Quin, this story came out back in March, we debated it then, and it's only becoming a story again because Drudge--who's known for his pro-Romney sympathies--decided to link to it. For people that are suspicious of McCain to begin with, it will reinforce their suspicions. Others will dismiss it as DC gossip. Since I have no insider information, there's nothing really more for me to say.
On Iraq, as I said, I think McCain went overboard with his comments, but there is no doubt that Romney wanted to have wiggle room on Iraq last year. That's why we were talking about how McCain was going to lose anti-war independents in New Hampshire. As for why McCain didn't attack Brownback or Huckabee on the surge, clearly, he went after Romney because Romney was his chief rival. I mean, it's like saying why didn't Romney go after Duncan Hunter for being protectionist on trade.
Look, I feel like you've turned me into a full-time defender of McCain here just because I feel the need to add some sense of balance to the blog. There are plenty of legitimate gripes to have with McCain, but what frustrates me is the hatred for McCain is so intense that many conservatives are trying to argue that we should all rally around Romney, overlooking his many deviations from conservatism--not just in the past, but now.
Right now, Romney is defending government mandated health insurance as a conservative position. Right now, Romney is supporting a $20 billion bailout for the auto industry. Right now, Romney is touting the basic idea that government infastructure projects are a way to create jobs--only objecting on the basis of the fact that they don't offer short-term stimulus. Right now, Romney is attacking McCain for voting against "the AARP-backed Medicare prescription drug program" --a multi-trillion dollar piece of legislation that conservatives have been complaining about for years.
That's just in the last few weeks--not in a 1994 Senate race or 2002 race for governor. Had McCain taken any one of the positions mentioned above, conservatives would be frothing at the mouth in rage, citing it as further evidence of his liberal, RINO tendencies. Yet because of the animosity they have toward McCain, conservatives are being blinded as to Romney's severe faults as a conservative.
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