Turnaround: McCain Gaining Momentum?

Matt Lewis
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Posted: Jul 02, 2008 5:30 PM

Exactly a year ago, John McCain purged a large portion of his staff including his highly-regarded campaign manager.  At the time, this was seen as his campaign's nadir, but was actually the beginning of his comeback.

Today, John McCain has once again endured a campaign shake-up.  But this time, the hope -- and speculation -- is that this change will once again create some momentum for McCain. 

This is not an absurd thing to suppose.  Not only did McCain's '07 campaign shake-up help McCain, but other recent candidates have witnessed a similar phenomenon. 

John Kerry famously fired his campaign manager in late '03, before coming back to win Iowa -- and capture the nomination.  And earlier this year, Hillary Clinton famously fired her campaign manager before turning her campaign around (though it wasn't enough to capture the nomination).

McCain might also be aided, however, by the recent erosion of support that has occurred since Barack Obama started flip-flopping on core issues (such as his politically calculated decision to not accept public financing) and tacking to the center (such as his change regarding FISA legislation).  Additionally, attacks on McCain's military background have undermined Obama's optimistic and positive image.  Clearly, the talk about Obama being a "new type" of politician has now become laughable. 

Could we be witnessing the watershed moment of this General Election campaign?