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Old 12-11-2006, 02:24 PM   #1
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McCain: a Maverick no longer

potential problems with McCain ...



[q]Why It's Dangerous For the Maverick To Be the...Front Runner

By KAREN TUMULTY

As a rallying cry. "Common sense conservatism" doesn't have quite the ring of "Straight Talk Express." But the new slogan on the website of John McCain's presidential exploratory committee--a slogan he manages to repeat at least three times in every speech he gives these days--tells you all you need to know about how different this presidential campaign will be from his last one. McCain '08 will be a bigger, more conventional operation--a tank, not a slingshot. The prevailing wisdom about McCain used to be that his bipartisan appeal would make him a sure bet in a presidential race--if only he could get past the Republican primary. But as more and more of the party establishment climb aboard a campaign that McCain has not yet even formally launched, it's starting to look as if the opposite may be true. By trying to become the perfect candidate for the primaries, McCain could be creating difficulties for himself in a general election.

His hard-line position on Iraq is a perfect case in point. McCain has continued to press for more troops there, and spent last week dismissing the Iraq Study Group recommendation to bring them home as nothing short of a recipe for defeat. That's the kind of strong, consistent hawkishness that G.O.P. primary voters look for. "Besides," says McCain strategist Mark Salter, "it's what he believes." The problem is that exit polls in last month's election said only 17% of voters overall share that view, which could leave the other 83% wondering whether McCain's famous independent streak, so appealing on most issues, would be such a good thing to have in a Commander in Chief who has the power to take the country to war. Already there are signs that his image is taking a hit. In the CBS/New York Times poll, McCain's favorability rating slid 6 points, to 28%, between January and September.

McCain insists that he has always been more conservative than many of his fans believe him to be. But the most important perception people have about McCain is not about ideology; it's about integrity. After staking his reputation on the moral high ground by speaking truth to power on issues ranging from deficits to torture, McCain is uniquely vulnerable to anything that hints of hypocrisy--even on questions that ordinary politicians would get a pass on. To have a shot at winning a presidential election these days, for instance, it is nearly a requirement that candidates opt out of the federal finance system, forgoing its matching funds because it's too difficult to mount a credible campaign within the law's spending caps. But that move, however pragmatic, would look bad coming from an author of the McCain-Feingold campaign-finance-reform law.

Also, it's harder for McCain than most to explain away inconsistencies. How, for example, could a deficit hawk vote to make President Bush's tax credits permanent after opposing their passage in the first place as fiscally irresponsible? Or why, after declaring Jerry Falwell to be an agent of intolerance during the brutal 2000 primary campaign, did McCain deliver the commencement speech last May at Falwell's Liberty University in Virginia?

Such overtures might make inroads in a skeptical Republican base, but these shifts make some of his longtime allies worry. "A profile in courage can become a profile in unrestrained ambition," says former Reagan White House chief of staff Ken Duberstein, who was one of the few G.O.P. establishment figures to support McCain's 2000 presidential campaign. "He has to remember who his friends are and not spend his integrity on one-night stands with those who will never fully trust him."[/q]



negative, Ghost Rider?
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Old 12-11-2006, 06:08 PM   #2
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I was a McCain voter in 2000, but it doesn't look like I'm going to be one in '08. Instead, I'll be voting for someone in the Democratic primary. That was weird, voting in my first ever Republican primary to vote for McCain against George Bush. I had a serious partisan identity crisis as I've always voted Democratic.
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Old 12-12-2006, 06:07 AM   #3
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I liked Irvine's topic title for a previous McCain thread....McCain:bending over for Falwell.
Hideous image though.
Question: Irvine511, does it make you wanna go hetero?
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Old 12-12-2006, 09:29 AM   #4
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Originally posted by blueyedpoet
I liked Irvine's topic title for a previous McCain thread....McCain:bending over for Falwell.
Hideous image though.
Question: Irvine511, does it make you wanna go hetero?

no. but it makes me want to gouge my eyes out.
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Old 12-13-2006, 02:41 AM   #5
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maybe their not so dissimilar
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Old 12-13-2006, 06:19 AM   #6
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McCain is one of the few Republicans I've always held a lot of respect for (well, at least since I started following politics in the 2000 campaign), and one of the few right-wingers I'd actually consider voting for if I could.

Personally right now I don't see another option for the Republicans for '08. Giuliani is the only one who really comes close as far as I've seen.

