Stuart Rothenberg’s “Why a McCain Win May Be Bad for GOP, Good for Democrats” has it wrong. (see here) Rothenberg’s lose, lose scenario for Republicans comes straight out of a liberal perspective from which he can only forecast dire inevitabilities for Conservatives but allow me to show what could happen if Sen. McCain were to win.
First, Rothenberg is correct there is a Civil War within the Republican Party, John McCain, Arnold Schwarzenegger RINOs vs. Ronald Reagan, Newt Gingrich Republicans. Democrats have been very successful in aligning themselves with the McCain Schwarzenegger oft times socially Liberal Republicans but Democrat leaders of the 110th Democrat controlled Congress have been often frustrated that their RINO allies have not given them the victories that they promised the American people in 2006.
Victories as ending the Iraq war and other disabling anti-Bush measures, what all of this suggests is Republicans may not be as bad off as many Liberals suppose.
Yet, Democrats have been successful on two fronts branding or negatively defining Republicans and Conservative ideas and triangulation which is stealing Conservative ideas, positions and arguments and presenting those ideas, positions and arguments as their own. Triangulation was how Bill Clinton managed to win against and stay one step ahead of his Republican rivals.
Eight years of bashing George Bush without the president or any Republican defending themselves or protecting their brand has created the huge negatives and low polling approval ratings that we presently see in the media today which affects all Republicans.
Republicans should take a page out of the Obama play book. Sen. Obama immediately started protecting his brand by putting up a website to defend himself against what he presents as unwarranted attacks against him and his supporters has demonstrated the first rule in publicity 101, “Protect your Brand.” President Bush should have done this, years ago.
The fact that Republicans didn’t protect themselves and the fact that they allowed President Bush to twist in the wind against all of the lies and mis characterizations against him, with that “Glad it’s him and not me” attitude, was patently wrong and now Republicans who are attempting to get reelected or elected are realizing that it was really about them all along, the whole Republican Party, not only George Bush but Republican unwillingness to fight for the president and themselves has attributed to even greater numbers of Democrats elected to the House and Senate because Republicans failed to protect their brand and the face of the Republican Party George Bush.
President Bush was merely the living persona which Liberals used to totally annihilate the other side, the Republicans, by proxy. The entire Republican Party was misbranded by scurrilous attacks on the Republican president and apparently Republicans were too stupid to know it although I warned of in 2007 when Democrats were threatening the impeachment of President Bush as the rest of the Republican Party stood idly by just watching.
Understand it isn’t actually about George W. Bush. It isn’t George W. that Democrats wish to impeach, censure or just run out of Washington on a rail, sure Democrats put in a lot of work to destroy his Presidency, but it would be the same thing if any other Republican candidate representing Conservative ideology would dare to lay claim to the most powerful elected office in the world.When Bush was being lied on the Republican Party was being lied on. When Bush was being called stupid the Republican Party was being called stupid, When Bush was being made radioactive the entire Republican Party was being made radioactive.
Democrats can’t stomach the thought of a Conservative leading this nation. So they’ve skewered President Bush for almost 8 years and so having the chance to impeach him and drive him out of office in shame would give Democrat haters orgasmic shivers of ecstasy which even sex couldn’t duplicate for the ardent Liberal Conservative hater.—Alaphiah
By attacking President Bush so effectively Democrats damaged all Republicans and in this case Republicans were too daft to realize that!
Secondly Democrats gained from their anti-Bush, anti-Republican campaign by winning the majority in both the House and the Congress how did they do it?
While Republicans were running away from George Bush and Conservativism Democrats where running Conservative Democrats in Conservative States and Districts against Republicans who were trying to act more like Liberal Democrats. Triangulation, taking the others positions or arguments as your own to negate your opponent’s strengths and appeal against you and It worked beautifully!
Now seeing the overall negativity that Democrats had created against the Republican brand and the losses in both the House and the Senate by Democrat Triangulation RINO Republicans saw it as their opportunity to establish themselves as the avant guard in Republican leadership and propped up John McCain to win the Republican nomination for the presidency and that worked too.
That said this is why Stuart Rothenberg’s assessment, that a McCain win is bad for Republicans is wrong.
John McCain has fought in the past to disassociate himself from the Conservative base of the Republican Party. Only now does he realize that he needs the backing of this very powerful coalition if he hopes to win in November. But McCain makes it easy for Conservatives to disassociate themselves from many of McCain less favorable positions.
What Rothenberg has interpreted as Conservatives rallying behind Sen. McCain in some loyal fashion to defeat Sen. Obama is not what Mr. Rothenberg thinks it is.
Conservatives are aware and understand all to well what a McCain Presidency would mean but too, Conservatives agree with Sen. Clinton’s assessment that Barack Obama is not ready to be President.
Therefore Conservatives reluctantly support John McCain and will hold President John McCain at arms length and anything that this one term President does will be chalked up as what was expected from a RINO and easily blamed on Democrats who if not for them voting for McCain in the early primaries he would not have received the Republican nomination and would not be President.
John McCain actually will give Conservatives the ability to denounce a President McCain’s Liberal social agenda while supporting McCain’s views on the war and Supreme Court nominations.
Conservatives will have the ability to say, “I told you so,” when McCain courts his Liberal allies. As well Conservatives will be able to utter, “I’m so glad it’s not Obama!” when McCain does the right thing concerning the war and the Supreme Court.
A McCain win contrary to Rothenberg’s assessment is actually a win, win for Conservatives. Conservatives get to blame McCain on the Democrats when appropriate and enjoy the benefit of some Conservative principles regarding the war and judges.
As for the conflict within the Republican Party if McCain should fail miserably at being President Conservatives would be more than happy to put up a true Conservative in 2012 with the knowledge that if Hillary Clinton could run with all of her baggage then certainly Newt Gingrich should not be afraid to man up and run on the principles that gave Conservatives victories in 1994.
Actually Conservatives should be looking ahead now and planning for the 2012 elections because the change that this country needs is the same change that European politics are experiencing. European politics have gotten more Conservative not less in recent elections.
The change that we need is oppose from a Liberal and Democrat controlled Congress, the change that America needs is change from wanna be proud Liberal Conservative Republicans, or Compassionate Conservative Republicans or from just plain RINOs.
The change that America needs will reverse recent judicial activism and overreaching, the change we need, will reverse big government and overspending, the change we need will stop al Qaeda and prevent future threats against America. The change we need will protect our boarders, language and culture.
All changes that come with true Conservatism not Liberalism.