John McCain’s presidential campaign today announced that the Honorable Robert Mosbacher will join Senator McCain’s team and serve as a general chairman. As general chairman, Mosbacher will be closely involved in the daily workings of the campaign, and assist with fundraising, strategy, and message development.

Previously nominated Secreatry of Commerce in 1988 by former President George H.W. Bush, he was confirmed 100-0 by the United States Senate. While Secretary of Commerce, he was point man for NAFTA and later was awarded the Aztec Eagle Award, the equivalent of the Medal of Freedom, by former president of Mexico Ernesto Zedillo.

Mosbacher also served as general chairman of the Republican National Committee and created the Team 100 program. Additonally, he served as finance chairman for former President Gerald Ford and Executive committee member for President Ronald Reagan.

“John McCain’s unquestionable national security credentials, strong conservative record, and inspiring personal narrative make him the most qualified candidate to lead America during these challenging times,” said Mosbacher.

Senator John McCain stated he was honored to have the support of such a distinguished and recognized leader. “Bob is a good friend and I am pleased he will be actively involved in my campaign,” said Senator John McCain. “Bob will play an important role and I will look to his leadership and guidance in the months ahead.”


You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Politico's Vogel: "McCain qualifies for public funds"

On Tuesday, August 28, The Politico’s Kenneth P. Vogel published an article in which he noted that Senator McCain’s campaign had successfully applied for public matching funds. Since it is an issue of paramount importance to the campaign, here is the text. Campaignia will offer some analysis in subsequent posts.

McCain qualifies for public funds

John McCain on Tuesday became the first 2008 presidential candidate to be
found eligible to receive taxpayer dollars for the primary election.

McCain’s application and qualification for the funds are likely to be interpreted by opponents as a sign of desperation, even though it does not lock him into the public financing system.
The Arizona senator has lagged behind the Republican front-runners in the polls and in fundraising. Participating in the public financing system would allow him to get an infusion of loans by borrowing against the promise of taxpayer dollars.

But the system is a trade-off, since it would also cap at about $50 million the amount of cash his campaign can spend during the primary – a limitation that would go into effect immediately.

The leading contenders for the nomination will likely quickly eclipse that level of spending, potentially putting McCain at a distinct disadvantage in early states.
McCain spent $21.9 million in the first six months of the year, according to a report he filed in July with the FEC. It showed he brought in $24.8 million, and racked up $1.8 million in debt. The matching public funds would be provided starting in January, but McCain, once considered the leading candidate for the GOP presidential nomination, could use the FEC certificate promising the funds as collateral for loans.
The maximum amount a candidate could receive is currently estimated to be about $21 million.

You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Nashua Telegraph: Several items of interest per McCain - Sept. 4 breakfast in Nashua, endorsements, etc.

On Sunday, August 26, the Nashua Telegraph published in an article titled “Defining costs of education,” no fewer than four items regarding Senator McCain. None of them were related to education, however.

Here are the excerpts, below. (Note: the section on the exhibit of NH primary history will undoubtedly devote some space to McCain’s landslide victory over George W. Bush in 2000…)

"Spreading the wealth

The father of a state law that says New Hampshire must hold the first presidential primary, Rep. James Splaine, D-Portsmouth, isn’t panicking about the move of the Michigan Senate last week to schedule a 2008 primary Jan. 15. Splaine said this could compel Iowa to accept fewer than the eight days it traditionally gets between the first caucus and the first primary here. Here is Splaine’s election calendar of the week:


• Iowa caucus: Saturday, Jan. 5.
• New Hampshire primary: Tuesday, Jan. 8.
• Michigan primary: Tuesday, Jan. 15.
• Nevada caucus and South Carolina primary: Saturday, Jan. 19.
• Florida primary: Tuesday, Jan. 29.
• Tsunami Tuesday (up to 20 state elections): Tuesday, Feb. 5.

Countering terror

Retired Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney will speak about the terrorist threat from radical Islam during a Manchester Republican City Committee-sponsored speech at the Institute of Politics on the campus of Saint Anselm College on Thursday night. McInerney is a co-author of the “Blueprint for Victory’’ in 2004 that detailed what he viewed as promising developments in a missile defense system he said could thwart the threat of nuclear weapons from Iran. Oh, yes, in the interest of full disclosure, McInerney donated $2,300 to the presidential campaign of U.S. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz…

Primary history

You’ll want to catch a new exhibit on the state’s presidential primary tradition at the New Hampshire Historical Society’s library at 30 Park St. in Concord. There are five exhibits on voter participation, the success of low-financed campaigning, the role of the media, the engagement of local government and the primary in a historical context. Rath, Young and Pignatelli, Boston Private Value Investors, WMUR-TV and the New Hampshire Union-Leader of are sponsors. “With a highly informed and engaged voter population, a level playing field for a wide range of candidates and strong tradition of civil engagement, New Hampshire is a unique crucible for national candidate readiness that strengths the democratic principles upon which our nation is founded,’’ said Michael Chaney, president and CEO of the New Hampshire Political Library…

McCain has a tough time getting traction in the Hawkeye State, since he didn’t compete in 2000. He also has long railed against federal subsidies for ethanol, the corn-based fuel that has become a bumper crop for Iowa farmers thanks to the current energy bill…

More Clinton bashing

McCain went after Clinton last week for her conflicting comments on the war in Iraq. Clinton had said at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention that the surge of troops was “working,’’ but later in the week she concluded the surge has “failed’’ and we need to start an immediate withdrawal of troops.

“The fact that the New York senator can reverse her position on an issue of grave
importance to our national security in a few days sends the wrong signal to our
enemies in Iraq and our own troops on the ground,’’ McCain said. “We must continue to support General Petraeus and the new counterinsurgency campaign to give us the best chance to succeed. Following the path to begin an ‘immediate withdrawal’ would be a grave mistake.”

