Patterico's Pontifications


John McCain: The Myth of an Electable Candidate

Filed under: 2008 Election,Dog Trainer,General — Patterico @ 7:02 am

Steven G. Calabresi and John O. McGinnis argue today in the Wall Street Journal that Republicans concerned about the judiciary should should vote for John McCain. Their argument rests primarily on McCain’s supposed electability:

We believe that the nomination of John McCain is the best option to preserve the ongoing restoration of constitutional government. He is by far the most electable Republican candidate remaining in the race, and based on his record is as likely to appoint judges committed to constitutionalism as Mitt Romney, a candidate for whom we also have great respect.

We make no apology for suggesting that electability must be a prime consideration.

It’s my view that McCain only seems electable because of his media image, which will collapse once the country actually gets to know him in the general election.

For example, the clueless boobs at the Los Angeles Times endorse McCain with this comment:

But the Arizona senator’s conservatism is, if not always to our liking, at least genuine.

They obviously haven’t bothered to read their former colleague Matt Welch’s book on McCain, McCain: The Myth of a Maverick. Welch demonstrates that McCain is far from a straight-talking maverick and Man of the People. Rather, he is a condescending elitist, prone to bending the truth to a remarkable degree, and unnervingly trusting in the power of Big Government to change our lives for the better.

For a taste of Welch’s views of McCain, go here for a recent article by Welch on McCain’s re-emergence. Keep in mind: these are not the rantings of some disgruntled conservative. This is the informed opinion of a libertarian with some lefty leanings, who knows more about McCain than 99.9% of the people in the country:

Here’s the funny thing about independent voters: They still love John McCain, think he’s a straight talker. No matter how many times he claims to run a positive-only campaign on the same day he releases an attack ad; no matter how many ways he violates the spirit of his own campaign-finance legislation (do yourself a favor and Google “The Reform Institute”); no matter how unconvincingly he stammers his way through wanting to make permanent the same tax cuts he eviscerated in 2001 and 2003; no matter how inaccurately he slimes Romney and others for insufficient support of “our troops”; no matter how many immigration bills bearing his name he now opposes; and no matter how many times he confesses to manipulative, ambition-driven lies in his own damned books, independents still come out for their maverick — 42 percent of them in open-primary South Carolina, and 39 percent in New Hampshire.

The thing is, I don’t think the dissonance between the image and the reality will survive a presidential campaign. Welch reinforces the point I make above: because of the media’s love affair with McCain, voters in love with his image don’t know who they’re voting for:

McCain’s momentum heading into the national primary could make him the first GOP nominee widely loathed by grass-roots conservatives since George Bush I back in 1992.

For many of us non-Republicans, that can seem like a perfectly good deal. After all, the enemy of Rush Limbaugh and Tom DeLay surely has a better chance of being my friend, right? Don’t be so sure.

It’s impossible to assess McCain accurately without first dealing with the fact that he’s probably been the beneficiary of more flattering media attention than any national Republican in the past four decades. . . . Newspaper endorsements — many featuring errors of fact — are gaining momentum: The New York Times, the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the L.A. Daily News, The Sacramento Bee, the San Jose Mercury News, and on and on. [Add the L.A. Times to the list. — Ed.]

As a direct result of his long media honeymoon, much of what we think we know about McCain is wrong.

Indeed. But in a Presidential campaign, some of that is going to come out. Many voters will eventually learn that McCain’s image is nothing like the reality. People who know nothing of McCain except his image are finally going to sit down and watch a debate. At that point, a lot of them are going to say: “Holy crap! That’s the guy I thought I liked?!” The antiwar crowd will finally realize he makes George Bush look like Neville Chamberlain. And everyone will see McCain’s smug condescension, born of a background of elitism and privilege. It will manifest itself in that self-satisfied mockingly contemptuous grin that he can’t hide.

Calabresi and McGinnis write today:

[T]he nomination of Mr. Romney could easily lead to a Goldwater-like debacle, in which the GOP loses not only the White House but also its ability in practice to filibuster in the Senate.

