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The Death of Conservatism? - 43 Mistakes and the GOP's Dobson's Choice
Sideshow Bob | January 29, 2008 | Sideshow Bob

Posted on 01/29/2008 11:55:19 AM PST by Sideshow Bob

There have been more than a few recent articles and editorials attempting to affix blame for the demise of the Republican Party. Peggy Noonan blames President Bush. Rush Limbaugh believes a McCain nomination will kill the party. However, even in a worse case scenario, the Republican Party will probably stagger along for several years much like the last decade of the Whigs. Conservative Republicans should probably be more concerned about the impending demise of the conservative movement within the party. Some individuals can be blamed more than others, but this folly has many fathers. The latest blow to conservatives has come from within – thanks to Dr. James Dobson and other egotistical evangelicals. Political doomsayers may be correct and it is likely too late to save the conservative movement in 2008. Conservatives can correct their path to destruction for 2010 and beyond, but only if they look back at recent history, recognize the actions and actors that have brought the party and movement to this point, and to learn from a long series of missteps and mistakes.

Ronald Reagan built a winning coalition of conservatives, independents and establishment moderate Republicans in 1980. A coalition of social, economic and security conservatives had come together to form a plurality within the GOP and wrest leadership of the party from the establishment, moderate GOP. The Iran-Contra scandal (Mistake #1) weakened the coalition and the moderate wing of the party regained control of the GOP (Mistake #2), which led to the election of President George H.W. Bush (Mistake #3).

While the elder Bush had adopted – albeit reluctantly – many conservative ideals, he and the moderate GOP leaders advocated a “kinder, gentler” approach (Mistake #4). Conservatives might have been content to take a back seat to moderate GOP leadership, but they read Bush’s lips and their support and enthusiasm for the Republican Party evaporated after the Bush tax increase (Mistake #5). In 1992 some conservatives were taken in by Ross Perot and his anti-establishment, anti-Washington message (Mistake #6). Others just stayed home (Mistake #7) and helped Democrats elect the Dope from Hope, Bill Clinton, with just 43% of the popular vote (Mistake #8).

The only positive to come out of 1992 was that it helped create an opening for an obscure, but brilliant Congressman from Georgia to lead conservatives to regain control of the Republican Party. Newt Gingrich reformed the three-legged conservative coalition and took an upstart innovative approach of leading the GOP from the House with a 1994 national congressional campaign platform – the Contract with America.

It is important to note that prior to the ’94 elections, Senate Minority Leader Bob Dole and other establishment, moderate GOP leaders scoffed at and were dismissive of Gingrich and the Contract. Dole and Senate moderates rode the Contract’s election coattails, but made it plain that the GOP Senate did NOT sign on to the program, was not obligated to it, reluctantly followed Gingrich's lead, and worked to water down each and every one of the Contract's provisions (Mistake #9).

By January 1996, Dole was the presumptive Republican presidential nominee (Mistake #10). Dole sought to convince Speaker Gingrich to fold up the federal government shutdown stalemate with President Clinton and allow Dole to lead the GOP via his presidential campaign.

Dole gave Gingrich the choice of single-handedly continuing the shutdown and fight with Clinton and the media with Candidate Dole seeking a different path from the House GOP or deferring to Dole's presidential campaign and resuming the conservative battle together with Gingrich’s friend Trent Lott to keep President Dole honest after the ’96 elections. Gingrich made the wrong choice (Mistake #11). Gingrich probably should have run for President himself in 1996 (Mistake #12).

We all remember what happened. By caving in and compromising on the shutdown, the conservative House leadership lost some of their ability to control their more moderate members (Mistake #13). Bob Dole lost (Mistake #14). Trent Lott built his own voice separate from the House (Mistake #15). And with no help from Lott & the GOP Senate and a Clinton veto looming on all conservative issues, Gingrich, Armey & DeLay focused too much of their efforts on the growing Clinton scandals (Mistake #16).

Gingrich was able to maintain order within the House even during the Clinton impeachment. But after the Senate RINOs failed to do their duty and convict Clinton (Mistake #17), the House moderates began feeling their oats (Mistake #18).

Then, the impact of the missing FBI files took effect. Allegations of marital affairs Gingrich and Hyde took their toll (Mistake #19). Seeing his conservative House coalition slowly diminish and Lott's desire to set on a different path, Gingrich stepped down as Speaker (Mistake #20). Then his presumed successor, Bob Livingston from Louisiana, was also taken out by a marital affair (Mistake #21).

House Moderates became emboldened and championed the lackluster Dennis Hastert as Speaker to muzzle Armey & DeLay and appear less confrontational (Mistake #22). This effort also helped to clear the agenda of party leadership for the 2000 GOP presidential candidates (Mistake #23). And in 2000, conservatives settled for the "compassionate conservatism" of George W. Bush (Mistake #24). Many conservatives stayed home, nearly costing Bush the presidency and actually losing GOP control of the Senate in 2000 (Mistake #25).

