"If this piece had run before New Hampshire, McCain would have lost. If it had run before Florida, he would have lost," suggested a former Romney campaign adviser, reported ABC News' John Berman.
Tony Beam, host of a Christian evangelical radio station in South Carolina, said while most of the listeners don't support McCain, many of them directed anger toward the New York Times.
"Most of my listeners don't like John McCain to start with, they were hoping for someone with more solid conservative credentials," Beam said. "But the callers I took said they thought the New York Times had blown this out of proportion."
ABC News' John Berman, Kevin Chupka, Jake Tapper, Rick Klein, Jonathan Greenberger, Teddy Davis, Courtney Cohen, Matt Stuart, Mosheh Gains, Lindsey Hamilton contributed to this report.