It could. But I believe that the nomination of John McCain is far more likely to create the same result.

We always pretend that we know how things will shake out in the future, based on present circumstances. Then, months later, we look back and think: how could we have thought that? As Welch notes, six months ago, John McCain was written off completely. Everyone was sure he was politically dead, based on what was known at the time. That was wrong. Now, everyone is certain that he is the most electable Republican, based on what is known now. I believe that is wrong.

I urge those who say John McCain is electable to read Matt Welch’s book, and at a minimum, to read the article linked above. Then ask yourself one question:

How much of this do you think we’ll be able to hide from voters through November?

74 Responses to “John McCain: The Myth of an Electable Candidate”

  1. McCain is more electable than Romney, but only to the extent that slim is better than none.

    steve sturm (40e5a6)

  2. But what about the argument I make in the post?

    Patterico (e13f7e)

  3. By the way, I changed the post title. It was previously:

    John McCain: The Most Electable Republican . . . As Long As You Don’t Know Anything About Him. Can We Maintain the Fiction Through November?

    Yeah. A little long.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  4. Romney is more electable than McCain. Less scary to white people. Better looking and a better speaker, too. Don’t trust the liberal weebs who want to pick our candidate for us.

    If you care about no bones about it national security, abortion and guns, follow McCain’s banner. If you care about a “business-friendly environment”, which sent our manufacturing capacity to China and made our economy dependent on illegal immigrant labor, either candidate is as good as the other I suppose.

    nk (12118a)

  5. Bill Quick seems to agree with you:

    Pat R. (722456)

  6. McCain is approved by the MSM only until he comes up against a democrat. Then, of course, they’ll turn on him.

    ManlyDad (d62cf6)

  7. Patterico, all these are strong reasons to oppose McCain in the primary – but if McCain gets the nomination anyway, Calabresi & McGinnis illustrate the stakes and thus (in my view, at least) the baby-with-the-bathwater insanity of failing to support the nominee (whoever that may be) in the fall.

    Simon Dodd (fb192d)

  8. Flip-flof Romney may very well apply to another rich Massachussettan this year.

    nk (12118a)

  9. John McCain’s comment about the 1st Amendment made on the Don Imus radio show on April 24, 2006 during a discussion about the liberty squelching McCain-Feingold law: “….I would rather have a clean government than one where quote First Amendment rights are being respected, that has become corrupt. If I had my choice, I’d rather have the clean government.” McCain-Feingold is a horribly conceived limitation on political free speech – the type of speech held most dear by our founding fathers. That McCain authored this law is absolute evidence of his disdain for the 1st Amendment.

    Coupled with his insults to those who dared oppose the McCain-Kennedy immigration bill tell me everything I need to know (and worry about) McCain’s commitment to free speech.

    in_awe (52fd64)

  10. Simon,

    My argument is geared towards the primaries. I want to pick the candidate who is not only the conservative, but the more electable. That is not John McCain.

    Patterico (e24128)

  11. Patterico,

    Do you really believe Romney is more electable? Just curious.

    voiceofreason2 (10af7e)

  12. McCain’s 0.00001% chance of being elected makes him more electable than Romney, because Romney, being Mormon, has 0.0% chance of being elected.

    And that trumps everything else that’s on the table: McCain on the issues, Obama’s inexperience and liberalism, Clinton’s nastiness and liberalism.

    steve sturm (40e5a6)

  13. Patterico – okay. I agree in that case. Sorry, I’m just a bit skittish when several high-profile conservatives (Coulter, Malkin et al) are urging a course of action that amounts – for reasons Calabresi notes – to collective suicide.