McCain won the backing of several social conservatives last week.

Merrimack Rep. Maureen Mooney and Pam Colantuono of Manchester will co-chair a steering committee of these activists. Colantuono is the wife of U.S. Attorney Thomas Colantuono and had chaired evangelical outreach for President George W. Bush in the state during the 2004 campaign…

Breakfast with McCain

McCain will speak to business leaders at a Sept. 4 breakfast session in Nashua. The Business and Industry Association and N.H. Political Library are co-sponsoring the event, which is part of its National Leaders Forum series. Admission costs $30...



You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Politico's Vogel: "McCain qualifies for public funds" - updated version

The Politico’s Kenneth Vogel has an updated version of his story on Senator McCain’s qualification for public funds. Here’s the text:

McCain qualifies for public funds
By: Kenneth P. Vogel
August 28, 2007 05:49 PM EST

John McCain on Tuesday became the first 2008 presidential candidate to
qualify for taxpayer dollars for the primary election. McCain’s application and qualification for the funds is likely to be interpreted by opponents as a desperate move, even though it does not lock him into the public financing system. Jill Hazelbaker, a spokeswoman for McCain, said: “This isn’t a sign of desperation — it’s a sign of prudence and should be interpreted as such.”

McCain has lagged behind the Republican front-runners in the polls and in fundraising. Participating in the public financing system would allow him in the coming months to get an infusion of loans by borrowing against the promise of taxpayer dollars.

But the system is a trade-off, since it would also cap at about $50 million the amount of cash his campaign can spend during the primary — a limitation that would go into
effect immediately. The leading contenders for the nomination will likely quickly eclipse that level of spending, potentially putting McCain at a distinct disadvantage in early states.

McCain, a senator from Arizona once considered the leading candidate for the GOP presidential nomination, spent $22 million in the first six months of the year, according to a report he filed in July with the Federal Election Commission. It showed he brought in $25 million, and racked up $2 million in debt.

Compare that to the GOP field leaders: Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani since January has raised $33 million and spent $17 million. And this year, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney spent $31 million and raised $35 million from supporters , though he has also loaned his campaign $9 million.

The matching public funds would be provided starting in January, but McCain could use the FEC certificate promising the funds as collateral for loans before then.
Even if the campaign opted not to borrow against the funds, a source close to the campaign predicted the Jan. 1 start of the matching funds would be “just when it will be most useful to him in early primaries.”

“It looks increasingly unlikely that most other Republican candidates will raise significantly more than McCain by then,” the source said. “So having these funds available at a crucial time gives McCain an important option. Whether he decides to use that option depends on his other fundraising for the rest of the year.” The maximum amount a candidate could receive is currently estimated to be about $21 million. McCain spokeswoman Hazelbaker also pointed out that last week former commerce secretary and top fundraiser Robert Mosbacher joined the campaign as general co-chairman, which she called “evidence of the fact that we continue to attract well-respected leaders to assist in our effort.”

McCain applied to receive the funds Aug. 10, and the FEC announced Tuesday that he qualified. In order to qualify for the program, candidates must raise $100,000 by collecting $5,000 in 20 different states in amounts no greater than $250 from any individual contributor.

You can read the full text of the original article here.
You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

NY Magazine: "The new McCain gang still paying bills" - and some more on the "Straight Talk Express" bus

Hat tip to The Politico's Jonathan Martin, for finding this short article from Geoffrey Gray of New York Magazine. Campaignia would also point out that this story is consistent with a question asked by TownHall.com's Matt Lewis during Senator McCain's August 20 conference call. Lewis asked if there had been an audit of the campaign, to which McCain answered in the affirmative.

John McCain’s new steward of the Straight Talk Express, campaign manager Ricky Davis, says that he’s been uncovering old bills and invoices for extravagant purchases that just don’t jibe with McCain’s image as a
frugal-minded maverick. Among them are whoopingly high receipts for a souped-up
Straight Talk bus McCain used on the campaign trail, which came complete with
flat-screen televisions and elaborate “art wrap”—the cellophane-y stuff that’s used to cover the bus with an image. “Every $10,000 counts now,” says Davis, who replaced Terry Nelson and McCain’s chief strategist, John Weaver, who resigned this summer after filings showed they steered McCain’s campaign off the road by spending too much on consultants and staff, among other things, and not doing enough fund-raising. Davis says he’s been able to balance the books a bit by focusing McCain’s bare-bones operation on three states—Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina—and finding a cheaper Straight Talk Express. “The next time we roll it out, it’ll be much more like the original version.”...


You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Innovative, video-included fundraising e-mail from McCain campaign, from his mother in re his birthday

Here is the text of an e-mail sent out under the signature of the Senator’s mother, Roberta, which was distributed at 12:20 PM on Tuesday, August 28, in advance of the Senator’s birthday on Wednesday.

A particularly innovative element of the e-mail is the video included within it. It is a short video in which Senator McCain’s mother, Roberta, speaks directly to the recipient about her son. Campaignia believes the e-mail to be effective, particularly the video aspect, which adds a personal, humanizing touch to the otherwise mundane topic of fund-raising. The complete text is below, with video link within it:


Dear [recipient’s first name],

Tomorrow is my son’s birthday and for such a happy day my daughter-in-law, Cindy McCain, has put together a birthday card to him that both of us hope you will sign.

My son, Senator John McCain, has been a leader his entire life. When he was a young boy, all of the kids knew me as “Johnny’s mother” because he was the leader of the other children. I raised him to be strong, to enjoy life, and to serve others. So I’m not surprised he’s grown up to be one of our country’s greatest leaders - and the best candidate for president. You do not have to guess about where he stands, his leadership abilities or what he can accomplish.

