Thursday, June 12, 2008

McCain, Obama still have work to do at home

Before Barack Obama and John McCain can woo the undecided swing voters, they might need to touch up their own party bases first. Yesterday Oklahoma Congressman Dan Boren, a Democrat, made news for stating he would not endorse Obama, calling him "the most liberal senator" in the Senate. Combine this with Joe Lieberman (technically listed as an "Independent Democrat") coming out in support of John McCain and it seems Obama has a problem on his hands.

Unfortunately for McCain, he can't do much to take advantage of this, because according to The Hill, at least 14 Republicans in Congress have not endorsed McCain, even though he has been the party's presumptive nominee for over three months.

Republican members who have not endorsed or publicly backed McCain include Sens. Chuck Hagel (Neb.) and Jeff Sessions (Ala.) and Reps. Jones, Peterson, John Doolittle (Calif.), Randy Forbes (Va.), Wayne Gilchrest (Md.), Virgil Goode (Va.), Tim Murphy (Pa.), Ron Paul (Texas), Ted Poe (Texas), Todd Tiahrt (Kan.), Dave Weldon (Fla.) and Frank Wolf (Va.).

McCain has always been painted as a maverick who isn't afraid to break with his party on issues such as immigration and campaign finance reform. Among the "Gang of 14," McCain's energy policy and his plans for Iraq are some of the chief concerns.

Prediction: Sound and fury signifying nothing. With maybe a couple exceptions, expect most legislators to hold their tongues and vote among the party line in what looks to be another very close election.

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