February 28, 2007

Early Exit For John McCain?
— Ace

From Dick Morris. And Eileen McGann, who always co-writes these things, but I never mention her. Sexist of me. (Well, more popularist, since everyone knows Dick Morris and few know of Eileen McGann.)

McCAIN'S CAMPAIGN COLLAPSES

By DICK MORRIS & EILEEN MCGANN

Published on NewsMax.com on February 27, 2007.

The John McCain candidacy, launched amid much hope, fanfare, and high expectations, may be dying before our eyes.

Even worse, it may go out with a whimper instead of a bang.

It may not end in an Armageddon style primary defeat, but just dry up from lack of support, money, or interest.

Throughout all of 2006, McCain sat atop the polls right next to Rudy Giuliani. In the Fox News survey of December, 2006, he was getting 27 percent of the Republican primary vote to Rudy's 31 percent. But, after Giuliani announced that he was running, the Arizona senator fell to 24 percent while Rudy soared into the stratosphere at 41 percent of the primary voters. But even when McCain was polling well, he wasn't raising the money he needs for this campaign.

In the last quarter of 2006, during a time when he was tied for front-runner status in the GOP and doing well in general election matchups against likely Democratic rivals like Hillary Clinton, he raised only $1.7 million according to his filing with the Federal Elections Commission.

Even worse, he had less than $500,000 on hand, pocket change in a presidential race and barely adequate for a run for Congress.

Part of McCain's problem was that he wasn't raising money. But the other part has been that he is spending money too rapidly — and not on reaching voters but on paying political consultants. One top Republican operative from the old Reagan campaign commented, "McCain has hired every consultant he can find. He has all the top names, but no money."

What is McCain's problem?

Why did he go from the most exciting candidate in the race a year ago to the verge of oblivion today?

Fundamentally, he failed to heed the Shakespeare's admonition "to thine own self be true." The John McCain of the 2000 campaign is nowhere in evidence in 2007.

Instead of challenging the party establishment, he pathetically waits at its door, hoping to be invited. Where he used to challenge the religious right, he now panders to them. Once he led the battle against big tobacco, for corporate governance reform, in favor of campaign financing changes, and in support of action against global warming.

Now he has been identified with two issues, neither popular in the Republican Party: The Iraqi troop surge and amnesty for illegal aliens.

Rather than stake out an independent voic e apart from the Bush administration, he has become the last survivor at Custer's Last Stand in its support of its policies.

Republican strategist and Reagan campaign manager Ed Rollins makes an interesting point about McCain: He has switched roles. He has gone from being the McCain of the 2000 race, challenging the party orthodoxy, offering new ideas, and demanding reforms and changes to the Bush of the 2000, toeing the party line and only timidly venturing different ideas if he advances them at all. And this is no way to win the presidency or even the Republican nomination. But where it has counted, on the two core issues that move Republican voters these days — tax cuts and immigration — McCain is badly out of step with the GOP base.

I'm not sure Morris' (and McGann's) analsis is even close to correct -- while Republicans are pessimistic on Iraq, the main reason they are willing to give Giuliani a pass on the social issues is that they think he'll fight the War on Terror, including the War in Iraq, harder and more effectively than Bush -- but it is interesting to see that conventional wisdom now sniffs the stink of debacle on McCain.

Some people attribute this to McCain-Feingold. I think Instapundit pushes that angle. I doubt that myself -- "normal" people, largely disengaged about politics, really don't care about such inside-baseball stuff, I don't think.

I think it's just the cumulative effect of all these "maverick" positions, most of which are, frankly, liberal. McCain rarely offers a "maverick" position that discomfits his most enthusiastic supporters, the liberal media.

Give him one thing: He's been mostly solid on the War on Terror -- one thing that the MSM doesn't like -- but he undermines that by being overly solicitous of terrorists' rights.

70% of politics is gut, 20% is proxy issues, and 10% is actual positions. In our guts, we just don't trust him, nor consider him one of us (largely because he's been quite ostentatious about tell us he isn't one of us, and would rather not associate himself with us rabble). On proxy issues? Well, you take a bunch of issues where he keeps sticking his thumb in your eye and you read into that that he's pretty much opposed to you on most of the other issues as well.

And the 10% of his actual, stated positions? Means little, because people, properly, don't put much stock in a politician's claimed positions. He's pro-life? Well, whatever. So's Mitt Romney. George Bush seems to be, but he wasn't when he first ran for Congress, and he's not exactly a bear on the issue. Etc.

I think there are few in the upper eschelons of the political class -- being mostly of the bicoastal liberal blue state social culture, no matter what their stated politics or party affiliation -- who are truly pro-life as most take that to mean. (I think that conservatives should brace for disappointment on Roberts and/or Alito -- they're conservative, yes, but they're also married, I'm guessing, to blue-state type wives, and such women tend to be pro-choice no matter what their general politics. And yes, even thuggish, rape-crazy rightwing troglodytes actually listen to their wives.)

At any rate, McCain has some stated conservative stances which few of us believe he actually believes in, and a lot of stated liberal stances which most of us figure he strongly believes in.

I'll vote for McCain, if I must, and I encourage others to drop their "Anyone But McCain" position. The worst Republican is better than the best Democrat, especially this cycle, when the nutroots are forcing Democrats further to the left than they've been since 1972.

President McCain would appoint justices like Kennedy and even Souter to the Supreme Court. President Hillary! or, more likely, President Obama would appoint Ginsburgs and Stevens. That's an unpleasant choice, but ultimately an easy one to make.

Related: Hannity and Colmes, and Taranto and Powers, on pro-assassination Death Wish Democrats.

Taranto recounts the story of professor at a prestigious university telling him, at a party, back in 1993 that someone needed to "assassinate" Rudy Giuliani.

If he drives liberals that sort of batshit, pro-assassination crazy, he can't be that liberal, can he?

There was a Giuliani Derangement Syndrome in NYC through the nineties. That fact alone should be somewhat comforting to conservatives fearing his nomination.

He may not be your dream candidate -- and, as I've written lately, his stubborness in refusing to move further to the right has made him no longer my dream candidate, either -- but I think he'd be a good President. Half of a loaf is always better than no bread at all.

Posted by: Ace at 10:33 AM | Comments (132)
Post contains 1248 words, total size 8 kb.

1 The whole Rumsfeld. Worst. EVAH. shit doesn't help. He's in a Republican primary race and he's throwing red meat to the other side.

Posted by: Penn State Marine at February 28, 2007 10:39 AM (TjqdC)

2 My problem with McCain is that he's just a cleaner, more articulate Ross Perot.

Every time I'd start to think "maybe this Perot fellow is OK, after all", he'd go and do something totally whacky.

McCain doesn't do things as whacky as frequently as Perot, but he's still likely to go off the deep end just when you're starting to think he's OK.

Posted by: Anachronda at February 28, 2007 10:42 AM (3K4hn)

3 Doesn't help.  He's not high on most Republican's lists, but I do think he is *acceptable* as a nominee -- if we're forced to have him.  If Rudy craters, if Romney never catches fire, if Gingrich never runs -- then McCain is our safety school.  We're not happy about going there, but it's either that join the fuckin' peace corps.

Or the army, I guess.  But I understand only morons join that.

Posted by: ace at February 28, 2007 10:43 AM (+u1X0)

4 Jesus. Dick Morris talking about McCain. Talk about an information-poor environment.

In the marketplace of ideas that's a wet carboard box full of expired gourds with a sign in front that says "Whatever, take what you like. Leave a farthing or rupee or something."

Posted by: tachyonshuggy at February 28, 2007 10:44 AM (w0dpL)

5 Ugh. If McCain is the best we can manage, we're in trouble.

I'm pining my hopes on Rudy.

Posted by: JosephD at February 28, 2007 10:45 AM (q1iOs)

6 Dick Morris is always, always, ALWAYS wrong. I'll never figure out why he's such a media favorite. How did the 2004 Hillary Clinton campaign go for him?

Posted by: John Norris Brown at February 28, 2007 10:45 AM (O1BdQ)

7 I think people are just burned out on McCain. People are looking for something new, fresh, on both sides of the aisle.

McCain has been to the rodeo to many times and he brings all the excitment of a week old newspaper.

Posted by: JackStraw at February 28, 2007 10:47 AM (t+mja)

8 Make no mistake: His is a third party candidacy that is waiting to be born.

I'm as confident in this prediction as I am that Jimmy Carter will go down in history as the WORST PRESIDENT EVAH!

After all, McCain's hip, trendy, and gets a lot of Don Imus love.

If he only had an oscar, he'd be just dreamy!

Imagine what could've been in 2000.....

