Republican congressional candidate Jim Oberweis recently lost Dennis Hastert’s seat for conservatives in part because he espoused staunch anti-immigrant views. John McCain is now acknowledging that the anti-immigrant wing of his party is turning off voters:
We just had a loss of Denny Hastert’s seat out in Illinois. The Republican candidate out there, I am told, had very strong anti-immigrant rhetoric also, so I would hope that many of our Republican candidates would understand the political practicalities of this issue.
McCain is now claiming ignorance about who Oberweis is and what he stands for. But Politico notes, “McCain campaigned for Oberweis last month, helping the campaign raise about $257,000.”
Moreover, McCain left the clear impression that he was endorsing Oberweis’ immigration approach during the campaign:
— The Daily Herald reported that McCain and Oberweis expressed “shared views on issues including immigration reform.”
— The Beacon News reported, “Oberweis took the opportunity to point out the issues on which they agree. Both candidates want to see the borders secured.”
— Chicago Public Radio reported, “In a joint appearance, Oberweis compared himself to McCain, saying they both favor smaller government and want to crack down on illegal immigration.”
While attending a campaign event on Oberweis’ behalf, McCain said last month, “I’m proud to be here with Jim Oberweis to begin the Republican march back to a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.”