Anonymous asked in Politics & GovernmentElections · 1 decade ago

Where did McCain lose the election?

The bush presidency aside I think McCain had a real chance. McCain didn't capatilize enough when the democrats were in a civil war. I don't think Hilary every got behind Barack. Here are the mistakes that he made:

1) Not campaigning in enough swing states early on.

2) Not knowing anything about the economy.

3) Sticking his campaign to smearing Obama, other than highlighting his own merits.

4) Not picking Mitt Romney.

5) Picking Sarah Palin.

6) Letting Sarah Palin speak.

7) Not killing Sarah Palin.


Great ideas jim

Update 2:

I am so tempted to give Judith best answer. Nothing get me turned on like a fiesty woman. *Drooling*

55 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer


  • endpov
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    A few more reasons to add:

    They lost in not taking seriously enough :

    1) How bad people disliked the idea of possibly 4 more years of the same. They really should have gone over the top in showing people that a McCain Presidency would be very different from and much better than the Bush years. Since they didn't, and mostly just paid lip service, that left people wondering and more likely to vote for Obama. Even Republican politicians knew that there would be this wave of negativity threatening their re-election because of Bushes low approval rating and the way things have been going lately for America and how this could be connected to the Republican Party, and they just did not address this issue adequately.

    2) The fact that a lot of people did not want to vote for the same person all the racist people were voting for. This isn't something that a lot of people would talk about or even admit to as a legitimate reason, but it is something you hear people talk about and can be an important factor in the direction people will go to make a final voting decision...

    3) And the fact that voting for a black man would be much more important and significant for this country than voting for a woman for vice president. And since Obama had some important pluses on his side (his education and good speaking skills, good image - an image of youth and energy, superior endorsements, more donations and larger number of workers with campaign, etc..., it made it more appealing and more sense to vote for him.

    4) The things people were saying against Obama proved to be unfounded at this time or unknowable until after the election.

    5) That Obama could be the embodiment and fulfilment of MLK's dream.

    6) Obama did not have many democrats that were against him, but McCain had some serious opposition from his own party. The fact that any Republicans were against a Republican candidate in a general election is a serious handicap and show that the Republican party is divided.

    7) They did not address McCain's age issue adequately. They really should have shown that McCain was perfectly able to run the nation for the next four years even though he probably couldn't physically run a marathon. Or, just because he moved a little differently than the rest of us because of his injuries from the Vietnam War, does not exclude him from being eligible for the office of President. Nor did they address the perception that Governor Palin lacked some basic knowledge a leader should possess. Because they did not address these two issues, it made people wonder, and continue to wonder and therefore more likely to vote for the other candidate.

    8) Ultimatelty, the fact that the Republican Party represented the wealthy and big corporations, and the Democratic Party represented the downtrodden masses, and coupled with the fact that a very strong democratic candidate was nominated to run, created an arena for a democratic win in the 2008 general election for President.

    All these things and possibly more conspired like a perfect storm against all Republicans to make it very difficult for the McCain campaign to overcome and succeed in winning more votes. There really would have had to have been some really brilliant minds working on the McCain campaign for Mccain to win. Obviously, that brilliance and support just wasn't there, and therefore, McCain did not shine through as the better candidate...

    And I've heard that now they are saying that if the Republican Party doesn't embrace the "change" and the different political climate and realities that now exist, it stands the chance of becoming only the party of "rural white America", will continue to lose in upcoming elections, and could even become a marginalized party.

  • 1 decade ago

    I think McCain did the best job he could. It wasn't a bad job at all. What he could have done differently with hindsight involved? I think he could have won almost up to the last minute, but the bottom falling out of the economy I think naturally favors the democrats. I don't think Sarah Palin hurt him. I think that was a brilliant move. He probably should have been negative on Obama very early on and less so at the end because it made him look like he was grasping at straws. Instead of allowing the focus to be drawn on his personal merits more focus should have been placed on his understanding of where we are today in America. Talking tough on politic ethics while ignoring the chasm being created by Wall Street and the widening gulf between the haves and the have-nots while using the same economic strategy as W and his republican predessors is not going to make head-way against those who are independent minded and can see the handwriting on the wall. ( The average person may have thought, "Sure he's a good man, but what's he going to do for ME?" ) Being engaged in understanding where people are today and flexibility in reaching out to those outside of his chanting base of "drill baby, drill" would have of course helped too.

  • 1 decade ago

    1. Could be. But I think it wouldn't really helped as the election map in 2004 and 2008 are still sort of similar.

    2. He knows, but he decided to stick for his "maverick" persona and smearing in the mid campaign.

    3. He did that turnaround mid campaign. Sadly. Probably due to the Republican party pressure.

    4. Could be. Just not Sarah Palin.

    5. Yes.

    6. Well he didn't allow her to speak on his concession speech. So I think it counts to something.

    7. Killing her won't solve anything.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    Pretty good start... though I don't agree with a couple of your points.

    - Kind of old and a cancer survivor

    - Came across as abrasive or grouchy during debates

    - Not picking Tom Ridge in my opinion (needed a more moderate pick, I think. Women don't actually want to lose their right to choose, mostly, and Romney had problems with people that wonder about Mormonism.)

    - Terrible campaign discipline (everyone knew right away about dirty laundry within the campaign... they called Palin a "diva" just before the election... as soon as she was picked they leaked that she wasn't McCain's first pick... and stuff like that)

    - Joe McCain, John's brother, started some of his own negative publicity right before the election

    - The perceived link between McCain's deregulation stance, and the problems on Wall Street

    - He wasn't that popular with a lot of right-wing conservatives to start with

    Just a few more ideas.

  • 1 decade ago

    I think he lost because his campaign was weak and he used the word "Maverick" too many times. I personally liked Sarah Palin though I do think Mitt Romney would have been the better choice.

    Obama also paid for advertising 11:1 in states like Ohio and Florida - which are a big part of how he won. In popular vote the election was very close, only about 2 million voting difference. However the states that Obama won like Ohio had a lot of electoral votes, therefore it ultimately led to his victory.

  • 1 decade ago

    You forgot a few:

    8) Running AT ALL on the heals of two Bush terms given his voting record

    9) Knowing nothing about the power of the internet. If his campaign manager had brought in a hard hitting, internet savvy professional to set him up a web based campaign it would have done a world of good. A lot of the young or new voter are on the internet. Obama hit them hard with almost and email a day (I ought to know as I got them) both pushing his issues, defending himself from the smears and gaining donations.

  • 1 decade ago

    I don't know when it all fell apart. But I was with him to the bitter end. I think it was a combination of things. I don't want to blame Sarah Palin, so I won't, but she just added fuel to the fire. I wanted John McCain to win so bad. Because he has earned it, and he deserved it. But in my heart, I knew he wasn't up for the job. It is a grueling job, and lets face it, he's no spring chicken. But I wanted him to get that brass ring, more then he wanted it fo himself. I hope he retires now. Because he doesn't owe America anything else. They have humiliated, and betrayed him for the last time. I wish him nothing but the best, life has to offer.

  • 1 decade ago

    In early september, McCain/Palin was ahead in the polls Then Bush announced the taxpayers will be spending 700 billion on a wall st. bailout, to stop the bottom from dropping out of the economy, after that it was just not possible to have confidence in W, or his buddy.

  • 1 decade ago

    He lost the election the moment he won the primaries.

    Come on now. John McCain? Rudy Guiliani is much better known and more widely liked. Even Mike Huckabee could have done a better job at running for office.

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.