To be fair, conservatives should thank God everyday for W's leadership in dealing with 9-11. But Bush also squandered the opportunity to push the party and country to the right following that horrible event (Mistake #26). The GOP regained control of the Senate in 2002, but based solely on the country’s fears of Democrats’ inability to deal with national security concerns and not on conservative social and economic principles. Meanwhile, the House drifted further to the center (Mistake #27).

Conservative fears of repeating Florida 2000 helped Bush win reelection in 2004, despite the party's overall drift to the center. By now, any conservative elements in the House and Senate were in complete retreat. The moderates ruled the roost in both houses. RINO defections on the Iraq war (Mistake #28), wasteful earmarks (Mistake #29) and ethics scandals (Mistake #29) were now front and center for the GOP. The only conservative victories of 2005-06 were the confirmations of Roberts and Alito to the Supreme Court. And it took a battle to defeat Bush on his nomination of Harriet Miers to do it.

By Fall 2006 conservatives had become utterly disheartened. Attempts to make the Bush tax cuts permanent stalled (Mistake #30), the continued treachery of Arlen Spector, John McCain, Lindsey Graham and the Gang of 14 (Mistake #31), increased dissatisfaction with George Bush and the Miers nomination debacle all caused conservatives to stay home in November 2006 (Mistake #32). And the GOP lost both the House and Senate.

Occasionally, the conservative movement can still rise up. The reaction to the Amnesty bill was encouraging. But other than that, conservatives have again been wandering in the wilderness. GOP moderates and RINO's have been resistant to allowing a conservative to assume leadership in Congress. And any potential conservative congressional leader has held back (Mistake #33), in part due to the extremely early start of the 2008 presidential race (Mistake #34).

And what did conservatives get for 2008 GOP candidates? Were there any Reagan conservatives who possessed all three legs of the coalition stool - strong national defense, social conservatism, economic conservatism?

Nope.

Instead, we got Rudy Giuliani. An autocrat who has little affection for social conservatives, but pledged to nominate strict construction judges. Whoopee!

Instead, we got John McCain. An angry RINO maverick who enjoys flouting social and economic conservatives AND even the GOP establishment to gain favor and positive reviews from the liberal media.

Instead, we got Mitt Romney, an uber-wealthy GOP establishment moderate. At least Romney panders to social and economic conservatives with recently discovered flip-flopped positions on issues of importance to those two factions.

Instead, we got Mike Huckabee – the Dope from Hope, part II. While he is just as slick and manipulative as Bill Clinton, Huckabee is nowhere near as smart.

Instead, we got Ron Paul, a true blue, libertarian nutbag. Paul has a few economic bona fides that have pulled away a few non-nut job libertarians. But I'm sorry, Dr. Paul is a kook.

Instead, we got the Obscure Four - Tom Tancredo, Alan Keyes, Tommy Thompson & Duncan Hunter. Tancredo & Keyes are single issue candidates. Tommy & Dunc are well-rounded politicians (especially Hunter), but they lacked the ability to have broad nationwide appeal.

Seeing this morass of blech, Fred Thompson entered the fray expecting to be the savior of the Republican Party and the conservative movement. Fred should have been that candidate.

Unfortunately, Dr. James Dobson and a few evangelical leaders decided to cut off their nose to spite their face (Mistake #35). You see, Fred's not a Bible thumper. Neither was Ronald Reagan. And like Reagan, Fred is a bona fide, all-around, federalist conservative. That wasn’t good enough for Dobson. And when Fred refused to kiss Dobson's ring of evangelical purity, Dobson went shopping for a candidate he thought he could control.

Flim Flam Huckabee seized on that opportunity. Huckabee played Dobson into thinking that Dobson could be a GOP kingmaker (Mistake #36). A handful of evangelical leaders blindly pushed Huckabee as a viable conservative (Mistake #37). The media, who knows a GOP loser when they see one, helped fan the flames of Huckabee's support. For a time, the scheme worked. Huckabee won Iowa (Mistake #38), but eventually the truth of Huckabee's Christian Socialism became evident to most conservatives.

But the damage had been done. Social conservatives were now spilt. Some had been taken in by Huckabee's class warfare (Mistake #39). Some had been taken in by the media's false depiction of Fred as a lazy campaigner (Mistake #40) and settled for Romney, Rudy or, worse, McCain (Mistake #41).

Added into this deceptive mix was the ability of independents and Democrats to participate in and distort the Iowa, New Hampshire & South Carolina Republican primaries (Mistake #42). Media darling McCain was back! McCain – the new Comeback Kid – was ready to lead....the GOP down to defeat. Meanwhile, Fred's race and the ability for the GOP to unify behind a Reaganesque conservative died (Mistake #43).