Service to one’s country is a tradition in our family. John has carried on our family tradition of service throughout his life in the Navy, in Congress and the Senate and hopefully as the next President of the United States. If you want a president with experience, character, courage and unwavering dedication to service, you’ll get one by helping John Sidney McCain get elected.

As a special birthday gift, I hope you will follow this link to sign the birthday card Cindy has arranged and make a contribution to his campaign for president. Campaigning is long, hard and expensive and your financial help will be appreciated. So please, give John a great birthday gift by making a donation today of $71, $142 or even $213 - as much as you can to help his campaign.

Yours sincerely,
Roberta McCain(Mrs. John Sidney McCain Jr.)


P.S. Please follow this link to sign the online birthday card Cindy has put together before John’s birthday tomorrow.


You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

McCain to make his 9th (at minimum) appearance on NBC's "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" tonight (Tues Aug 28)

Senator McCain will be a guest on NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, tonight, Tuesday, August 28, at 11:35 PM EDT. At minimum, this will be McCain’s 9th appearance with Jay Leno. His other appearances, courtesy of the Internet Movie Data Base (IMDB), are listed below. In spite of its name, it also tracks talk show appearances. It will mark McCain’s first visit to Jay in over a year.

Episode dated 29 June 2001 (29 June 2001) - Himself
Episode dated 18 September 2001 (18 September 2001) - Actor
Episode dated 19 July 2004 (19 July 2004) - Himself
Episode dated 4 November 2004 (4 November 2004) - Himself
Episode dated 18 July 2005 (18 July 2005) - Himself
Episode dated 18 April 2006 (18 April 2006) - Himself
Episode dated 7 August 2006 (7 August 2006) - Himself

However, Campaignia distinctly recalls Senator McCain appearing on Leno, at least once, during the Senator’s 2000 campaign, and probably more often, in fact. So the IMDB list is only partially complete, and so the subject line reads that this will be his 9th appearance. (In addition, it is puzzling as why McCain is listed as “actor” rather than himself, in his September 18, 2001 appearance above.)

You can read the IMDB page here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Reuters: In SC, "McCain's straight talk on issues alive and well"

On August 14, Steve Holland of Reuters had the following to say on Senator McCain's trip to South Carolina - here are excerpts:

By Steve Holland


CHARLESTON, South Carolina (Reuters) - Republican presidential candidate John McCain's "Straight Talk Express" bus may be off the road because of money woes but his tough talking on foreign policy is still on track.

On a two-day swing through the early voting state of South Carolina, McCain was feisty in answering some skeptical questions from voters he will need for a political comeback after suffering a series of setbacks in his bid for the
presidency in November 2008.

The senior Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee has been criticized for being too controlled by advisers and losing his focus. With his stripped-down campaign after the departure of top aides and little money in the bank, he is basically a candidate alone with a microphone.

The Arizona senator began the year as one of the Republican front-runners but has fallen behind rivals Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney. He has plotted a path back based on strong showings in the early voting states, including in South Carolina, which he lost to George W. Bush in his ultimately unsuccessful 2000 bid for the Republican nomination.

His straight talk now equates to tough talk, some of it distancing himself from Bush's policies. He was skeptical about Russian President Vladimir Putin, who Bush wined and dined last month at the Bush family compound on the Maine coast. "When I look into Mr. Putin's eyes, I see three letters: a 'K,' and a 'G' and a 'B,'" McCain said, referring to the Russian leader's KGB spy tenure and mocking Bush's famous
statement that he had looked into Putin's eyes and got a sense of his soul. "Is he trying to make problems for the United States of America? Absolutely, yes," McCain said...

You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

New West (Colo.) - "McCain Finds Friendly Crowd in Aspen"

The publication New West has this report on Senator McCain's appearance in Aspen, Colorado. It was published on August 20:

By David Frey, 8-20-07

Sen. John McCain looks at home with this Aspen, Colo., crowd. His collar undone, his jacket open, he stands under the tent on the manicured grounds of the Aspen Institute and turns the weather – another hot mountain afternoon – into a campaign issue.

“Twenty years ago, the temperature in this tent would have been 20 degrees cooler,” McCain says. “The fact is, climate change is real.”

This is McCain’s crowd. Like him, they are mostly white, white-haired and wealthy. Many are educated, personally conservative, politically moderate, and they respond with exuberant applause at times when many wouldn’t. Stick it out in Iraq. Applause. Hands off the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Applause. McCain’s popularity here may explain why the Arizona Republican presidential candidate seems less and less popular anywhere else. As anybody who has spent any time here knows, Aspen feels far removed from the real world.

“I used to be a more conservative Republican but now I’m more middle of the road,” says Aspenite Jim Weaver, who likes McCain so much, he voted for him in the 2000 primary even though McCain had already dropped out.

“I wouldn’t be that much in favor if I didn’t think he had the best chance to win
the general election,” Weaver says.

But McCain’s Straight Talk Express is losing its steam, in part because of that straight talk. McCain has staked his ground as an independent Westerner, not afraid to break from his party and follow his gut. It’s a winning formula that saw lots of Democrats – and lots of Western Democrats – ride into office on a centrist path not far from McCain’s own brand of politics.

If he hoped to capture the votes of independents, though, his staunch support of the Iraq war (he calls the fight of Islamic extremism the top foreign policy issue) is beguiling at a time when Americans are increasingly becoming critical of the war. His support of immigration reform (he calls it the top domestic issue) didn’t win him much love either.

