Saturday, July 05, 2008



Eight weeks from now Republican Party officials will convene in the city where Senator Larry Craig reinforced the image that the party stands for hypocrisy and sex in dark, dirty places. But Senator Craig (R-ID) isn't the only high profile Republican who the McCain camp would like to see skip the Republican National Convention. "Convention planners, the White House and the McCain campaign are wrestling with how to choreograph a proper send-off for Mr. Bush-- sure, his poll numbers are in the tank, but he is still the party leader and president of the United States-- while hustling him out the door in time for Mr. McCain to look like his own man."

Egyptian-born John McCain refuses to be photographed-- or even seen-- with Bush. But, as much as the nation and the world loathes Bush and everything he stands for, he is a- still popular with the crazy extremists who make up the Republican base; b- still able to raise a great deal of money for Republicans; and c- delusional enough to think a steady 4 year slide into ignominy is about to turn around... even as the economy sinks into Depression as his catastrophic policies take hold.
This year, of course, Mr. McCain is trying to escape from Mr. Bush’s shadow. Most Republicans say Mr. Bush should play whatever role Mr. McCain wants him to. Some, like Representative Dana Rohrabacher of California, simply wish Mr. Bush would keep out of it, though few would say so openly.

“I don’t think there are a lot of people who want to see him at the convention,” said Mr. Rohrabacher, who is especially irked with Mr. Bush for his stance on immigration. He said the president “should stay home from the Republican convention, and everybody would be better off.”

But others, like Rob Portman, a former congressman and budget director for Mr. Bush, say Mr. McCain would be unwise to put too much distance between himself and the sitting president. “The president’s approval rating among Republicans’ base voters who are needed for a successful McCain campaign is relatively high,” Mr. Portman said.

That is the crux of the Republicans’ 2008 convention quandary. If the imagery coming out of St. Paul looks like a McCain-Bush hug fest, the Arizona senator will turn off voters who are through with Mr. Bush and want to move past him. If the imagery looks like Mr. McCain is trying to file for some kind of Republican divorce, it will turn off party conservatives who are already skeptical of Mr. McCain.

So Republicans may just have to grit their teeth.

Yes, we all will. But what about Larry Craig? Will he show up? Will he pose for pictures in front of the stall where he was arrested for propositioning a handsome young police officer? In fact, will he pose for pictures with the handsome young police officer and donate the desperately needed money to the McCain campaign? And what about Cheney? Does McCain want him skulking around too?

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At 5:05 PM, Blogger Lee said...

Hey, I don't mean to nit-pick, but McCain was born in Panama, not Egypt.


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