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Gomez Campaign Walks Back McCain’s Statements On National GOP Support

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., right, campaigned with Massachusetts Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Gabriel Gomez, center, at the Boston Police VFW Post Monday. (Michael Dwyer/AP)

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., right, campaigned with Massachusetts Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Gabriel Gomez, center, at the Boston Police VFW Post Monday. (Michael Dwyer/AP)

BOSTON — U.S. Sen. John McCain likes talking to reporters.

It is a proclivity that can, on occasion, get him into trouble.

Witness his joint appearance with Massachusetts U.S. Senate candidate Gabriel Gomez Monday morning at a VFW hall in Dorchester.

McCain’s message was, broadly speaking, in tune with his host’s campaign. He cast Gomez as a moderate Republican who is well suited to representing Massachusetts — a bipartisan figure who will work toward immigration reform and tackle the sexual assault crisis in the military.

But he made a couple of statements that Gomez’s campaign had to walk back afterward.

Asked if more national Republicans would rally to Gomez’s side, McCain suggested U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham would stump for the Massachusetts candidate.

Will Ritter, a spokesman for the Gomez campaign, later said Graham would not be coming to the Bay State.

Ritter also said the campaign did not yet have a financial commitment from the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) — the party’s main organ for electing Republicans to the U.S. Senate. (See update below.)

McCain had suggested Washington Republicans were already lining up behind Gomez — a move, he said, that was sure to bring other national conservative money to the race.

Gomez’s aides, working to get Gomez and McCain off to a fundraiser after the event, tried to pull the pair out of the hall on several occasions. But the Arizona Republican repeatedly waved them off.

John McCain likes talking to reporters.

Update at 5:45 p.m.: Ritter corrects himself and says the Republican National Committee and the NRSC have committed funds to the Gomez campaign. “We welcome their financial support,” he writes, “and will work together to make sure Gabriel Gomez is the next senator from MA.”

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