If McCain runs, it will take a pretty solid candidate from the Democratic side to retain my support. Not Hillary, though. That would be probably the dumbest thing Democrats have done in a long time to have her on the ballot (at least at this point - people will be voting for her based on her husband's presidency rather than her qualifications, and that could be really dangerous).

Sometimes I wish I could vote in American Presidential elections - to see something as critical to the free world go down and have no say whatsoever is a little unsettling.

But then I remember I live in Canada, and I have the power to boot out Harper, and that makes me happy too.
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Old 12-13-2006, 08:48 AM   #7
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I lost respect for McCain during the 2000 primaries and he's done nothing to win it back since.

He was never the maverick people claim he is. He just managed to frame the discourse in such a way to convince people (through the media) that he's really independent minded. Bullshit, he's cut from the same cloth as the right. I wouldn't vote for him in a million years.
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Old 12-13-2006, 10:20 AM   #8
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i could handle a McCain presidency -- a sure thing, if some posters are to be believed, so sure, in fact, that we might as well not even bother having an election in 2008 -- if for no other reason than i do think he's actually an adult, and pretty much anyone is going to look good in comparison to the rhesus monkey currently in office.
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Old 12-13-2006, 11:36 AM   #9
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I think McCain's plan to increase the number of troops in Iraq is going to go over like a lead balloon. We just voted the Republicans out of power in Congress over Iraq. We'd have to "win" the war for a Republican to get in, something that's not likely to happen.
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Old 12-13-2006, 02:31 PM   #10
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McCain lost me in '04 when he kissed up to Bush as much as he did. Shameful
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Old 01-18-2007, 02:23 PM   #11
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[q]McCain no longer rocks in Granite State
By Brett Arends
Boston Herald Business Columnist
Thursday, January 18, 2007 - Updated: 12:17 PM EST

As Mitt, Hillary, Barack and a dozen others jump into the presidential stampede, something interesting is happening in New Hampshire.

For seven years, conventional wisdom has said that the state’s pivotal independent voters would line up behind maverick Sen. John McCain, as they did so famously in the 2000 GOP primary. But new polling data, to be released later this week, will suggest that might no longer be the case.

Manchester, N.H.-based American Research Group finds that McCain’s popularity among New Hampshire’s independent voters has collapsed.

“John McCain is tanking,” says ARG president Dick Bennett. “That’s the big thing [we’re finding]. In New Hampshire a year ago he got 49 percent among independent voters. That number’s way down, to 29 percent now.”

American Research Group, which is New Hampshire’s leading polling company and has been operating in the state since 1976, polled 1,200 likely Granite State voters in the survey.

Bennett says ARG is finding a similar trend in other states polled, including early primary battlegrounds like Iowa and Nevada. “We’re finding this everywhere,” he says.

The main reason isn’t hard to find: His hawkish stance on the Iraq war, which is tying him ever more closely to an unpopular president. “Independent support for McCain is evaporating because they view him as tied to Bush,” says Bennett.

The McCain camp yesterday said the senator, who is pushing for a bigger troop surge in Iraq than the president, will stick by his guns. “He has been and will remain committed to achieving victory in Iraq,” a spokesman said.

New Hampshire is among the states that allow independents to vote in either party’s primary. It was their support that gave McCain his huge primary victory there over then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush in 2000.

If the senator is losing that base, it opens the GOP race to other challengers. And it weakens his strongest pitch to Republican die-hards - namely that his appeal to independents makes him the most electable candidate in the general election.

“It’s significant that McCain is going down rather than up at this critical juncture in the early maneuvering,” comments Larry Sabato, who chairs the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics. “It suggests that, contrary to conventional wisdom, John McCain may not be secure as the GOP front-runner. But a lot can change.”

The big question for 2008: Where will all those independents end up?

Mitt Romney could have made a strong pitch to them if he weren’t instead running to the right. ARG’s poll finds some like Rudy Giuliani. Others, switching sides, are warming to Democratic Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois.

But most are now up for grabs. [/q]
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Old 01-18-2007, 02:32 PM   #12
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one can only hope that mayor mike decides to run and the majority of the country decides to ignore the fact that he's jewish and vote for him anyway
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Old 01-18-2007, 03:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
[q]McCain no longer rocks in Granite State
By Brett Arends
Boston Herald Business Columnist
Thursday, January 18, 2007 - Updated: 12:17 PM EST

As Mitt, Hillary, Barack and a dozen others jump into the presidential stampede, something interesting is happening in New Hampshire.

