ATLANTA (CNN) - When asked what he would change to avoid a repeat of the 2006 Republican defeat in congressional elections, Arizona Sen. John McCain was clear - four times.
"Spending, spending, spending, spending, which led to corruption," he said.
"We let spending get out of control. We presided over the largest increase in the size of government since the Great Society [domestic reforms of the 1960s]. And our constituents and our Republican [supporters] became dispirited and disenchanted."
The mid-term elections gave control of Congress to the Democrats, who have since become a political thorn in President's Bush's domestic and international agenda.
McCain pointed to a $233 million bridge to an island in Alaska with 50 people on it as the "tipping point."