At best, the GOP could still end up with a George W. Bush-lite nominee like Mitt Romney. He will at least pretend to care about conservative ideals from his Country Club wing of the party.

At worst, the GOP could end up with John McCain. McCain, the perennial thorn in the GOP's side who was once touted as a possible VP running mate for John Kerry!

Who knows? It’s still remotely possible that none of the moderates and RINO’s still in the presidential race will win a majority of the primary delegates. Maybe a conservative nominee could still rise up in a brokered GOP convention. Maybe a conservative national congressional campaign like the Contract with America could still arise in time for the 2008 elections. But really, that’s a fantasy.

The reality is that conservatives will have to wait until 2010 or 2012 to reassert itself as the true and legitimate leaders of the Republican Party. The reality is that conservatives have allowed numerous people to make numerous mistakes which have led the movement to this precarious point. The reality is that conservatives and the GOP are now left with this Dobson's Choice of Romney or McCain. Pass the nose clips and prepare for the worst.


TOPICS: Editorial; Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: 2008; 2008campaign; 2008election; campaign; conservatives; dobson; fred; fredthompson; gop; jamesdobson; presidential; shadowparty; soros; votefraud
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1 posted on 01/29/2008 11:55:22 AM PST by Sideshow Bob
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To: Sideshow Bob

For me, it’s Romney or __________. Fill in the blank, but it won’t be McCain.


2 posted on 01/29/2008 11:58:02 AM PST by Brilliant
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To: Sideshow Bob

>>Mitt Romney.. his Country Club wing of the party.<<

I thought Country Club Republicans were Episcopalians?


3 posted on 01/29/2008 11:58:59 AM PST by Jeff Chandler (It takes a father to raise a child.)
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To: Brilliant

If it’s Romney, I hope he wins the general election; If it’s McCain, I hope Hillary or Obama win and take the blame for the next 4 years


4 posted on 01/29/2008 12:00:02 PM PST by hugorand
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To: Sideshow Bob
You lost me with the "bible-thumpers" comment. I'd expect that kind of junk out of the KosKidz, but not from a conservative who knows that Evangelicals are our political allies and alienating them is a sure way to lose a national election.

Based on that, I'm not surprised you've identified stealth-liberal Flip Romney as the "least bad" choice.

Romney's actually the second worst choice. If you look at how liberalism advanced on all fronts while he was governor of Massachusetts, and the GOP devolved into the pathetic rump party that it is today, with no shot of winning another statewide election in the foreseeable fuure, that should tell you all you need to know about Flip.

If you want the National GOP of the future to resemble the Massachusetts GOP of today, vote for Mitt.
5 posted on 01/29/2008 12:01:15 PM PST by Antoninus (All you Mittens out there are going to feel like Flippers come November...)
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To: Sideshow Bob

“Unfortunately, Dr. James Dobson and a few evangelical leaders decided to cut off their nose to spite their face (Mistake #35). You see, Fred’s not a Bible thumper. Neither was Ronald Reagan. And like Reagan, Fred is a bona fide, all-around, federalist conservative. That wasn’t good enough for Dobson. And when Fred refused to kiss Dobson’s ring of evangelical purity, Dobson went shopping for a candidate he thought he could control.”

I think Dobson’s ill conceived attack on Thompson played a major part in ensuring that no conservative will occupy the White House in 09.


6 posted on 01/29/2008 12:02:07 PM PST by NavVet ( If you don't defend Conservatism in the Primaries, you won't have it to defend in November)
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To: Sideshow Bob

Excellent, excellent commentary.


7 posted on 01/29/2008 12:03:14 PM PST by Zhang Fei
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To: Sideshow Bob

“At best, the GOP could still end up with a George W. Bush-lite nominee like Mitt Romney. He will at least pretend to care about conservative ideals from his Country Club wing of the party.”

Romney will drive the last nail in the conservative coffin by going hard left while hordes of glassy eyed image lickers worship his silly putty looks on “A Day in the Life” threads. His fake sincerity will insure a smooth ride over the cliff to socialism.


8 posted on 01/29/2008 12:07:37 PM PST by the gillman@blacklagoon.com (And close the damned borders!)
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To: Sideshow Bob

Interesting stuff. I disagree about the Fred related mistakes. Fred in fact ran a poor campaign and failed to motivate people. You could say that seeing the morass of RINO candidates, the MISTAKE was drafting Fred in the first place. We would have needed either a) a better candidate/campaigner to draft or b) get behind Mitt that much sooner. But Fred went where he was meant to go. That part, sadly, was no mistake.


9 posted on 01/29/2008 12:07:45 PM PST by Huck (Buzzards gotta eat, same as worms.)
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To: Antoninus

He said that Fred wasn’t a ‘bible thumper’, which is true. When I think of a ‘bible thumper’, I think of a phony like Huckabee using the bible to pander and trick people or at the very least someone making an issue out of their religion for political gain.


