Robert Novak

McCain currently opposes mainline Republican policy on numerous issues, including global warming, stem cell research, immigration and energy (including drilling in Alaska).

A footnote: National Republican operatives are coming to the aid of Sen. Norm Coleman, an endangered incumbent Republican in Minnesota. They are attacking his Democratic opponent, comedian Al Franken, who paid a $25,000 fine this month for failing to comply with New York disability insurance regulations for employees of his corporation.


Stunned by results of Tuesday's special congressional election in Mississippi, Republican strategists are saying it will require spending at least $1 million to save the House seat for the GOP.

The Democratic candidate, County Clerk Travis Childers, fell only 700 votes shy of winning the strongly conservative northern Mississippi district outright without a runoff. Massive financial help from Washington is expected by Republican strategists to be necessary to save the seat for Southaven Mayor Greg Davis against Childers in the May 13 runoff. The seat, in a district that George W. Bush carried for president in 2004 with 62 percent of the vote, became vacant when Republican Roger Wicker was appointed to the Senate.

Childers, a social conservative, is better known through the district than Davis. The Democrat's strong showing Tuesday also reflected the nationwide Republican malaise, which extends even to the Deep South.

Robert Novak

Robert Novak (1931-2009) was a syndicated columnist and editor of the Evans-Novak Political Report.

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