April 11th, 2008
08:58 AM ET
15 years ago

McCain advisors to meet with House Republican staff Friday

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/11/art.mccainhill.ap.jpg caption="McCain's senior staff is headed to the Hill Friday. "]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Senator John McCain's presidential campaign and congressional Republicans are stepping up their efforts to coordinate campaign strategy and political messaging.

McCain's campaign manager Rick Davis and senior policy advisor Douglas Holtz-Eakin are scheduled to meet Friday morning on Capitol Hill with the chiefs of staff for all Republican House members, according to several GOP congressional aides.

"This is the campaign generally starting to take on the mantle of the leadership. McCain now becomes the standard bearer of the Republican message," Sean Noble, campaign spokesman for Rep. John Shadegg, R-Ariz., one of McCain's early Hill supporters, told CNN.

Noble said he expected McCain campaign officials to lay out where the candidate will campaign in the coming weeks, what themes he'll be hitting, and what the fundraising targets are. Noble also said the meeting would give senior staff of House Republicans who backed McCain's primary rivals a chance to meet the top staff members of McCain's campaign.

Noble noted it wasn't that long ago that McCain could only count on a handful of GOP Hill supporters to carry his message.

"Now he can reach out to essentially the entire House Republican Conference to serve as surrogates," he said.

One congressional aide said senior Republicans have already been coordinating with the McCain campaign, including regular communication among Davis, senior McCain advisor Charlie Black and senior Hill staff.

The McCain campaign recently enlisted John Green, a lobbyist and former aide to retired Senator Trent Lott, R-Miss, to lead Congressional outreach efforts.

House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Oh, acts as the liaison for the campaign to House Republicans and Senator Jon Kyl, R-Ariz, is the liaison to Senate Republicans. But the aide said, "coordination has ramped up just in the last couple of weeks."

Another source downplayed the significance of Friday's meeting, saying most of the information would be "scripted and generic" message coordination, but said it was valuable as "an initial touch of gloves for rank and file Members."

Boehner's spokesman Michael Steel said that Republicans see the value of McCain's ability to reach out to independents.

"People are increasingly enthusiastic about how much he'll help in the fall," Steel said.

GOP aides pointed to April 15th, tax day, as a natural opportunity for McCain and Hill Republicans to work together to highlight differences with Democrats on economic policy.

Boehner announced Thursday that Republicans will argue on the House floor next week that Democrats support "the biggest tax increase in American history" by not extending President Bush's 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (87 Responses)
  1. cnn rocks

    As a democrat,i am suprised at the division in the dem party,its just heart breaking,i must commend the republicans for their unity even when they disagree,every blog i go clinton supporters are on obamas throat and vlice versa,having lost my home and my brother in iraq i am afraid the dems are going to hand the white house to the repubs again.
    so sad so sad,if dems dont wake up and see that the repubs are fueling this fued then we dont reserve the white house.

    April 11, 2008 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  2. Pamela, OR

    Getting the GOP talking points together, I guess. No matter, Obama will win in November.

    We already know the one talking point–more war.

    Obama 08

    April 11, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  3. McCain as modern day Sysiphis

    McCain will never be able to reconcile his 'maverick' self from the divided interests of his Party. Bloomberg's comments were as much an effort to poke at Hillary (who he detests) as to praise McCain. Yet, the closer the man Bloomberg admires cosies up to his own Party and has to put forward policy positions rather than snappy words of defiance, he'll look more and more like a Bush redux. It's an uphill battle he'll never overcome; sooner or later he'll come tumbling down.

    April 11, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  4. Maura, ND

    The Democratic Party is not divided, the Clintons are divisive. Like any other problem, we will handle it by November. The numbers are in Barack's favor and that's that. The Clintons will have to steal the election from our cold dead hands.

    Obama 08

    April 11, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  5. Zoinks

    Hillary Clinton you see how it works when you want to win?

    April 11, 2008 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  6. Diane

    Hillary will not win because she is not the right person for the job. She is too much of the establishment to be believable as far as change. She should have run in 2004. I think she would have had a better chance.

    Obama 08

    April 11, 2008 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  7. Uncle Sam

    In the midst of the hoopla surrounding Sen. Obama's message of change, the truth is that it is actually Sen. John McCain who will bring real change to the White House and the country. Americans of all political stripes are beginning to realize that it has always been Sen. McCain who has demonstrated the integrity and honor to endure the wrath of both Democrats and Republicans in order to do what is right for the American people. It is President John McCain who will unify this country. History has shown us that the great change agents – Gandhi, King, Mandela – did not ask their audiences to simply hope for change. It turns out that bringing about real change and unity is not a matter of rhetoric or manner but of character and courage.

