November 13th, 2008
11:00 AM ET
5 years ago

McCain back on the campaign trail

Former GOP presidential nominee John McCain will campaign for Saxby Chambliss Thursday.
Former GOP presidential nominee John McCain will campaign for Saxby Chambliss Thursday.

(CNN) – Nine days after losing the presidential election to Barack Obama, John McCain is back on the campaign trail.

The former GOP presidential nominee will stump for fellow Republican senator Saxby Chambliss today in Georgia.

The freshman senator most likely faces a run-off election December 2 against Democrat Jim Martin, a former state lawmaker.

At the start of the campaign, Chambliss was the heavy favorite in the race. But the contest tightened, and neither candidate won more than 50 percent of the vote on Election Day, thanks in part to a third-party candidate who won 3 percent of the vote. The race appears headed to a runoff between Chambliss and Martin.

The runoff is expected to become official later this week, after the state certifies the election results. Unofficial tallies show Chambliss with 49.8 percent of the vote, just short of the 50 percent plus one vote need to win. Martin has 46.8 percent of the vote.

McCain will join Chambliss at a campaign rally in suburban Atlanta this afternoon. McCain won Georgia's presidential vote 52 percent to 47 percent. President Bush carried the state by 17 points in his 2004 re-election victory.

Former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee is expected to campaign for Chambliss in Georgia this weekend, and an appearance by another former Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, is also possible.

Martin is hoping that President-elect Obama will come down to Georgia for an assist. While there's no guarantee that will happen, Obama is dispatching campaign aides to Georgia to help Martin in his runoff efforts.

A victory by the Democrats in Georgia could help determine if the party reaches its goal of reaching 60 Senate seats, which would give the Democrats a filibuster-proof majority in the chamber. A filibuster is a move that allows the minority party in the Senate to stall and even block votes on legislation. Sixty votes are needed to overcome a filibuster.


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (306 Responses)
  1. bob

    He should go unreported!

    November 13, 2008 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  2. rich

    With all due respect to McCain, he is the looser here. I can't see for the life of me how helpful he will be to this guy. Now, flip the coin, If President-Elect Barack was to the do the same (which I understand he will not do but his surrogates will do instead), I would expect a better result.

    November 13, 2008 08:58 am at 8:58 am |
  3. Stacy from Loudoun County VA

    Senator McCain, Saxby Chambliss is nothing more than an unpatriotic simpleton that craves power and tramples over anyone that gets in his way. Please do America a favor and throw this loon under the bus where the creep belongs. What he did to the good Senator Cleeland, a fellow vet who sacrificed for this country, is inexcusable.

    November 13, 2008 08:58 am at 8:58 am |
  4. Jon

    It's sad that right now third party candidates can only play the role of the spoiler, or just waste everyone's time and money. Now, the only two viable candidates will have to spend more time and resources, and all the voters will have to spend more time to vote again.

    November 13, 2008 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  5. lindapuma

    Will Joe Lieberman be joining?

    Losers of the world unite!

    November 13, 2008 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  6. JIM...TX

    O boy...McCain helping Chambliss:) If he stumbles around like he did in the Presidential election Martin should take it easily!

    November 13, 2008 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  7. Candy West Virginia

    I can honestly say I don't miss you john or your clueless pathological lying running mate at all.

    November 13, 2008 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  8. JB

    It's obvious that mccain has lost any integrity he may have ever had. He called the ads that Chambliss ran against Cleland "despicable" – but yet now he can campaign for him. That says a lot about Mccain. Shameful.

    November 13, 2008 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  9. Mike Dallas

    Please leave Palin behind!

    November 13, 2008 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  10. Jean

    Could we please, please, get Palin and McCain out of the headlines. Can't take anymore of either one of them.

    November 13, 2008 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  11. 1/20/13

    To all you people to include many woman who are bashing Palin give it up. The only reason all of the woman groups dislike her is A) She doesnt look like the typical liberal woman (Short haired and manly looking) and B) She doesnt believe in killing babies.

    Give it rest I thought you were the party of Peace, love, Gay and happy

    November 13, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  12. beevee

    McCain is campaigning for the republican victory in Georgia to prevent the democrats gaining 60 seats in the senate. He is counting on using the sympathy he gained from republican voters on losing the presidential bid. There is the GOP brain behind this.

