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Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 6:54 EDT

GOP: McCain Needs Consistent Message

October 12, 2008

U.S. Republican Party leaders say the campaign of GOP presidential nominee John McCain is drifting, lacking a coherent message and running out of time.

While party leaders said it wasn’t impossible for McCain, a U.S. senator from Arizona, to bounce back in the polls that show him trailing his Democratic opponent, Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, he will have to settle on a clear message soon or face defeat, The New York Times reported Sunday.

“I think you’re seeing a turning point,” GOP Michigan Chairman Saul Anuzis told The Times. “You’re starting to feel real frustration because we are running out of time. Our message, the campaign’s message, isn’t connecting.”

Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson said McCain faces a tough challenge in his state. Asked by if he was happy with the campaign, Thompson replied, “No,” adding, “I don’t know who is.”

Some party leaders said McCain’s harsh attack ads against Obama were not swaying enough independent voters, especially women. The attacks on Obama’s character were actually helping the Democrat in his efforts to portray McCain as erratic, they said.