    Simon Dodd (fb192d)

  14. The GOP selected Gerald Ford over Ronald Reagan. Ford lost the general election. Was the selection a matter of party suicide?
    The GOP is making its own bed. It’ll have to lie in it.
    I didn’t leave the GOP …. etc., etc.

    cboldt (3d73dd)

  15. Anybody but McCain!
    My vote is for Mitt Romney!
    USAF, Retired

    L8DBACK IN VA (8324b2)

  16. How can anyone after the last 2 Republican debates think that McCain is more electable than Romney?

    Bubba J (3265a8)

  17. How can anyone think that the leftist organizations (sorry, newspapers) that are “supporting” McCain will support him against a Democrat?

    I’d reverse the odds: 0.000001% ROmney, 0.0% McCain.

    The GOP has offered us bruised lemons again.

    Merovign (4744a2)

  18. McCain will get ripped apart starting from the first day after he becomes the GOP nominee until he loses so badly in November as to guarantee that the D candidate wins a mandate for bigger government for the next 4 years.

    He is only “electable” because the media keeps telling everyone that he is, but they neglect to talk about any of his policies or history because they know that revealing such would guarantee that he starts losing in landslides to any other GOP candidate The MSM wants McCain to win the primary becuase they know that the dirt they have on him will not only guarantee that conservatives stay home, but will make him toxic to the very independants that are pushing him to victory now and they are counting on that pushing the D candidate to victory.

    All I can say is Romney might lose in November, but its doubtful he will lose big. McCain won’t get more than 30% of the votes at the national level once the MSM finishes with him.

    Mvargus (8c2339)

  19. What will happen to Republican lawmakers up for election if McCain is on the ticket? McCain is the most electable if we assume that independents will vote for him over Obama/Hillary…but will those independents vote for a Republican congressperson?

    Mike (c3f277)

  20. Don’t trust the liberal weebs who want to pick our candidate for us.

    Now you know how we feel about Joe Lieberman.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (7d46f9)

  21. Wise-up conservatives the McCain drum beat in the MSM is coming from the RNC spin machine via the “Neo Con” press; (Bill Crystal, Fred Barnes, etc.) The psychotic Neo Cons and cult-like free market opportunists, whose combined arrogance and greed will ultimately turn the U.S. into a third world munitions & chicken factory, all support McCain.

    If; “On national security, McCain’s credentials are dazzling”, as Fred Barnes says, why can’t he secure our own borders and ports? AND what about “timetables” for removal of the 2 million illegal alien criminals he keeps talking about. It appears there’s not much of a “surge” happening in our own country to rid us of foreign nationals who seek to victimize us on our own turf.

    In addition, many of us remember the S&L scandal that defined John McCain as a man who lacks integrity regardless of how he’s tried to repudiate that experience. In fact, how has the fight against political corruption worked out? Hmm let’s see, oh, fast forward to ….Enron… “sub prime mortgage” crisis/ scandal. Somehow we always end up suffering in the end from “self-regulated industries”, I wonder why that is?

    McCain will put the Republican party on the famous “ bridge to nowhere” he loves to cite.

    Nevada voter (3801ca)

  22. You guys are nuts to think Romney is more electable than McCain, or that Romney is somehow a more “honorable” candidate. But hey, you guys want 4-8 years of a Democratic president & Congress, their judicial picks, their laws, etc. Good job!

    sharon (99ccf7)

  23. Does that same theory work for Obama? There seems to be a big love fest for him and he stands for NOTHING, is that going to change when he steps on the debate platform?

    Jim P (0a3103)

  24. sharon’s right about Romney. No one’s going to buy anything he’s selling in a general election. I don’t think McCain will win either, but his chances are better than Romney’s.

    Leviticus (43095b)

  25. Hugh Hewitt, who’s one of Romney’s biggest supporters, is linking an analysis of Romney’s possible path to victory, assuming Super Tuesday plays out as expected and Huckabee and Paul are out after 2/5 (as is pointed out, it ain’t pretty):

    “The table below shows what Romney must do for victory if the likely scenario above plays out on 2/5. Essentially – Romney must win the three remaining winner-take all states AND he must beat McCain by an average margin of 61.45% to 38.54% in the other states. That is how Romney can reach the magic number of 1,191 delegates.”