“I have never seen an issue that has inflamed the passion of the American people the way immigration reform has. Never.” McCain says. “We have never received death
threats like I have received,” he says. The two issues have sparked groundswells of emotions that a candidate like McCain, who carries a sort-of third-party appeal, could play into. But McCain has avoided the populist card.

Instead, his hand includes issues that play well in Aspen, a town with storied reputation as a bastion of liberalism that is turning more and more conservative. As million-dollar homes see more zeroes added onto their price tags, a wealthier and wealthier set is settling here and visiting here. But these are Aspen Republicans, not Branson, Mo., Republicans. They mix traditional Republican values like national security and fiscal responsibility with some traditionally Democratic issues, like the environment. McCain’s moderate stance fits in well.

“I don’t consider myself part of the Republican base anymore,” says Vickie Waters, of Greenwich, Conn., who was visiting Aspen for a few weeks when she stopped to see McCain. “"It’s been hijacked by the religious right. It’s not really my thing.” Like McCain, she cares about national security. Like McCain, she wants to see immigration reform. She’s been sponsoring an employee to get her green card, Waters says. “It’s a laborious process.”

When McCain talks of fighting Islamic extremism, combating global warming and curbing
federal spending, he finds himself in front of a friendly crowd. And they don’t shy away when he strays from safe territory. Sounding hawkish on Iraq: “I’m confident we will win. I’m confident we will never surrender.” Waxing green on ANWR: “I think there are some parts of the American wilderness, like the Grand Canyon and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, that we don’t need to drill in.” Calling for immigration reform: “There’s a human rights issue as well.” In conservative circles, that could prompt scorn. Not here.

“I thank you, and I’ve already sent money to your campaign,” says one man, who pressed McCain on immigration. “I hope you’re not asking for it back,” McCain responds. He isn’t, but that hasn’t been the response across the country. If Americans are looking for a moderate choice, if Western straight-shooting is a winning formula, McCain’s own particular brand hasn’t been; not so far.

Maybe you can chalk it up to the curse of his home state. Barry Goldwater, Morris Udall, Bruce Babbitt – they all lost their bid for the presidency, he notes.
“Arizona may be the only state in America that mothers don’t tell their children they may grow up to be president of the United States,” he says.

You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

The British newspaper The Guardian picked up the AP story with quotes about the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Here's the excerpt from Senator McCain:
``I have said for a long time that I thought the president would be best served if the attorney general resigned so I think it's the right thing to do.'' - Sen. John McCain of Arizona, Republican presidential candidate.


You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

View from across the Atlantic - The Times (UK) on McCain and the 2008 campaign

The view of the election, from across the Atlantic, can be found in this article from The Times in the United Kingdom. Here are excerpts pertaining to Senator McCain and the overall 2008 campaign, from Tim Reid's article on Monday, August 27:

Countdown begins for real in America's first billion-dollar presidential
campaign


Although the race to succeed President Bush has been in full swing for a year, Labor Day is when things really start to get serious...


In five days most Americans will begin enjoying their long Labor Day weekend - the traditional end of summer - in the usual way: barbecuing, a final trip to the beach and watching sport.

A strange group of nearly 20, however, will fan out across Iowa and New Hampshire, the first two states in the presidential nominating process. They will trudge through
cornfields and scamper from diners to town halls and school gymnasiums. They will lavish praise on their audiences and tell voters in each state - two of the whitest and least populated in America - why they are the most acute political judges in the nation.

Labor Day also marks the traditional start of the presidential primary campaign, when voters choose their Democratic and Republican candidates. Although the race to succeed President Bush has in effect been in full swing for almost a year, this is the moment when many voters begin to focus on the candidates and the issues. Already the longest and most expensive campaign in US history - it will be the first $1 billion election - this phase will also likely have one of the earliest finishes. With a series of big states voting on February 5, or “Tsunami Tuesday”, America is probably only 20 weeks away from knowing who its two main candidates will be.

The 2008 race is the first since 1928 in which both parties have genuinely open primary contests, with neither an incumbent president nor vice-president running.
Although Hillary Clinton, on the Democratic side, and Rudy Giuliani, on the Republican, have solidified significant leads over their rivals in their parties’ national polls, they are far from sure bets for the nomination, let alone the White House. As things stand, there are still six or seven candidates who could conceivably become the next commander-in-chief.

History, and the current political environment, weigh heavily against the Republicans. In four out of five times in the post Second World War era - 1960, 1968, 1976 and 2000 - the party holding the White House for two consecutive terms has failed to win a third. The Iraq war and President Bush’s low approval ratings have also left Republicans dispirited and Democrats resurgent. In 2002 party identification split evenly between the two parties. Now only 35 per cent of Americans call themselves Republican - compared with 50 per cent who say that they are Democrat.

The leading Democrat contenders - Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards - have raised considerably more money than their leading Republican rivals: Mr Giuliani, Mitt Romney, John McCain and Fred Thompson. However, in head-to-head match-ups with the Republicans, although all three Democrats win, they do so by narrow margins. Mrs Clinton fares the worst. She is in a statistical tie with Mr Giuliani and just ahead of Mr McCain. This is feeding Democratic fears that although she is a prohibitive favourite for her party’s nomination, she will prove too unpopular and polarising to win a general election. She has the highest “negatives” - unfavourable ratings - of any candidate.

The match-ups also suggest that, despite Republican troubles, 2008 could be another close election. There will still be roughly 12 key states that Mr Bush and John Kerry, his 2004 challenger, split between them with winning margins of less than 5 per cent. They will again be pivotal. If the “surge” in Iraq achieves real progress, the anti-Republican dynamic could be reversed significantly...

