John McCain Hires New Campaign Manager After Last Week's Shake-Up

Senator John McCain's re-election campaign announced today that it has found a replacement for former campaign manager Shiree Verdone and it's opted to go with a familiar face.

Mark Buse, "The Maverick's" former Senate chief of staff, and one-time intern when McCain was in the House of Representatives, will take over for Verdone just as the campaign filed more than 15,000 ballot petitions with the Arizona Secretary of State's Office -- more than enough to get McCain on the ballot.

Last week, the campaign announced that both Verdone and staffer Mike Hellon were leaving the campaign to work on the Republican National Committee's efforts in Arizona.

McCain campaign spokesman Brian Rogers insists the pair wasn't fired but that hasn't stopped McCain's GOP primary opponent J.D. Hayworth from calling the move the beginning of "the McMeltdown."

"This is the hottest race in the country and the top two people don't just jump ship with three months to go before the primary election unless something is wrong," Hayworth campaign spokesman Mark Sanders told us last week. "This looks more like a meltdown than a makeover."

Call it what ya want, McCain still leads Hayworth by 12 points in the most recent Rasmussen poll.

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