Conservative leaders have a bracing message for voters leery of John McCain: he can win in November. Politico interviews with more than a dozen over this weekend's conservative powow in DC finds them approving of McCain's distance from Bush, which they see winning over voters who want change. “The unhappiness is with Bush and not the Republican agenda,” anti-tax activist Grover Norquist tells Politico.
“There is general acceptance of McCain as the nominee,” he adds. Others say McCain’s key popularity with moderates and independents will boost him in the general election, which is suddenly looking less hopeless than it was a few weeks ago. Michigan Rep. Thaddeus G. McCotter, a former detractor, says he now thinks "this should be a close election."