Posted by: Jack "Andy Ostroy" M. at February 28, 2007 10:50 AM (gfp19)

9 You are right. Only morons are in the Army. Now, the Marine Corps, on the other hand...

Ok. Sorry for that.

Sometimes you have to sit back and look at the bigger picture. Senators are horrible presidential candidates for the same reason they tend not to be good Presidents. They are not executives. They are frat boys. Consider that the next time you debate the current field of contenders with (non-insane) democrats. Their best offering is Richardson but they dwell on insubstantial posers from the Senate.

Rudy is the strongest executive running on our side right now.

Posted by: Penn State Marine at February 28, 2007 10:51 AM (TjqdC)

10 Well, quite frankly I would love to see McCain fall to obscurity. After his shameful attitudes towards his own party (and putting forth that dismal campaign finance reform) he doesn't deserve to get the nomination.

And is this article author having a brainfart? Pandering to the religious right? Is he SERIOUS? Obviously the shrooms were impairing his thinking by quite a bit on that one.

Posted by: Seferas-H. at February 28, 2007 10:55 AM (fdeNn)

11 I'm not an "anyone but McCain" guy either.

More of a "please not McCain" guy. I'll vote for him if I have to.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at February 28, 2007 10:55 AM (pzen5)

12 Couldn't happen to a nicer jack ass guy.
I love the smell of crater in the afternoon.

Posted by: Nom de Blog at February 28, 2007 10:56 AM (IUY/6)

13 Jeez, Ace, you're depressing the hell out of me. I gotta go through two years of nose-holding this election?

I guess Rudy's better than McCain, but isn't there a fiscal conservative out there somewhere? Does every election have to boil down to a guy who wants to spend more of my money and... a guy who wants to spend more of my money? I agree Newt will never get the soccer mom vote, but we can't find one Reagan in a nation of 270 million people?

Posted by: Eric at February 28, 2007 10:57 AM (XIXhw)

14 I'll vote for him if I have to.

You said it best a few days ago, Dave - I'll vote for him if I have to, but I'll go home and wash my hands bloody afterwards.

Posted by: Rocketeer at February 28, 2007 10:59 AM (GFaLW)

15 I agree Newt will never get the soccer mom vote, but we can't find one Reagan in a nation of 270 million people?

I know I sound like a retard saying this, but I kind of got excited last week when I heard the first "draft Fred Thompson" rumors.

Posted by: Rocketeer at February 28, 2007 11:01 AM (GFaLW)

16 I won't support McCain because he was mean to Jack M.'s old Boss's wife.

I don't think enough credit is being given to the role of that story appearing HERE AT THIS WEBSITE in derailing McCain's candidacy.

Ace of Spades may have a small readership, but with politcal heavyweights like WickedPinto, Feisty, Spurwing Plover and Spinistar following Ace of Spades, it sets the political agenda in Washington.

Posted by: Kasper Hauser at February 28, 2007 11:05 AM (KeOQp)

17 >>>I guess Rudy's better than McCain, but isn't there a fiscal conservative out there somewhere?

Rudy is a fiscal conservative.  NYC is a welfare hellhole, and it still is such, but you have to evaluate someone's fiscal conservativism according to the changes they made.

I linked a story aboout Rudy's "negatives" the other day -- a Deroy Murdock piece on all the negative changes in spending, etc., in NYC.  No, he didn't transform NYC into, I don't know, Lubbock, TX as mayor.  But that's like criticizing Bush for not turning Iraq in Darien, Connecticut in four years.  He arrested and to some degree rolled back the ever-increasing taxes and expenditures of the city.

 A guy who can push a behemoth heading in the wrong direction a few feet back in the right direction has done something most politicians haven't -- he's actually fought entrenched interests, the NYT, and even most of his voters to make a postiive change.


Posted by: ace at February 28, 2007 11:07 AM (+u1X0)

18 Ace, you couldn't be more wrong about the Supreme Wives.

At least one of them has a hilariously pro-life paper trail.

Posted by: someone at February 28, 2007 11:07 AM (I/t4f)

19 I'll never vote for McCain.

Rudy? We'll see if he actually goes conservative at CPAC. If he still plans on running as a liberal, he's toast.

Posted by: someone at February 28, 2007 11:10 AM (I/t4f)

20

John McCain is basically our Hillary Clinton- or maybe Hillary!  is their McCain.


Neither is really in tune with their party's base (for her, it's the Iraq War, for him, everything else), both are senators and not executives, both probably already peaked, and so on.


And I still say neither will be nominated.  Even if that means I have to agree with Dick Morris on this point.


Even a stopped clock is right twice a day, right?


Posted by: Some Guy at February 28, 2007 11:13 AM (lPxkl)

21 One of these days you guys are going to actually look at Romney instead of pretending he doesn't exist. Not today, not tomorrow, but someday.

Posted by: JackStraw at February 28, 2007 11:13 AM (t+mja)

22 I guess my problem is that last time we elected what we thought was a conservative, and ended up with a liberal... what do we get if we Start Out with a liberal?!

Posted by: Terry at February 28, 2007 11:15 AM (Y6vT5)

23 McCain has never been popular with Republicans. In 2000, he was only competitive in primaries where democrats could cross over to create mischief.

Since then, he has made himself the Republican most admired by people who loathe Republicans. He traded on that reputation to get tens of millions of dollars' worth of free facetime on national TV.

He played footsie with John Kerry over the Vice Presidential slot in 04. If McCain had been a real Republican, Kerry would never have thought to ask, let alone ask three times.

McCain paid Kerry back by slandering the Swift Boat Veterans without bothering to inform himself about who they were or what they had to say.

For McCain, the GOP is a flag of convenience. No one in the party is less deserving of the nomination.

Posted by: lyle at February 28, 2007 11:15 AM (r4w0J)

24 One of these days you guys are going to actually look at Romney instead
of pretending he doesn't exist. Not today, not tomorrow, but someday.


Who?

Kidding!

Posted by: Slublog at February 28, 2007 11:16 AM (R8+nJ)

25 Kasper,

If you want to assign the "credit" to me for single-handedly destroying the McCain candidacy, I will gladly accept it.

Although I suppose this ruins my chances of ever dating Rightwingsparkle's daughter.

Damn it all.

Posted by: Jack M. at February 28, 2007 11:19 AM (gfp19)

26 JackStraw,

I do consider Romney.  I'd say he's my number two choice. (Well, him or Gingrich, but I'm not as in love with Gingrich as many are.  Partly because I think he'd be very, very difficult to actually elect.)

I'm bothered by the flip-flopping, of course, but not too bothered. That's what politicians do.  At least he's made such noises about being a social con it would be difficult to reverse himself and try governing as a liberal.

But the fact is he's not even really on the radar right now.  If Rudy tanks, I imagine Romney will benefit a lot.  But that hasn't happened yet.


Posted by: ace at February 28, 2007 11:20 AM (+u1X0)

27 I am as uncomfortable with Obama as President as I am with Hillary as President. His only qualification is his skin color. A white guy with a bio similar to Obama can become a county commissioner at the most. Presidency is not the place to practice affirmative action. For all the love Democrats profess for black people, they don't have a single competent black politician in their party.

Posted by: Tushar D at February 28, 2007 11:21 AM (h76y6)

28 Jackstraw,

if we build it they will come.


Posted by: roc ingersol at February 28, 2007 11:23 AM (m2CN7)

29 Good riddance to bad rubbish. McCain is a toadying, weaselly in-love-with-the-sound-of-his-own-voice MSM-felching beclowning fucknozzle. If he were at the top of the ticket, Marilyn Monroe would have to rise up out of the grave to suck the chancerous pustules on my scrotum before I'd mark an "X" next to his name.

I remember having a similar conversation during the run-up to the elections, when a friend of mine was praising McCain's "loyalty" to Dubya. When I looked incredulous - admittedly, I'd had a few scotches, so my credulosity was at a low point - my friend said "all right, he does shoot his mouth off, but when the chips are down, he's always supporting the GOP." To which my response was "screw when the chips are down. I want someone who's GOP all the way, not mopping Pinch Sulzberger's splooge off his chin during the eleven months it takes "maverick McCain" to come around to pulling the shanks he stuck in the President's back out and wiping off the blood."

And Jack, I hope to all that's holy McCain doesn't run as a third party candidate. Because if he puts the Crone of Chappaqua in the White House, he'll be praying he were back inside a VC prison, the right will want his head on a platter so much.

