October 18th, 2008
04:48 PM ET
6 years ago

Rival consultant now working alongside McCain campaign

Warren Tompkins, standing, is a veteran GOP strategist.

Warren Tompkins, standing, is a veteran GOP strategist.

NEW YORK (CNN) - Warren Tompkins, the hard-hitting South Carolina Republican consultant who worked against John McCain during the state’s vicious primary battle in 2000, is now toiling in North Carolina alongside McCain’s campaign on behalf of the Republican National Committee, according to sources.

Tompkins has been working in the state for two weeks, participating in conference calls and traveling up from South Carolina for meetings, said one southern GOP operative.

A McCain campaign official said that Tompkins is volunteering for the campaign, doing so through the RNC, but that he has only been in the state for “a few days.”

The presidential race in North Carolina has tightened in recent weeks, and CNN has moved the reliably red state into the “toss-up” category. The state’s down-ballot Republican candidates - Senator Elizabeth Dole and gubernatorial candidate Pat McCrory - are also in tough races.

“He is working for the RNC, so therefore coordinating with all the campaigns,” the operative said of Tompkins. “It’s the final few weeks of a campaign and you need people with experience, and frankly there are not many people in the southeast with near the experience that he has.”

Tompkins, known for hardball tactics, has long been accused of orchestrating a smear campaign against McCain in 2000, but he has never been formally linked to any of the attacks carried out against the Arizona senator. The Columbia-based strategist was a senior adviser to Mitt Romney’s primary campaign in South Carolina last year.

The McCain official said Tompkins was just one of many Republicans coming on board to help the McCain campaign in its final weeks.

“We’re deploying hundreds of political operatives to the battleground states,” the official said.

Filed under: John McCain • North Carolina
soundoff (333 Responses)
  1. No to welfare for the privileged few!

    The only thing I've seen here on CNN these days is:

    McCain, Palin, McCain, Palin, McCain, Palin...

    Obviously, the mainstream media are desperately trying to spread McSame's lies, distortions and demagoguery all over the place only to defend the Republican status quo.

    It is just ridiculous that McSame's shameless attacks and lies, especially about Barack Obama's tax policies, go unchallenged time and time again!

    October 18, 2008 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  2. Allen

    A A A – ACORN ,AYERS and ANGER The McBush and Moose Bush strategy. And now the latest gimmick. A fake unlicensed plumber who does not pay his taxes, is not named Joe and works for a tiny company that does not make anywhere near the money he claimed it does. Just another farce.
    The latest in a never ending string of McBush political gimmicks.Now the truth comes to light so McBush whines that we are all picking on the poor fake alias Joe the unlicensed tax dodger plumber.

    October 18, 2008 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  3. Lou from CT

    Here we go – another "Swift Boater" has joined the McCain campaign.

    Whatever happened to taking the high road, Mr. McCain?

    Oh wait – your "CREEP" based advisors won't let you do that. You can't discuss the issues, so the "splatter theory" is all you have left.

    Obama/Biden 2008.

    October 18, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  4. R in Maine

    That comment was in moderation. If he thinks it is cool to call Obama a socialist, then I am entitled to say how I see him. Ask me how I really feel about him.

    October 18, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  5. LT for Obama


    I watched some of the show and David actually did not hit him as hard as I had hoped. As far as I am concerned, he got off easy.

    McCain is spiraling out of control. He says one thing on day about hating negative campaigning then turns around and flies into the robocalls, mailers and campaign speeches that are filled with hate mongering, lies and fear pandering. Are you going to write to him about his conduct?

    October 18, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  6. carol lang

    I hope that someone can bring up the isue about Palin and her husbands involvement with this group in Alaska that wants to break Alaska away form the USA. If she and McCain gets in there will not be a America. Her husband will take over the president and we will not have anything to say. Heaven help us. Please get this out to the American people so they can vote for a real American. We don't need a washup old man who think he is the only hero in the world. My dad gave his life for the country and so did a lot of other man and women They are the heros. Give credit where it should go

    October 18, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  7. sick & tired of it

    This just proves what Obama's been saying.......FOUR MORE YEARS OF GEORGE BUSH.

    October 18, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  8. Ken

    It is a shame that this man, McCain, is wanting to become the next President to lead this nation with the low life tactics he is using. If he were to win the election, he would be the first President to go into office with an approval rating as low as his Twin, Bush.

    My neighbor is an Atheists and this evening on his way to work he knocked me for a loop. We were discussing the debate last week and he said to me, that McCain and Palin scare him so bad that he was PRAYING for an Obama / Biden win.

    Now that was a powerful statement coming from an ATHEIST

    October 18, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  9. carol lang

    please let the american people know who the real Sarah is. Ask the question about her husband and his group that dont want Alaska to be a part of the US. They want to take over the US and break it up. Is this what we want in the white house. This is not brought up its about time the american people know about this so they can make their choice if this is what they want. Sarah even had a tape from her office welcoming this groups coonvention to Alaska and even gave a speech at the convention. McCain is a washup old man who thinks he was the only person in the war and the only hero. What about my dad and the other dads that were killed in the war and left our mothers to raise us. These man were the real heros. there are still man and women that are dieing in a war that we should not be in. We need new leadership and someone who wants to be in the white house for the right reasons. McCain better watch his back for some reason they get in. Saaarah want to be president so bad her and her husaband will do anything to get there. Than we will have trouble

    October 18, 2008 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  10. Luke

    I support Obama - McCain calls what Obama stands for 'socialistic', therefore he call me a socialist.

