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Get used to it
Posted by: mcq on Wednesday, January 30, 2008

For all you Republicans:
Assuming there is no shocking revelation or health issue, the GOP nomination is over. Conservatives need to start practicing the phrase "Nominee presumptive John McCa....."

Sorry, I can't say it. Not yet.
Once again, the Reps choose the "Bob Dole" candidate. And Graham is pretty much right. Barring unforseen health issues or McCain caught with a dead girl or live boy, the GOP nomination is pretty much over and you're going to be looking at a McCain/Huckabee ticket come convention time.

Giuliani's Florida strategy blew up in the face of the Crist and Martinez endorsements just prior to the primary (and now he's going to do the same for McCain just before Super Tuesday), and Romney was sunk by 17% independents voting in a supposedly closed Republian primary (those are self-identified "independents").

Not that Romney was the best catch for Republicans, but he is far and away better than McCain. So get used to it. It's going to be McCain as the nominee against either Obama or Clinton. None of the three is going to be a boon for anyone interested in smaller government and fiscal responsiblity, regardless of their claims, and especially those of the man who is now trying to claim he is "Mr. Conservative" - John McCain.
 
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Comments
McCain isn’t the Bob Dole candidate. He’s the John Kerry candidate. A veteran who’s not so much loved as perceived to be "electable".
 
Written By: SaveFarris
URL: http://
McCain is certainly a fiscal conservative. That’s why he didn’t support tax cuts as much as some Republicans who seem to think tax cuts are always good regardless of the budget situation. The Republicans had a weak field of candidates this year, and McCain probably is their best bet to hold on to the White House.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
as you said before Bob Dole without Bob Dole’s charisma. Well better luck next time
 
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
A former two termed Governer, a former two termed Governer, a former two termed mayor of the largest city in the US, a current Senator and war hero, etc.

All this compared to what? A sitting junior senator with about as much experience as a high school student body president, a former First Lady who has only slightly more experience than her collegue, and a populous former senator who’s done, well, nothing over the past year.

Yup. The strength is simply overwhelming.

That being said: We don’t know whether Giuliani will endorse Romney or McCain, but the talking heads seem to think it’s going to be McCain over Romney, so we’ll see.

As for McCain/Huckabee....that’s enough for me to stay home. While I can swallow down the bile and vote for McCain after having a few good stiff shots, I will not, can not, in good conscience, put Huckabee in any REMOTE chance of ever gaining the White House. And McCain is no Spring Chicken.

Now...the only reason I can eventually swallow and vote McCain is because the likelihood is he’s only going to be a one term President, which means we go through all this again in four years. If he chooses a Romney (which would be strong) or a Giuliani (which would be strong, too) it puts either one in a good position for 2012, barring disaster.

Again, not a good day, but it could be worse.
 
Written By: Joel C.
URL: http://
maybe I’m tilting at windmills, but much depends on who the 30%+ of non McCain, non-Romney GOP voters end up voting for. The important thing for Romney is to keep McCain from hitting enough delegates to win on the first ballot... and with McCain barely getting 1 out of every 3 voters, that may not be so hard to do. Let’s see how the Giuliani voters go for, as well as the Huckabee voters now that they realize he’s not going anywhere. And let’s not presume there won’t be some "shocking revelation or health issue". It wasn’t so long ago that McCain was dead in the water, and who knows, some illegal goes on a shooting rampage, some Democrat comes out and talks again about how much they like McCain, word gets out about (another) McCain profanity-filled tantrum against his fellow GOPers... and McCain is right back where he was.
 
Written By: steve sturm
URL: www.thoughtsonline.blogspot.com
McQ, it sounds like you, I, and some of our commenters have electile dysfunction.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
feh.
So this is what it feels like to know in January that I will not be voting for either party’s nominee.
 
Written By: Tim
URL: http://
http://asecondhandconjecture.com/?p=2319

McCain may be the front runner, but it is still anyone’s game going into next Tuesday. And the race can be just as muddled after next Tuesday, if there’s not a clear front runner.

And yes, it’s my contention that at this time, there isn’t a clear front runner. Just look at the numbers:

McCain - 93
Romney - 59
Huckabee - 40

I know some will look at that and think McCain has a tremendous lead on Romney. Except that the goal is 1191 delegates to get the Republican nomination. So, as a percentage of goal the candidates are currently at:

McCain - 7.8%
Romney - 5.0%
Huckabee - 3.4%

Now, between Super Tuesday puts 1102 delegates in play (including 21 for Maine this Friday.) I doubt that any candidate is going to sweep 22 states.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
Keith: Romney has vastly outspent McCain, but has lost all three major primary states: NH, SC, and Florida. The polls show McCain leading in the big super Tuesday states, and McCain has momentum. If Romney hasn’t been able to generate a lot of support and excite yet, he probably never will. I think he’s just a weak candidate. But we’ll know a lot more next week so you’re right, this is speculation.