As for me - I'm from Massachusetts. Romney talks tough on Iran, but he's a weasel, too. He's afraid of what the MSM will say about him. Rudy's my man for now, mainly because he's the only one who can put a stake through Hillary!'s heart. And that's all I care about

Posted by: Christopher at February 28, 2007 11:25 AM (zF6Iw)

30 I would love to see a Giuliani/Romney ticket, but know it would never happen.  Both are from the Northeast, which would be an issue for all of you damn rebel types.

Posted by: Slublog at February 28, 2007 11:25 AM (R8+nJ)

31 Jack M.

Although I suppose this ruins my chances of ever dating Rightwingsparkle's daughter


That' probably for the best anyway. Word is that she's not been vaccinated.

Posted by: Kasper Hauser at February 28, 2007 11:26 AM (KeOQp)

32 Kasper, she's gonna cut you for that little blurb...

Posted by: Sinistar at February 28, 2007 11:30 AM (oHd6r)

33 Ace,

You can't be "solid" on the War on Terror AND be an open borders guy at the same time.

Posted by: SOC at February 28, 2007 11:32 AM (1/F/d)

34 I'm an 'anyone but McCain' type, and won't vote for the man if he's the nominee. I have no faith in his resolve to prosecute the GWOT, and have every expectation that were he put in power, he'd be a poll-position president like Clinton, only without the smarmy charm and sex scandals.

I'd vote for Guliani because I feel like I know what I'm getting with him. A democrat that'll fight the war. Come to that, I'd vote for Leiberman for that reason as well.

I really hope we can do better than those two, like maybe a fiscal conservative and social libertarian with conservative leanings; but if it's a choice between someone that'll vascillate wildly on his support of the war, and someone who'll pull us out all together... I'll vote for the third option of solid support for the war and let other folks decide which poison they want us all to swallow.

Posted by: Cautiously Pessimistic at February 28, 2007 11:33 AM (VbTWC)

35 I don't have to say what I think here about McCain. You all know what I think. He will get the nomination. Dick Morris HAS always been wrong in his predictions. If McCain doesn't, I will let you guys rag all over me when the time comes.

JackStraw,

I certainly like Romney's positions on the issues. If it wasn't for McCain, I would be for Romney because Rudy will never get my support. (although he WILL get my vote if he is nominated and that's a big compromise for me)

I have been asking around about Romney to people and I have been stunned at the prejudice against Mormans. And these aren't evangelicals I'm asking either. Most people I have talked to seem to think that Mormans are a cult and would just never vote for one. I know this is just a small sampling, but it doesn't bode well for him imo.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 11:35 AM (gZ/8m)

36 McCain is one of my Senators and I find him quite infuriating at times. He doesn't seem to care much about what his constituents think and does as he pleases most of the time. My biggest problem with him though is McCain-Feingold. I don't care what SCOTUS says. It's blatantly un-constitutional. McCain tries to justify it by saying the temptation of money in politics is to hard for a politician to resist. Well to that I say you will never get the money out of politics and if you dont' think you can resist temptation, then remove your self from the temptation.

If McCain does win the nomination (and I doubt he will) it will be without my support, though I'd have to (reluctantly) support him in the general election. I do think Giuliani may be a better choice than we think too and I'll be keeping my eye on him. I'd also really like to see Fred Thompson give running some serious consideration.

Posted by: Jonathan B at February 28, 2007 11:37 AM (yJ5ul)

37 JackStraw,

I did look at Romney. I went to the speech he gave to the NR folks a few weeks back, and I was deeply disappointed. I don't think I was the only one, either.

And, truth be told, the more I learn about Romney, he appears to be less a man of conservative conviction than a man of conservative opportunism.

Yes, he ran the Olympics well and he's been a competent executive in Massachusetts. Further, he's articulate and photogenic, and he seems to have many of the interpersonal skills that a successful candidate should have.

But there is an increasing aura of Kerry-esque flip-floppery surrounding the guy, as well. Enough so that I am not confident saying the positions he holds today (which he didnt hold two years ago) will be the positions he holds two years hence.

I think Giuliani is authentic, although I disagree with many of his policy positions. I think McCain is an incredible phony. I think Romney is somewhere in between.

Which is discouraging.


Posted by: Jack M. at February 28, 2007 11:37 AM (gfp19)

38 If it wasn't for the fact that I am poor, under 35 and completely unknown. I would run for president.

My youth and obscurity holds me back. That and the fact that I've never held public office HOWEVER! i'm pretty sure I could shore up a conservative vote on both the moral and fiscal side.

Oh, and im pretty sure I could have the likes congress and the senate dems shaking in fear of my Veto power and judicial appointees. This silly notion of liberalism would be on the ropes in no time.

Posted by: Seferas-H. at February 28, 2007 11:39 AM (fdeNn)

39 One of these days you guys are going to actually look at Romney instead of pretending he doesn't exist. Not today, not tomorrow, but someday.
If he can't crack 4% he doesn't actually exist.

Posted by: Eric at February 28, 2007 11:43 AM (XIXhw)

40 Ace-

Yea, I hear you on the radar thing. I think Rudy is our Obama, in pizzaz not substance, and he has grabbed the new guy place for now.

At the end of the day, I agree mostly with your analysis about position on the issues. They are the least of my concern. Not because they don't matter but because when it comes to governing I don't any of them will stray that far from what the base wants them to.

Character is huge for me. Issues, positions, all that stuff focuses on the past. I remembersomething G H W Bush said during his debates with Clinton. Something along the lines of during a presidency, something that nobody could predict is going to happen and you need to think about which candidate will best be able to handle an unknown crisis. Given the times we live in now, I think that statement was never more true.

Rudy was magnificent during 9/11 and he gets high marks from me on that one. Romney is an enormously accomplished business leader and has demonstrated, albeit on a different stage, tremendous leadership and vision. I think he would wear better over time and has the ability to be a great communicator.

I would love to see a Romney/Gingrich ticket. Gingrich would have to have a role like Cheney but I think they would be fantastic team.

Posted by: JackStraw at February 28, 2007 11:45 AM (t+mja)

41 No, he didn't transform NYC into, I don't know, Lubbock, TX as mayor.

If he had, that would make East Orange NJ like Hereford TX.

Which oddly enough, smells about the same as Hereford.


So RWS, you kinda like McCain do you? Anything in particular?



I keed, I keed, because I love

Posted by: Dave in Texas at February 28, 2007 11:45 AM (pzen5)

42 Both are from the Northeast, which would be an issue for all of you damn rebel types.

Well, Slublog, I'm from a border state, which in most ways is culturally southern (Kentucky) and I can tell you that I would pull the lever for Giuliani/Romney in a heartbeat. So would everyone in my very large, proudly hillbilly family.

Admittedly, for me, part of the reason would be the intense joy I would get from Cadillac Deval having to pay political obeisance to his predecessor for at least two years...

Posted by: Rocketeer at February 28, 2007 11:46 AM (GFaLW)

43 McCain's campaign looks positively robust next to Romney's right about now:

http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=MDc5NWU5OWI4NTg5NzU1NDdhMmU5MDAxNmNjODVlODE=

Romney keeps getting mentioned as part of the "Big 3," but those numbers are edging into Tancredian territory. If McCain is starting to tank, the field is starting to part like the Red Sea for Rudy. I would expect someone to jump in the race if that happens, definitely Newt, and maybe even Fred Thompson. While I love both of them, and hope that Newt finds a place somewhere in the next administration, I think Thompson would be the only other Republican candidate besides Rudy that could win the general.

Posted by: Dudley Smith at February 28, 2007 11:48 AM (0S8Xt)

44 Well, Slublog, I'm from a border state, which in most ways is
culturally southern (Kentucky) and I can tell you that I would pull the
lever for Giuliani/Romney in a heartbeat. So would everyone in my very
large, proudly hillbilly family.


I was kidding.  I'm originally from the south and was just trying to get Dave in Texas or RWS to respond, but neither of those two aggressors against the North responded.

Posted by: Slublog at February 28, 2007 11:53 AM (R8+nJ)

45 I figured you were kidding. I just can't pass up a chance to beat up dem assumptions a bit, even when they come in jest from southern conservatives exiled to Maine.

Posted by: Rocketeer at February 28, 2007 11:54 AM (GFaLW)

46 There was a Giuliani Derangement Syndrome in NYC through the nineties. That fact alone should be somewhat comforting to conservatives fearing his nomination.

Not that I dislike Giuliani, but in NYC, Hillery is considered conservative, thus someone like Giuliani was outrageously conservative to an average liberal in NYC. Much like how how the left views the MSM (i.e., they think the MSM is neutral or conservative, b/c they are so far left, it appears that way to them), the NYC left's views against Giuliani don't mean that he is actually more conservative than we think, just that the NYC left is that much more left than you believed.

