December 2nd, 2007
03:20 PM ET
15 years ago

McCain receives major New Hampshire endorsement

McCain received a major endorsement from an influential New Hampshire newspaper on Sunday.

(CNN)–GOP presidential hopeful John McCain received a major endorsement of his candidacy Sunday, from the New Hampshire Union Leader, New Hampshire's largest and most influential newspaper.

"We don't agree with him on every issue. We disagree with him strongly on campaign finance reform," the paper wrote in its Sunday edition. "What is most compelling about McCain, however, is that his record, his character, and his courage show him to be the most trustworthy, competent, and conservative of all those seeking the nomination. Simply put, McCain can be trusted to make informed decisions based on the best interests of his country, come hell or high water."

The newspaper's traditionally conservative editorial page is influential to the state's Republican primary voters who vote in the first Republican primary on the presidential nominating calendar. The endorsement is among the most coveted and sought after of the candidates in the GOP field each election cycle.

The endorsement appeared on the front page of the newspaper's Sunday edition.

The paper went on to say McCain, in their view, was the most qualified, and ready to lead the country. "Competence, courage, and conviction are enormously important for our next President to possess. No one has a better understanding of U.S. interests and dangers right now than does McCain," the paper said. "He was right on the mistakes made by the Bush administration in prosecuting the Islamic terrorist war in Iraq and he is being proved right on the way forward both there and worldwide."

The paper also noted McCain's time as a prisoner of war during the Vietnam war, and the torture he endured at the hands of his captors after being shot down, saying "he never gave in then, and he won't give in to our enemies now."

"I am honored to receive the endorsement of the New Hampshire Union Leader, the only statewide newspaper in the Granite State," McCain said in a statement released by his campaign. "It is yet another indication that I have the momentum to win the first-in-the-nation primary. New Hampshire voters deserve straight talk, and it is a privilege to answer their questions in living rooms and town hall meetings across the state."

"I alone have the experience, knowledge and judgment to lead as commander in chief from day one, and my candidacy will rally the Reagan coalition to win a great victory next November," McCain said.

New Hampshire will hold the nation's first primary in the race for the 2008 Democratic and Republican presidential nominations on January 8th. They will follow Iowa's first in the nation caucuses on January 3rd.

McCain is scheduled to campaign in New Hampshire on Monday.

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-CNN Political Desk Editor Jamie Crawford

Filed under: John McCain • New Hampshire
soundoff (57 Responses)
  1. ANDROLOMA, Commerce City, Colorado

    The next Republican president should, at some time, apologize to the world for the behavior of the last one. How much more compassionate conservativism can the people take before they're despoiled completely?

    December 2, 2007 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  2. Robert, Shelton, CT

    Things at this point can only hurt McCain. he is going to have to do some serious campagning in New Hampshire if he expects to win, there is still a chance believe it or not.

    December 2, 2007 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  3. Lee, Mays Landing NJ

    Maybe he'll pull it out over that fraud, Mitt.

    December 2, 2007 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  4. Mark Maxwell, New York

    The 'straight talk express' ran off the rails long ago and so did my support for John McCain. He still has his moments, but he is a broken man compared to the candidate of 2000, before he was smeared by the Bush/Rove machine.

    There is only one man still standing with enough honesty and integrity to lead the Republican party back to respectability.

    I'm voting for Congressman Ron Paul in the Feb 5th New York GOP primary.

    December 2, 2007 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  5. Cliff, Newport, NH

    Bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran.

    December 2, 2007 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  6. Trent, Chapel Hill NC

    From what I've read, McCain's success in 2000 in NH came from independent support, so this could actually result in a noticeably lift for him.

    December 2, 2007 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  7. RevGreen

    will he take the 10K Callenge.....

    The Marijuana Policy Project's Medical Marijuana PAC will donate $10,000 - the maximum permitted* - to the presidential campaigns of Mitt Romney, John McCain, or Rudolph Giuliani if they can prove that any one of their statements about medical marijuana documented on this site are true. Click the individual candidate links for their actual statements and the claims they need to prove.

    Applications for this cash award will be forwarded to an independent panel of scientists for evaluation. The Marijuana Policy Project will accept submissions for this challenge from December 3 to December 31, 2007. Review and adjudication may take up to 30 days.

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    *$5,000 primary, $5,000 general

    December 2, 2007 11:22 am at 11:22 am |



    December 2, 2007 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  9. Joe Mahma

    McCain is a putz.

    That Hitler comment he made recently at the CNN Debate was cheap and almost laughable.

    December 2, 2007 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  10. Wayne, Hanover, NH

    This is what happens when you actually spend some time campaigning in-state. Romney frequents the Granite State, but Giuliani is acting like NH is the last primary in the country, instead of the first. I'm all for the guy, but unless he gets over here and holds more town halls, he can forget about picking up the NH primary vote. I'm still surprised that the Union Leader went for McCain, but he deserved this endorsement.

    December 2, 2007 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  11. Tim, Cincinnati, OH

    If he loses Iowa but wins NH, can McCain win the nomination? Here's a scenario: Huckabee beats Romney in Iowa, McCain beats Romney in NH. That moves Romney down and, with Huckabee lacking a national campaign, it becomes a race between Guiliani and McCain. I could see moderate and conservative Republicans rallying behind McCain. And he could beat Hillary.

