Has-Beens for McCain

John McCain has announced his home state campaign co-chairs.  And what a group it is! Consisting of the powerhouse crowd, hangers-on and wannabees, it is an impressive list, indeed.

Leading the pack of co-chairs is former Gov. Jane Hull.  She is remembered as much for her sucker-punch to McCain’s 2000 presidential bid, as for her flame-colored hair.  Her endorsement of George W. Bush was not warmly received by AZ’s senior senator in his previous race for the White House. This New York Times article details her view of the ill-tempered McCain:
McCain Having to Prove Himself Even in Arizona

Nice to see they’ve mended those fences.

Arizona’s other US Senator, Jon Kyl is serving as state campaign chairman.

The majority of the state Republican congressional delegation is in his corner.  Only Trent Franks has broken ranks with his endorsement of California Congressman, Duncan Hunter. But, Reps. Jeff Flake, Rick Renzi and John Shadegg have all dutifully signed on as co-chairs. There are cabinet and diplomatic appointments, federal judgeships and McCain’s vacant senate seat up for grabs if he wins the big prize.

The West end of the party is represented with former Attorney General Grant Woods, former Secretary of State Betsey Bayless. Another former Governor Fife Symington and two former Reps. Jim Kolbe and Matt Salmon have also hopped aboard.  Former Superintendent of Public Instruction, Lisa Graham Keegan is another co-chair.

Oops! Nearly forgot the list of former state GOP party chairmen, Mike Hellon, Burt Kruglick, Mike Minnaugh and John Munger. What happened to Bob Fannin?

The list is resplendent with “formers.”
Final count: 2 former governors, 5 former party chairmen, 2 former congressman (We’re counting Salmon in two columns both as a congressman and chairman), 2 former Secretaries of State (counting Hull twice) and 1 former Superintendent of Public Instruction.

To be fair, there is a sprinkling of current Arizona office holders: Others supporting the McCain  presidential candidacy are Secretary of State Jan Brewer, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Horne, State Senate President Tim Bee, Arizona Corporation Commissioners Mike Gleason, Jeff Hatch-Miller, Kris Mayes, Bill Mundell and Gary Pierce and Arizona Mine Inspector (and former state legislator) Joe Hart. Yep. An impressive list, indeed.


  1. Grassroots Girl says

    Huh, having every statewide elected Republican (except one) and every Republican member of the Congressional delegation (except one) warrants a snarky “has beens” comment and implies that the list of supporters isn’t very impressive? Not even Hillary Clinton has that level of support coming out of New York. (Nor does Mitt Romney coming out of Mass.)

    Pray tell, who does the list need to include for it to impress you, Ron?

  2. John Q. Public says

    Some of his endorsers don’t even like him. Did you read the linked NYT article?

    The lengthy list of “former” office holders speaks volumes about Sen. McCain—especially the GOP state chairman harkening back to the Mecham administration and Burt Kruglick.

    Has anyone EVER seen McCain at a Republican state party meeting? Since they only occur once every two years and he was elected to congress in 1982 and has been in the senate since 1986, wouldn’t you think he could find one morning in all of those years to show up? Sen. Kyl is routinely in attendance, along with the rest of the congressional delegation. Only McCain and (former congressman) Jim Kolbe continually ignore the group who attend their events, contribute money, collect their petition signatures, stuff mailing envelopes, hammer signs and engage in get-out-the-vote efforts.

    Many on the “current” list are hoping their endorsements might be fruitful for their own future aspirations if McCain hits pay dirt in 2008. Call it an exercise in futility.

  3. Keen Observer says

    The New York Times article quotes current endorser, Grant Woods, during McCain’s last presidential campaign:

    Grant Woods, a former Arizona attorney general and Mr. McCain’s first administrative aide when he was elected to Congress in 1982, said that Mr. McCain had been ”heavy-handed” with Mrs. Hull. ”People come away with great respect and admiration for him,” he said. ”But it’s kind of ridiculous to gloss over big flaws and pretend they don’t exist. John McCain likes being the maverick but does not tolerate mavericks well. Governor Hull was not willing to be told how to do her job.”

    We’ve all heard it said before: Those who know McCain best, like him least.

  4. I’m not quite sure I understand the point of this post.

  5. The “significance of this post, ” was not lost on me. McCain is gathering support from a lot of “formers,” and people like Grant Woods, Jane Hull and Betsey Bayless–moderates, at best, because he has spurned the conservative base. Watch McCain’s Double-Talk Express, a video posted on this site on March 22 for “significance.”

  6. Mike Triggs says

    Where’s Ev? I just checked on Wikipedia and it appears he is still living.

    The former Governor has to be hard pressed to know whom to support…both McCain and Mitt have been caught using the phrase “tar baby”

  7. Gov. Mecham is seriously ill. He is not in any condition to endorse anyone; but odds are good it wouldn’t be McCain.


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