McCain Campaign's Growing Pains

GOP insiders see organizational problems.


John McCain's presidential campaign is struggling with its share of growing pains. Republican insiders who want to help the presumptive nominee complain that, when they offer assistance and counsel, their calls aren't returned and their offers too often go unheeded. "The campaign just doesn't seem equipped to deal with a rapid expansion right now," though it needs all the help it can get as the general-election campaign accelerates, says a senior Republican who has worked in several presidential campaigns in previous cycles and supported Fred Thompson this time around.

GOP insiders add that McCain's senior staff also appears to be worried about possible new media reports of high-level lobbying activity by McCain partisans. This could lead to another round of bad publicity about alleged conflicts of interest and McCain's connections to Washington's power brokers. "They're wondering, who's next," says a senior Republican who has long supported McCain.

—Kenneth T. Walsh