McCain's a 'hero' - so what?
Posted: January 25, 2008
1:00 a.m. Eastern
Many conservatives have said Sen. John McCain is not conservative enough to
suit them. Some of McCain's defenders have not only disagreed but have
impugned his critics, hypocritically blaming them for divisiveness.
But intramural bickering isn't the issue. What's important is that
conservatives have an intellectually honest and open discussion about GOP
It's disappointing to watch good conservatives demean themselves by trying
to present McCain as something he's not. No matter how much they spin, they
can't fool conservatives familiar with McCain's record. McCain's detractors
are not the ones having to stretch and massage the facts in order to turn
McCain - overnight - into a Reagan conservative.
McCain is not only not conservative enough; he has also built a reputation
as a maverick by stabbing his party in the back - not in furtherance of
conservative principles but by betraying them. McCain delights in sticking
it to his colleagues while winning accolades from the mainstream liberal
Former Sen. Rick Santorum, whose conservative credentials are beyond
question, said, "I don't agree with (McCain) on hardly any issues." Santorum
told radio host Mark Levin, "I just have to tell you, as a leader, as
someone who had to put these coalitions together, it was always hard and we
very rarely on domestic policy had any help from the senator from Arizona."
Santorum said McCain has been damaging to conservative causes and would be
no friend to conservatives in the White House.
McCain's defenders - in the McCainian spirit of chilling political speech -
forbid us from criticizing him because he is a war hero. That's
irresponsible nonsense. Voters and analysts have an obligation to assess
McCain's suitability for the presidency. To consider and verbalize the
negatives is not to demean his service or sacrifice.
We can recognize and honor McCain's indescribably grueling POW experiences
without taking the leap of arguing they automatically qualify him as an
ideal commander in chief. His qualifications should be evaluated on the
merits, not on sentimental appeals to his service.
Understandably, I suppose, pundits
glibly assert that one of McCain's many advantages is his character - a
character that was molded by the hardships he endured. McCain's captivity
undeniably involved more character building than anything most of us will
ever experience. But to say he is a rugged, battle-tested hero does not mean
he is incapable of prevarication, opportunism, demagoguery or other
mischief. Nor does it immunize him from scrutiny concerning the credible
claim that he lacks the temperament to be president.
I respectfully reject that McCain's honorable and sacrificial
character-building experiences or his self-description as a "straight
talker" place his veracity above question. I remember him sidling up to the
media by falsely claiming President Bush
level with the American people about how long the Iraq war could take. I
remember him blaming dirty campaign tricks on Bush in South Carolina in
2000, when investigations revealed there was no evidence Bush was behind it.
I remember him joining liberals in slandering the truth-telling Swift Boat
as "dishonest and dishonorable." I remember his disingenuous derision of the
across-the-board Bush tax cuts as being only for the rich. I witnessed him
changing his position on immigration
http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=59880> to shore
up support in South Carolina, then after that primary arrogantly denying to
Sean Hannity that he'd flip-flopped. People can assess for themselves
whether McCain is always straight, but hopefully they'll base their decision
on the evidence and not his hero status.
I seriously doubt McCain will win the GOP
nomination, precisely because of his infidelity to conservative principles.
He crusades against Guantanamo, favors constitutional rights for terrorists
but opposes tough interrogation techniques, was the ringleader of the Gang
of 14, which legitimized the filibustering of judicial nominees, and is the
godfather of political speech-suppressing and Democrat-favoring
campaign-finance reform legislation.
He has displayed contempt for conservative evangelicals, opposed Bush's
pro-growth tax cuts for reasons other than he says (spending), has engaged
in other class-warfare rhetoric like demonizing oil and drug companies,
co-sponsored the abominable McCain-Kennedy illegal immigrant
-forgiveness/open-borders/Social Security zapping bill, and even voted for
the Specter amendment, which could have conferred consulting rights on
Mexico concerning the erection of a southern border fence.
He sold out on global warming, opportunistically opposed drilling in ANWR,
favors re-importation of drugs from Canada and promoted the
McCain-Kennedy-Edwards patients bill of rights. Even his pro-life
credentials are not as pristine as we're told: He opposes reversal of Roe v.
Wade and sided with anti-political speech zealots in filing an amicus brief
against Wisconsin Right to Life.
