Thursday, August 14, 2008

McCain Says He Would Pick A Pro-Choice VP As Long As He Is Anti-Gay


McCain and Obama both seem to be playing the same game of VP expectations with their parties' respective bases. Obama has held out a few examples of truly horrific reactionary Democrats from the far right of the party, Governor Tim Kaine of Virginia and Senator Evan Bayh of Indiana being two particularly horrible ones. After throwing those two out, who would complain about Hillary or even Biden? Well... plenty, but not as loudly. Plenty of fingers are still crossed that he picks Wes Clark but more and more people are thinking Hillary would be a good move.

Late yesterday one of the far right propaganda sheets printed an interview Stephen Hayes did with McCain on his wife's jet. "McCain said that he is open to choosing a pro-choice running mate and named former Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge as someone who merits serious consideration despite his support for abortion rights." Last week the religious right drew a line in the sand and said that McCain could not under any circumstances pick Ridge or Lieberman or anyone else with even moderately pro-choice leanings. McCain is far too cowardly to stand up to the religious right at this point and, despite his rhetoric he will never pick anyone who is less of an anti-choice fanatic than himself.

Defensively, McCain, who admits he wants Roe v Wade overturned, made the point that as long as the pro-choice Republican isn't moderate on anything else-- especially gays-- he could go for it.
"I think that the pro-life position is one of the important aspects or fundamentals of the Republican Party," McCain said. "And I also feel that--and I'm not trying to equivocate here--that Americans want us to work together. You know, Tom Ridge is one of the great leaders and he happens to be pro-choice. And I don't think that that would necessarily rule Tom Ridge out."

McCain's comments came in response to a question about comments he made to several reporters during the Republican primary season. During that exchange, McCain was asked whether New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg would make a good running mate. McCain offered strong words of praise for Bloomberg but said that Bloomberg's position on abortion--he is also pro-choice--would make it difficult to choose him as a vice presidential candidate.

In the interview this morning, McCain suggested that Ridge would be more palatable to social conservatives than Bloomberg.

"I think it's a fundamental tenet of our party to be pro-life but that does not mean we exclude people from our party that are pro-choice. We just have a--albeit strong--but just it's a disagreement. And I think Ridge is a great example of that. Far moreso than Bloomberg, because Bloomberg is pro-gay rights, pro, you know, a number of other issues."

Yesterday another of the far right GOP warlords, Tony Perkins, ran to the Moonie Times to reiterate that McCain better get any moderates out of his head or he would be toast.

Question: There has been a lot written about possible VP candidates for McCain that will be acceptable to the Christian value voters. Who are a few possibilities that you could see this coalition being comfortable with?

Answer: To date I have resisted the temptation to play the name game. Rather, I have focused on the qualities we would like to see in John McCain’s running mate. His running mate needs to be strong where he is weak, someone who is not reluctant to talk about the issues that remain top priority for most social conservatives; the sanctity of human life, the preservation of traditional marriage and the strengthening of the family. Not only must this person be able to communicate a concern and a commitment for these issues, they have to have a record of delivering on these and other issues.

... There is no question in my mind that Mike Huckabee would raise the intensity level of support for John McCain, something the Senator really needs. I do have some policy differences with Mike, but we share a common view on most, if not all, of the social policy issues. I think he would compliment John McCain and I would be supportive of him as John McCain's running mate.

My guess is that Rove and Bush have long ago told McCain that Romney is his running mate and that he should just make the best of it. Throwing around names like Tom Ridge will, like Obama's ploy with Bayh, make it less likely that the base will go ape-shit when they realize they've got to pull the lever for someone who belongs to what they consider a Satanic cult.

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At 9:52 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Further infuriating the already-seething Republican right-wing base, John McCain is has been dropping the name of Tom Ridge as his vice presidential running mate. Tom Ridge? The abortion-rights supporting former ex-governor of reliably Democratic and blue collar Pennsylvania?
Let's get a rundown on the guy who might inadvertently tip the scales for Barack Obama:

At 10:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

He's just trying to justify his VP pick (Lieberman), who fits that model.

At 11:34 AM, Blogger Jennifer Matarese said...

Tom Ridge? The abortion-rights supporting former ex-governor of reliably Democratic and blue collar Pennsylvania?

I'm from Pennsylvania, and it's not exactly an odd situation. I once read a line in one of those "You know you're from PA .." quizzes that said, "You elect pro-choice Republicans and pro-life Democrats to be governor." I didn't think about it until I read that but, yeah ... yeah, we're guilty as charged.


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