- GB (banned at Red State since February 2007)

Posted by: Great Banana at February 28, 2007 11:55 AM (JFj6P)

47 Supreme Court Justice Roberts's wife is head of a pro-life organization, I think.

RWS, are you really sure about this promise:

He will get the nomination. If McCain doesn't, I will let you guys rag all over me when the time comes.

Really, really sure?

Posted by: adolfo_velasquez at February 28, 2007 12:02 PM (BrPYJ)

48 McCain is an incredible phony

This is the one accusation of McCain that I cannot abide by. You can say you are angry with him over McCain/Feingold and his position on amnesty, but he has NEVER been phony. In fact he always takes his positions and believes in them and doesn't budge, even when it would be politically expident to do so. You can hate him for what he believes, but you cannot honestly say he is a phony. He is quite the opposite.

When asked recently about his support of the surge (which, btw, he recommended a long time ago and never wavered) and whether that might cost him votes he said, "I'd rather win the war than win the Presidency." I'd say that takes a lot of guts to say as a candidate.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 12:04 PM (gZ/8m)

49 Yeah, I'm single-issue blackballing McCain. Kinda like with Kerry, he dissed our troops after Vietnam, lied about them, and I refuse to ever vote for him. No second chances there.

McCain torched the first Amendment, wiped his butt with it, and has put in place a cherry deal making the prospect of beating an incumbent even more complicated then before.

I suspect, as you're a second chances kind of guy, you'll keep an open mind about Kerry even after his past mistakes? Giving Gore a fair shake if he decides to run again are you?

There are failures that if you decide to ignore or promote that will remove my support for you. Never backtracked, never apologized, and I should vote to put him in charge?

Sorry, not this vote.

But if you want half a loaf for him, I can probably sqeeze one out.

Posted by: Gekkobear at February 28, 2007 12:07 PM (X0NX1)

50 adolfo,

Of course I'm sure! I can take it!!!

But please expect the same from me when McCain wins.

;-)

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 12:07 PM (gZ/8m)

51 Make way for Duncan Hunter..........

Posted by: Uppity Hick at February 28, 2007 12:08 PM (tPOg8)

52 When asked recently about his support of the surge (which, btw, he recommended a long time ago and never wavered) and whether that might cost him votes he said, "I'd rather win the war than win the Presidency." I'd say that takes a lot of guts to say as a candidate.
No, it doesn't take a lot of guts to say that. No matter what side you're on it sounds strong without giving anything away. I takes some guts to actually be for the "surge", but I'm not sure he could have reasonably flopped on that without taking a lot of heat.

Posted by: Eric at February 28, 2007 12:09 PM (XIXhw)

53 Jack-

Yea, I heard about the speech, from all of you folks. Sounds like he was less than inspiring. Fair enough. There's plenty of time for more speechifying.

A couple things. First, he is far more than a competent business man. Maybe this strikes closer to home for me cause I have dealt with my share of VC's. He is a brilliant businessman. Look what he did with Bain Capital and some of the many success stories they spawned including the one that made him personally a few hundred million, Staples.

What he did with the Olympics was pretty miraculous. When he took them on they almost $400 million in the red and he not only turned them around, they made a profit of $100 million. He is an exceptional executive.

Smart? The man graduated from Harvard B School and Harvard Law School. Not enough? He did them at the same time and graduated near the top of the class in both.

Yea, I get the whole flip flop. It definitely has some validity. But remember where he was governor. MA is the most Democratic state in the union. Period. There is not one Republican in the MA Congressional delegation. The only way he had a chance to get elected was to run as a social moderate. Governing from the middle in MA is the equivalent to most in MA of being a hun. Look who replaced him. Deval Patrick. That's MA in a nutshell. I tend to think what he is saying today is a lot closer to the real deal but I could be giving him too much credit. Time will tell.

As to his position in the polls today, who cares? We have a long way to go and if Obama can rise 24 points in the month of January and say absolutely nothing, anything can happen.

Posted by: JackStraw at February 28, 2007 12:09 PM (t+mja)

54 RWS, I'll grant you that McCain is not necessarily a phony on issues, but he's a phony human being.

On Meet the Press, he'll be talking about closing Guantanamo or whatnot, but his eyes say that he'd rather be making cookies out of his own poop and proclaiming his left shoe 'Emperor of New Icecream Land'.

Until he let's the crazy shine, he's a phony.

Posted by: adolfo_velasquez at February 28, 2007 12:09 PM (BrPYJ)

55 If he drives liberals that sort of batshit, pro-assassination crazy, he can't be that liberal, can he?


Well you have two choices: either he's not that liberal, or the people you refer to are lunatics. Given that they are fantasizing about the assassination of uber-liberal Joe Lieberman, you make the call.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at February 28, 2007 12:14 PM (wmgz8)

56

He's also pretty old.  That's not gonna help him.


Posted by: Some Guy at February 28, 2007 12:14 PM (lPxkl)

57 As soon as McCain started pandering to the global warming zombies I knew he would place his goals over the best interests of our country. That one issue showed me he was running under a "political handler" strategy and not under a deep conviction strategy. I simply could not trust him politically.

Posted by: PR guy in NY at February 28, 2007 12:16 PM (koO9y)

58 He's a phony, RWS.

McCain's core convictions are based on two (often overlapping)things: 1) what will get McCain good press and 2) what will rile up the base.

How many positions has he taken on the Confederate flag in South Carolina now(he used to say it was their choice...now he's against flying it)? Is he for or against Falwell and Robertson this week (at last count he was courting their support..in 2000 they were the masters of evil)? Is he still continuing to take fundraising money from sources that he tried to outlaw(yes)? If so, why, if people who take that kind of money are inherently corrupt as he has previously argued? And on, and on, and on.

He's a headline driven pol if there ever was one. He's the GOP's answer to Chuck Schumer, except with a better sense of humor and a warmer state to represent.

But I know you Texas women like to stand by your men. I just hope you show the same kind of fidelity to the other members of the Keating 5.

Cause they get pretty lonely these days, not running for President and all.

Posted by: Jack M. at February 28, 2007 12:17 PM (gfp19)

59

I mean, if he's elected in '08, he'll be older than Reagan was upon his inauguration.


I'm not sure how to say it, so I'll just imply the heck out of it and let other jump to all kinds of conclusions about what I really mean.


Which is that youth doesn't always beat age these days, but that's the way to bet.


Posted by: Some Guy at February 28, 2007 12:17 PM (lPxkl)

60

Dave


hereford makes new jersey smell like a gardenia.


rocketeer


put me in the retard group with you. fred thompson would be great. hell, his speeches would be worth putting him in the White House. i heard him one night on a radio show. he said things that were exactly what i wanted to hear. damn, i mean he really did. mccain is all hat and no cattle, always has been. i aint saying i wouldn't vote for him, if all else failed, but it makes me want to cry thinking about it. i would do it, but one hand would be holding my nose.


Posted by: mikeyslaw at February 28, 2007 12:18 PM (yrptY)

61 I keep hearing, "Romney's a flip-flopper". He doesn't appear that way to me. He is, for lack of a better word, nuanced. He has had to walk a very fine line with language in MA for the past couple years, since at any moment, the entire statehouse was ready to brand him as an intolerant bigot at every turn. He held very strong convictions while realizing that he governed a deeply divided populace. My only reservation is that he tended to be reactive instead of proactive in pushing a conservative agenda.

I was somewhat more worried about Giuliani's "pro-choice" moniker until I heard him describe his position on abortion, which was, frankly, closer to my own pro-life views than I had expected it to be. Additionally, I would not expect Rudy to be passive in his agenda--as is the current administration, which has absolutely squandered its opportunity at greatness--and I couldn't imagine him sitting back to watch the Dems and media contort every argument until he looks like he's on the unsupportable side.

Posted by: red speck at February 28, 2007 12:20 PM (Lc9rf)

62 Is he still continuing to take fundraising money from sources that he tried to outlaw(yes)

Maybe that's why he has only $500,000??

Look, I could give you a page report on why all things you say aren't true. And I probably will as we get closer. Just promise to hear me out when the time comes.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 12:22 PM (gZ/8m)

63 You know, being an eternal moron, I keep hoping and praying that someday, SOMEDAY, a "Republican" who wants to run for President will actually realize that teeing off on your base, maybe, JUST MAYBE isnt the best strategy to win an election.

I'm as right-wing as you can be on social issues, but as Ace has said, my "gut" just does not trust McCain. At all. Not a bit. He has a long history of going out of his way to trash conservatives to curry favor with the mainstream media.

Although Rudy may not be rock-solid on issues such as abortion and gun control, at least we KNOW where he stands on them. In other words, I don't worry nearly as much as about Guiliani backstabbing me over social issues as much as a McCain or other RINO becuase Guiliani has at least been open about what he thinks.