    Full link is here:

    JayHub (0a6237)

  26. I usually agree with you, but I’m sorry, this is complete drivel from beginning to end. McCain isn’t by any stretch of the imagination an unknown, and there is nothing to “discover.” He’s been in office for 22 years.

    He’s far from my ideal candidate, but the more I see trying to shoot him down, the more comfortable I am voting for him in November. As for issues, there is one issue for the President: National security. He’s not a king. He can’t make law in the White House. And unless a bigger, stronger hawk joins the race, McCain’s got my vote.

    I have lots of family who served in uniform. I’m not going to spit on their service by helping to elect Democrats in November, no matter how I may feel about the Republican candidate.

    rightwingprof (fbb932)

  27. RightWingProf,

    I don’t know how I feel about the candidates yet, although my gut says Romney is more conservative than McCain but, unfortunately, less electable. Nevertheless, I’m also worried about McCain’s electability. First, it’s easy to be misled by early polls. Second, I suspect that in a head-to-head matchup McCain would end up in second place. Here’s why:

    Most of the time, McCain looks old, pasty, and almost sick. He always looks older than he is. He has a fake Jimmy-Carter-type smile that seems more like a grimace than a genuine smile. And he has a reputation for being mean, nasty and vindictive … and don’t fool yourself into thinking we won’t hear those mean, nasty and vindictive stories when the general election rolls around.

    Voters, especially swing voters, dislike all these qualities and McCain will be heavily dependent on swing voters since he can’t depend on a big turnout from the conservative base. So if you are truly concerned about electability because of your concern for the military, I think you should think twice about McCain.

    DRJ (517d26)

  28. DRJ, if Hillary’s the Dem candidate, then I wouldn’t be concerned, since she too “has a reputation for being mean, nasty and vindictive.”

    Moreover, “A new poll shows that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton is considered the candidate most likely to “do anything — including something unethical — to win,” and most likely to embarrass the United States. According to a national Fox News Poll, 44 percent put Clinton in that category, compared to 11 percent for Mitt Romney, 9 percent for Sen. John McCain and 8 percent for Sen. Barack Obama. Twenty-eight percent of voters were unsure.”

    Full story:

    JayHub (0a6237)

  29. I’m not convinced, JayHub. Voter dynamics have a lot in common with jury dynamics, and juries always have a harder time believing a woman (as opposed to a man) can be mean, nasty and vindictive — even when they have clear proof.

    DRJ (517d26)

  30. McCain supporters (yes, rightwingprof)are giving the guy way too much credit for being tough on terror, and a potential Democratic President way too little credit, especially compared to McCain.

    Because of Bush, any successor, no matter what they say during the campaign, is going to have his/her hands tied when it comes to Iraq. None will dare ‘oppose the generals’ by trying to cram a change in strategy or tactics. None will pull our troops out of Iraq during their first term, if not a second term.

    And as far as what I consider the real war on terror, seeking out and killing terrorists, and pressuring the countries that support terror to back off, neither McCain nor either Hillary or Obama are all that strong. None of them favor harsh interrogation to help our side learn of upcoming attacks. All of them are more concerned than they should be with making other countries like us. They want Guantanamo closed and to treat terrorists more like common criminals. None of them could be counted on to be tough with Syria, Iran or the other sponsors and practitioners of terror. Hey, at least Obama said he’d consider sending troops into Pakistan to hunt terrorists.

    And McCain supporters are also overplaying his value in picking judges. Even if he were to win, there’s no way the GOP ends up with 60+ Senate seats, so they can’t override the inevitable Democratic filibuster, so McCain would have to nominate ‘centrist’ judges. And presuming the GOP holds on to at least 41 Senate seats and were willing to play tough, then either Obama or Clinton would have to play nice as well with their nominations, which means that we end up with pretty much the same group of judges regardless of which of the three of them win.

    And once you take away McCain’s supposed edge in national security and nominating judges, there’s absolutely nothing to like about him.

