August 13th, 2008
04:10 PM ET
6 years ago

Another Republican senator skipping convention

Roberts is skipping his party's convention.
Roberts is skipping his party's convention.

(CNN) – Another Senate Republican is officially skipping the party's national convention next month, the latest sign vulnerable Republicans may be wary of linking themselves to the GOP brand this election cycle.

Pat Roberts, the two-term senator from Kansas who finds himself in a closer re-election bid than initially expected, won't be on hand to see Sen. John McCain accept the Republican presidential nomination in Minneapolis, his spokesman Molly Haase confirmed to CNN.

Roberts will instead be completing a 105-county tour of the state, Haase said. Polls show Roberts holds a double digit lead over Democratic challenger Jim Slattery, though the race has narrowed over the last several weeks.

Roberts joins a handful of vulnerable Senate Republicans who have flatly said they will not attend the convention, including Susan Collins of Maine, Gordon Smith of Oregon, Ted Stevens of Alaska, and Elizabeth Dole of North Carolina.

Two other vulnerable Republicans - New Hampshire Sen. John Sununu and Mississippi Sen. Roger Wicker - have yet to announce if they will attend.

Roberts' decision comes a week after Republican Congressional Committee Chair Tom Cole reportedly suggested some embattled Republicans should steer clear of the GOP Convention.

According to a report in The Hill, the Oklahoma congressman also urged Republican lawmakers to feel free to criticize the party -– including prospective future colleagues - citing dismal congressional approval ratings. “These ratings are worse than we had on the eve of losing the majority,” he said. “Don’t be afraid to say you are disappointed in fellow Republicans… don’t hesitate to be anti-Washington, D.C."


Filed under: John McCain • RNC
soundoff (203 Responses)
  1. ..OUTRAGEOUS Liberal...

    Don't skip the convention, skip the G.O.P. There's no excuse for anyone to be a Republican in the year 2008, get over it already. The numbers are in and since you people have eaten your young for so long now you'll soon be extinct w/in the next 20 years. Probably sooner if you keep up your good work. Rush Linbaugh, Anne Coulter, Dick Cheney, Glenn Beck,George Bush One & Two (Jeb), Bill O' Riley, Condeleeza, SOMEONE SHOULD STUFF ALL YALL IN A CLOWN CAR HEADING OVER THE EDGE OF THE GRAND CANYON B4 YOU BRING ON THE APPOCALYPSE.

    August 13, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  2. Steve, Minneapolis

    Come on, CNN, get it right. The Republican National Convention will be in St. Paul, not Minneapolis.

    August 13, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  3. Will from NYC

    Does the fool really think that will help his chances??? lol

    August 13, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  4. It Be Me

    even his own party doesn't want to be seen with him! LMAO tells you alot about the man.

    August 13, 2008 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  5. Republicans for OBAMA

    GOOD FOR HIM !!!

    ALL OF US ARE NOT SLEAZY LYING, THIEVING, SCUM BAGS.

    August 13, 2008 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  6. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    It seems that as friendly as McCain can be, it just doesn't seem like Republicans in the Senate want to get to close to him or to Bush. I can't imagine why given the record of higher budget debt, an unpopular war, politicized science among other great things.

    August 13, 2008 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  7. Steve - Wyoming

    Tough days ahead for the GOP if someone as seemingly safe as Robert s is now worried about losing his seat!

    August 13, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  8. Oh Yea!

    Roberts is skipping his party's convention.....He need to go home and Stay There!!!

    August 13, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  9. steve

    I cant wait till November! I want to vote every Rethug out!!!!!! What goes around comes around.

    August 13, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  10. Buckethead

    Does he think his constituents will forget he's a Republican if he skips the convention?

    August 13, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  11. John Y Des Plaines IL

    It's bad enogh he has to sit with the smell at the office, he doesn't have to stand knee deep in it too.

    August 13, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  12. The Oracle

    Actually truth, Hagel and Obama only agree on the war, they pretty much disagree on everything else. Also, if he were to pick one of those Dem senators the dem Gov of each state would pick the replacement. Which would most likely be a Dem.

    August 13, 2008 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  13. My Friends, let me tell you,

    they can run but they cant hide,I have written their names down and will make sure their names appear again just before election time.

    August 13, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  14. Mr Republican

    I hope all these Republicans show up at the Ron Paul Rally in Minneapolis

    August 13, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  15. Joe the Troll

    “These ratings are worse than we had on the eve of losing the majority,” he said. “Don’t be afraid to say you are disappointed in fellow Republicans… don’t hesitate to be anti-Washington, D.C."

    Don't hesitate to pretend you aren't what you are in the hope that Americans really are as stupid as the Republican party thinks they are.

    August 13, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  16. andrew curtis

    I have yet to meet a liberal who can tell me what qualifies Obama to be President.

    Hillary pointed this all out to you, yet 51% of you voted for him anyway.

    When IBM hires someone to be the CEO, they don't hire someone who has almost no experience, no matter how bright he might be.

    McCain is a moderate, with tons of experience. In fact, Kerry wanted him to be his Vice President.

    O'bama is qualified to be a TV news anchor, or perhaps a United States District Court judge. McCain, of course, has his faults, but at least he has 30 years of experience.

    August 13, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  17. DJ Los Angeles

    Weird...never heard of so many politicians "skipping" their own convention. Too much shame in the GOP right now, no wonder I have only seen 1 McCain sticker and hundreds of Obama bumper stickers.

    August 13, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  18. gm

    Doe's it matter how many won't attend the GOP convention? It's the end of the road for the Republican Party.

    August 13, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  19. Joe Reg

    Hagel sounds good to me.

    Obama/Hagel 08/12.

    August 13, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  20. California Gold

    It's a freaking exodus.

    Headline should read:

    "Republican Convention Cancelled Due To Lack Of Interest"

    August 13, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  21. Eileen from Maine

    Dear Lord, have they no ingegrity at all?
    ************************************************************************

    Roberts' decision comes a week after Republican Congressional Committee Chair Tom Cole reportedly suggested some embattled Republicans should steer clear of the GOP Convention.

    According to a report in The Hill, the Oklahoma congressman also urged Republican lawmakers to feel free to criticize the party -– including prospective future colleagues — citing dismal congressional approval ratings.

    “These ratings are worse than we had on the eve of losing the majority,” he said. “Don’t be afraid to say you are disappointed in fellow Republicans… don’t hesitate to be anti-Washington, D.C."

    August 13, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  22. sherry for Obama

    Who cares.......blah blah blah

    August 13, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  23. Shari, NY

    This does not bode well for the Republicans. While the Democratic Convention has been sold out the Republican one seems to be anti-magnetic. Intelligent people can see a stark difference between the two.

    August 13, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  24. Walter

    Gee, the Republican chicken-hawks are all flying the coup.

    McCain is going to need to add a lot of extra bodies to fill up that conventional hall. Maybe he should invite his kids from his first marriage.

    Haven't seen much of them, have we?

    August 13, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  25. Benjamin Columbus, Ohio

    The GOP has nothing to worry about. Sen. Lieberman will gladly fill any slot left open by disgruntled, Republican Senators.

    August 13, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
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