Question: will those who dislike McCain decide to vote for him if he chooses Fred Thompson as running mate? What if it’s Clinton-Obama vs. McCain-Thompson (or Obama-Edwards vs. McCain-Thompson)?
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
So the election will be between two Democrats, an Old White man and McCain.
 
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
McQ, it sounds like you, I, and some of our commenters have electile dysfunction.
Isn’t there some kind of pill we can take to get over it? Or is it easer to just lop it off and throw it away (as it seems that is what the Republicans have done).
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
McCain has momentum
McCain has won the last 2 out of the last 4 races, and is starting to misrepresent Romney’s statements.

If Florida hadn’t been winner take all, Romney would still be in the lead.

Only 4 states on Tuesday are winner take all, and they only amount to 109 delegates.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
McCain is certainly a fiscal conservative.
Come on Scott, do your homework!
First, it is notable that Senator McCain stood so astride the Republican anti-tax position that he was one of only two Republican senators to oppose the 2001 tax cuts[5] and one of only three GOP senators to oppose the 2003 reductions.[6]

Second, Senator McCain’s stated reason for opposing the Bush tax cuts rhetorically allied him with the most radical anti-growth elements of national politics. Senator McCain argued, "I cannot in good conscience support a tax cut in which so many of the benefits go to the most fortunate among us at the expense of middle-class Americans who need tax relief."
Those are not the quotes of a conservative.

Question: will those who dislike McCain decide to vote for him if he chooses Fred Thompson as running mate?
That would be the ONLY way I would vote for him, and then... maybe (reference from the movie Platoon)!
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
One thing about McCain: he was pushing the surge from the beginning. Bush and McCain both deserve credit for that.

I don’t like McCain’s support for gun control, McCain-Fiengold, etc., and I tend to view him as having personality / popularity issues (like Hillery). Further, I’m not keen on someone who lacks executive experience.

But McCain has been right on the war more times than not. That’s the biggest issue we face right now. I previously thought I’d sit out a Hillery vs McCain contest, but based upon this single point I think the Republic is better off with McCain.

Obama—no frigging way.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
I am not sure why anyone would vote for the president of the senate. I was a Fred supporter, but putting him on the ticket with McCain is offensive to me. That strikes me as a coldly calculating political move, designed to trick people into voting for a candidate whose trustworthiness is suspect. It would further underscore my distrust for the man. He may be conservative, he may not. He doesn’t seem to share my values. No candidate still in does, with Mitt saying the right things, but I have trust issues with him too. What I do know is that I will no longer vote for the lesser of two evils. You still end up with evil.
 
Written By: Paden Cash
URL: http://
But McCain has been right on the war more times than not. That’s the biggest issue we face right now. ... but based upon this single point I think the Republic is better off with McCain.
I agree. McCain has all the negatives that those who hate him point out, but he’s better on foreign policy than either Democrat. And foreign policy is where the President has the most power.

He’s also better in other areas as well. On judges, McCain will probably appoint compromise candidates acceptable to Democrats. It’s even possible that some conservatives might get appointed. With Hillary or Obama, the most liberal judges possible will be rammed through. No conservative or near conservative is going to get anywhere near an appointment.

On spending, McCain will probably compromise with Democrats and continue wasting federal money in large quantities. But no matter how much taxpayer money a RINO wants to waste, Democrats always want to waste more.

On healthcare, I don’t recall McCain having a plan to nationalize/socialize our entire healthcare system. Yet another reason to vote for him over the Democrats.

You can go issue by issue. On almost everything McCain is to the right of Hillary and Obama. Let’s not pretend there aren’t going to be significant differences between a McCain presidency and that of Obama or Hillary.
What I do know is that I will no longer vote for the lesser of two evils. You still end up with evil.
Then you’ve decided to give up voting. Electing politicians is almost always a lesser of two evils choice, especially at the national level.
 
Written By: David C.
URL: http://
Isn’t there some kind of pill we can take to get over it?
Sure. I’ve heard about a special drug for conservatives called Cialoutis (pronounced "sell-out-is"). There are people marketing it all over the Internet. Here’s an example.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
McQ:
Not that Romney was the best catch for Republicans, but he is far and away better than McCain.
I don’t see any evidence for that. I have always thought that Romney is a stiff, and a stiff with fewer core principles than McCain.

If McCain is a zero, Romney is a -3, from my point of view.
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
The ACU ratings on him aren’t that good. While more conservative then Democrats, he’s on the low end of the scale compared to other Republicans.

