November 18th, 2008
09:47 PM ET
10 years ago

McCain may face bumpy shift from White House run

Sen. John McCain is looking forward to returning to the Senate full time, aides say.

Sen. John McCain is looking forward to returning to the Senate full time, aides say.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Two weeks after losing his bid for the presidency in an electoral landslide, Sen. John McCain is beginning the thorny transition back to life out of the spotlight as he weighs his future role in the Senate.

Aides say McCain is looking forward to returning to the chamber full-time after a nearly two-year hiatus.

But the road from Republican Party standard-bearer to merely one of a hundred senators can be a bumpy one, political observers say, especially since the Arizona senator is without a leadership position as his party faces its slimmest minority in the chamber in nearly three decades.

McCain's return to a lower profile is made more precarious by the fact that he has to grapple with a stinging public rejection and ongoing criticism from some Republicans who say his campaign was mismanaged. Other Republicans have said it was downright incompetent.

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Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. Paul

    You heard it here–landslide.

    November 18, 2008 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm |
  2. Ilona Hussein Proud Canadian


    MEAN? YES!



    I have absolutely no idea, how John McCain can look in
    the mirror everyday, and remember the way in which he
    conducted his Presidential Election Campaign! How can
    he look at himself in the mirror and justify his actions?

    November 18, 2008 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  3. Mike

    Stinging public rejection? 8 million votes short out of over 125 million cast?

    November 18, 2008 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  4. John

    Johny boy, reality start hitting home!!

    November 18, 2008 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  5. beartrack

    It will be very hard for McCain to return to the Senate as if nothing has happened. Time to call it day John. Retitement to Sedona doesn't sound bad about now.

    November 18, 2008 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  6. John, Air Force Vet

    He IS incompetent. And he picked a more incompetent person as a VP canidate. It is truely frightening how many millions of Americans voted for those two. There are many far better options for the Party.

    November 18, 2008 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  7. davesarush

    yes the photo proves McCain has a bumpy face.

    November 18, 2008 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  8. Proud to be an American and willing to defend America

    McCain didn't stand a chance because of the censorship by the liberal mainstream media and ignorance of mainstream America. Check out theYouTube video titled "How Obama Got Elected", and you will see why this country is in the mess it's in. With ignorance to this degree we are ripe for an onslaught like that of Rwanda, Sudan, Congo. You young Americans so eager for change better do some independent research instead of getting your "facts" from SNL, PBS, NSNBC, CNN and the New York imes. Try reading some real history books while you're at it. BTW when the "Fairness Doctrine " is reinstated will PBS have to give equal time to conservatives? I doubt it.

    November 18, 2008 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  9. G.R.I.T - Girl Raised in the South

    I'm sure the transition will be bumpy for Sen. McCain, but he deserves to eat a little crow after such a horrible campaign. On the other hand, for the GOP to blame him for a poorly managed campaign and the problems within the GOP is ridiculous. There were other people running the campaign, McCain tried to appease the extreme right with the Palin pick, and McCain bears some of the blame. Lots of others deserve their share of the blame, as well. Let this man do what he does best, work in the Senate.

    Just to keep the record straight, I did not support McCain, I am a lifelong Democrat and a newly minted Obamamaniac!

    November 18, 2008 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  10. WAW

    I'm a democrat, that said, John McCain is responsible to no one but himself. For the GOP he was to be the "also ran". He was to be out of it early in the primaries and Mitt was to be the shinning standard barer. The only problem was the GOP's religious right base, their strongest supporters. The Southern Baptist, Farwellians and Focus on the Family was more concerned about Mitt's "cult underware" that winning the White House. McCain even had to select one of "them ones" as VP in order to even have a chance. McCain did what he had to do in order to launch a campaign that offered any possibility. Nobody guarded his back or his front for that matter. He may be on his own, but it is not anywhere he has not been before and PEOTUS Obama recognizes that this man meant it when reached across the aisle. John McCain was a valiant opponent and will continue to be honored as a Great American.

    November 18, 2008 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  11. CanIcallyouJoe

    McCain: Because 2008 really should be 1935.

    Get out.

    November 18, 2008 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  12. Sarah Smith



    resonates w/me..

    that's my opinion too..

    November 18, 2008 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  13. Gerry in Va. for Obama.

    John McCains campaign was not a campaign to get him elected. It was a campaign to get him out of the way. The Bush white house didn't want him elected so there was no one who wanted to take responsiblity for the expert political guidance an election team requires. The Republican party simply stood back and watched as the "maverick" buried himself in lies and hate mongering, knowing full well he would never be elected. McCains attitude towards the Republican party was one reason, but the fact that George Bush hates John McCain was the main reason. Senator McCain will hopefully learn before he dies that one can't be a fence straddler with out paying a price when it comes to politics or, like his buddy Lieberman, he may find himself forced to stand on one side or the other, of a fence that is not his choice.

    November 18, 2008 11:44 pm at 11:44 pm |
  14. Yikes!

    Thank God they lost by a landslide, especially with the person he picked as his running mate, give me a break! That woman is more scary than his photo, and that's scary! Country first? More like Johnny first. Karma is real, oh yeah!.

    November 18, 2008 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |

    He served our country. As such he deserves our respect and courtesy.


    November 18, 2008 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  16. jack myhoph

    Obama won, McCain lost. Let's all move on.

    November 18, 2008 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  17. Bill Charlotte,NC

    Tell McCain to be on the look out. I hear there are un-American, terrorists, socialists, Marxists, Communists, "that-one," celebrities and people who are "not one of us" about to move into Washington. But not to worry, he has them right where he wants them.

    November 19, 2008 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  18. Democrat


    McCain is the only GOP candidate who would have challenged Obama this year. It was close up until the financial crisis even though it should have been a Reagan like blowout. With Romney, Huckabee or any other wanna be clown the Republicans had to offer it would have very much been a total blue map on Nov 4th

    November 19, 2008 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  19. PETER




    November 19, 2008 12:19 am at 12:19 am |
  20. S. Boatman Warrensburg, Mo.

    Thats The Way You Look After Getting A Landslide!

    November 19, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  21. Peter (CA)

    "Proud to be an American"-
    Just going to twist facts, huh?
    Can't trust the media because it is all liberal, right? Better to check out a video made by someone with an agenda to "prove" why your side is right.
    How about a video of some racist rednecks to balance it out?

    We understand history and we also know that if we repeat the same mistakes, we are doomed. It might fit your narrow agenda, but not mine and, luckily, not the MAJORITY of voters.

    November 19, 2008 12:28 am at 12:28 am |
  22. Craig in Kansas

    He lost control of the campaign. All of his advisors lead him down a path that he did not want to take. He has served the country with honor. His campaign staff did not serve him well.

    November 19, 2008 12:30 am at 12:30 am |
  23. J.C.

    Senator McCain lost, because he did not have enough confidence in himself, which hurt his leadership.
    But I still respect him as one of our best public servants in D.C. He is one strong voice we should keep in the Senate.

    November 19, 2008 12:30 am at 12:30 am |
  24. Justin W.J. in Phoenix

    I wonder if he would consider a position as Secretary of Defense.

    November 19, 2008 12:35 am at 12:35 am |
  25. Sara from Arizona

    John McCain, a good man and war hero. I have nothing but respect for him.

    November 19, 2008 12:37 am at 12:37 am |
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