Perhaps I am being a little naive, but I believe that this is why many evangelicals and other conservatives are not supporting a "conservative" candidate like McCain.

And if someone like McCain gets the nod, then I am staying home on election day. I know many people will say that it is wrong to let a Hillary! or Obama win, but I would have a clean conscience letting a Hillary! or Obama win verses voting for a treasonous, backstabbing, closet liberal RINO candidate. I will not, WILL NOT let myself be reamed by one of our supposed "own."

It is bad enough to suffer defeat at the hands of an enemy, why should we vote in people of our own party who are only going to do the same thing as our enemies, just maybe not as bad?

Just my thoughts.

Posted by: Pardigm Shift at February 28, 2007 12:22 PM (/s5j6)

64 Both are from the Northeast, which would be an issue for all of you damn rebel types.

Fie on thee, you yankee. It was the War of Northern Aggression.

McCain is tanking because he is a phony, and people can smell right through it. He decided long ago that being loved by the press was more important than principle. Leadership my ass. He pushed his way around in the Senate and started believing he was actually in charge.

Harrumph. Harrumph I say.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at February 28, 2007 12:23 PM (pzen5)

65 Oh.. and by the way...

John McCain: If you can come from a state that's overrun with illegals and still say there's no problem? You're an idiot.

And Dick Morris: You used to be a Clinton Insider who was unafraid to tattle. Now that they're out, you've served your purpose, and your prognostication powers are crap.

Posted by: red speck at February 28, 2007 12:27 PM (Lc9rf)

66 If it makes you guys feel any better, my hubby feels the same way about McCain.

We do have a long way to go. A lot of things could change. I'm not so stubborn as to say my mind can't be changed, but so far, McCain is still my man.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 12:28 PM (gZ/8m)

67 That should have said "my hubby feels the same way as you guys feel about McCain."

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 12:29 PM (gZ/8m)

68 RWS,

Yeah...because we all know the fact that McCain is spending beyond his means on his campaign staff couldn't possibly be contributing to his low balance.

John "Man of Integrity" McCain has to be broke because he isn't availing himself of all the possible sources of fundraising dollars. It's the only way the narrative works for ya.

Well, hell, if he can't run a campaign staff's budget, lets make him Cheif Executive. Sounds like a pretty good idea.

But here you go:

"But now the contrast between McCain the presidential candidate and McCain the reformer can be jarring. McCain's campaign says that he is still studying whether to forgo the public financing and spending limits he has long supported, but that he will not be handicapped by restrictions his competitors will not face in 2008.

McCain the reformer worked unsuccessfully through Congress and the courts to try to stop nonprofit political groups known as 527s from using unlimited donations to run political ads and fund other activities aimed at influencing voters in the run-up to elections. He reintroduced legislation last week to end 527 donations, but there appears to be little appetite in Congress to pass it.

McCain the candidate now expects Republicans to use the same big-money 527 groups in the 2008 elections to beat Democrats, if the groups remain legal. "The senator believes that both parties should be subjected to an even playing field. If Democratic organizations are allowed to take advantage of 527s, Republican organizations will, too," said Mark Salter, a senior McCain adviser. The senator declined to be interviewed.

McCain the reformer relentlessly argued that six- and seven-figure "soft money" checks that corporations, wealthy individuals and unions were giving to political parties to influence elections were corrupting American politics. "The voices of average Americans have been drowned out by the deafening racket of campaign cash," he warned just a few years ago.

McCain the candidate has enlisted some of the same GOP fundraising giants who created and flourished in the soft-money system, including Bush's fundraising "Pioneers" and "Rangers," who earned their designations by raising at least $100,000 or $200,000 for his campaigns.

At least six of McCain's first eight national finance co-chairmen have given or raised large donations for political parties or 527 groups, campaign and IRS records show. In all, the finance co-chairs have given at least $13.5 million in soft money and 527 donations since the 1998 election.

They include former Bush moneymen such as lobbyist Thomas G. Loeffler and financier Donald Bren, whose personal and corporate donations total in the hundreds of thousands of dollars each in recent elections."

Source:http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/02/10/AR2007021001510_pf.html

Posted by: Jack M. at February 28, 2007 12:33 PM (gfp19)

69 >If he drives liberals that sort of batshit, pro-
>assassination crazy, he can't be that liberal,
>can he?

Richard "Rim jobs for Mao and price controls on gas" Nixon drove them crazy, just through the combination of an R after his name, not playing along with the pretend Hiss wasn't a Communist game, and sucking in general. It's not a measure of conservatism.

Posted by: Dave Munger at February 28, 2007 12:37 PM (5llHU)

70

John McCain, in 2000:

Neither
party should be defined by pandering to the outer reaches of American
politics and the agents of intolerance, whether they be Louis Farrakhan
or Al Sharpton on the left, or Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell on the
right.
John McCain, 2007:Rev.
Jerry Falwell and prominent right-wing Christian broadcasters will host
a reception for Arizona Sen. John McCain at the National Religious
Broadcasters convention in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 19.

Posted by: Slublog at February 28, 2007 12:41 PM (R8+nJ)

71 Crap. Reformat:

John McCain, in 2000: Neither party should be defined by pandering to the outer reaches of American politics and the agents of intolerance, whether they be Louis Farrakhan or Al Sharpton on the left, or Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell on the right.


John McCain, 2007: Rev. Jerry Falwell and prominent right-wing Christian broadcasters will host a reception for Arizona Sen. John McCain at the National Religious Broadcasters convention in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 19.

Posted by: Slublog at February 28, 2007 12:42 PM (R8+nJ)

72 "I think that conservatives should brace for disappointment on Roberts and/or Alito -- they're conservative, yes, but they're also married, I'm guessing, to blue-state type wives, and such women tend to be pro-choice no matter what their general politics."

Dunno bout Alito, but Madame Roberts was involved in a group called Feminists for Life for a while.


Posted by: Emperor of Icecream at February 28, 2007 12:45 PM (w4Bx4)

73 Jack M.

Let me get this straight. McCain has enlisted big wig fundraisers who have legally used the system to raise funds in the past.

Did you expect McCain to hire people who were not familiar with fundraising for Pres. campaigns???

They are the ones who garnered money in the past from soft money, not McCain.

I feel sorry for McCain in this respect. He doesn't want to raise money in the way he fought against because he feels it corrupts the system, but he cannot realistically wage a campaign without the big money because, after all, it is still legal.

It's called a rock and a hard place.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 12:48 PM (gZ/8m)

74 The Giuliani Derangement Syndrome meme is crazy.

Look, it couldn't possibly compare to BDS--and don't get me wrong, I'm a Bush supporter--but if we had to do 2000 over again how many would be enthusiastic Bush supporters in the primaries, knowing what we know now?

Anyway, nationally there's no GDS. Guiliani is doing well right now because the national press loves the guy. In NYC, Giuliani was the hard right so the press hated him. Nationally, he's a left republican so he won't inspire that reaction until the only candidates left are to his left, i.e., in the general election.

Posted by: Emperor of Icecream at February 28, 2007 12:49 PM (w4Bx4)

75 My man Romney has the endorsement of Sheriff Joe Arpaio. That should tick off Senator Mccain.

Posted by: roc ingersol at February 28, 2007 12:51 PM (m2CN7)

76 Principled, unless stuck between a rock and a hard place.

At least Gore buys carbon credits.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at February 28, 2007 12:51 PM (pzen5)

77 Hey, those are my principles. If you don't like them, I have others.

Posted by: John McCain at February 28, 2007 12:52 PM (pzen5)

78 The only people who were able to remind the country of what Kerry did after he came back, an unpardonable, treasonable (and I am not someone who throws that world out lightly, but it truly sticks here) offense, were the SBVT. If anyone beat Kerry, one of the worst serious Presidential candidates in recent memory, they're it. And McCain stabbed them in the back.

Posted by: MlR at February 28, 2007 12:52 PM (Y/00e)

79

Someone should draft Arpeio for Veep.  Balance out the ticket. 


Posted by: Some Guy at February 28, 2007 12:52 PM (lPxkl)

80 treasonable

*treasonous

He, and a number of his VVAW buddies, should have been prosecuted.

Posted by: MlR at February 28, 2007 12:54 PM (Y/00e)

81 RWS,

Support him to your heart's desire.

I'd like McCain supporters, like yourself, to vote for the Republican nominee even if he's not McCain, and I'd also like McCain haters to vote for him should he somehow get the nomination.

One thing McCain has going for him: The Republican Party has historically been a "whose turn is it now?" party as far as nominations, and it is McCain's turn.