The Republican contest, by contrast, is impossible to predict. All the candidates have significant flaws. Mr Giuliani, the former New York mayor, has confounded pundits by maintaining a solid lead nationally. But his positions on abortion and gay marriage are at odds with conservatives, a key constituency in the primary campaign. He is also in danger of running on a single issue: his widely praised performance in the days after the September 11, 2001, terror attacks. But he is well funded and in the best position to benefit in the nationwide multiple primaries of “Tsunami Tuesday”.

Mr Romney is running as the true conservative candidate. But as Governor in a heavily
Democratic Massachusetts, he was pro-abortion and socially liberal. His recent pro-life, anti-gay marriage conversion has brought charges of rank opportunism. But with a personal wealth of $250 million (£125 million), he has invested heavily in an early-state strategy and, although trailing in national Republican surveys, is well ahead in Iowa and New Hampshire. He has gone a long way to dispel concerns about his Mormonism. He has raised more than his rivals. He is a hugely successful venture capitalist who rescued the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics. He desperately wants to be president. He is the Republican most on the rise.

Mr McCain, the party’s frontrunner in January, suffered a near-fatal implosion to his campaign earlier this summer. His funds are low. He has lost all his senior advisers. He has been greatly damaged by his support for immigration reform - anathema to conservatives - and his support for Mr Bush’s Iraq strategy. But he is still roughly third with Mr Romney in national polls. He is a tough man, surviving five years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam. He cannot be written off.

Mr Thompson, the former senator and Law & Order star, is expected to finally declare his candidacy next week. As a Southerner and a conservative, many on the Right, unhappy with the current field, hope that he will be the true heir to Ronald Reagan who will save America from a Clinton restoration. Without even declaring that he is polling a healthy second behind Mr Giuliani. There are, however, worries that he lacks the fire in the belly - and the in-frastructure - to sustain a challenge. A possible entry by Newt Gingrich, the former House Speaker, this year will shake up the already volatile Republican race even further...

One thing is clear: US presidential politics is a mercurial and brutal affair where conventional wisdom is often turned on its head. Michael Dukakis warned his party this week how quickly things can change. He should know. In July 1988 the former Democratic nominee held a 17-point lead over George Bush Sr. Three months later he lost in a landslide.

War chests of the hopefuls

Republicans

Rudy Giuliani, the former Mayor of New York City, raised $43.9 million (£21.9 million) during the first six months of 2007

Mitt Romney, multimillionaire Mormon who also lent his campaign $8.9 million from his pocket. $35 million

John McCain, the Vietnam War veteran who had to fire staff because his campaign is short on funds, has raised $24.3 million...

You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

The New Yorker: McCain "is still an either/or kind of guy" and "regrets the inexorable movement of earlier and earlier primaries"

In the September 3 issue of The New Yorker, Senator McCain was interviewed for the purpose of promoting Hard Call. Here are some excerpts from the article, titled "Escapist Express":

Politics is all sports metaphors,” John McCain said the other day. “It’s unfortunately overwhelmed with clich├ęs from sports. It’s sickening, almost.” ...

... he spoke with regret about “the inexorable movement of earlier and earlier primaries,” coupled with the compressed schedule of primary season. “You could never have a Hart-Mondale race anymore, where Hart won the early primaries and Mondale came back to defeat him,” he said...

[Note from Campaignia: McCain was referring to the protracted battle between Senator Gary Hart of Colorado - a good friend of McCain's - and former Vice President Walter Mondale for the 1984 Democratic presidential nomination, during which the primaries lasted for months. They became friends while McCain was serving as the Navy liaison officer on Capitol Hill, prior to his first election to the U.S. House in 1982. Hart, in fact, was an usher at McCain's wedding to Cindy Hensley, according to McCain's 2002 book, Worth the Fighting For, co-authored by long-time aide Mark Salter.]


The hard calls discussed in McCain’s book are an
eclectic and decidedly historical bunch: Solzhenitsyn’s decision to publish “The Gulag Archipelago,” Gertrude Ederle’s determination to swim the English Channel,
Reinhold Niebuhr’s conversion from pacifism. Still, an obvious contemporary issue came to mind. “Is Iraq a hard call?” he said. “I think it’s not that hard, because I have had no doubt. It hasn’t been a struggle within me.”
...


Bud Selig’s treatment of Barry Bonds was much the same. “I would have done one of two things: not go or stand up and applaud,” he said. McCain is still an either /or kind of guy...


You can read the full text of the original article by clicking here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Former Ariz. Gov. Symington: if McCain is not GOP nominee, Hillary becomes the next president

According to the Arizona Republic, former Gov. Fife Symington - a Republican and a strong ally of McCain's - believes that unless Senator McCain captures the Republican nomination, Senator Hillary Clinton will become the next president. Here's an excerpt from the article:

The former GOP governor remains strongly loyal to Sen. John McCain and had just commented to a reporter that unless McCain finds a way to pin down the Republican presidential nomination, he figures Hillary Clinton will be the next president.

You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.
On Thursday, John Marelius of the San Diego Union-Tribune's Newsblog feature had the following to say, about the fundraising e-mail sent out by the official campaign under Cindy McCain's signature:

Sign John McCain's birthday card (oh, and send
money)

This isn't the hokiest online fundraising gimmick of the 2008 presidential campaign season. That honor goes to John Edwards' mother hawking her pecan pie recipe in exchange for a $6.10 donation to her son's campaign in honor of the candidate's June 10 birthday. Republican John McCain's wife, Cindy, is emailing around an electronic birthday card that people can sign and return before the Arizona senator's 71st birthday next Wednesday.

"Birthdays are always special occasions in the McCain family," she writes. "Even during this grueling, historic campaign, we can't lose sight of what's really important. I know my husband won't." And what's really important? Well, money for starters.