    I personally resent this. I have lost all respect for John McCain. This slime campaign he has run will make it vitrtually impossible for the next president, no matter who it is, to bring the country together to deal with the crises that we face.

    I am sick of hearning him say he loves this country - what he loves is the idea of being elected.

    And this comes from a democrat who probably would have voted for the John McCain of 2000 if Bush hadn't done to him what he is now doing to Obama.

    A disgusted American

    October 18, 2008 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  11. Zion

    Obama, I am praying for you, and that you be the wisest president, not just for black or white, but for all Americans.

    God Bless

    October 18, 2008 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  12. lovebaby

    obama will win, he has come to far not too!!!!!

    October 18, 2008 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  13. JT

    How can they vote! They all live in Canada and Europe. The silent majority will prevail. This is typical liberals. Remeber who is the majority member of NATO? European plus Canadians. Gues what NATO means? No Action Talk Only.

    October 18, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  14. Brad from Ia

    You brilliant people who want to tax your employers more will find yourselves in the unemployment line. The people with the money will only give a certain amount of it out. If their taxes are higher, that leaves less for wages. But go ahead and vote for the socialist, it worked out great for the U.S.S.R.

    October 18, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  15. Andrew

    Birds of a feather . . . .

    October 18, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  16. Cathy

    McCain has sold their soul to the devil to TRY to win this campaign.

    I don't know how McCain can sleep at night knowing what he is doing now he so strongly spoke out against in 2000.

    McCain is NO MORE the maverick he ONCE was...McCain has no honor or integrity.

    October 18, 2008 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  17. Gracie

    WOW..... these rivals are NOT fooling anyone. These WHITE MEN are just scared to death that a WELL EDUCATED young African American is beating them at their own game. If Sen. Obama was WHITE, these JOKERS would still be bitter rivals. This is RACIALLY motivated at the core. These fools know good and well they wouldn't even be sharing the same room let alone the same desk if this was anyone else but Sen. Obama.

    As a WHITE female, this is just utterly disgraceful in my opinion. How many CROONIES is John McCain going to hire to try and CHEAT his way into the White House. I mean seriously, is taking the LOW road all he knows how to do? That speaks to John McCain's Character, or lack thereof.






    October 18, 2008 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  18. Sharon

    John McCain is despicable!! Seems all he is doing is lying. Sarah Palin too. But then both were found to have committed Abuse of Power.

    These two declared all average workers in America are a "welfare". We are a disgrace to them!!!! All average workers are worthless as they say!!! They sure do – all in black and white and in video!!

    They claim Barack Obama Tax benefits for American average workers is socialist!!! Obama is socialist because he is taxing rich??

    John McCain is giving 9.7% increase to rich per Tax Policy Center!! Everyone else is way down!!! Google Tax Policy Center. McCain is for the rich!! Sure is not giving this good of tax break to anyone else. What is his plan called???

    What do Average American Workers think of these two???

    This registered Republican has had it with John McCain and Sarah Palin!! All they do is lie, attack with lies!! Attack with fear and hate mongering!! What they are doing should disgust all Americans!!

    October 18, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  19. Bianca

    Please McCain, just bow out of the race and stop making a fool of yourself! Socialism? So many dumb Americans don't even know what the term means!

    October 18, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  20. Will the Real Maverick Please Stand Up?

    Ahhhhhhhh...there goes McCain's last small shred of honor and decency.

    October 18, 2008 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  21. Andre

    The Democrats shouldn't be too worried about Tomkins. The two situations are not the same. In 2000 he succeeded in swinging right-wing voters in the Republican base away from McCain with a dirty smear campaign that was able to push the buttons of right-wingers. This time, however, the race in North Carolina is not ABOUT the right wingers, it's about the independent voters. Their brains are not wired the same way as partisan voters. In fact, the independent voters don't LIKE negative campaigning, so, if anything, Tomkins' tactics might work against McCain/Palin in North Carolina.

    October 18, 2008 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  22. Marie,San Diego

    No matter what tactical defense the McCain will do now is almost futile. People who are economically tested already made up their minds. I think McCain campaign also under estimate the Iraq issue. Most of the people want the war to end due to the obvious expenditure that should have been spent here. People are angry with that 1 billion a month price tag.
    One more thing, people want to start fresh especially now that the country is in economic crisis.

    October 18, 2008 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  23. La Von Hummel -


    October 18, 2008 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  24. Angry Republican

    McCain-Palin, Americans made their choice already.
    I am Rep, and I would not vote for your. Since the beginning of this campaign what ever McCain does is never right, maybe because he's too old and his capacity of thinking are shrinking day after day, it's so shameful for all Republican to have a presidential candidate like this. It over ok, it's over.

    October 18, 2008 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  25. Roberto in Revelstoke

    So now McCain accused Obama of being a socialist.
    Read the definition of a word before you use it.
    Shame on you and your ever malicious campain John McCain. When you loose by a landslide, your ill termpered and increasingly vile campaign will have been a major factor.
    1: any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods
    2 a: a system of society or group living in which there is no private property b: a system or condition of society in which the means of production are owned and controlled by the state
    3: a stage of society in Marxist theory transitional between capitalism and communism and distinguished by unequal distribution of goods and pay according to work done

    October 18, 2008 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
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