But so mcuh in politics has changed I doubt that holds anymore.

Posted by: ace at February 28, 2007 12:55 PM (+u1X0)

82 So McCain shouldn't reach out to the National Religious Broadcasters because he once mentioned Jerry Falwell as n agent of intolerance. Right.

Look, While I probably agree with Falwell on some issues, I don't agree with the way he expresses his views. I think he does come across as intolerant. Which means I can criticize him but still accept his support. It also means that it isn't hypocritical to do so.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 12:56 PM (gZ/8m)

83 "Although Rudy may not be rock-solid on issues such as abortion and gun control, at least we KNOW where he stands on them. In other words, I don't worry nearly as much as about Guiliani backstabbing me over social issues as much as a McCain or other RINO becuase Guiliani has at least been open about what he thinks. "

Well sure, in some ways an open enemy is more admirable, but does that make you want to vote for him? Me, not so much. I don't see that likely front-stabbing is a big improvement over possible back-stabbing.

Posted by: Emperor of Icecream at February 28, 2007 12:58 PM (w4Bx4)

84 I think McCains problem is that in staking out some of his "maverick" positions he has managed to alienate virtually every facet of the Republican Party. First he alienated the religious right in the 2000 campaign by pandering to the media and "challenging" them on several issues whilst seeming very contemptuous of them. Then he lost the libertarian right with his campaign finance reform (The "shut the hell up I'm trying to run a re-election campaign" Incumbency Protection Act, does anyone remember when he said he would trade free speech for good government? ). Then he managed to alienate national security Republicans by going on a media pandering spree over Guantanamo and terrorist rights. He alienated the fiscal conservatives by opposing the Bush tax cuts. For the coup de grace he alienated everyone else with his deceitful and arrogant open borders boosting ("No there will be no amnesty, we are simply going to forgive the criminal acts the immigrants who are here illegally commited by coming here and give them citizenship. This is a commonsense approach, the wall is a racist idea that can't work"). I think someone should have clued him in years ago that the people who vote in the Republican primary are not going to consist primarily of New York Times editors/reporters, CNN anchors and MSNBC hosts.

Basically I see him as the ultimate result of living in Washington DC for so long that you can't see that the Times and the Post don't represent some sort of center/majority viewpoint in this country.

Posted by: Big E at February 28, 2007 12:59 PM (uw1/g)

85 Hereford Makes Dumas smell like Muleshoe. Being a Red Raider alum I would even consider visiting NYC if more Lubbock-like. Got to listen to my Buddy Holly and Joe Ely cds now.

Posted by: Mose at February 28, 2007 12:59 PM (nwV/e)

86 So McCain shouldn't reach out to the National Religious Broadcasters
because he once mentioned Jerry Falwell as n agent of intolerance.
Right.



Look, While I probably agree with Falwell on some issues, I don't
agree with the way he expresses his views. I think he does come across
as intolerant. Which means I can criticize him but still accept his
support. It also means that it isn't hypocritical to do so.


So "agents of intolerance" are okay if you need their support?

In that speech, McCain was criticizing Bush for something he is now doing.  I would say that is quite hypocritical.

Posted by: Slublog at February 28, 2007 01:01 PM (R8+nJ)

87 Republicans I would vote for:
1. McCain
2. Rudy
3. Random Southern Governer, assuming he isn't too conservative on social issues.

Democrats I would vote for:
1. Lieberman, pretty solid dude imho.
2. Other jewish politicians, I don't like 75% of the people in the M.E. and it would upset them if the POTUS was jewish.

Female President, it's separate because their isn't going to be one for a long time:

1. Eva Mendes

Independent, if they ran I would actually work for the campaign:

Couture/Henderson '08

Isn't it a little early to pronounce a campaign for office in 2008 dead?

Posted by: mike at February 28, 2007 01:04 PM (/InkS)

88 >>>First he alienated the religious right in the 2000 campaign by
pandering to the media and "challenging" them on several issues whilst
seeming very contemptuous of them.

It's the "contemptuous" thing that always puts people off.  I have a large social con/Christian right readership, and they never get cheesed off simply because I disagree with him -- the anger comes when I get hot and perceived as "contemptuous" as I did in the HPV threads.

This is why Giuliani is doing better with evangelicals than McCain is, as I keep saying.  On *paper*, McCain seems to be more socially conservative.  But, given the cathartic emotion that came through in slamming the Christian right, people suspect that his real beliefs diverge quite a bit from his paper positions.

Giuliani, on paper, seems to disagree with the Christian right more, but he also seems to respect them.

Anyone one the  Christian right would prefer respect AND advancing their preferred policies, of course, but forced to chose only one -- well, a lack of respect is a good proxy for figuring out where someone's real political core is at.


Posted by: ace at February 28, 2007 01:06 PM (+u1X0)

89 Prediction: The ticket will be G/G ...Guiliani/Gingrich. You read it here.

Newt solves Rudi's main issues with the base (his - lack thereof of - conservative appeal). Rudi solves Newt's main issues with the general electorate (Newt can't win a general election).

Rudi satisfies the Blue-dogs ...the Northeast will be in play. Newt holds the South (more as a comfort zone thing for the Warrior Class than anything truly palliative). Liberals can live with Rudi; conservatives will be appeased by Newt as primary backup (and they'll understand that Newt will follow: he's not Cheney ...he'll run if he's still kicking).

They're both smart, smart guys. And. Together, they make one Reagan (well, almost: neither of 'em are exactly moral giants ...but they'll do ...they'll do). They'll be able to keep the ship off the shoals.

...if the Democrats have anyone who's actually half as intelligent as either of 'em, that candidate remains thoroughly hidden from public view ...and prob'ly - like everyone else - doesn't have a chance against the Clinton thugocrats.

Posted by: davis,br at February 28, 2007 01:07 PM (5xoMO)

90 Let me address this swiftboat thing too. Although that was all good fodder for us and against Kerry, that IS all it was for us. But for McCain it was much more. It was about a war and service that is at the very heart of who he is. He would have spoken out against ads like that no matter who they targeted. Everyone likes to focus on his " dishonest anddishonorable" quote, but he also said this at the same time:

"McCain said that's all in the past to him, but he's speaking out against the anti-Kerry ad because "it reopens all the old wounds of the Vietnam War, which I spent the last 35 years trying to heal."

You guys really aren't getting this man. A true hero with a hero's heart.

Like I said, the time will come when I will lay it all out for you.


Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 01:08 PM (gZ/8m)

91 RWS,

No...the point I was making was as to the "phoniness" of John McCain.

You say "In fact he always takes his positions and believes in them and doesn't budge, even when it would be politically expident to do so." And yet this is demonstrably not true.

That isnt true with his notion on campaign fundraising. That also isnt true with his flip-flopping on whether or not to be associated with folks like Falwell, as Slublog noted.

The fact of the matter is that if McCain were to stick with his alleged principles, he wouldnt take the money he has tried to ban. He is as hypocritical on this as is Al Gore on Global Warming.

Too make matters worse, even Russ Feingold saw fit to refuse to take the kinds of money in his Senate campaigns that he was also on record in supporting of abolishing.

John McCain is a phony on his signature issue. As a great man once said, "that's. just. the. way. it. is."

But if a "do as I say not as I do" nominee is what excites you, I won't be able to change that.

Posted by: Jack M. at February 28, 2007 01:09 PM (gfp19)

92 It all comes down to whether the primary voters are as conservative as the "rightwingers" I know.

The people I talk to would never ever vote for someone who is pro-choice, period. Add to that his positions on gay rights and his multiple marriages and some NYC scandals that will surface and you have pretty much a Clinton liberal on social issues. If the primary voters are like that..McCain wins. If they aren't, then maybe Rudy wins.

I just can't see it though.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 01:15 PM (gZ/8m)

93 A guy who can push a behemoth heading in the wrong direction a few feet back in the right direction has done something most politicians haven't -- he's actually fought entrenched interests, the NYT, and even most of his voters to make a postiive change.

This is probably my favorite aspect of Rudy as a candidate. That it was the particular behemoth that is NYC makes it all the more impressive. I am wary of his gun stance and other "liberal" positions, but I could vote for him, even pretty enthusiastically. I could also vote for Romney. I could vote for Gingrich. I would hate, hate, HATE to vote for McCain ...

Posted by: iamfelix at February 28, 2007 01:15 PM (s32I+)

94 RWS, don't you find this kind of hard to do? You're on record having stated many times you support McCain because you believe he's the only guy who can beat Hill.

Fine. You're entitled to that view. What bugs me is you keep telling me what a great guy he is instead of just sticking to that conviction. And then you cover it with a dose of "we just don't really understand the guy".