    November 13, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  13. former gop

    It's clearly dementia. His memory of just nine days ago is gone.

    November 13, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  14. j williamson

    Maybe he's also trying to redeem himself – getting into bed with Karl Rove was the biggest mistake of his political life. The nastiness didn't work this time (for the Repubs) and I don't think McCain truly was all that comfortable with it. It showed at times – in the end it was his campaign and those were his decisions – as he said on election night.

    November 13, 2008 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  15. BM

    MCCain and his running mate need to take a long vacation. They have insulted everyone's intelligence! Country First, Mavericks, Reform, Change, I lost count. Which one was it?

    November 13, 2008 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  16. Linda from Prescott AZ

    The Presidential race is over. Isn't it about time for McCain to pack up and head back to the Senate.

    and

    Will you please quit talking about palin, she is old news and not good news at that.

    November 13, 2008 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  17. Phyllis, TX

    McCain in my opinion is a moron for introducing Sarah Palin to the country. She's an idiot, but doesn't know it. If she starts one more sentence with "Being that", I'll throw up.

    When she speaks I flip the channel because I don't want my kids to pick up improper English from a so called "leader". Send her back to Alaska and don't continue to annoy us.

    November 13, 2008 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  18. Jeff

    McCain wants to insure that another Democrat is elected to the senate.

    November 13, 2008 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  19. Joe Green

    Saxby Chandliss, the triple-deferment candidate, defeated a triple-amputee Vietnam Vet by calling him a "traitor to his country".

    After 9/11, Chandliss suggested that the Georgia State Patrol pull over every car from New York with Muslims in it and throw them in jail.

    In 6 years in the Senate, this bigoted cowardly buffoon has done NOTHING for the State of Georgia.

    Wake up Georgians! With a Democratically controlled Congress, Georgia will be on the short end of the stick unless we elect an effective Senator – Jim Martin.

    Perhaps Martin doesn't have that "Boss Hawg" Dukes of Hazzard Good 'ole Boy (fake) persona that Chamliss has, but frankly, is that the direction Georgia wants to go in the next decade?

    November 13, 2008 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  20. Susan

    If Chambliss wins in Georgia and the Democrats fail to reach the 60 Senate seats they'd like, Silly Sarah can somehow worm her way into the Senate and become the Designated Filibustress - perfect job for her - talk and talk and talk and say NOthing!

    November 13, 2008 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  21. Mike in Ohio

    This is another sign that McCain has sold his soul.

    In 2003, Chambliss was running against Max Cleland, and ran one of the dirtiest smear-laden campaigns ever.

    [A] television spot on behalf of the Chambliss campaign accused
    Cleland, a triple amputee and Vietnam veteran, of lacking the "courage to lead" for not backing all of President Bush's Homeland Security amendments. It showed pictures of Cleland after those of Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein.

    "I'd never seen anything like that ad," said Sen. McCain, himself a
    Vietnam veteran and prisoner of war, in July 2003. "Putting pictures
    of Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden next to the picture of a man who left three limbs on the battlefield. It's worse than disgraceful. It's reprehensible."

    But I guess it is ok to campaign for this reprehensible character in 2008.

    November 13, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  22. Bubba

    We're really looking forward to having these bozos come down here and tell us how to vote. You betcha, wink wink. Keep your cameras ready, CNN. You may see someone sic a dog on a former candidate for president before this is over.
    Seriously? Chambliss has been a sad sack senator with nothing much to show his constituents, and he rode into office by kicking a man in a wheelchair. On the other hand Martin managed to come out against dredging the Savannah port, which is vital, and is a Democrat in a mostly-Republican area. No one has much enthusiasm for the race.

    November 13, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  23. KJL

    McCain can't stay away from the cameras. He needs a hobby.

    November 13, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  24. The postpartisan era

    Let the criticism of McCain begin in 1...2...

    November 13, 2008 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  25. Doug R.

    I wonder if Joe the Plumber will be with him...or maybe Benedict Joe LIEberman?? They can hold hands and cry on each other shoulder.

    November 13, 2008 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
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