Wednesday, July 9, 2008

McCain is like Barry ... Goldwater, that is

Meet the New Barry Goldwater says Quinn Hillyer: "Many conservatives realistic enough to know there will never be "another Reagan" nevertheless wish at least for another Barry Goldwater. They don't realize that we already have one. His name is John McCain."

It's a good comparison. Goldwater was McCain's Arizona Senate predecessor, and they share some of the same strengths, weaknesses, and characteristics (including pugnaciously blunt-speaking and fierce streak of independent-mindedness).

Hillyer points out several areas where McCain is as good as the best of conservatives, as was Goldwater:

Consider the fight against outrageous government spending. No major party nominee since Goldwater, Reagan included, has been as consistently and bravely dedicated to fiscal discipline as has McCain. Last week he both made a superb campaign speech and penned a hard-hitting column for the Chicago Tribune blasting the bloated, irresponsible Farm Bill for which 80 percent of his colleagues were cravenly voting. Likewise, McCain's longstanding record of opposing purely local pork barrel projects -- "earmarks" -- is well known, and utterly unmatched. McCain also consistently has opposed expansion of entitlement programs, which of course are the biggest long-term fiscal problems facing this nation. Indeed, entitlements collectively represent an absolutely deadly time bomb, and McCain might be the only man in American politics today with the will power, the moral standing, and the sheer cussedness needed to defuse it.

Similarly, McCain has proposed the most free-market-oriented health care reforms imaginable from a national party nominee during a contentious campaign. And on taxes, the fact remains that McCain has never, not once, supported an income-tax rate hike. He calls for corporate tax deductions and seems genuinely committed to fighting, really fighting, to make most of President Bush's tax cuts permanent.

Spending, taxes, the war on terror, life (and in right-to-life), and judges. They consitute five core areas when John McCain is good for conservatives and Barack Obama is starkly farther to the left (in some areas dangerously extreme leftwing).

He concludes: "John McCain is not a conservative champion. But he deeply believes, and strongly champions, many conservative principles, many Goldwaterite principles. We certainly could do worse than to be stuck with him as our own, infuriating, headstrong, bullying, honor-obsessed, indefatigable, and sometimes downright inspirational SOB."

I agree.

1 comment:

Randy A. Samuelson said...

While all of this is probably true about what McCain stands for, he does not trump this up among Republican circles. He barely campaigns among Republicans or publicly speaks on our issues.

In public, McCain speaks more about reaching out to Democrats and courting liberal votes, like La Raza (, instead of talking to our own party about our own platform.

If McCain does not start acting like a Republican in the campaign, he will find that Republicans will stay home, like in 2006.

It is very hard to go out and campaign amoung Republicans for somebody who is not publicly courting his own party's voters and issues. That not only hurts his chances of winning, but destroys our down-ballot races locally.