John McCain, trying to breathe new life into his campaign message, has set up a new political action committee to get more Republicans elected around the country.
The PAC -- you guessed it -- is called Country First. McCain sent an email to supporters today asking for money to fill its coffers.
"Country First will allow us to strengthen our party, better define our Republican ideals and message, recruit and back strong, dedicated candidates, and continue our efforts to bring real reform to government by always putting our country and the noble ideals she stands for first," McCain wrote.
Republicans are the first to admit that their party badly needs reinvention and a fresh message -- witness the unusually fierce competition for Republican National Committee chairman. McCain, though, cites the age-old GOP values in his fund-raising plea: "limited government, economic opportunity, personal responsibility, and strong national security."
The email makes no mention of President-elect Barack Obama, whose Cabinet nominations, federal court picks, and legislative initiatives -- including the massive economic recovery plan he wants passed right away -- will present McCain and his fellow Senate Republicans with a fundamental question: Does putting country first mean supporting the president, or opposing him?
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.