    December 2, 2007 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  12. Wayne

    This is what happens when you actually spend some time campaigning in-state. Romney frequents the Granite State, but Giuliani is acting like NH is the last primary in the country, instead of the first. I'm all for the guy, but unless he gets over here and holds more town halls, he can forget about picking up the NH primary vote. McCain deserved this endorsement.

    December 2, 2007 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  13. David MTL Ca

    They endorse bozo ?
    most informed?
    most capable?
    they are as looney as Mcain is

    December 2, 2007 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  14. MKW Flowood, MS

    I agree that McCain is the most qualified presidential candidate across the spectrum of Dems and Republicans. He's been lagging behind other candidates but hopefully this is the momentum he needs to bolster himself to being the frontrunner. If he gets the GOP nom, then he can overtake any Dem candidate! People shouldn't delude themselves by thinking Hillary can win the election! On the night of the general election, people watching poll results on TV will be astonished to see that red WILL be the dominant color on the USA map!

    December 2, 2007 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  15. Independent in IA

    Too little....way too late....thank goodness...we don't need this has-been running the country.

    December 2, 2007 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  16. David, St. Petersburg, FL

    After watching various Republican debates over the past weeks, I've decided I can no longer vote ethically for a candidate simply because they appear the most 'electable' against the Democratic front runners. That's how we got 'W,' who has humiliated his party with his myopia and shortsightedness. Although I disagree strongly with Mr. McCain on certain issues, he will humiliate neither his party, nor his country. Amongst his competitors, he is easily the most qualified.

    December 2, 2007 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  17. Daniel, NY

    The most recent poll of New Hampshire out yesterday has McCain a very strong second - proving he has a good opening to win the state if Romney fades.

    December 2, 2007 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |

    I want to see a McCAIN-GIULIANI ticket this coming November.

    It will be the best team possible regardless of party to lead our country to regain it's former sovereignty in the world's opinions and regain the respect that those former administrators have left us without.

    I put my name to this statement, and anyone who wants to criticize me about anything should have the courtesy to put their name to their statements.

    December 2, 2007 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  19. Greg

    Too soft on Illegal Immigration.

    I love the guy but we can't afford to have him as president.

    December 2, 2007 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  20. Mark, Farmington, NH

    I doubt that the Union Leader endorsement is as great a boon to McCain as this squib makes it out to be. People in this state have already had a good deal of exposure to the candidates and an opportunity to get to know the candidates and their records. They haven't exactly been waiting for the Union Leader's endorsement to make up their minds about who they're going to vote for, nor is the UL's endorsement likely to have much of an effect on that decision.

    December 2, 2007 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  21. Tim, Cincinnati, OH

    I think the monitor of this site needs to stop publishing childish remarks, like the ones calling Romney a "fraud" and McCain a "putz." We're trying to have a serious discussion about the election of the next President of the US and leader of the free world. Yes, they have the right to say what they want, but by publishing their namecalling remarks, you are lowering the bar on the discussion.

    December 2, 2007 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  22. Katherine E.

    It really does not matter what the Union Leader says or does.
    They may be the most influential newspaper in NH, but they are not the most influential source here.
    George Vreeland Hill is.
    Mr. Hill's views are well known, and he sets the records straight on each and every Republican, including George W. Bush.
    The Union Leader is afraid of Hill, and all other newspapers publish him, and publish him.
    In the long run, Hill has had more to say.
    I kind of think he will have a lot more to say.
    Today, the UL backed McCain.
    Hill has already hurt McCain in the state.
    I am a Lib, but if I only had a choice between Republican and Democrat, I would go Democrat.
    Hill is right.
    The UL is wrong.

    December 2, 2007 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  23. E. C., Houston, Texas

    President Bush owes apology to no one and certainly, to No Country. President Bush has made the correct decisions based upon provided information. President Bush has been blamed for immaginary incidents that are untrue and unjustified accusation brought about Democratic Party trying to bring down his administration. Pity you.... who believed all the Democratic Party accusations and hateful rhetoric; it just means that you are ignorant of facts and the truth. As for McCain apologizing to the world....get real! Rumsfeld was the mistake, and McCain should have been there instead of Rumsfeld from the beginning. President Bush has been a great President regardless of what you think, and History will judge him so. If you consider Hillary, Bill and Pelosi true American Leaders, you don't live in the same country as me.

    December 2, 2007 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  24. E. C., Houston, Texas

    McCain will show huge gains in the coming months and rightly, so. He is the only true American Leader who is Right for Commander-in-Chief. Every comment quoted in the Union Leader was right on target and true, beyond a shadow of a doubt. McCain's record has no blemishes....nothing dishonorable. His character and integrity have remained the same throughout his career.

    December 2, 2007 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  25. Jose Hernandez Jr., Westwood CA

    His continued support for an illegal war in Iraq and horrible foreign policy, yet a so-called leading newspaper endorses him. Sad.

    I will be voting for Ron Paul. I want out of Iraq and American values restored.

    December 2, 2007 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
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