Vote for McCain if you wish, but please don't insult conservatives by
suggesting he's one of us.
This is from the "McCain" press and there are probably many more like articles in the McCain press. But, to qualify the statement in the ATC, "If anyone, McCain supporter or not, will send an article by a notable favorable of McCain the Arizona Town Crier will publish it.", the article should be from a third party. Does anyone expect the McCain press to say anything against McCain?
However, since the statement wasn't qualified, here is what McCain's group has to say about McCain.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Sunday, January 27, 2008 10:21 AM
Subject: Fwd: In Case You Missed It: The Wall Street Journal: "McCain Gets Edge For El...
Sent: 1/25/2008 3:17:55 P.M. US Mountain Standard Time
Subj: In Case You Missed It: The Wall Street Journal: "McCain Gets Edge For Electability"
For Immediate Release
Contact: Press Office
Friday, January 25, 2008
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:
The Wall Street Journal: "McCain Gets Edge For Electability"
"The leading Republican presidential candidates all claim to be the best-suited to overcome the Democratic tide expected in the general election. But opinion polls clearly favor Arizona Sen. John McCain in that regard. ... [McCain] did the best in hypothetical matchups with the two leading Democrats. The [new WSJ/NBC] poll shows him beating New York Sen. Hillary Clinton by 46% to 44% and tying against Illinois Sen. Barack Obama with 42% support. Messrs. Romney, Giuliani and Huckabee all lose handily in polling matchups with Sens. Clinton and Obama." -- The Wall Street Journal
McCain Gets Edge For Electability
As Primary Moves Along, Republican Voters Face Question of Who Can Win
By Alex Frangos And Elizabeth Holmes
The Wall Street Journal
January 25, 2008
The leading Republican presidential candidates all claim to be the best-suited to overcome the Democratic tide expected in the general election. But opinion polls clearly favor Arizona Sen. John McCain in that regard.
In the latest Wall Street Journal/NBC poll, 37% of respondents said Mr. McCain has the best chance to win in November against the Democrats. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was far back in second, with 16%, followed closely by former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani at 15% and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee at 12%. Those results are mirrored in other polls.
Mr. McCain also did the best in hypothetical matchups with the two leading Democrats. The poll shows him beating New York Sen. Hillary Clinton by 46% to 44% and tying against Illinois Sen. Barack Obama with 42% support. Messrs. Romney, Giuliani and Huckabee all lose handily in polling matchups with Sens. Clinton and Obama. Statistically, the results are about the same -- a dead heat -- whether Mr. McCain's opponent is Sen. Clinton or Sen. Obama because the poll has a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points.
Many Republican primary voters face a quandary this year: Whether to choose the candidate they like best or the one they think has the best shot against a formidable Democratic opponent in November.
"We have got to figure out who's the most electable. That's the hard part," said Ron Dahlstrom, a 67-year-old retiree living in Naples, Fla., who says he hasn't decided on a candidate. The self-described religious conservative likes Mr. Huckabee, but says the Baptist preacher is too religious to get elected. That leaves him undecided between Messrs. Romney and McCain. "Anybody but Hillary," he said Tuesday.
The electabilty quotient is a growing concern for voters as the campaign heats up in Florida. That represents a change for the Republican Party. In recent elections, Republicans have either had an incumbent or an anointed front-runner who gained momentum early, such as George W. Bush in 2000 or Bob Dole in 1996. This year, Republicans are the underdogs, with an unpopular sitting president and facing a possible economic recession.
"A lot of Republicans are looking for who can win," Mr. McCain said yesterday after an event in West Palm Beach, Fla.
Mr. McCain released an Internet advertisement yesterday that will appear on the Web sites of Florida newspapers. It's called "Democrats' Worst Nightmare." The ad says Democrats "fear John McCain most because he's the one candidate who can rally the conservative Reagan Coalition while appealing to independent voters to win in November."
That type of message resonates with McCain supporter Bob Freid of Boynton Beach, Fla. The retired dentist, 67, said yesterday that Mr. McCain is "the candidate that can beat the illustrious Democrats."
"He can work with anybody," Mr. Freid said, explaining Mr. McCain's appeal to independents. ...
Read The Wall Street Journal: "McCain Gets Edge For Electability"