Posted: July 2, 2007 6:35 PM
McCain Radically Restructures Campaign after Poor Second Quarter Fund Raising
The campaign of Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., announced Monday it had raised $11.2 million during the second quarter of fund raising, falling short of the $13.6 million he raised during the first quarter. As a result of the lackluster figure, the campaign announced it had restructured its staff, firing more than 50 people and asking senior aides to take pay cuts. The campaign also has only $2 million in cash-on-hand funds.
Campaign manager Terry Nelson also announced he will be working for the senator without a salary.
“We confronted reality and we dealt with it in the best way that we could so that we could move forward,” Nelson said in a conference call with reporters.
He blamed the disappointing quarter on a number of factors, including the general unpopularity of the Republican Party and the senator’s unpopular positions on the war in Iraq, immigration reform, and earmark, or congressional spending project, reform.
The campaign said it would continue to focus on the early primary states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, and that it would consider accepting federal matching funds for the primary, according to an article in the Los Angeles Times.”
Meanwhile on Monday, the senator traveled to Iraq to visit with U.S. troops. He plans to be there through the Fourth of July. Before leaving, he sat down with the New York Daily News for an interview. About the war, he said that “the outcome is uncertain but I believe we should continue the fight as long as there is a prospect for success.”
Last week, McCain was mostly in Washington, D.C. to try to rally support for the now-defunct immigration bill. Michael Shear of the Washington Post wrote on Thursday that the senator’s position on immigration was hurting him in the campaign. Shear noted McCain’s sinking poll numbers in the early primary states and quoted McCain’s Iowa campaign manager, David Roederer, as saying “from a political perspective, having a candidate that takes on all the tough issues is not always the most politically expedient thing to do.”
After the immigration bill died on the Senate floor, McCain was asked by reporters at the Capitol if he was considering dropping out of the presidential race. He responded, “That’s ridiculous. Why in the world would I want to do that?”
Also last week, Jennifer Steinhauer of the New York Times profiled McCain’s wife, Cindy. She discussed how her adopted daughter found out about the allegations made in 2000 that she was McCain’s illegitimate daughter by Googling herself. And Mrs. McCain dismissed the idea that the senator has a bad temper. She also described the period when she was addicted to painkillers for a back problem as the darkest days of her marriage. Finally, she said she does not play a day-to-day role in making campaign decisions, preferring to focus more on on-the-ground politics.
Looking ahead, although McCain does not have any public events scheduled after his trip to Iraq, his campaign said he plans to address the country about Iraq and travel to Iowa shortly after he returns.