Thursday, October 16, 2008
Michigan Republicans: McCain 'threw us under the bus' RAW STORY While John McCain seems to have recognized his inability to win Michigan's electoral votes, his decision to give up on the state has angered some local Republicans who fear the decision will prevent GOP voters from turning out to vote in local races."He's a general who left the battlefield in the middle of the fight," said L. Brooks Patterson, Oakland County executive and a GOP leader, tells the Washington Post's Al Kamen. "I'm disappointed in his behavior; he's thrown a lot of good Republican candidates under the bus."Vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin says she still wants to go to Michigan, despite her campaign's nearly nonexistent chances of victory there. If anything, the McCain campaign's decision to abandon the state has left some fertile ground for Republicans who might be gearing up for another shot at the party's presidential nomination in four years. It's not unlikely that Palin counts herself among their numbers.Kamen reports on some of the other big names who have stopped by the Wolverine state. But not to worry. Big-name Republicans have stepped into the breach, coming to the rescue, as one recent state party e-mail put it, to "fire up the troops and raise money for our party." Native son and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney was there recently for a two-day tour doing events for the state organization, various Republican candidates and Rep. Tim Walberg (R), who's in a tough race.Romney even came by the state headquarters in Lansing after an event for Walberg, the e-mail said, and "thanked everyone for their efforts, encouraged folks to never give up and left us with a surprise check for $50,000 towards our statewide efforts!" There was chatter that Minnesota governor and former vice presidential wannabe Tim Pawlenty (R) might come by to help. President Bush is headed there today for a meeting in Grand Rapids with business leaders and then off to nearby Ada for a closed-door fundraiser to help GOP congressional candidates.And don't forget that former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee (R) is heading to Michigan next Wednesday for a luncheon fundraiser for Hoogendyk in Farmington Hills -- $500 for a photo op. Huckabee is also going to be at the other end of the state that day for a speech at the Economic Club of Southwestern Michigan, in Benton Harbor.Whether it reflects a lack of optimism for McCain's chances, or simply a hope that he'd only serve one term if elected, it seems the race for the 2012 GOP nomination has already begun.