    April 11, 2008 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  8. jd

    Too bad Clinton and Barack did not unite. Thanks to them McCain looks good. Though I would not vote for him, still he has gained some ground. OBAMA/08

    April 11, 2008 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  9. Phil from Guadalupe, Ca.

    There we go again with these republicans.
    What about the biggest earmark McCain gladly supported: The war in Iraq?
    We probably would not even have talk of tax hikes if this war would not even have happened. The McCain-Bush-Cheney team at our taxpayer services.
    HRC, if you get nominated, I hope you defeat McCain in November. Unfortunately I believe that the McCain machine is already painting Obama as too liberal and unelectable.

    April 11, 2008 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  10. SayNoToHillaryBillaryCheslaryClintrous

    Democratic party needs to wake up and stop the Republicans for destroying this country any farther. We can offerd to another Bush policy, if we can not stop them we might as well flash this country to the toilet and be done with it.

    April 11, 2008 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  11. Praetorian, Fort Myers

    I hope they can inspire him to remain the alternative to the extreme socialist agendas of his two rivals.

    If he keeps wooing the left wing of politics to attract independants–he's going to chase conservatives to the Libertarians who prefer less of what he's offering-oppressive over involved costly government!!

    April 11, 2008 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  12. jw, canadian,ok

    A combined IQ of -6.

    April 11, 2008 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  13. Stacy Clarks,

    I really hope the democrats get it together, I truly believe it will be a devastating day for this country, and the world to elect a third Bush term!!!

    DECMORATS IN 08!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 11, 2008 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  14. RealityKing

    Meanwhile..., the Obama/Clinton cage match to the death continues..

    April 11, 2008 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  15. Phil from Guadalupe, Ca.

    For the supporters of Barrack Obama,
    What do you want? That HRC give up and look like a quitter? No way Jose!!!!!!!! I would rather have her in because she is a fighter over someone who is crying foul.
    Besides, if your support is that solid as your candidate claims, something I doubt, then he should not worry about having us in his boat come November.

    April 11, 2008 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  16. ***AMERICAN***

    Why are you talking about Clinton and Obama. Their names are not even in the article. I guess when you are afraid that you will not win, you will do anything to get your person's name out!

    Good try!

    April 11, 2008 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  17. Mike Glenn

    In other news, leftist billionaire George Soros has cut a check for a $40 million television smear campaign against John McCain. The smear will be led by David Brock, the founder of Media Matters, and can be expected to start hitting the airwaves soon.

    *shakes head* I was going to comment on that bit of info, but I think I'll just let it stand on its own.

    April 11, 2008 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  18. MBFLA

    How many Republicans does it take to form the message "More war-bankrupt America?"

    April 11, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  19. Eric

    Too bad for McBush, I like the guy, just don't think he is the man this year.

    April 11, 2008 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  20. D

    Real change comes about through someone who knows how federal government works, and what is most pressing for the country. One person running can answer those questions: John McCain.

    Change through Experience. McCain '08

    April 11, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  21. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    I would say that this shows how unified the Republicans are. It could be because McCain has so much experience on Capitol Hill that he is part of the system despite his "maverick" reputation.

    Restoring the proper tax levels aren't a tax increase; they are a return to normalcy. Besides, with the way the president wants to spend on this war, why did we have tax cuts in the first place? Didn't McCain oppose them in the first place.

    April 11, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  22. Grif

    Rice is Nice...

    April 11, 2008 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  23. Richard, St. Paul, MN

    Good job, McCain. Learn from the 'best' how to lie, cheat, scam and gouge the American people. I don't think that America can survive 'four more years' of Republican corruption and bungling.

    Obama '08!

    April 11, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  24. James, SC

    The only change that John McSame will bring is old politics to older politics.

    April 11, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  25. jason

    White people keep your mouth shut!

    A delegate from Chicago talked to her neighbour's children who were
    climbing in a large tree in their front yard with no parent to be seen. She called to them and asked them to quit playing in the tree like "little monkeys".
    Thechildren's mother called the police on her. Obama's campaign office called her and demanded her resignation from being a democratic delegate. Why? Because the children were black and she was white. She received a TICKET for disorderly conduct. (see Chicago Sun Times for complete details)
    Obama, overzealous political correctness and a sign of the future.
    Be black or keep your mouth shut.

    if you want race relations to go backward elect Hussein Obama

    Vote for Hillary or Mc Cain we know what are getting good or bad

    April 11, 2008 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
1 2 3 4