    Having said all that, McCain still is more electable than Romney. The bigots have found something they hate worse than blacks and women, Romney’s religion. Ah, if only Obama and Hillary were Scientologists.

    steve sturm (40e5a6)

  31. It’s called denial, and it happens when people simply WILL NOT BELIEVE what they are seeing and hearing.

    Denial, however, cannot change the fact that McCain will be the Repub nominee.

    Expect to see the next stage, ANGER, after Romney pulls out!

    elixelx (37144e)

  32. I’m going to skip, for now, an analysis of whether Romney or McCain has better policies. I’ll just mention that slim as any Republican candidate’s chances are (thank God!), McCain’s are probably better. Why? Because Romney has zero cross-over appeal to Democrats or genuine independents. I don’t see any way that a Republican candidate who appeals only to Republicans is winning in November, especially against Obama, who seems able to swing a few Republicans into his column. You won’t see (even) Benedict Lieberman stumping for Romney.

    The perception that McCain is somewhat open-minded, doesn’t believe in borrow-and-spend budgeting, and opposes torture seem to give him a significant edge among non-Republicans. Hasn’t he clocked Romney in every open and semi-open primary?

    I realize that having a 71-year old man whose heterodox on the abolition of habeas corpus and waterboarding disheartens the Bush Base for which these are non-negotiable programs, but it is what it is.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (7d46f9)

  33. May I remind all of you who thinks that McCain is more “electable” is that not one Republican candidate in history has ever carried the general election without the support of the base. McCain does not have that support.

    #26, yes, McCain has been in office for 22 years, and while he is now the darling of the left wing media because he is considered a “maverick”, they will turn a dime on him when it comes time for him to run against the annointed Democrat. All the garbage of the last 22 years will be drug out and reexamined by the press. Matter of fact, I think they will go farther back than that. We will read how McCain dumped his crippled wife who waited so long for him to return from Vietnam to bag a new, rich wife. We will hear how he cheated on Carol once he met Cindy and how his kids did not talk to him for years. We will hear how he teamed up with John Kerry on the America POWs left behind in Vietnam. We will hear about his infamous tempter, even getting physical with Strom Thurman. We will hear it all. Because the purpose is to get a Democrat elected, not a Republican who currently holds “favorite son” status with the liberal media. Excuse me if I think that the leftist media has an ulterior motive to pander for McCain.

    I live in Texas. When is McCain’s “national” security plan for my state? Why are we seeing more and more illegals flooding in, straining our services and schools, to the point where we are taxes out of house and home, while John McCain is “great” on national security. Where is he on the plan to keep Americans secure from the criminals that are swimming the Rio Grande?

    McCain gets the endorsement of the NYTs, the LA Times, and every leftist newspaper in America. Human Events and every conservative group endorse Romney.

    McCain will be a repeat of Gerald Ford and Bob Dole and you McCain supporters will be responsible for the defeat.

    retire05 (44698e)

  34. I share your concerns, Retire05, with one exception: I don’t think we can blame McCain *yet* for the flood of immigrants coming into Texas. For now, that seems to be due to the refusal by Texas politicians to pass laws like the ones in Arizona and Oklahoma:

    “Illegal immigrants are flowing into Texas across its long borders. But they aren’t just swimming across the Rio Grande from Mexico or making dangerous treks through the rugged desert.

    Instead, a new rush of illegal immigrants are driving down Interstate 35 from Oklahoma or heading east to Texas from Arizona to flee tough new anti-illegal immigrant laws in those and other states.

    Though few numbers are available because illegal residents are difficult to track, community activists say immigrants have arrived in Houston and Dallas in recent months, and they expect hundreds more families to relocate to the Bayou City soon.

    ”They’re really tightening the screws,” said Mario Ortiz, an undocumented Mexican worker who came to Houston after leaving Phoenix last year. ”There have been a lot coming — it could be 100 a day.”

