Can John McCain win with a 1988-style Republican presidential campaign? In terms of issues, biography, and appeal to swing voters, he is probably better suited to do so than George H.W. Bush. Barack Obama has recently been coming down from the heavens to look more like Michael Dukakis, and possibly someone to Dukakis’s left. Yet I think David Frum is persuasive in arguing that 2008 is no 1988 (though I might have dwelled longer on why it is that “Americans have lost confidence in Republican foreign policy leadership”). And if a 1988-style campaign does succeed without dealing with some of these fundamental challenges, Republicans will just be kicking the can down the curb for another four years.
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