For seven years, conventional wisdom has said that the state’s pivotal independent voters would line up behind maverick Sen. John McCain, as they did so famously in the 2000 GOP primary. But new polling data, to be released later this week, will suggest that might no longer be the case.

Manchester, N.H.-based American Research Group finds that McCain’s popularity among New Hampshire’s independent voters has collapsed.

“John McCain is tanking,” says ARG president Dick Bennett. “That’s the big thing [we’re finding]. In New Hampshire a year ago he got 49 percent among independent voters. That number’s way down, to 29 percent now.”

American Research Group, which is New Hampshire’s leading polling company and has been operating in the state since 1976, polled 1,200 likely Granite State voters in the survey.

Bennett says ARG is finding a similar trend in other states polled, including early primary battlegrounds like Iowa and Nevada. “We’re finding this everywhere,” he says.

The main reason isn’t hard to find: His hawkish stance on the Iraq war, which is tying him ever more closely to an unpopular president. “Independent support for McCain is evaporating because they view him as tied to Bush,” says Bennett.

The McCain camp yesterday said the senator, who is pushing for a bigger troop surge in Iraq than the president, will stick by his guns. “He has been and will remain committed to achieving victory in Iraq,” a spokesman said.

New Hampshire is among the states that allow independents to vote in either party’s primary. It was their support that gave McCain his huge primary victory there over then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush in 2000.

If the senator is losing that base, it opens the GOP race to other challengers. And it weakens his strongest pitch to Republican die-hards - namely that his appeal to independents makes him the most electable candidate in the general election.

“It’s significant that McCain is going down rather than up at this critical juncture in the early maneuvering,” comments Larry Sabato, who chairs the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics. “It suggests that, contrary to conventional wisdom, John McCain may not be secure as the GOP front-runner. But a lot can change.”

The big question for 2008: Where will all those independents end up?

Mitt Romney could have made a strong pitch to them if he weren’t instead running to the right. ARG’s poll finds some like Rudy Giuliani. Others, switching sides, are warming to Democratic Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois.

But most are now up for grabs. [/q]
Unlike candidates in the Democratic party, McCain is sticking to what he knows is best for the country. Clinton, Edwards, and certainly Obama, don't even touch McCain when it comes to knowing and understanding US National Security interest and Foreign Policy. The Democratic candidates are concerned about getting votes, McCain is concerned about having the best policy for the country in National Security, something he has dedicated his life to.

McCain's incredible record of service to this country is something that the general republic will soon be reminded of and will contrast significantly with the Democratic opposition and will indeed impact peoples decisions on who to vote for in November 2008.
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Old 01-18-2007, 03:22 PM   #14
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if the democrats can't win the white house in 2008 then they should really just fold the party.
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Old 01-18-2007, 10:32 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Headache in a Suitcase
if the democrats can't win the white house in 2008 then they should really just fold the party.
Just like the GOP should have when they couldn't control Congress in over 40 years?

Right. Let's get some perspective here and fewer histrionic statements. The Democratic Party was dominated by Kennedy/Johnson, and when that fell apart, the Democratic Party went into a tailspin. RFK's assassination certainly contributed to their problems. Then Bill Clinton dominated(/ates) the party, and it's back into that same old identity crisis that they're currently digging out of.

Think the GOP is immune from that? Here's a party that has so closely identified itself with religious fanatics that its presidential choices are limited. McCain is probably their only hope, which means that he's an easy target for the Democrats to rip down over the next two years. Giuliani? Too much baggage to make the religious fanatics support him.

Beyond that, we have the "neo-con" generation, which have, basically, been the same cast of characters since the Nixon era. As formidable of a group as they have been, they're not going to live forever, and a handful of them have already died. The GOP is going to have a rather huge power vacuum once they die, and they're bound to fall into a tailspin for at least a few years.

But let's not underestimate this: McCain is formidable in his own right, and he certainly has a great chance of winning this election. But, compared to the wave of popularity he had a few years ago, McCain is much more vulnerable. His actions since 2000 have seemed much less "maverick" and much more party loyal. His rather unpopular stance on Iraq is also a vulnerability. However, even if he is to win, there's still the issue of who's after him in the party. And currently? There's no one. The GOP is quickly becoming the party of dinosaurs and cavemen.
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