    The growing exodus is the result of dozens of new state and local laws aimed at curbing illegal immigration. The two toughest measures are in Oklahoma and Arizona.”

    DRJ (517d26)

  35. AJL – Your inability to grasp even fundamental Republican politics never fails to live down to the very low expectations you have set for yourself.

    JD (fc7319)

  36. The myth of the electable candidate produced John F. Kerry for the Dems last go around. Letting the media tell us who is electable is even more foolhardy than the Dems thinking that Kerry was.

    JD (fc7319)

  37. You may be a McCain supporter IF:
    1. You think Congress is doing a good job.
    2. You also know nothing about the economy and if asked will babble incoherently.
    3. You get turned on by elevated terrorist alerts used for political purposes.
    4. You exploit illegal immigrants
    5. You are an illegal immigrant
    6. You have a fetish for senile old men.
    7. You are a senile old man
    8. You want the Democrats to win in a landslide victory.
    9. You prefer a war lord rather than a president
    10. You still believe Iraq was responsible for 9/11.
    IF SO, PLEASE READ; “False Pretenses”

    TKW (3801ca)

  38. self-satisfied mockingly contemptuous grin

    That may be a mouthful, but an insightful one it is.

    The commenters here blaming the MSM for McCain’s success in the polls is disturbingly delusional. The media is this gigantic loophole of an excuse for you for everything that doesn’t go your way. McCain is getting so much attention because he’s leading in the polls – not vice-versa. You confuse cause and effect.

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  39. BBBBBBBBZZZZZZZZZTTTTTTTTTTT. Wrong, Psyberian. He is leading in the polls because the media loves him, and holds him out as some “maverick” rather than a RINO.

    JD (fc7319)

  40. I realize that having a 71-year old man whose heterodox on the abolition of habeas corpus and waterboarding disheartens the Bush Base for which these are non-negotiable programs, but it is what it is.


    Can you elaborate on your views of John McCain’s position on habeas corpus? Are you referring to, for example, this vote?

    Sure you’re not just making an assumption based on McCain’s image?

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  41. So is that why Bush won then JD? The media loves him?

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  42. Well what do you know Patterico, that evil LAT is accusing Hillary of Push Polling.

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  43. The Republican primary is the race for the Presidency. I refuse to believe that the American people are so gullible. I don’t care what people tell pollsters — neither Hillary nor Obama will get more than 40% of the vote in the national election. Hillary has too many negatives and Obama has no positives. Romney is Bush light. Pro-business and wishy-washy on everything else. McCain may be a nasty, intemperate jerk, but he is much more solid on his positions even if not each and everyone of those positions is a conservative plank.

    nk (12118a)

  44. Psyberian,

    You must have missed my recent post on that.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  45. nk, may the force be with you…

    reff (99666d)

  46. nk – I only hope you are right. I fear not though.

    JD (fc7319)

  47. Questions;

    Can one of you McCain supporters tell me what he has accomplished?

    Why, when given the choice between the “smart guy” or the one with observable mental deficiencies, does the Republican electorate have so much trouble choosing?

    McCain is not electable. Don’t let fear delude you or guide you.

    SK (3801ca)

  48. I liked the clip of Hannity asking the focus group of Obama supporters to name one accomplishment of Barry O’s. They almost seemed happy in their ignorance. One guy listed great orator and another said inspirational.

    JD (fc7319)

  49. JD: I’m an Obama supporter mostly because I don’t want Hillary to be President.

    aphrael (db0b5a)

  50. Dick Morris agrees that McCain is more electable than Romney. I agree.

    I think Romney’s Mormon religion will keep his negatives around 30% and that’s getting close to Hillary’s negatives, but Romney doesn’t have the potential to attract new voters like Hillary (single women who typically don’t vote) or Obama (young voters) might. Further, despite his speech at the Bush Library, in my opinion Romney has never really resolved this issue.

    DRJ (517d26)

  51. aphrael – I respect you, but can you give me one reason why he should even be considered for the position? One accomplishment? We were joking, kind of, at the office that were my boss’ position to open up, Barry’s resume would not even get him an interview.