"I hope you'll consider commemorating his birthday with a special gift of $142 -- just $2 for each year as a friendly reminder of his birthday?" she says. Of course,
anybody wanting to wish McCain a really special birthday is free to send in the
maximum allowable contribution of $2,300. But no pecan pie.


Posted by John Marelius August 24, 2007 11:02
AM



You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

CBS' Jeff Greenfield: "Campaigning for Votes... and Laughs"

Jeff Greenfield of CBS News has an entertaining piece on how candidates - including Senator McCain - have begun appearing on Comedy Central with increasing frequency:

Campaigning for Votes... and Laughs: Comedy Central's Late-Night Talk Shows Have Become a Stop for Presidential Hopefuls of Both Parties

(CBS) If you're running for president, you have to show up at the Iowa State Fair and you have to debate just about every day. Now there's a new tradition that's fast becoming as familiar as kissing a baby or chowing down on local grub: an appearance on "The Daily Show" or "The Colbert Report" — the twin towers of the Comedy Central network's political coverage, labeled "Indecision 2008," reports CBS News chief political analyst Jeff Greenfield.

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., was with Jon Stewart on Wednesday night. "With the experience thing, have you thought about running a smaller country first?" asks "The Daily Show" host. Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee was with "Colbert Report" host Stephen Colbert last week. "I was on the Stephen Colbert show not once, but twice, and you gave me the bump the last time," Huckabee said on the show. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., a "Daily Show" favorite, has been on 10 times; most recently, to talk abut his campaign woes. "In the words of Chairman Mao, 'It's always darkest just before it's totally black,'" he quipped.

So what's the appeal? "You actually end up being more truthful and talking more substance on a show like this than you do sometimes on some of these other shows," says Obama. You can see why candidates would flock to shows that can reach more than a million mostly young, mostly male viewers — one of the most elusive and desirable of audiences.

For Comedy Central, there's a clear bottom-line payoff. "It's big business for us now," says Michelle Ganeless, a Comedy Central vice president. "The franchise of 'Indecision' has become one of our biggest success stories with advertisers." Advertisers like Volkswagen, which has made a multimillion-dollar buy. The network, which has launched a freestanding
"Indecision 2008" Web site, also plans a politically-themed comedy tour. "They're reaching an audience that's interested in politics — but that's younger, and that's a rarity," says Ganeless. It's the kind of coverage that has a very different feel from the old days: When John Kennedy went on Jack Paar's "Tonight" Show back in 1960; the treatment was deferential — almost fawning. "May … may I call you Jack?" Parr asked. That's not so much the case today.

"I only mean this in the most respectable way: Who the hell are you?" Colbert recently asked Huckabee. And Stewart to Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del.: "Is there anything in Delaware the Bidens don't control?" "It's tough humor, but there's always an intellectual bite to it," Biden said. Not every candidate finds the network comfortable turf. Neither Hillary Clinton, Rudy Giuliani nor Mitt Romney has shown up so far. Even so, Comedy Central is showing that political funny business can mean serious profits.


You can read the full text of the original article
here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

ABC News: " '08 Campaigning on a Jet Plane" sheds light on cost of charter jets

On Friday, August 24, Jennifer Parker of ABC News wrote an extremely insightful report on how candidates travel, via either charter (corporate or otherwise) or commercial flights. Here are excerpts, some of which are directly relevant to Senator McCain's campaign, with others shedding light on the relative benefits and costs of campaigning via private jet, as opposed to commercial flights.
By JENNIFER PARKER
Aug. 24, 2007

As the end of the summer travel season nears, many
Americans have an air travel horror story. Delayed or even canceled flights. Lost baggage. Ever-changing security rules. Cramped seats. Some of the '08 presidential candidates have bypassed travel nightmares by flying high in style -- either on expensive privately chartered jets or by hitching a ride on the corporate jets of some of the world's wealthiest businesses.


Other White House wannabes fly with the masses on commercial flights -- either because of ethical reasons or simply because they can't afford to travel any other way. However, with a packed campaign event schedule, large entourages, more hands to shake than ever because of the early primary voting states, criss-crossing the nation on regular commercial flights has become a challenge.

Travel Delays Thwart '08 Presidential Candidates

A delayed flight caused Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. to miss a scheduled campaign event last month in Pittsburgh. The White House wannabe was forced to address supporters by speaker phone. Early in the campaign McCain pledged he wouldn't take flights on private corporate planes...

Many politicians, including Biden, freely admit they would rather fly on a private or corporate jet. "If I had a plane, I would make 30 percent more appearances in the state of Iowa, in New Hampshire, in Nevada," Biden told Radio Iowa's O. Kay Henderson last month. "That's where money does make a difference," said Biden, whose
fundraising effort lags far below '08 rivals Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill. ...

Candidates Flying High on Chartered Jets


Cash-rich presidential candidates, like Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., are flying to rallies, debates and fundraisers, using their vast campaign war chests to charter private jets. Both Obama and Clinton have promised to forgo corporate jets in favor of chartering their own private planes. But chartering your own private jet can be costly. A return flight from Washington, D.C., to Manchester, N.H., on a chartered Citation III jet, which seats eight passengers, would cost almost $22,000 return, according to Air Charter, a private jet company based out of Missouri and frequently used by Obama's campaign.

The Obama campaign spent $340,000 on private planes in just February and March of 2007, using Air Charter, according to FEC documents. Obama has spent the most on travel so far, according to the
Center for Responsive Politics, spending about $696,000 on hotels, private planes, commercial flights and rental cars. Other White House wannabes have found a way to get those costs down by using corporate jets and reimbursing the owners the cost of a first-class ticket, which is far below the cost of operating a private plane.
Candidates Fly on Corporate Jets at Reduced Rate

Almost half of the Republican and Democratic '08 candidates running for president are traveling at reduced rates on corporate private jets, according to federal election campaign disclosures. Federal Election Commission rules allow candidates to pay what amounts to a first-class ticket to fly on corporate-owned private jets....

