Arizonans who have been around awhile still have vivid recollections of the Keating Five banking corruption scandal that nearly brought down John McCain in the early 1990’s. His lost credibility took him to the verge of falling off of the political precipice. McCain’s image sank along with his approval ratings, which dropped to 38 percent in 1994.
Now, according to the latest poll conducted by the Behavior Research Center, a mere 40% of Arizonans approve of the job McCain is doing for them in D.C.
A Rasmussen Reports statewide survey of Arizona Republicans in September found that 61% thought McCain was out of touch with those in his own party. And as dismal as those numbers are, they were up eleven points from 50% in May. Only 33% of Republicans in the state believe McCain has done a good job representing GOP values, according to that same poll.
The aggregate of these flagging numbers become worrisome as he attempts to fend off a primary challenge by popular former U.S. Rep. J.D. Hayworth. So far, McCain has been willing to spend early and liberally, running radio ads that are blistering attacks on the still unannounced candidate, Hayworth.
As McCain frets over the potential Tom Daschle-like embarrassment he would suffer if he were ousted, he and his operatives have engaged in despicable attempts at character assassination aimed at Hayworth. They have repeatedly tried to link him to the discredited and incarcerated lobbyist, Jack Abramoff, although they are well aware that Hayworth has been “completely vindicated” by the U.S. Department of Justice.
TPMDC reports that McCain’s job approval numbers are at a 15-year low in Arizona. That’s not much of a surprise, given that he barely carried the state in the 2008 presidential match-up with Obama, limping to a home state victory by just 9 points.
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