10 posted on 01/29/2008 12:08:58 PM PST by perfect_rovian_storm (Careful guys, someone spiked the Mitt KoolAid.)
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To: Antoninus
Evangelicals are our political allies and alienating them is a sure way to lose a national election.

And that's not just speaking hypothetically. Just ask Bob Dole. If there is a demise of the Republican Party, it will have been the price paid for alienating social conservatives by calling them "Bible thumpers" and worse.
11 posted on 01/29/2008 12:09:40 PM PST by BMIC
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To: Sideshow Bob

This crap is getting tiring. I hope it goes away over after the nominee is chosen. Yes, McCain is annoying (personally, at this point I’d rather see Romney, but neither of these two are all that great), but this garbage about “you are either a conservative or you are not”, and “he’s no better than Hillary” is ridiculous. I haven’t seen Hillary staunchly supporting the WOT and Iraq war. I haven’t seen McCain pandering to NOW and the pro-abortion lobby. And bet your bottom dollar that Hillary will appoint a few more Ginsburgs to the USSC.

Fine, keep bitching now (that’s what primaries are for), but have some sense in the general election campaign.

As for Rush Limbaugh, he makes the best case that can be made for opposing McCain in the general, but frankly its not very good. By suggesting that somehow Hillary “will be no worse” than McCain, and that “we may need a Hillary” to bring back conservatism, he’s really minimizing the importance of conservatism. Connservatism is important enough to me that I will always pick the MOST conservative candidate available, even if it is McCain in the general election. Conservatism is important enough to me that I do not want 4 or 8 years of a flaming liberal Hillary. Is Rush suggesting that the next 4 or 8 years are not important? Hell, they are to me.


12 posted on 01/29/2008 12:09:45 PM PST by dinoparty
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To: Antoninus
You lost me with the "bible-thumpers" comment.

Bible thumper is the respectful term for evangelicals. The less respectful terms are Jesus freak, Rapturist, etc.

The idea that Romney advanced the liberal cause in Mass is wrong. The Mass legislature is 85% Democrat - a veto-proof majority by a country mile. Romney slowed them down, watering down their socialist universal health plan by mandating that private insurers be involved. He also managed to appoint some Republican judges in that den of iniquity.

13 posted on 01/29/2008 12:11:30 PM PST by Zhang Fei
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To: Brilliant

I guess people could write in a name. I bet this year both Democrats and Republicans will make this a historic election with the most write in’s setting a record for Guiness.


14 posted on 01/29/2008 12:11:37 PM PST by rovenstinez
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To: Sideshow Bob

Romney or McCain...either way we get AMNESTY

McCain for the ploiticical advantage...and Romney for the Big Business/slave wages, pathway to citizenship, we cant send them all back...

Welcome to Amerivilla


15 posted on 01/29/2008 12:12:06 PM PST by Tennessee Nana
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To: Sideshow Bob; pissant

Looks like another Duncan Hunter endorsement to me. Draft Duncan Hunter, Take II!


16 posted on 01/29/2008 12:12:37 PM PST by Rockitz (This isn't rocket science- Follow the money and you'll find the truth.)
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To: Sideshow Bob

Very good commentary. Right on the money.


17 posted on 01/29/2008 12:13:16 PM PST by Finny (FOX News: "We report only what we like. You decide based on what we decide.")
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To: rovenstinez

I want to vote for someone who at least has a theoretical chance. If it’s McCain, and I can’t support his VP, then I will be hoping that Paul goes third party. I think I could lower myself to vote for him, if the alternative were McCain.


18 posted on 01/29/2008 12:14:05 PM PST by Brilliant
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To: NavVet
I think Dobson’s ill conceived attack on Thompson played a major part in ensuring that no conservative will occupy the White House in 09.

It had a part in it, that is for certain, but so did many "establishment" Republicans who didnt like the fact that Fred wouldnt kiss their fat rear. At that point, they decided to fold behind someone who would - Romney.

19 posted on 01/29/2008 12:14:14 PM PST by BoBToMatoE
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To: Sideshow Bob

I don’t think it’s Conservatism that is dying. It is the Republican Party.

I don’t know anyone who is happy with the horrible choices we are left with for this election.

The Republicans will lose this election(just like they lost last year), and hopefully, they’ll be smart enough to return to the Reagan roots that brought them (us) to power.


20 posted on 01/29/2008 12:15:22 PM PST by Tex Pete
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To: Antoninus
You lost me with the "bible-thumpers" comment. I'd expect that kind of junk out of the KosKidz, but not from a conservative who knows that Evangelicals are our political allies and alienating them is a sure way to lose a national election.