Romney, Edwards, Giuliani, Richardson Fly on Private Jets

Early on Romney's campaign actively solicited corporate jets as a way to save money.
The Romney campaign has spent almosy $620,000 in travel expenditures on corporate jets, commercial flights, hotels and vehicles, according to a campaign document filed with the Federal Election Commission. The Edwards campaign has paid more than $430,000 to Fred Baron for the use of his private plane, according FEC documents.
Baron, a successful asbestos trial lawyer, is a former president of the Association of American Trial Lawyers and is currently the national finance chair of Edwards' '08 presidential bid. Giuliani has paid more than $175,000 this year for flights on private jets leased by Elliott Asset Management, a company owned by Paul E. Singer, a hedge fund executive.

"Corporate jets are a much easier way to get around the country than commercial jets," said Ritsch. "Anyone who's been to an airport recently knows how difficult it is to get in and out. If presidential candidates had to do that they'd waste a lot of time that they could be spending with voters or with campaign contributors, so that's why they do it," he said.

Running Into Candidates in the Airport

Many presidential candidates fly on commercial planes to save money, and even to be seen by voters as down-to-earth.



You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

NY Daily News: "McCain - never too old to raise cash."

Here is the New York Daily News's Celeste Katz, on the fundraising e-mail under Cindy McCain's signature, encouraging donations based on Senator McCain's birthday on August 29:

McCain - never too old to raise cash

Saturday, August 25th, 2007


John McCain, the oldest of the major candidates in the presidential race, is seeking to turn his age to his advantage as his 71st birthday approaches.

"We've put together an electronic birthday card for John's birthday on August 29th. I hope you'll be able to sign it and, if you wish, write my husband a short personal note," his wife Cindy McCain wrote in a blast e-mail to McCain backers.

"As a special way of letting him know you're still on the McCain Team I'm asking you to make a special contribution of $142, or even $71 - one dollar per year - to commemorate this event."

While McCain has faced questions about his age and his health during the 2008 campaign, spokeswoman Crystal Benton says it's not an issue for the Arizona senator.
"This election is about experience, and Sen. McCain is the most experienced candidate on either side to lead the country from Day One," she said.

The oldest candidate in the race - Democratic former Alaska Sen. Mike Gravel, 77 - doesn't think McCain's age is an issue. "What should be a factor is the candidate's judgment," said Gravel spokesman Alex Colvin, who said the real problem is "the fact that [McCain] ... continues to believe a military presence in Iraq is justified."

Celeste Katz

You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Friday, August 24, 2007

WashPost: "McCain is only veteran among leading presidential hopefuls".

On Friday, August 23, the Washington Post published an article titled, "2008: The Year of the Civilian: McCain Is Only Veteran Among Leading Presidential Hopefuls". Here are the excerpts, in which Senator McCain is mentioned:

By Peter Baker

Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, August 24, 2007; Page A03

As some of the leading presidential candidates trooped
before the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Kansas City this week, there was one thing largely missing at the lectern -- veterans of foreign wars.

With the exception of
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), none of the front-running White House contenders served in the military...

... McCain, the Vietnam hero and prisoner of war, naturally argues that his service helped prepare him to lead in a time of war. "Clearly, voters will take life experience into consideration when electing our next president," said spokeswoman Brooke Buchanan. "John McCain's record of service and sacrifice makes him uniquely qualified -- more than anyone else running on either side -- to lead as commander in chief from Day One."


You can read the full text of the original article
here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Text of birthday fundraising e-mail from Thursday, 8/23, under Cindy McCain's signature

Here is the complete text of the fundraising e-mail that the campaign issued under Cindy McCain's signature, per Senator McCain's birthday on August 29. It was sent out on Thursday, August 23, at 12:44 PM.

Dear (recipient's first name),

Could you do something special for my husband?

It may not seem like much, but it will mean a lot to John. I really hope you can take a minute today and help me out. During this tough Presidential campaign, I like to do what I can to let John know he has got a lot of people pulling for him.

We've put together an electronic birthday card for you to sign and, if you wish, write my husband a short personal note. I'm
planning a small party for him and I'd like to give him your warm birthday wishes. I know he'd love to hear from you.

You see, he's always talking about how blessed he is to
have so many dedicated supporters across the country who are so deeply committed to his Presidential campaign. And if you know anything about John McCain, you know his unwavering loyalty to our nation, to our men and women in uniform, to his friends and family, and to his conservative principles.

He appreciates your loyalty during this important
election, and that's why I can't wait to give him your card on his birthday.

So please take a moment right now to sign it and write your own personal message to him.

And if you can, I hope you'll consider commemorating his birthday with a
special gift of $142 - just $2 for
each year as a friendly reminder of his birthday!

I can't think of a better way for you to help share in
this special event than to pass along some supportive words and, in the process,
help out his Presidential campaign.

Birthdays are always special occasions in the McCain
family. Even during this grueling, historic campaign, we can't lose sight of what's really important. I know my husband won't.

John and I have children just starting their careers; one recent college graduate, one at the Naval Academy, one in the Marine Corps, and one still in high school. That's why John is so committed to America's future.

And while there are moments when I wish he wasn't so busy, and under the spotlight so much, we both make sure our children understand that public service is a McCain family tradition, and sometimes it's not going to be easy. He runs for office because he feels it's his duty to give back to our nation, which has been so good to him.