It's like listening to Bush tell me what a peach Putin is from looking into his eyes.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at February 28, 2007 01:15 PM (pzen5)

95 What do you guys think about Haley Barbour?

I think he's got a good Katrina recovery story to tell, and knows how to raise money.

Has he been making any POTUS moves?

Posted by: Master of None at February 28, 2007 01:16 PM (2c7xL)

96 Jack M.

I already explained why it isn't phony or hypocritical for him to speak at the request of Jerry Falwell. And that isn't an "issue" or a "position" anyway.

He hasn't decided how he is handling the fundraising yet. So I wouldn't call him a hypocrite on that yet either. Maybe he will have to "flip flop" on that issue to win. I hope not for his sake.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 01:20 PM (gZ/8m)

97 Master of None,

Haley Barbour would be interesting. I'd be interested.

The current crop of candidates is pathetic, but we've got time to do something about it.

Posted by: Emperor of Icecream at February 28, 2007 01:22 PM (w4Bx4)

98 RWS,

I guess I can't get past the open border thing with McCain.

I lived in AZ for over a decade and now live in S. Cal and have seen how the illegals have essentially over-run these two states - their highways, schools, hospitals, welfare systems, etc.

It frustrates me to no end to see a guy from a border state not taking a tougher stance against the "immigration" issue.

We call it the "illegal" immigration issue out here. Being a Texan, how do you get past this when you consider McCain? Or does that "other" issue trump all others for you?

Posted by: SOC at February 28, 2007 01:25 PM (1/F/d)

99 Master of None,

I like Haley Barbour. I know that at one point he actually was meeting with some people to consider making a run for it, as I actually got a call asking me if I would donate.

As far as I know, though, not much has happened since. Either it was a trial balloon that fell flat, or he decided it was way too soon. If I get any more calls, I'll let you know.

Posted by: Jack M. at February 28, 2007 01:27 PM (gfp19)

100 DIT,

While it is certainly true that I believe that McCain is the only one who can beat Hillary, it is also true that I honestly believe him to be a true hero and that he would be a great President. I can believe both, can't I?

Would I rather have a more true conservative on all the issues? Yes. Do I disagree with him on certain things? Yes.

But I have long admired John McCain. Years and years ago I remember reading an article in National Review about McCain. This was way before he was well known. I remember reading with fascination and growing respect about his life and all he went through and how he made his way back from Vietnam. There was a line in the article that said "We just don't make men like him anymore."

That has always stuck with me. Make no mistake about it Dave, I'm a true believer in McCain. It isn't only his ability to beat Hillary that keeps me on.

Would I support someone who is more conservative if I thought they could win? Yes. But that doesn't make me admire McCain any less.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 01:27 PM (gZ/8m)

101 SOC,

Well, I am going to step into hot water here for this..but I agree with McCain on this issue. McCain says we need tougher border enforcement and it must be accompanied by guest-worker provisions that give illegal immigrants a legal path toward citizenship.

I agree with that. I know that that border control is a BIG problem and I think it should fixed any way possible. McCain thinks border enforcement is important too. But the guest worker thing is where I differ with most of you.

I can only tell you this simply. I have worked with illegal immigrants. I have volunteered at places they go for help. My personal experience is that these are the hardest working people I have EVER seen. When I look at all the laziness I see every day and I look at the back breaking work these people do, I just can't help but admire that. THey never complain either. I just think they deserve a shot at being a guest worker.

We say that this "rewards illegal behavior." THese people don't know politics and they don't know laws, they just want to work. The problem is that we haven't enforced our laws so they think that if they can just get here, they know they can work.

I am big believer in FREEZING the border in any way that will work. But I also believe that the people who are here now deserve a way to become citizens.

What can I say? I'm a compassionate conservative.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 01:39 PM (gZ/8m)

102 If the Swift Boat Vets had just been a bunch of guys criticizing John Kerry's war record, that would be one thing. But they were Kerry's fellow officers. They served honorably and gave eyewitness testimony about his conduct.

By their service, they earned the right to be heard. But McCain didn't bother to familiarize himself with their charges.

He could have declined to participate in the controversy, or he could have disagreed respectfully. They deserved as much respect from McCain as he gave to Kerry, and they didn't get it.

For McCain, Kerry's word outweighed theirs because Kerry, like McCain, was a member of the senatorial elite. That's all he needed to know.

Posted by: lyle at February 28, 2007 01:39 PM (tbUSO)

103 I can believe both, can't I?

You can believe whatever you want to dear. You can admire his service, I certainly respect it.

Commenters here have provided numerous examples that are part of the public record that demonstrate his integrity challenges, or outright hypocrisy. Telling me I don't understand him is not a compelling defense. Nor is glossing over his willingness to speak at a convention of the NRB after having labeled two of their principles Sharpton and Farrakhan-like demagogues. Who the hell else in the NRB is he reaching to that anyone anywhere has heard of?

Posted by: Dave in Texas at February 28, 2007 01:42 PM (pzen5)

104 RWS,

I disagree.

It actually is a "position", because McCain went out of his way to make it one.

Who delivered the speech lumping Falwell in with Farrakhan? McCain. It was a calculated shot at the christian-right designed to tar GWB for having successfully attracted their support leading up to the South Carolina primary in 2000.

Now it's 2008. McCain finds himself as the candidate who needs that pool of voters, as Giuliani has more appeal to the voters who McCain once relied upon.

So what happens? Falwell is no longer persona non grata solely because McCain feels he needs him to win. If McCain truly believes his own rhetoric he should distance himself from Falwell completely. No one is stopping McCain from refusing their invitation, after all.

Which indicates that McCain is willing to abandon his so called "principles" anytime they get in the way of his own political goals.

He was either lying about what Falwell represents in 2000 or he is lying about what Falwell represents in 2008. There really isn't anyway to put lipstick on this hog.

Posted by: Jack M. at February 28, 2007 01:43 PM (gfp19)

105 Gotta disagree RWS. The most fundamental tasks of a country are to define its boundaries and its citizenry. If you can't do those two things, you don't have a country. Saying we'll let fate and the ambitions of foreigners to determine our citizenry is abrogating one of the essential duties of any nation.

I agree that many illegal immigrants are amazing workers. But letting their amazingness define their citizenship is a suicidal act for a nation.

Posted by: geoff at February 28, 2007 01:46 PM (GJTEc)

106 Previously posted long ago.

Except for being a keating 5, gang of 16, speech limiting, sick wife leaving, media whoring, swift boat bashing, rumsfeld hating, democrat coddling, angerphile, Mccain is an okay dude.

Posted by: roc ingersol at February 28, 2007 01:47 PM (m2CN7)

107

For myself, I'm a big fan of enforcing the current laws, not rewarding lawbreakers and encouraging more.


If you want to change the laws so that it's legal to sneak in here, or eliminate expiration dates on visas, then go for it.


Then there's the drug-smuggling and violence that goes with lax border security...


Look.  European, Asian, Australian, and African would-be immigrants have to go through a process.  So should our nextdoor neighbors.


(As an aside, look at how Mexico enforces their Southern border.  And internal enforcement.)


Posted by: Some Guy at February 28, 2007 01:53 PM (lPxkl)

108 McCain is the GOP's John Kerry.

By that I mean, McCain gets a pass for his (totally honorable and awe-inspiring) service in Vietnam. He simply a RINO like Olympia Snowe.

Strike that, he's worse than Snowe et al could ever be. Like John Kerry it's all about him and screw the party. Think how many times McCain sabotaged the Republicans over the last couple of years every time they tried to get some politcal mojo working. McCain- Always there to pull the rug out from under fellow Republicans.

But people think about his service and think there's something beyond the preening pomposity. And there was, thirty/forty years ago.

He's also got the same contempt for the common man as Kerry. He couldn't jump on freedom of speech fast enough with McCain/Feingold. That alone, that total subversion of First Amendment rights, should of put him out of the running forever. Same deal with his immigration stance.

But he's taken seriously, why? Vietnam. A man of honor there. Hell, I think about that and I want to believe.

McCain is the funhouse mirror version of Kerry. Yeah, he's not stupid like Kerry. Yeah, his service was truly magnificent. Unlike Kerry's three months and out. But everything, everything is bent and warped around the black hole of his ego. Just like John f'ing Kerry. And just like Kerry he's taken seriously only because of Vietnam.

Having said that, if by some wild quirk of fate, McCain becomes the GOP's candidate. I'll vote for him. And get drunk afterward to wash the taste out of my mouth.

