John McCain -- or at least his surrogates and endorsers -- continued the assault on Mitt Romney today.
Lindsey Graham, McCain's US Senate colleague from South Carolina, called Romney "naive" for saying on Fox News last weekend that foreign policy experience isn't a prerequisite for the next president.
"The next president of the United States will face some of the most monumental foreign policy challenges in our nation's history," Graham said in a statement issued by McCain's campaign. "Because of this, I believe foreign policy experience matters. For Governor Romney to say otherwise is naive."
McCain also launched a new web-only ad (watch it here) that calls itself a "Mitt Romney issue alert" on foreign policy.
It shows Romney saying, "Well, if we want somebody who has a lot of experience in foreign policy we can simply go to the State Department."
Then the announcer says, "Is he serious? We live in a dangerous world. And these are serious times. America needs a President who is serious about foreign policy. John McCain is he one man prepared to lead America in a time of crisis."
Romney's campaign responded by issuing a statement from US Representative Pete Hoekstra of Michigan, the top Republican on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, who has been campaigning with Romney in Iowa.
"Senator McCain is an honorable man but his recent attacks on Governor Romney are a stretch," Hoekstra said. "In challenging times, we need a leader who can guide America and chart a course to overcome the threats our country faces today. Governor Romney is the only presidential candidate who has outlined a comprehensive strategy for leading America forward and defeating the global jihadist threat. He will build a stronger military, develop a new counter-terrorism force, and work with our allies and partners around the world to help nations reject jihadism."
The New Hampshire Union Leader, whose endorsement of McCain helped resurrect his campaign, hit Romney again in a front-page editorial that accused him of running dishonest ads about McCain's stand on immigration, specifically Social Security benefits.
"With gloves off, Romney distorts," says the headline on the web version.
Romney has been slashing McCain in ads on taxes and spending, as well as immigration, and arguing that the former Massachusetts governor is the true conservative in the race.
A new CNN/WMUR poll shows Romney and McCain tied at 29 percent, with Rudy Giuliani in third with 12 percent, a week before the Jan. 8 primary.