    JD (fc7319)

  52. Patterico: It was reported that McCain said to

    First, close the prison at Guantanamo Bay and “expedite judicial proceedings” for the remaining prisoners.

    That’s what I had in mind.

    JD: I’m scratching my head thinking of one pre-2000 accomplishment of George W. Bush. For that matter, Kennedy and Lincoln didn’t have that much for track records. If you pushed me, though, I’m impressed with his getting Illinois to pass a law requiring police to tape confessions.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (012046)

  53. Governor of Texas, you moron.

    JD (fc7319)

  54. Did Hugh Hewitt ghost-write this post?

    jack (1afea2)

  55. JD: no, not really. But as a Democrat who doesn’t want Hillary, I’ve not really got any other option … nobody else stands a chance of stopping her.

    I was going to vote for Biden, but …

    aphrael (db0b5a)

  56. aphrael – Isn’t that absolutely sad?

    JD (fc7319)

  57. Yes, jack, Hugh Hewitt wrote this post. Because it is simply inconceivable that some people could have a problem with McCain based on his positions.

    JD (fc7319)

  58. Governor of Texas, you moron.

    Fine, and Obama is the junior Senator from Illinois, and has previous experience in municipal and state government. Are you talking about “accomplishments” or just previous elective office?

    Obama’s experience is a valid question, but you can’t judge Bush by some completely different standard. Well, you can if you’re dishonest and hypocritical…

    Andrew J. Lazarus (012046)

  59. Anyone, McCain’s accomplishments? Anyone?

    Lazarus – So, shifting the Guantanamo detainees into our prisons / judicial system would be an accomplishment?

    Abe Lincoln’s short list of accomplishments; ran a country store; was self taught; Postmaster of New Salem; Deputy County Surveyor; put himself through law school; Illinois legislator; successful trial lawyer; the only U.S. president to hold a patient.

    AND again, what has McCain accomplished?

    “Family values” voters are hypocrites if they avoid Romney because of his religion. I am not a Mormon, but Mormonism is centered on the family. Mitt Romney is a good and decent husband and father. He is an intelligent and accomplished man.

    McCain, on the other hand; military brat who did not distinguish himself in the academy; dumped his first wife after she was seriously injured in a car accident, then found himself a rich girl and road her daddy’s coattail up the social ladder.

    Anyone, McCain’s accomplishments? Anyone?

    SK (3801ca)

  60. I do not believe McCain is a candidate of any
    value. None. I will feel very unsafe with him
    at the top.
    As for the two dems, they are worse, but I belive
    Obama may win simply because Oprah, etc are there
    for him and he has charm. Remember the last president with charm, the one out there trying to
    get back in the WH through his wife?
    So take you pick, there is only Romney left and
    I can only trust my own, objective thinking.

    Republicans, as usual, are whining, sniveling,
    saying they won’t vote and genereally looking
    only to their own needs, not the countries and
    the world. I think someone must have told them
    they were special and were smarter than any old
    If someone tells me I am wrong, fine, but I
    will not argue as all the arguments are done as
    far as I can see and with McCain and the two
    high steppers the dems have set up win, America
    is in trouble. Big trouble.

    Carole (9019c2)

  61. It looks like McCain will have at least one important GOP accomplishment on his record: As long as he keeps winning primaries, he will be the Republican nominee.

    DRJ (517d26)


    This was an interesting article in regards to McCain and the demographics regarding conservatives, moderate/independents and the GOP.

    voiceofreason2 (869026)

  63. #44 – Although you link to the LAT through the text, your post failed to mention that the LAT was making that charge. So it was only via a hidden link. Sneaky.

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  64. AJL: I’m not convinced that two years of Senate experience is particularly meaningful, and we haven’t had a President without executive experience of some sort since President Ford.

    JD: to some degree, yes. But at the same time … neither being Governor of Arkansas (a small state) nor Governor of Texas (a state whose Governor has very little power and authority) are particularly good qualifications, either.