Posted by: rinseandspit at February 28, 2007 01:53 PM (AOEPL)

109 I will never vote for McCain. He has nothing but contempt for his party, the conservative base, and the constitution, and I return that feeling with interest. McCain-Feingold and the Gang of Fourteen were enough to put him on the permanent shitlist, and there can be no compromise, even if it means standing by while the democrats elect an empty suit (or pantsuit.) Ladies and gentlemen, if it comes to the point where we have to choose between the Hildebeeste and McCain, we're just shuffling the chairs on the deck of the Titanic, and it's not going to matter a hell of a lot who we pick.

I still hope it won't come to that. But I'm not going to vote for McCain if it does.

Posted by: Kerry at February 28, 2007 01:54 PM (rCgkx)

110 It's the "contemptuous" thing that always puts people off. I have a large social con/Christian right readership, and they never get cheesed off simply because I disagree with him -- the anger comes when I get hot and perceived as "contemptuous" as I did in the HPV threads.

I admit that I am contemptuous of the idea that some group of people think they have a right to preserve the availability of avoidable negative outcomes for behavior that they don't like in order to discourage that (legal) behavior. If you don't like the behavior so much get it made illegal. If, as in this case, it's not feasable (or probably constitional) to make the behavior illegal? Tough. In this country we don't make people die for other people's beliefs.

Posted by: Big E at February 28, 2007 01:59 PM (uw1/g)

111 Why is it hypocritical for McCain to speak at the NRB? Didn't Bush speak at the NAACP?? Was that hypocritical??

McCain pointed out Falwell specifically, not all the people who are evangelicals.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 02:00 PM (gZ/8m)

112 geoff,

I would agree with you if we were starting at point zero, but we aren't. We have to deal with the fact that this country has let in 14 million illegals and nothing was done about it for decades!! We are where we are and we have to deal with it as it is, not as we wish it to be.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 02:02 PM (gZ/8m)

113 Why is it hypocritical for McCain to speak at the NRB? Didn't Bush speak at the NAACP?? Was that hypocritical??

Because he lumped Jerry and Pat in the same bucket with Louis Farrakhan dear, an off the charts joo-hatin racist. Now he wants to court their supporters to win an election.

Your Bush strawman defense doesn't even make sense. When did Bush accuse Mfume of being a Farrakhan (or anything for that matter)? And Bush spoke as an elected President, you know, a guest. Not seeking votes.

See the difference?

Posted by: Dave in Texas at February 28, 2007 02:07 PM (pzen5)

114 RWS -

You're right, we absolutely need to figure out a way to deal with the 20+ million illegals (not 14, stop listening to the MSM talking points) that are here.

But stop with the namby-pamby feel good "Oh they work so hard..." crap - we'll so did all four of my grandparents, and I'm sure someone in your family did too - but they all came here the legal way AND they learned English, adopted some of our culture and didn't march in the streets waving the flag of their country of origin and demand things even US citizens don't get.

Oh, and they assimilated into our melting pot.

I'll meet you half-way on this one, I respect McCain something fierce, but will never vote for him.





Posted by: SOC at February 28, 2007 02:21 PM (1/F/d)

115 Amen, Kerry.

I could not have said it better myself. How short a memory some of us have. Although I have the utmost respect for all of the members here, I have to respectfully disagree with Rightwingsparkle and others who feel like her.

As Kerry said, McCain has REPEATEDLY shown his utter comtempt and disdain for members of his own party, the First Amendment, Christian Evangelicals, etc...

Yes, we can all agree that his service in Vietnam was heroic. However, this is 40 years later and since then, he is not behaving like the hero serviceman that he once was. No one here is more supportive of soldiers who have honorably served in any war. However, it is no less important what they do when they come back home. Should we give a Iraq war vet a pass on a bank robbery? What about child molestation?

I realize that no one is accusing McCain of such, but I'm trying to make a point that past service, while honorable and worthy of praise, should not be an automatic "get out of jail free card" for current bad behavior or bad decisions.

I in no way hold anything against someone who would vote for McCain if he were to be the R nominee. But I just can't turn my back on my principles so I can say that I voted Republican.

I am first and foremost a conservative, and R or D after the name is of secondary importance.

By the way, great posts, everyone. I really enjoy the *mostly* well thought out arguments put forth by everyone.

Posted by: Pardigm Shift at February 28, 2007 02:21 PM (/s5j6)

116 RWS,

Rather than a lengthy post on why I don't support McCain... hit the blogosphere and listen to what us rightwingers think of him. The base of each party ends up making the nomination, and the Republican base is pretty riled up against McCain- far more so than Rudy even with his left-leaning social positions.

If you support McCain because you agree with his postions- fine. Just don't try convincing us that he's likely to get the nomination or is the most electable candidate- that ship sailed it's last voyage in 2000.

Posted by: Hollowpoint at February 28, 2007 02:25 PM (plsiE)

117 I think the McCain-Feingold effect will crush him even if his annoying personality and clear lust for power at any cost does not.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at February 28, 2007 02:44 PM (wmgz8)

118 Because he lumped Jerry and Pat in the same bucket with Louis Farrakhan dear, an off the charts joo-hatin racist.

DIT, I see your point there. It was an unfair comparison. One of McCain's vices is that he sometimes speaks his mind without fully thinking it through.


Hollowpoint,

Oh, I KNOW what the rightwing of the blogosphere says about McCain!! I've been a lone voice here for a while. But, while we may discuss politics here, we are not politics. Politics is a strange dance and seduction that happens during the primaries. The candidates have a real chance to change minds, to show their true selves (so to speak).

McCain knows this dance well. And he's very good at it.

We shall see.

Posted by: Rightwingsparkle at February 28, 2007 02:47 PM (gZ/8m)

119 RWS-

Politics is a strange dance and seduction that happens during the primaries. The candidates have a real chance to change minds, to show their true selves (so to speak).

The fatal flaw in that theory is that the better people get to know McCain, the less likely they are to actually like him, at least with regards to conservatives. I have no reason to believe that the primary delegates won't feel the same way.

The opposition to McCain in the conservative blogosphere isn't because we know too little about him, but rather because we're likely more familiar with his positions than the average primary or general election voter.

His only redeeming quality is his stance as a fiscal conservative, but he largely negated that with his position on taxes.

Posted by: Hollowpoint at February 28, 2007 03:04 PM (plsiE)

120
McCain knows this dance well. And he's very good at it.


And that's why we hate him.

Posted by: Slublog at February 28, 2007 03:08 PM (JrEqJ)

121 I should add not because he's especially good at it, but because he thinks that it will fool us again.

Posted by: Slublog at February 28, 2007 03:10 PM (JrEqJ)

122 The GOP's main problem is that our best candidate has the wrong last name.

Posted by: someone at February 28, 2007 03:13 PM (I/t4f)

123 One of McCain's vices is that he sometimes speaks his mind without fully thinking it through.

McCain's primary vice is that he'll say whatever he thinks will get him power and advancement politically. He doesn't say what he thinks, I don't even know if he knows what he thinks let alone says it.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at February 28, 2007 03:25 PM (wmgz8)

124 McCain hasn't a snowball's chance in hell of getting elected. He's taken different stands on so many issues over the past two years it's difficult to know exactly who he is or what he stands for.

Posted by: Dalton at February 28, 2007 03:28 PM (zkeOi)

125 "Let me address this swiftboat thing too. Although that was all good fodder for us and against Kerry, that IS all it was for us. But for McCain it was much more. It was about a war and service that is at the very heart of who he is. He would have spoken out against ads like that no matter who they targeted. Everyone likes to focus on his " dishonest anddishonorable" quote, but he also said this at the same time:

"McCain said that's all in the past to him, but he's speaking out against the anti-Kerry ad because "it reopens all the old wounds of the Vietnam War, which I spent the last 35 years trying to heal."


Who the hell made him manager of what other people can say? Just because he's in the good old boy's senate network with Kerry doesn't mean Kerry gets a pass from the other 99.99999999% of Vietnam veterans.

I didn't see McCain defending Bush's National Guard service as a way of 'putting the past behind us.' He stuck himself out and threw red meat to the MSM and Democrats on the one issue that they were most terrified about, rightfully so. All the ad did was play Kerry's words, damning as they were on their own.

Posted by: MlR at February 28, 2007 03:55 PM (Y/00e)

126 RWS would be an absolutely wonderful wife. I mean she obviously attractive but have you seen the loyalty on that woman? Wow. I would love to find a woman that loyal. Or, hell... Who am I kidding? I'd love to find a woman.

But that pure, Grade-A loyalty would be nice too.

Posted by: Nom de Blog at February 28, 2007 06:08 PM (f9DT5)

127 she --> she's

Posted by: Nom de Blog at February 28, 2007 06:09 PM (f9DT5)

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