And during his time in public life, he has always worked hard to do what is right for America. He could take an easier path that might win him a few more votes or friendly newspaper headlines, but that's not him. Because he cares more about our nation's future than about what his political opponents say. That's just one of the reasons why I love him so much, and I suspect it's why you have been so loyal to him.

So please, as one of his closest supporters, take just
a moment to
sign the electronic birthday card
and let him know you're still on the McCain Team by making a special contribution of $142, or even $71 - one dollar per year to commemorate this event.

Thanks again for helping my husband. He won't let us down.

Cindy McCain

P.S. On behalf of the entire McCain family - Doug, Andrew, Sidney, Meghan, Jack, Jim and Bridget, I hope you can add your own special touch to help make this birthday extra special. I know my husband would really appreciate it. Please make sure to sign the birthday card today so we
can give it to him on August 29th - his birthday. And if you can, please include
a special birthday gift of $142 or $71 to McCain for President.


Many thanks -

Cindy McCain


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Washington Times' "Dinan on the Republicans" on Cindy McCain's e-mail per McCain's birthday

The Washington Times' "Dinan on the Republicans" had this analysis of the fundraising e-mail sent out under Cindy McCain's signature on Thursday, August 23:

Remember those birthday checks from grandma?

Well, Cindy McCain, Sen. John McCain's wife, sent out an e-mail fundraising pitch today asking the Republican presidential candidate's supporters to pony up $142 -- $2 for each year in honor of the senator's 71st birthday.


The birthday e-mail never mentions McCain's actual birthdate until the very end -- it's Aug. 29 -- but does stress how committed McCain is to his campaign and to his principles.

"Birthdays are always special occasions in the McCain
family," his wife writes. "Even during this grueling, historic campaign, we can't lose sight of what's really important. I know my husband won't."

Judging by her e-mail, the most important thing is money. She asks three times for donations, which she said would be "a special birthday gift" for the man whose lackluster fundraising in the first two quarters of this year has helped knock his campaign out of front-runner status.

McCain isn't the only one to tap his birthday. Former
Sen. John Edwards held a $15-a-plate fundraiser in honor of his 54th birthday in June, while Sen. Barack Obama's supporters were encouraged to donate $46 for his
46th, celebrated Aug. 4.

Still, McCain retains a built-in advantage over the rest of the field: as the oldest candidate, he stands to gain the most, dollar for dollar, from donors willing to match his birthday.

Posted on August 23, 2007 1:34 PM

You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

NRO's Kathryn Jean Lopez: "Something to love John McCain for".

On Monday, August 20, Kathryn Jean Lopez of National Review Online's "The Corner" had this concise praise of Senator McCain:

Something to Love John McCain for [Kathryn Jean Lopez]

His upcoming "No Surrender" tour. (P.S. to Jim Geraghty: Yes, Gen. Petraeus on the Hill on 9/11 tracks with what a number of NR-ers have been told.)

08/20 12:02 PM

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Official statement from McCain per Hillary Clinton's statements on Iraq

Here is the text of an e-mail sent out by the official McCain campaign on Thursday afternoon, August 23, regarding statements made by Senator Hillary Clinton on Iraq:

ARLINGTON, VA - U.S. Senator John McCain issued the
following statement today:


STATEMENT BY SENATOR JOHN McCAIN

"On Monday, Senator Clinton told an audience at the Veterans of Foreign Wars that the surge of troops in Iraq was 'working.' Now, after taking heat from anti-war activists and her primary opponents, Senator Clinton says the surge 'has failed' and thatwe should 'begin the immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops.'


"The fact that the New York senator can reverse her position on an issue of grave importance to our national security in a few days sends the wrong signal to our enemies in Iraq and our own troops on the ground. We must continue to support General Petraeus and the new counterinsurgency campaign to give us the best chance to succeed. Following the path to begin an 'immediate withdrawal' would be a grave
mistake."



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Nashua Telegraph: "McCain has national answer for local issue" while getting ice cream

On Friday, August 10, the Nashua Telegraph published this story, regarding Senator McCain's visit to New Hampshire that weekend - here are key excerpts:



McCain has national answer for local issue



By Eileen Hynes
Telegraph Staff


MERRIMACK – After a long day on the campaign trail, Sen. John McCain did as many locals do – he treated himself to an ice cream at King Kone.

“I can tell you, King Kone has earned its name,” the Arizona Republican joked, marveling at the towering medium, orange-flavored soft-serve in his hand.

Before earning his dessert, though, McCain faced more than 250 New Hampshire voters in a Town Hall meeting at the John O’Leary Adult Community Center on Thursday night.
Though some audience members had supported the senator’s presidential run eight years ago, many were still undecided and shopping around for a candidate.

Leslie Doughty of Merrimack, who worked on McCain’s campaign in 2000, but acknowledged that the issues have changed since then, and she remained undecided. “I pay attention to polls and who has money and who doesn’t have the money,” she said.

Recently, McCain has dipped in donations and support, but he remains optimistic about appealing to voters.

“In fact, if the Republicans don’t back him, then I’m voting for a Democrat. It’s as simple as that,” said Claire Seusing of Nashua, who considers herself an independent.

In his opening comments, McCain highlighted stopping pork barrel Congressional spending, protecting eminent domain and taking the entire Middle East situation into consideration when developing a policy on Iraq...

In the end, McCain weighed in on the status of the primary, saying that he wouldn’t visit a state that moved their primary ahead of New Hampshire with the exception of the Iowa caucus.

“We have a very unique electorate here, people who understand their responsibilities and examine the candidates in the most thorough fashion,” he said.

You can read the full text of the original article here. You can contact Campaignia at publisher@campaignia.org.