I think that just makes him a Republican.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
StratosBlog makes the same point I’m trying to make.
What does this mean, there will be no winner after Super Tuesday. Who does a better job of brokering Mike Huckabee? What states lock in their delegate support throughout the ballot process and what states release delegates after the first ballot? Does Huckabee have more political capital before or after Super Tuesday? Don’t forget, Huckabee is leading the polls in Texas...and it carries with it 140 delegates.
BTW the number of states with winner take all come Tuesday is 9 w/ 408 delegates.

Now, even by his analysis, McCain would still be ahead, w/ 637 to Romney’s 352, and Huckabee’s 279.

But a lot can happen in a week to change peoples minds.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
David C.
If I accept your cynical worldview that voting always involves unacceptable choices, then indeed I would stop voting. Still I would be politically active. If I fail to work for good choices, then they won’t be offered. If I accept such choices, those will be the only choices offered. I am too old to become complicit in my own demise (figurative). If you believe that McCain is a good candidate who will represent you fairly, you should most definitely vote for him.
 
Written By: Paden Cash
URL: http://
The ACU ratings on him aren’t that good. While more conservative then Democrats, he’s on the low end of the scale compared to other Republicans.

I think that just makes him a Republican.
McCain’s rating is 65. Clinton and Obama are 8’s. 65 isn’t that great, true, but it’s a whole lot better than 8.

Paden,
If I accept your cynical worldview that voting always involves unacceptable choices, then indeed I would stop voting. Still I would be politically active.
I plead guilty to being cynical.
If I fail to work for good choices, then they won’t be offered. If I accept such choices, those will be the only choices offered.
That’s what the primary/nomination process is for. I’m not arguing that you should support McCain for the nomination or like him in any way. What I am arguing is that by refusing to vote for him in the general election, you are in effect voting for something worse.
I am too old to become complicit in my own demise (figurative). If you believe that McCain is a good candidate who will represent you fairly, you should most definitely vote for him.
If McCain is the Republican nominee, I’ll vote for him because I believe he’ll be significantly better than having either Obama or Hillary as President — not because he will "represent me fairly."

 
Written By: David C.
URL: http://
I noted in another thread McCain has an 82 lifetime rating, was 80 by the ACU in 2005, though he did dip to 65 in 2006. Most Democrats are in the single digits or just barely above 10. The Republican Senators representing my state are somewhere around 30 or 40. Many Republicans are in McCain’s range. He’s a maverick, but he definitely is conservative. No doubt about that. Sure on some issues he has his own view, and breaks with the "party line," but do some of you really want to suggest that to be conservative you have to follow the dictates of the "conservative position" on every issue, and with every quote? Doesn’t that sound a bit more Stalinist than liberty oriented?

I think Guiliani and Romney are more liberal than McCain, though Romney has tried to hide it by changing positions. Still, while I respect him as a man, he’s too conservative for me. I’d prefer Olympia Snowe.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
David C.
From the standpoint of tactics you are absolutely correct. If the goal is to win the engagement. From a strategic standpoint, it may not be desirable to win the engagement and lose the contest. What I am suggesting is that we change the game. If you want better candidates, stop voting for bad ones. Even if the other guys are worse. If you like the available options, pick your favorite, and vote for it. A vote for McCain will insure that we will get to vote for many more just like him. If otoh you are after good governance, don’t vote for bad choices. How did I get to this age and still think I deserve good representation? I must not have been paying attention. I blame those two doobies a day.
 
Written By: Paden Cash
URL: http://
Discussion so far:
Position#1....The game is rigged, you can’t win
Position#2....Yeah, but it is the only game in town
come on gamblers step right up
 
Written By: Paden Cash
URL: http://
There are only 2 good things about a McCain presidency.

1. He is not Billary.

2. He may die before the 4 years are up. Yeah I know that is tactless, etc Not wishing it on him but I cant say the thought hasnt crossed my mind.


 
Written By: retired military
URL: http://
That’s why he didn’t support tax cuts as much as some Republicans who seem to think tax cuts are always good regardless of the budget situation.
Have we discarded the "tax cuts for the rich" argument? I don’t know why you would.
Still, while I respect him as a man, he’s too conservative for me. I’d prefer Olympia Snowe.
Huh. Maine professor prefers "moderate" Republican. Never saw that coming.
 
Written By: Rob
URL: http://
I noted in another thread McCain has an 82 lifetime rating, was 80 by the ACU in 2005, though he did dip to 65 in 2006. I actually think those ratings mean something, unlike those who consider McCain’s complete sellout of the Bill of Rights prima facie evidence of his complete lack of conservative principles. Most Democrats are in the single digits or just barely above 10, which demonstrates that they are even more contemptuous of the Constitution than McCain. The Republican Senators representing my state are somewhere around 30 or 40, which suits me because it indicates complete contempt for the Constitution, yet still allows me to claim I’m a moderate by supporting them.

