It ended up not happening, but in 2001, a few weeks before Jumping Jim Jeffords killed the republican majority by changing his party affiliation to Independent, Sen. John McCain considered switching parties when John Weaver, McCain’s chief political strategist, made overtures to key democrats.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) was close to leaving the Republican Party in 2001, weeks before then-Sen. Jim Jeffords (Vt.) famously announced his decision to become an Independent, according to former Democratic lawmakers who say they were involved in the discussions.
In interviews with The Hill this month, former Sen. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) and ex-Rep. Tom Downey (D-N.Y.) said there were nearly two months of talks with the maverick lawmaker following an approach by John Weaver, McCain’s chief political strategist.
Sen. McCain was testing the waters in 2001, and, by his voting and legislative record, has been building that liberal ‘base’ ever since.
If you are looking for a conservative to lead the party, this is just another thing to consider, and ignored by the mainstream media, on how conservative Senator McCain really is. Switching political party does not sound like something a ‘conservative’ would even entertain.
related link: Democrats say McCain nearly abandoned GOP