***

Sorry, certain evangelicals were either stupid or egotistical in believing that Huckabee's faith trumped all of the negatives of his candidacy.

If we don't recognize our mistakes and learn from them, we'll only repeat them.

21 posted on 01/29/2008 12:15:30 PM PST by Sideshow Bob
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To: NavVet

You blame Dobson for Fred’s loss, but the fact is, Fred ran a lousy campaign and thumbed his nose at the evangelicals.

The Republican establishment loaded the candidate field with too many social liberals for any of the true social conservatives to get traction early in the primaries.

And now we have but one social conservative left.

As for me, I prefer Huckabee, but will take anybody over Romney. And that’s includes ‘rats if need be.


22 posted on 01/29/2008 12:15:51 PM PST by DannyTN
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To: Sideshow Bob
The only positive to come out of 1992 was that it helped create an opening for an obscure, but brilliant Congressman from Georgia to lead conservatives to regain control of the Republican Party. Newt Gingrich reformed the three-legged conservative coalition and took an upstart innovative approach of leading the GOP from the House with a 1994 national congressional campaign platform – the Contract with America.

Mistake #6 wasn't a mistake after all. If Mistake #3 had been reelected, that would've truly made Mistake #6. Had Americans made the mistake of reelecting Bush Sr. he would've continued to destroy the Republican party as Noonan says his son has.

So, if you want to be intellectually honest, if you must blame Perot voters for Clinton's win, then you must give Perot voters credit for the Republican win in '94 because that certainly wouldn't have happened with Bush Sr meandering through another four years.

23 posted on 01/29/2008 12:16:14 PM PST by Nephi ( $100m ante is a symptom of the old media... the Ron Paul Revolution is the new media's choice.)
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To: Sideshow Bob

bump for later reading.


24 posted on 01/29/2008 12:16:34 PM PST by MissouriConservative (We accommodate other cultures at the expense of ours.)
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To: Sideshow Bob

It’s Chuck Norris’s fault!


25 posted on 01/29/2008 12:17:55 PM PST by Squidpup ("Fight the Good Fight")
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To: dinoparty

Actualy, Rush, like me is suggesting that the only thing that will bring Conservatives back together is for someone like Hillary to be in office for very long.

I’ve said it a couple of times, to unite Conservatives will take a Hillary (or even Obama) in office.

I say this because right now the media has pushed out the most Conservative of the candidates, by pushing polls down everyone’s throats, and what’s worse, people who are intelligent and KNOW BETTER have been getting in these very forums and whining about “the most electable” instead of actually standing up, supporting and HELPING people like Hunter and Thompson.

It’s too bad we’re going to see at least four years of a Democrat in office next... because of some of those whiny babies who tried to do the “pragmatic” rather than stand on principles.


26 posted on 01/29/2008 12:18:21 PM PST by Rick.Donaldson (http://www.transasianaxis.com - Visit for lastest on DPRK/Russia/China/Etc --Fred Thompson for Prez.)
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To: Sideshow Bob
...Dr. James Dobson and other egotistical evangelicals

Credibility-flush. Writer has personal issues. I stop reading.

27 posted on 01/29/2008 12:18:32 PM PST by BibChr ("...behold, they have rejected the word of the LORD, so what wisdom is in them?" [Jer. 8:9])
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To: Zhang Fei
Bible thumper is the respectful term for evangelicals. The less respectful terms are Jesus freak, Rapturist, etc.

Right. Just like "Mackerel Snapper" is a respectful term for Catholics.
28 posted on 01/29/2008 12:22:29 PM PST by Antoninus (All you Mittens out there are going to feel like Flippers come November...)
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To: Huck

Hogwash....


29 posted on 01/29/2008 12:22:36 PM PST by Getsmart64
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To: Sideshow Bob
However, even in a worse case scenario, the Republican Party will probably stagger along for several years much like the last decade of the Whigs.

Ouch. I have seen that analogy made more than once lately.

30 posted on 01/29/2008 12:22:56 PM PST by King of Florida (A little government and a little luck are necessary in life, but only a fool trusts either of them.)
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To: BoBToMatoE
It had a part in it, that is for certain, but so did many "establishment" Republicans who didnt like the fact that Fred wouldnt kiss their fat rear. At that point, they decided to fold behind someone who would - Romney.

***

Agreed. But conservatives knew the establishment GOP preferred Romney or Giuliani prior to Fred's entry in the race. Dobson's annointing of Huckabee was the final blow that eliminated Thompson's (and even Hunter's) chance at the nomination.

31 posted on 01/29/2008 12:24:09 PM PST by Sideshow Bob
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To: DannyTN
As for me, I prefer Huckabee, but will take anybody over Romney. And that’s includes ‘rats if need be.

