Thursday, March 06, 2008

Primary Thoughts

Support Hillary!?

I was asked why I would consider the support of Hillary!, if she is the Democrat nominee, over the Republican, Senator John Sidney McCain, III.

The question was posed by someone who suggested that, since (typically) Democrat giveaways (read Great Society-style entitlements) become so ingrained in the fabric of daily life they simply can not be eradicated.

We have spent trillions of dollars on eliminating poverty, with little or no impact on the broader problem.

The United States spends billions on a failing education system; and, food stamps are abused (as they are promoted in advertisements on the radio). Social Security is a morass; and, Medicare/Medicaid are eating up an ever-larger percentage of America's GDP.

President Reagan tried to unwind many of these programmes; and, in eight years, he was powerless to bring sanity to Washington, DC. Indeed, where else but Washington could a five (5%) percent increase in spending be called a cut (when seven (7%) percent would be the norm).

So, I have contemplated joining the likes of Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter, who have vowed (with, perhaps, tongues in cheek) to support Hillary!

Here is my rationale:

While I respect and admire Senator McCain for using the rules of the Republican Party to his advantage (when Rudy demonstrated that he wasn't salable to the GOP as a whole), I realise his limitations.

Face it, the Winner-Take-All set up worked for the moderate (or should I say, "maverick") McCain.

However, I have three problems with the Arizona Senator (and one of them is not the fact that he was born in The Canal Zone):

1) He has been running--hard--for the Republican nomination since he was knocked out of the 2000 Presidential race. How else to explain the "Gang of Fourteen" nonsense (which was wholly unnecessary, since the so-called Nuclear (Nucular?) Option would have gotten President Bush's nominees for the Federal Bench to the floor of the Senate. And, they would, most assuredly, been confirmed with the Senate acting in its role of providing advice and consent, without las
ting damage to the GOP).

2) He has consistently run to the center. This has alienated those of us on the right. Regardless of what you might think, or say, Nixon's adage of "running to the right in the primaries, to the center in the general election" remains true. I am afraid that the moderates (read independents and Blue Dog Democrats) will vote for the Democrat, when given a choice between a Democrat and a Democrat. I am more afraid that the evangelicals and way-right Republicans will sit out the general. Face it, conservatives vote in greater numbers--when they are engaged--than do liberals.

3) He is very conciliatory toward the Democrats. While I know that this might pay off in the general, I am afraid that his sound bites about Hillary! might just find their way into ads for the Democrat nominee (if it is Hillary!). Then, there is the whole Keating Five debacle (which will come back to haunt him), the unconstitutional McCain-Feingold, and a host of other legislative mis-steps.

As someone noted, how will he feel when one of his SCOTUS nominees is asked about McCain-Feingold, and its dubious constitutionality. Trust me, one more conservative justice (in the mold of Scalia/Roberts/Thomas) and McCain-Feingold is toast.

That having been said, Coulter and Limbaugh have benefited the GOP by their words of support for Hillary! It is helping foment rebellion in the DNC, and is forcing the Democrats to raise (and spend) a shit-ton of money in order to get through what was supposed to be a quick and easy primary season.

So, The Lifeguard remains on the stand, watching, waiting.

And, as the Democrats discuss what is going to happen to the unseated delegates from Florida and Michigan, things are getting interesting.

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