October 29th, 2008
07:39 PM ET
8 years ago

Shays takes swipe at McCain

Shays is the lone House Republican in New England.

Shays is the lone House Republican in New England.

(CNN) - New England's lone House Republican appears to have publicly broken with his party's standard-bearer, saying John McCain has not run a clean campaign and is likely to lose his bid for the presidency.

"I just don't see how [McCain] can win," Connecticut Rep. Chris Shays told the Yale Daily News earlier this week. "He has lost his brand as a maverick; he did not live up to his pledge to fight a clean campaign." Shays, who in 2006 became the only Republican congressman from New England, perennially finds himself in a heated re-election race.

The comments are the latest in a string of Republicans who have publicly criticized the Arizona senator's handling of the presidential race and predicted his defeat next week is all but certain. (Other Republicans joining the chorus include Former Maryland Sen. Charles Mathias, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, and former Secretary of State Colin Powell.)

Fellow Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl and former GOP presidential Candidate Mitt Romney also have reportedly said they think McCain is likely to lose. Jon Kyl denied making the comments, though the Arizona Daily Star later produced audio indicating he did.

In his Yaale Daily News interview, Shays did not endorse Barack Obama, and said he remained skeptical the Illinois senator will govern from the center if he is elected president.

“It’s what all presidents should do, but [Obama] has never been there,” he said of Obama's ideological orientation.

Shays is a co-chairman of McCain's campaign efforts in Connecticut.

Filed under: Extra • John McCain
soundoff (196 Responses)
  1. P. D.

    I guess the gloves are coming off. Repupublicans are terrified. First, Liddy Dole should lose. By calling her opponent 'Godless' is astonishing. Does she think she is Ann Coulter?

    October 29, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  2. Ron

    Obama hasn't run a clean campaign either and if truth hurts then oh well... What about Obama going back on using public financing only? He lied to get an advantage... what else will he lie about to get what he wants?

    October 29, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  3. Dale, Phoenix

    I am so sick and tired of all these character attacks against Sen. Obama !!!!!
    But I guess that is all the McCain camp has got.....Because, they have nothing to offer America except more of the same old crap that is already in Washington D.C.

    I keep waiting and waiting for Sen. McCain to offer something that HE is going to do good in Washington...Instead of What Sen. Obama did bad in his past.
    Sen. Obama has offered a CHANGE in Washington, and I am thrilled that the American people can see though the garbage that the McCain camp is tossing around!
    I can not wait until to Old man is out of the picture and the Dizzy Gov. from Alaska goes back to killing moose!
    We are long over due for change!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 29, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  4. ulric

    We`ve had eight years of bad domestic and foreign policy. it time to fix these mess with common sense policies that will fix our economy at home and improve our image globally

    October 29, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  5. Barbara - 65 yr old white female in NC

    Barbara – 65 yr old white female in NC October 29th, 2008 7:17 pm ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Smart man. Let's send Sarah and her AIP-Lovin' first DUD packin' and put McWarmonger in some old folks home where he can't start any more wars. He was a traitor in Nam, and he's trying to ruin the U.S. now just for his own egomaniacal reasons.

    I voted early for Obama/Biden – do the same. The republicans have endless tricks up their sleeves this year to disenfranchise voters.


    October 29, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  6. mouli

    At this rate, if you graduated out of a university and had some friends sharing your intellectual curiosity, it is detrimental to the American presidency. That is the message of John McCain and Sarah Palin.

    If America elects McCain/Palin, that is proof to the world that intellectuals don't have place at the top but they can do their work at the bottom and earn the name of a radical.

    October 29, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  7. Lisa

    Shay has it absolutely right, McCain is a dirty politician, he is such a liar, Mr.I am not going to run a dirty campaign!!!!

    October 29, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  8. Jonathan

    If John McCain wins I'm running for President in 2012. I won't be 35 but hey, who cares about those pesky "rules" and "regulations" and those "voter" people. Who needs them to be president?

