Blogger Conference Call With Senator McCain
Obviously everybody congratulated him on his victory last night. Surprisingly, he did not show any irrational exuberance to use Alan Greenspan's term from several years ago. He's the same guy the day after a big win as he was in July, when he was down in the polls.
He started out by expressing his satisfaction with the win, and stated that he was as nonplussed as the rest of us at Hillary's startling comeback. I couldn't help thinking that while Hillary becomes the story, her resurgence may help the Senator in the long run, because it ensures that the base will hold if she can win the nomination.
Erick Erickson of Red State asked him whether there would be an investigation into how a piece of pork barrel spending managed to get back into the appropriations bill, noting that Senator Tom Coburn is leading the charge on that issue. Senator McCain indicated that if need be, he would issue an executive order requiring an investigation if he becomes president.
Ed Morrissey crowned him the frontrunner, and asked if he had given any thought to a running mate. Senator McCain replied that it was too early, but that while he's perfect in every way (joking of course) that he would look for a candidate who has strengths where he has weaknesses, specifically mentioning Phil Gramm as a man who could help him reform the tax code.
Dan Nowicki of the Arizona Republic asked about fund-raising: How was the money coming in, both in amounts and technique. Senator McCain expressed satisfaction with the dollar amounts and although he did not have any specifics he said the campaign could get Dan that information.
No surprise, the senator did have some peas for us all, mentioning briefly a potential rise in the CAFE standards, climate change issues and the need for some retraining of auto workers whose jobs will not be coming back. Although I'm not in complete agreement there, you gotta commend a guy who won't lie about his positions or soft-peddle the issues where he may not be in complete harmony with the base. The Straight Talk Express rolls on!
I did not get a chance to ask my question, which was whether the campaign was doing any outreach to the talk show hosts to see if they could tone down the negativity.
I would like to add here that I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to participate in these phone calls. It is a humbling experience to think that I am given a chance to talk to the man who very much looks to me like the next president of the United States. Thanks, Pat Hynes!
Labels: 2008 Candidates, John McCain