This morning, a very senior Republican strategist joined with many other increasingly skeptical conservatives and called up Politico with a rant about the way McCain is running his campaign in the final stretch:
Lashing out at past Republican congresses instead of Pelosi and Reid, and echoing your opponent's attacks on you instead of attacking your opponent, and spending 150,000 hard dollars on designer clothes when congressional Republicans are struggling for money, and when your senior campaign staff are blaming each other for the loss in The New York Times [Magazine] 10 days before the election, you're not doing much to energize your supporters.
The fact is, when you're the party standard-bearer, you have an obligation to fight to the finish. I think they can still win. But if they don't think that, they need to look at how Bob Dole finished out his campaign 1996, and not try to take down as many Republicans with them as they can. Instead of campaigning in electoral-college states, Dole was campaigning in places he knew he didn't have a chance to beat Clinton, but where he could energize key House and Senate races. I think you'll find these sentiments shared by MANY of my fellow Republican strategists.
OMG, can you imagine if John McCain turned into Bob Dole 2.0? Then Cindy McCain could launch an aborted run for president four years from now, and go on to become a senator and help her party lose six whole seats! And John could settle down to do what he's been dying to do all these decades: Viagra commercials.
12 Days [Politico]
Earlier: Et Tu, GOP? The Conservative Betrayal Spectrum