    DRJ: the same could be said of Obama as long as he keeps winning primaries, right? I think asserting that winning the nomination makes you qualified misses the point. :)

    aphrael (db0b5a)

  65. Voter turnout in the Democratic primary in Illinois and New York will tell us a lot today. Arguably, those are Hillary’s and Obama’s most motivated constituencies. If turnout is at about 40%, then the general election will be the Republicans’ to lose. If it’s close to 50% we should worry, and if it approaches the roughly 60% of the 2004 general election we should transfer all our assets to offshore accounts, make sure our passports are current, and get ready to go underground for the next four years.

    nk (12118a)

  66. get ready to go underground for the next four years

    It won’t be that bad. Remember, we liberals don’t believe in Gitmo.

    Now, where are my ameros?

    Andrew J. Lazarus (012046)

  67. Yeah, but Hillary might want to finish that road to the North Pole that her mentor started building. 😉

    nk (12118a)

  68. “If it’s close to 50% we should worry, and if it approaches the roughly 60% of the 2004 general election we should transfer all our assets to offshore accounts, make sure our passports are current, and get ready to go underground for the next four years.” – NK

    Good observations. My variation to your plan is to just count on moving in with you…
    Don’t worry I don’t take up too much of a carbon footprint.

    voiceofreason2 (10af7e)

  69. So if McCain is elected, do you think in a million years he would appoint a judge that would potentially vote or lean towards OVERTURNING McCain-Feingold?

    Dream on about McCain appointing anything but judges approved by Ted Kennedy.

    So why vote for McCain even in the general election?

    Big Dan (7f9d06)

  70. Re #66: “It won’t be that bad. Remember, we liberals don’t believe in Gitmo.”

    No, liberals don’t believe in Gitmo for illegal combatants.

    Gitmo would be just fine for any conservatives they run into. though.

    Big Dan (7f9d06)

  71. No, liberals don’t believe in Gitmo for illegal combatants. Gitmo would be just fine for any conservatives they run into. though.

    As Gandalf noticed,

    That we should wish to cast him down and have no one in his place is not a thought that occurs to his mind.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (a140f0)

  72. VOR2, #68,

    During the Kansas-Missouri border war, peaceful abolitionist and pro-slave families would live together to protect each other from the Redlegs and Bushwackers. I don’t think that that would work with Hillary, though. She’ll send us all to the gulags.

    nk (4ebdf4)

  73. NK,

    LOL. You are probably right about Hillary and the Gulag – but we’d have until the second term before that started up in full force.

    btw I agree with you about not cursing at a woman — no excuse for it in any scenario I can imagine.

    voiceofreason2 (590c85)

  74. Folks, Let’s have a chat … shall we?

    McCain only cares about one thing and that is McCain. His stance on certain issues has nothing to do with his values or principles, it has to do with what he thinks is the best political position to take.

    If something is good for McCain, he will see it as good for America.

    BUT If something is good for America, but not necessarily good for McCain .. he will choose what is best for him.

    This man has taken his former POW status and made a political career out of it.

    He doesn’t give a rats a$$ about anything or anyone except himself and his ego.

    Did you know that he has been the biggest enemy to the families of Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action from Vietnam? He has made the efforts of these families a mockery by belittling witnesses during testimony at Senate hearings, supporting and passing legislation that weakened previous legislation which gave the families some sense of oversight. McCain just came in and gutted it – He has saw to it that documents remained classified LONG after their declassification date – Why? Because some of them deal with him and what he did while in captivity. Once again, he made the POW/MIA Issue about HIM!

    for more – please go to

    It will make you sick what this man has done to families whose fate was much worse than his own.

    There is no denying what is there in black and white. Just watch the video … It will make you sick!

    The man is a psycho – if elected, they will be adding a psych wing on to the West Wing! Maybe Brittney can come by for a visit and they can chat about their meds! UGH!

    Marc (e6e5ef)

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