I'm almost in the same boat, but will never vote for a Democrat. I'd find the 3rd party guy that best approached my own principles and vote for him.
32 posted on 01/29/2008 12:24:42 PM PST by Antoninus (All you Mittens out there are going to feel like Flippers come November...)
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To: Zhang Fei
Bible thumper is the respectful term for evangelicals.

Uh, you might want to read the definitions for "bible thumper" in the Urban Dictionary. "Respectful" is not the first term that comes to mind to describe them . . . .

33 posted on 01/29/2008 12:27:41 PM PST by King of Florida (A little government and a little luck are necessary in life, but only a fool trusts either of them.)
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To: Rick.Donaldson

I think that Rush may be the most afraid of the dilemma that will face him as host if McCain is elected. Will he continue to attack McCain and run the risk of having liberals side with him, or will he grudgingly accept McCain and essentially ignore him in his criticism of liberals. His show could suffer.


34 posted on 01/29/2008 12:28:38 PM PST by dinoparty
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To: Antoninus; All

President: ANYONE BUT JOHN McCAIN or Hillary Clinton!!!!

The John McCain Truth Files

Capitol Hill staffers rate their bosses. McCain got no glory from those who work with him.
“Every election year we survey top aides on both sides of the aisle—administrative assistants, press secretaries, legislative directors, and chiefs of committee staffs—to get their up-close and personal, and anonymous, views. While there may be lots of partisan backbiting among congress members, their staffers seem far more capable of putting politics aside and making honest judgments. It wasn’t unusual for aides in both parties to name one of their own as “spineless” or give the “workhorse” nod to someone across the aisle. “

Worst Follower 2. John McCain (R-Ariz.)

Show Horse 2. John McCain (R-Ariz.)

Hottest Temper 2. John McCain (R-Ariz.) , known to snap at staff when the cameras are off
http://www.washingtonian.com/articles/mediapolitics/1666.html

McCain’s the candidate of amnesty for illegal aliens.
McCain supports embryonic stem-cell research.
McCain has said “I would not support repeal of Roe vs. Wade”.
McCain opposed the Bush tax cuts, and refuses to sign the “No New Taxes” pledge.
McCain supports legislation that would increase taxes on energy.
McCain was the ring-leader of the Senate “Gang of 14”, which kept the then Senate Republican leadership from ending the ability of Democrats to filibuster Bush’s judicial nominees.
McCain supports legislation to grant due-process rights to terrorists.
McCain sponsored the inept legislation which restricts free-speech rights of those involved
in the political process, (the McCain/Feingold bill)
McCain called evangelical-conservatives an “evil influence” on the Republican Party.
McCain - member of the Keating 5 that caused a bipartisan scandal during the S&L meltdown.
McCain had a recall election ran against him by the conservatives in Arizona.
McCain blocked the investigation into whether Viet Nam and the Soviets were still holding over 600 of our missing POWs in 1990.
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Please note that our ratings do NOT amount to endorsements. Nor do they convey anything about the character, the strength or any other positions about the candidates. http://www.betterimmigration.com/candidates/2006/prez2008.html
THE McCAIN WAY - ATTACK REPUBLICANS

.Defending His Amnesty Bill, “Presidential hopeful John McCain - who has been dogged for years by questions about his volcanic temper - erupted in an angry, profanity-laced tirade at a fellow Republican senator, sources told The Post yesterday. In a heated dispute over immigration-law overhaul, McCain screamed, ‘F— you!’ at Texas Sen. John Cornyn, who had been raising concerns about the legislation. ‘This is chickens—stuff,’ McCain snapped at Cornyn, according to several people in the room off the Senate floor Thursday. ‘You’ve always been against this bill, and you’re just trying to derail it.’” (Charles Hurt, “Raising McCain,” New York Post, 5/19/07)

In 2000, Sen. McCain Ran An Attack Ad Comparing Then-Gov. George W. Bush To Bill Clinton. SEN. MCCAIN: “I guess it was bound to happen. Governor Bush’s campaign is getting desperate, with a negative ad about me. The fact is, I’ll use the surplus money to fix Social Security, cut your taxes and pay down the debt. Governor Bush uses all of the surplus for tax cuts, with not one new penny for Social Security or the debt. His ad twists the truth like Clinton. We’re all pretty tired of that. As president, I’ll be conservative and always tell you the truth. No matter what.” (McCain 2000, Campaign Ad, 2/9/00; www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHoXkCprdL4)

Sen. McCain Repeatedly Called Sen. Pete Domenici (R-NM) nams. “Why can’t McCain win the votes of his own colleagues? To explain, a Republican senator tells this story: at a GOP meeting last fall, McCain erupted out of the blue at the respected Budget Committee chairman, Pete Domenici, saying, ‘Only an a–hole would put together a budget like this.’ Offended, Domenici stood up and gave a dignified, restrained speech about how in all his years in the Senate, through many heated debates, no one had ever called him that. Another senator might have taken the moment to check his temper. But McCain went on: ‘I wouldn’t call you an a–hole unless you really were an a–hole.’ The Republican senator witnessing the scene had considered supporting McCain for president, but changed his mind. ‘I decided,’ the senator told Newsweek, ‘I didn’t want this guy anywhere near a trigger.’” (Evan Thomas, et al., “Senator Hothead,” Newsweek, 2/21/00)

