Saturday, August 30, 2008

An interview with Del. Chris Saxman ... McCain's VA co-chairman

[Editor's Note: This interview with Delegate Chris Saxman took place Thursday evening before the selection of Sarah Palin as John McCain's Vice Presidential pick. His response on Friday to that news? "Game on!" He will be a delegate to the Republican National Convention next week in Minneapolis-Saint Paul.]

SWAC Girl: You have been a long-time supporter of John McCain, and you were on board last summer when he almost dropped out from lack of money and lack of support. Having gone through that, do you find it amazing now that he is the presumed nominee?

Chris Saxman: Yes and no. Yes, because it was over last summer. I mean over. We were all just scratching our heads at how he could stay in but he sure did. No, because that is who John McCain really is. A leader. A survivor. He is such an inspiration on so many levels but is incredibly down to earth. Sure, I caught a lot of heat for supporting him in 2000 and JUST a little more last year and this. He will be a great leader for the American people and a great inspiration to the next generation of leaders.

SWAC Girl: What do you think of Barack's lack of a bounce this week during his convention?

Chris Saxman: Well, it’s not over and I think it will be around 8-10 points in the end. The fa├žade of the set behind him is most appropriate – looks good but there is nothing behind it. It will come down as quickly as it went up.

SWAC Girl: Swing voters reportedly are between the ages of 40-59 during this election. Obama has young voters; McCain has older voters. Do you agree because you and I fall into that swing group?

Chris Saxman: No, not because that is where we fall but where they are currently appealing. I think it will change and is. Obama numbers are falling in key states and in key demographics because people are taking a closer look at the candidates and going with an experienced leader who has a long record of working with the other party.

SWAC Girl: The stage backdrop for the GOP Convention is a huge American flag. Since John McCain is an American hero, do you think that personifies him?

Chris Saxman: Good question. I don’t think it personifies him although he is quite obviously an American hero of great magnitude.

SWAC Girl: I have heard you say in the past that John McCain's background made an impact on you as far as supporting him, and you were able to explain it to your son, William. Could you tell that story?

Chris Saxman: Well, we were watching one of the very early debates together side by side on the couch. I had my arm around William and we were just vegging, watching and listening….and William looks up at me and says, “Why are we supporting McCain?” Gratified that he accepted my wisdom without question, I knew that I could not sell him on policies or even McCain’s personal story of service and sacrifice. So, I just looked at him and said, “Because he inspires me to serve others."

SWAC Girl: You are 42. John McCain is 72. Do you think he is too old for the job as President?

Chris Saxman: Not at all. Have you ever met his mother, Roberta? She is 96 and so is her twin! She is sharp as a tack and an amazing woman. I’ve met her several times and she is always engaging and FUNNY … whenever you see people leave a conversation with her, they always say, “Wow, she’s a piece of work.” Almost to a person. I stayed with some of his DC staffers in SC during the primary in January and to a person they all agreed that he has so much energy that McCain just wears them out. And these are fresh out of college kids!

So, no. Not at all.

SWAC Girl: Any other thoughts about the convention? The line-up? The next two months? Convention?

Chris Saxman: No real thoughts…still have three soccer games this weekend to go to and a ton of work to knock out so I really have not thought about it too much. I have watched very little of the Democrats convention just been too busy with work and the kids practices and Mary Kathryn’s first varsity volleyball game! Lee beat Harrisonburg in 5 games!!!

The line up? I am sure it will be great. But the convention will be a complete introduction of John McCain to the country and people who have not paid attention will be amazed at his story and hopefully inspired by it to serve, as he says, a cause greater than themselves.

Next two months? It is going to be awesome.

SWAC Girl: Care to offer a prediction on the outcome of this race?

Chris Saxman: Sure. % or electoral? Just kidding. I really do think McCain will win. The experience factor will hurt Obama too much and people will accept that McCain really has been a reform leader for decades, was right on the Surge, was right on corruption in DC, and is right on more issues that matter to voters. The economy grew 3.3% in the last quarter so that will take some of the wind out of that sail. The critical vote on drilling when Congress is back in will really impact the congressional races and maybe the POTUS race. I think I know the McCain closing argument but will wait for him to make it. In the end, yes people want change – the question will be how much and who do people trust to really be independent of their party. Answer – John McCain. Why? He’s walked it not just talked it.

Cross-posted at

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