Senator McCain: Republicans in search of message to woo angry voters
The Republican Party is in search of a message to attract voters who are angry with just about everything — healthcare, the U.S. deficit, Wall Street bonuses, increased unemployment and home foreclosures to mention a few.
“There’s a lot of anger out there and there’s a lot of frustration,” said Republican Senator John McCain, who was defeated by Democrat Barack Obama for president last year.
Thousands of people are turning up at townhall meetings and “tea party” protests against government policies, he noted.
“So there’s something going on out there. And I’d love to sit here and tell you that we Republicans are attracting all of those unhappy people but we’re not, we’re not,” McCain said at a Reuters Washington Summit.
“They’re out there kind of in the middle and they haven’t found a home. And in fact they haven’t even channeled their anger yet,” he said.
Many have swung into the Independent category — “They’re leaving the Democrats but they’re not coming home to Republicans” — because of the deficit increases during the previous 8 years of a Republican (George W. Bush) White House, McCain said.
“So they are not finding a message from the Republican Party that resonates with them, and so I think we’re in one of the most interesting times politically in Amercia,” he said.
One possible answer would be a return to a formula that worked when Republicans took control of the House and Senate for the first time in 40 years — “Something like the Contract with America that we gave them in 1994, portray a far more positive agenda for America,” McCain said.
Photo credit: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst (Senator McCain at Reuters Washington Summit)