Sen. McCain Had A Heated Exchange With Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA) And Called Him A “F*cking Jerk.” “Senators are not used to having their intelligence or integrity challenged by another senator. ‘Are you calling me stupid?’ Sen. Chuck Grassley once inquired during a debate with McCain over the fate of the Vietnam MIAs, according to a source who was present. ‘No,’ replied McCain, ‘I’m calling you a f—ing jerk!” (Evan Thomas, et al., “Senator Hothead,” Newsweek, 2/21/00)

In 1995, Sen. McCain Had A “Scuffle” With 92-Year-Old Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-SC) On The Senate Floor. “In January 1995, McCain was midway through an opening statement at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing when chairman Strom Thurmond asked, ‘Is the senator about through?’ McCain glared at Thurmond, thanked him for his ‘courtesy’ (translation: buzz off), and continued on. McCain later confronted Thurmond on the Senate floor. A scuffle ensued, and the two didn’t part friends.” (Harry Jaffe, “Senator Hothead,” The Washingtonian, 2/97)

Sen. McCain Attacked Christian Leaders And Republicans In A Blistering Speech During The 2000 Campaign. MCCAIN: “Unfortunately, Governor Bush is a Pat Robertson Republican who will lose to Al Gore. … The political tactics of division and slander are not our values… They are corrupting influences on religion and politics, and those who practice them in the name of religion or in the name of the Republican Party or in the name of America shame our faith, our party and our country. 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.” (Sen. John McCain, Remarks, Virginia Beach, VA, 2/28/00)

Celebrating His First Senate Election In 1986, Sen. McCain Screamed At And Harassed A Young Volunteer. “It was election night 1986, John McCain had just been elected to the U.S. Senate for the first time. Even so, he was not in a good mood. McCain was yelling at the top of his lungs and poking the chest of a young volunteer who had set up a lectern that was too tall for the 5-foot-9 politician to be seen to advantage, according to a witness to the outburst. ‘Here this poor guy is thinking he has done a good job, and he gets a new butt ripped because McCain didn’t look good on television,’ Jon Hinz told a reporter Thursday. At the time, Hinz was executive director of the Arizona Republican Party. … ‘There were an awful lot of people in the room,’ Hinz recalled. ‘You’d have to stick cotton in your ears not to hear it. He (McCain) was screaming at him, and he was red in the face.’” (Kris Mayes and Charles Kelly, “Stories Surface On Senator’s Demeanor,” The Arizona Republic, 11/5/99)

Sen. McCain “Publicly Abused” Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL). “[McCain] noted his propensity for passion but insisted that he doesn’t ‘insult anybody or fly off the handle or anything like that.’ This is, quite simply, hogwash. McCain often insults people and flies off the handle…. There have been the many times McCain has called reporters ‘liars’ and ‘idiots’ when they have had the audacity to ask him unpleasant, but pertinent, questions. ” (Editorial, “There’s Something About McCain,” The Austin American-Statesman, 1/24/07) /?p=161

Is it any wonder McCain has few endorsements from his Congressional piers? http://thehill.com/endorsements-2008.html


35 posted on 01/29/2008 12:29:24 PM PST by AuntB (" DON'T LET THE PRESS PICK YOUR CANDIDATE!" Mrs. Duncan Hunter 1/5/08)
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To: Sideshow Bob

Best post I have read on F.R. since I registered.

This is the straw that broke the conservative movement:

“Unfortunately, Dr. James Dobson and a few evangelical leaders decided to cut off their nose to spite their face (Mistake #35). You see, Fred’s not a Bible thumper. Neither was Ronald Reagan. And like Reagan, Fred is a bona fide, all-around, federalist conservative. That wasn’t good enough for Dobson. And when Fred refused to kiss Dobson’s ring of evangelical purity, Dobson went shopping for a candidate he thought he could control.”

Dobson is a complete ass -— THAT was THE moment when the tide turned against Thompson.


36 posted on 01/29/2008 12:29:58 PM PST by MeanWestTexan (At kaki metumtam, Rudy McRomnabee)
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To: Sideshow Bob

Newt made a lot of mistakes (shutting down the govt and threatening to default was major no no)

Some of the conservative “mistakes” are actually consequences (3, 8, 14, 25 for example). Conservatives didn’t actually vote for clinton. well, if they did, we’re in really big trouble.

