Republican presidential hopeful John McCain said former US secretary of state Colin Powell's decision to endorse his Democratic rival was no surprise, and evoked the possibility of electoral defeat.
Republican White House candidate John McCain, who has seen his standing in the polls sink in recent weeks, on Sunday evoked the prospect of his own defeat but said he would not be "feeling sorry for himself" if he lost.
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Asked on Fox News Sunday whether he had considered the possibility of losing on November 4 to his Democratic rival Barack Obama, McCain said "Oh sure. I mean, I don't dwell on it.
"But look, I've had a wonderful life. I have to go back and live in Arizona, and be in the United States Senate representing them, and with a wonderful family," he added.
"I'm the luckiest guy you ever interviewed.... Don't feel sorry for John McCain, and John McCain will be concentrating on not feeling sorry for himself."
According to a national poll average compiled by independent website Realclearpolitics, Obama leads McCain by five points, 48.9 percent to 43.9 percent.
And Colin Powell, who served as President George W. Bush's secretary of state, dealt McCain's hopes a crippling blow Sunday when he endorsed Obama.
McCain brushed the rebuff aside, saying Powell's endorsement "doesn't come as a surprise" and cited the support of other former secretaries of state including Henry Kissinger and James Baker.
McCain also said he would not let himself get derailed by critical reports about him or, in the case of a New York Times report Saturday, his wife Cindy McCain.
"I just want to go on with this campaign," McCain said. "Most Americans want in these difficult economic times to see who has a plan of action for getting our economy out of the ditch, helping working families, men and women.
"I think I made a very good point of that, that I have that plan.... I think it's being reflected in the polls.
While some polls show Obama extending his lead into double digits -- a New York Times/CBS News poll released Tuesday had Obama ahead by 14 points, 53 to 39 percent -- recent days have seen McCain claw back a few points in national poll averages.
McCain, 72, acknowledges he is trailing Obama, 47, but said he relishes the chance to make a shock comeback.
"I'm very pleased where we are. And I love being the underdog," he said, even allowing a lighthearted moment: "You know, every time that I've gotten ahead, somehow I've messed it up."
Date created : 2008-10-19