    October 29, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  9. tanyia

    Good for him

    McCain/Palin are toast

    October 29, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  10. paul (reformed republican)

    I hope the RNC learns a lesson from this campaign cycle. Mud-slinging, divisivness will not work and Extreme Religious Views no longer have a place in the political arena.

    Religious Extremism is what Al-Quaeda (sp?) and the Taliban are all about.

    The US is supposed to be about Freedom!

    October 29, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  11. Lyndon,CA

    Rats jumping ship!

    October 29, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  12. Mick

    Maybe some of these moderates will finally be willing to move away from the far right and work to get this country back on track instead of just calling people names.

    October 29, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  13. Guy, Toronto

    Yes McCain needs to retire after this

    October 29, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  14. Bob

    Gee, When the national polls were favoring Obama by a large margin,
    CNN showed them 6 times an hour full screen in BIG numbers.
    Now when the national polls are closing fast, CNN ignores them.
    Your electoral map is a joke. CNN moves states in Obama's favor
    whenever they can find a rogue poll in his favor. But notice how their
    map is based on polls that are now 1 to 2 weeks old....Hmmmm

    CNN= Obama Campaign Headquarters!!

    October 29, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  15. GSHELL


    October 29, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  16. anonymous

    Republicans out in 2008; Democrats out in 2010. Good riddance! There is pleanty of blame to go around. It wasn't the "failed policies of the Bush administration" (as Obama likes to say) that got us where we are today, it was failed leadership in Congress and the White House.

    October 29, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  17. Tom from California

    John McCain SHOULD be ashamed of himself. He has run the lowest, most mean spirited campaign I have seen. Between and his Caribou Barbie VP running mate, they have disgraced the party and anyone who used to beleive in this man. How low can John McCain go? I think we still have more depth and depravity he and Sarah Palin and tumble towards.

    October 29, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  18. Joe

    I think this is comical, public self-destruction is what is taking place. Unfortunately, this campaign is going to bring some good republicans down with it. You know the saying "misery loves company". I don't think either McCain or Palin will ever win another election not even in thier own districts. You reap what you sew.

    October 29, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  19. serah

    please someone read my comment, this was the only place i could express my feelings about the new McCain's add in which someone asks if you can trust someone without children to care for your children, I have no kids i am trying hard to get even one its not yet possible. My resort is IVF and as you know it is money which i do not have it is a pain. But i LOVE children and i am a good caregiver, i have done babyseating for my family members, relatives friends and neighbours Can someone tell McCain that comment is to painfull on women without kids like me!!!!!!!! someone please tell him.

    October 29, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  20. mbg

    To Scot k

    Lets be real clear it has alway been a tax proposal

    1. If you are single and make over 200,000 your taxes will go up same under Pres Clinton

    2. If you are a Family and make over 250k your taxes will go up same under Pres Clinton.

    You clearly are a misinformed person and need to read all the facts before you spout your mouth off. I pretty much have the same recomendations for McRacist. He and his campain need to go read what is fact and not a lie.

    Go Obama

    October 29, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  21. Greg

    Couldn't agre more.

    October 29, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  22. Dave

    I no longer have any respect for McCain. Sad that he has sunk this low.

    October 29, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  23. Mike

    CNN, you are leftist propoganda machine. The closer we get to the election the more evident it becomes. Let's hear Obama call for the release of the L.A. Times videotape, you actually report that it's a huge issue facing American voters, and then we'll see where you really stand. I think we all know where that is.

    October 29, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  24. Melissa

    Good for him.

    October 29, 2008 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  25. JD in Houston

    Closing line – Shays is co-chair of McCain's campaign. With friends like this, who needs enemies? Chalk me up as another Republican who agrees – the most qualified candidate this year is Obama. Let's get it over with and rebuild the Republican party, this time without the loony bin fringe right wing (Gov Palin, that means your 15 minutes are up).

    October 29, 2008 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
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