Republican State Chairman Thomas Wilson will take a public role in support of John McCain’s campaign for the 2008 presidential nomination, according to several GOP County Chairmen who say Wilson has disclosed his intentions to them. Wilson made his support of McCain clear during a series of telephone calls to party leaders testing his own support for re-election in June following his former business partner’s admission that their firm, The Strategy Group, intentionally overbilled the Burlington County Bridge Authority for public relations services. Robert Stears, an ex-Republican National Committee staffer who partnered with Wilson in a Trenton lobbying group, faces up to 25 years in a federal prison for bilking the BCBA out of as much as $1 million. Some Democrats are calling on Wilson to return his share of the profits from the Burlington contract. One County Chairman said that Wilson’s support of McCain could cause him problems with supporters of other candidates who won’t want the GOP State Chairman to give the McCain campaign any advantages in a state whose February primary could put New Jersey in the national spotlight. Wilson’s pending endorsement of McCain was not exactly a secret: he was among the leaders of McCain’s New Jersey campaign in 2000 and has maintained close contact with McCain’s organization.