Fred made many mistakes too. He waited too long, hired Spence Abraham to be campaign manager, appeared to contradict the GOP pro-life platform and just gave the general impression he wasn’t really into it. And he justified that impression by dropping out. We were excited when he started to go after Michael Moore on his blog but he “fell asleep” until the SC debate and by then it was too late.


37 posted on 01/29/2008 12:30:07 PM PST by ari-freedom (Hillary wants to be just like Gov. Granholm except more evil.)
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To: Sideshow Bob

You left out Buchanan. He blew the Pubbies up in 1992 before Perot ever got a chance. With his sour face and angry diatribes, he became the poster boy for liberal fundraising. Bush I wasn’t perfect, but Buchanan did serious damage to the Republicans before leaving and then totally destroyed Perot’s Reform party, which actually had some momentum going to be a viable third party before Buchanan got there.


38 posted on 01/29/2008 12:30:37 PM PST by Richard Kimball
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To: Brilliant
The big, big mistake was people overlooking Bush's lack of ideological committment to conservatism. He might not even know what conservatism and smaller governemtn means. Whenever the issue was brought up 8 years ago, there was a resounding slam from the bush-bots who claimed that he was just trying to soften his conservatism during the election. That he was just toning down the rhetoric during the election so the main stream media wouldn't crucify him.

Well, what we got was a man who doesn't why his positions on things like open borders, campaign finance reform, No Child Left Behind Act, Prescription Drug Benifits - aren't conservative.

And unfortunately, the Commander and Chief is the one who embodies things like party ideology to the American public. He defines what it means to be a "Republican" to most Americans. And basically that means we have a party that stands for nothing because Bush stands for nothing.

39 posted on 01/29/2008 12:30:51 PM PST by PFC
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To: Sideshow Bob

My one slight disagreement is that I can no longer agree to hold my noise and vote for someone as lothesome as Romney.

I will write in Fred Thompson.

Losing power and elections is all the RNC can understand, so they need to know why they lost.


40 posted on 01/29/2008 12:31:52 PM PST by MeanWestTexan (At kaki metumtam, Rudy McRomnabee)
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To: DannyTN

As for me, I prefer Huckabee, but will take anybody over Romney. And that’s includes ‘rats if need be.
-

after all both Huck and dems are for big government and against freedom


41 posted on 01/29/2008 12:32:46 PM PST by ari-freedom (Hillary wants to be just like Gov. Granholm except more evil.)
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To: NavVet

I agreee with you. Dobson’s attack on Thompson was disasterous.


42 posted on 01/29/2008 12:33:35 PM PST by Bryan24 (When in doubt, move to the right..........)
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To: Antoninus

Well I thought about going 3rd party. But if Romney gets the nod, I’ll only vote 3rd party if I’m relatively certain Romney will lose anyway.


43 posted on 01/29/2008 12:34:50 PM PST by DannyTN
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To: Richard Kimball

it’s people like Buchanan and Huckabee that excite people into writing big checks for Planned Parenthood and NARAL


44 posted on 01/29/2008 12:35:24 PM PST by ari-freedom (Hillary wants to be just like Gov. Granholm except more evil.)
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To: Huck

See Mistake #40


45 posted on 01/29/2008 12:37:16 PM PST by TexanByBirth (No I don't like you or your RINO candidate!)
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To: BibChr
...Dr. James Dobson and other egotistical evangelicals

Credibility-flush. Writer has personal issues. I stop reading.

***

No, Reader has personal issues and stopped thinking.

Believe it or not, evangelicals are not infallible and can fall to the sin of egotism. Dobson may be a strong man of faith and a learned Biblical scholar, but he knows little of the rough & tumble world of partisan politics and made a bad choice.

46 posted on 01/29/2008 12:37:18 PM PST by Sideshow Bob
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To: ari-freedom

Oh and Romney’s not? Huck’s tax increases were mostly driven by a court order. Club for Growth gave Romney a 50 and Hucabee a 49. Not a lot of difference.

At least Huckabee is a social conservative. Giulani would be a lot better than Romney, if you have to vote for a social liberal.


47 posted on 01/29/2008 12:38:24 PM PST by DannyTN
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To: hugorand

That is what I have said. After 4 years disaster, country would be ready for someone really decent


48 posted on 01/29/2008 12:39:38 PM PST by graceland
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To: Antoninus
If you want the National GOP of the future to resemble the Massachusetts GOP of today, vote for Mitt.

Indeed. Many nation-wide conservatives should have learned the lesson Schwartzneggar taught Californians with S.B. 777. Unfortunately, many didn't.

49 posted on 01/29/2008 12:40:19 PM PST by scripter ("You don't have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body." - C.S. Lewis)
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To: Rick.Donaldson

It took a Carter to bring us Reagan.


50 posted on 01/29/2008 12:41:45 PM PST by ejonesie22 (Haley Barbour 2012, Because he has experience in Disaster Recovery.)
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