Many Republicans are in McCain’s range. The combination of a leftist mainstream media and leftist academia has made sure that Republicans think they should be in that range. He’s a maverick, considering that the indoctrination on the futility of the Iraq War has not taken hold of him yet, but he definitely is conservative, by which I mean not completely Marxist. No doubt about that.

Sure on some issues he has his own view, and breaks with the "party line," but that just indicates his flexibility in giving in to we wise leftists even when Republicans elect him. Pretty smart on our part, huh? Do some of you really want to suggest that to be conservative you have to follow the dictates of the "conservative position" on every issue, and with every quote? Doesn’t that sound a bit more Stalinist than liberty oriented? I have to say, that’s one of the best crafted strawmen I’ve ever constructed, don’t you think?

I think Guiliani and Romney are more liberal than McCain, though Romney has tried to hide it by changing positions. Neither has gone quite as far in selling out the Bill of Rights, but they were elected in areas that contain a majority of wise leftists, so they must be pretty liberal. Still, while I respect McCain as a man, he’s too conservative for me. I’d prefer Olympia Snowe. After all, McCain might actually stand on a conservative principle at some point, and I know Olympia would never do that.
 
Written By: Ott Scerb
URL: http://cluelessprof.maine.edu
Sure on some issues he has his own view, and breaks with the "party line," but do some of you really want to suggest that to be conservative you have to follow the dictates of the "conservative position" on every issue, and with every quote?

"Conservative positions" are not part and parcel of the Republican "party line" you refer to. Hence, the conservative backlash toward the Republican party over deviation from conservative principles. What’s confusing you here? Or are you being purposely obtuse... again?
Doesn’t that sound a bit more Stalinist than liberty oriented?
Show me a conservative position that is Stalinist and I’ll concede.
 
Written By: Rob
URL: http://

"Conservative positions" are not part and parcel of the Republican "party line" you refer to. Hence, the conservative backlash toward the Republican party over deviation from conservative principles. What’s confusing you here? Or are you being purposely obtuse... again?
You’re confused. I didn’t mean "party line" as Republican party, I meant a particular conservative line, that if you deviate it away from it, you’re defined as not a ’true conservative’ and thus somehow tainted. That reminds me of things like Stalinism and the orthodox left.

McCain is definitely conservative - he just broke on a few issues and a few can’t forgive him — and probably will find the next year very disappointing.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
he just broke on a few issues
He’s done more than just "break"

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
McCain didn’t just "break with the party line." That’s a major understatement. On the McCain-Feingold and Kennedy-McCain bills he co-led the charges—on the latter with Ted Kennedy no less—against the conservative line.

True, McCain is conservative compared to, say, Barack Obama (there’s a guy whose voting record screams "I never think for myself!") and no doubt some other Republican pols, but still, if conservatives feel betrayed and distrustful of McCain (and it’s more than a "few" and they are not "extremists"), they’ve got good reasons. After all, Prof. Erb, it’s not your ox that is being gored here.

I suspect that many, if not most, will find a way to vote McCain in the face of a Clinton or Obama presidency, but for those who care about conservatism, McCain’s ascendancy is a bitter pill.
 
Written By: huxley
URL: http://
So who is the Libertarian candidate. The way this election is shaping up, I might just vote for him.
 
Written By: Jeff the Baptist
URL: http://jeffthebaptist.blogspot.com
That reminds me of things like Stalinism and the orthodox left.
That’s your problem, partly because you present yourself as a centrist and everyone around you as a kook for not being like you. McCain-Feingold is, to a degree debatable for eternity, an assault on free speech. You say conservatives who oppose McCain because of it are "Stalinist". Once again, how does standing solidly on our First Amendment make you akin to Stalin? The fact that you cannot reconcile these facts means the confusion remains yours.

Many of his credentials trouble me greatly, but I’m really not looking for "purity", per se, as I can consider voting for him. The only question I’m mulling is whether sitting out and allowing a Hillary presidency will simultaneously splinter the Democratic Party in future elections, force the Republican leadership to push forward better conservatives for future elections and spoil the country’s taste for Democratic politicos in future elections. One or all of those things would happen. Unfortunately, some of the more ornerous things that I can’t stomach from our government (global warming legislation, oppressive tax hiking, etc.) will probably happen no matter who I vote for at this point. It’s gonna take an election or two for the American people to sort this out.
 
Written By: Rob
URL: http://

 
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