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McCain in '04?

I had an interesting phone conversation with my Command Post co-conspirator, Alan. It went something like this. I'm not really the vapid automaton Alan's reprint of the convo makes me out to be; it's just that you can't get a word in edgewise with him. Also, he is the most persuasive speaker I have ever encountered. Do NOT get into an argument with him. You will always lose. Anyhow, this is the result of the conversation we had:
If the presidential election were held today, for whom would you vote?
George Bush
John Kerry
John McCain
Ralph Nader
Free polls from Pollhost.com
Vote here or at TCP, and join the discussion there. Alan is also encouraging other bloggers who find this subject as interesting as we do to post the poll on their own site - he includes the code.


This makes me wonder why Bush isn't courting McCain for VP instead of Kerry. Personally I'd rather see Bush drop Cheney for Rice, but that would open the way for Dems to put Hillary as VP (you know, in case hell froze over and she considered it).

It wouldn't take Hell to freeze over for Hilary to consider the job. She knows that nothing serves her political interests better than some time. Plus, she's working on her resume.

She'd say yes to an offer, but Kerry isn't asking (or is that the Hell freezing over part?) He'll go with a relative outsider like Richardson or a more-conservative Southern or Midwestern Democrat.

As for why Bush doesn't dump Cheney, I think it all comes down to family ties and personal loyalty. This is a case where Bush could do better politically with a different Veep, but he doesn't want to open that can of worms right now: loyalty, once it's spoilt, makes a big stench.

McCain would make a lousy VP for almost anybody. He's too opinionated and outspoken by nature, and would have a very hard time being a "team player"--and while people may snicker at that, if you're going to be a member of an administration, most especially a VP, that's really what you need to do. You can't have an administration constantly at war with itself.

Just imagine if Michele and Alan were constantly at war with each other over how to run The Command Post. Not just now and then, but on major, fundamental issues that they made public. How long before the whole thing blew apart?

A healthy administration needs people who aren't afraid to voice their opinions and express disagreements, but who also know how to, when push comes to shove, say "Yes, sir," salute, and to as ordered--or resign.

It would take someone McCain had massive respect for as President. I don't mean "likes" or "thinks is okay" or "thinks is better than the other choice," but someone he genuinely admired and respected at a very deep level. That's not Bush, and it's not Kerry either. It's probably not many people at all.

I begged McCain to run this year already, and his office turned me down. As a former Arizonan, I would LOVE to see McCain as President. I voted for him in 2000, and would have done so again in '04. I still haven't forgotten what Karl and W did to him in SC during the primaries.

Is this publicity spin, dishonesty, plain idiocy or the dirty trick of a Kerry political opponent? I find it sad that the best publicity Kerry can get is by flaunting a hypothetical (and impossible) connection with a popular Republican. Is there really not a single Democrat Kerry can unite with to generate popularity? Yikes. Is this an implicit recognition that the American people relate more to conservatism than not? And doesn't this just set up his eventual running mate as a let down, when compared to McCain?

Yeah, as a leftist, I must say that I really have no clue what this McCain garbage is all about.

Pick somebody from you own darned party, Kerry! Thereís a reason heís a Republican! While I have great respect for McCain, I donít think he stands with the Dems on most social issues. You need to have someone who generally agrees with you as your Veep. In addition to being a backup if you should fall, the Vice President serves as the Presidentís eyes and ears, allowing him to, by proxy, be more than one place at once. Itís no good having a Veep who you canít always trust to act in an approvable manner when youíre not around.

But really, I do like McCain. Personally, I would have loved to see him win in 2000. Now ... eh, I think his moment is past. If it were him versus Kerry, with no Bush in the picture, Iíd think real hard about it, since Kerry severely fails to impress me.

I think it's a matter of Kerry keeping McCain in the news. And that keeps South Carolina racist sleaze, Bush's Vietnam-era service, and other things on peoples' minds. Not a bad strategy.

Plus, it would win. That's not a bad thing, all thing's considered.

As for what that says about the Democrats (a point I admit to having no good response to, though I'm no big fan of the Kerry/McCain ticket either), that could easily be turned around: who's going to be the Republican nominee in 2008? Assuming McCain is too old and/or doesn't want it, why is Condi Rice the only name I've been hearing? Does anyone know anything about her outside of military and foreign policy issues? Or is she just the Republican Affirmative Action Dream Ticket (co-runner to be announced)? Can she campaign? Would she be able to win money and votes? I guess we'll find out, since there doesn't seem to be any other national figure in Republican land.


Condi Rice isn't the only name I've heard floated for 2008. Colorado Governor Bill Owens is a possibility:

As is Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist:

...and Jeb Bush:

It might be a crowded field in 2008. I don't know if any of these guys woud be a worthy successor to the current President, though.

Also, don't count out McCain for being too old. Many people thought the same thing about Reagan.

I like McCain, but not his positions. I think he's the kind of Republican I could deal with (ditto for Ahnuld). I would not, however, vote for him for president - if only for his position on abortion and other social issues.

In 2008, Hillary Clinton will not run, no matter how much Dick Morris pants over it. I think it will be Jeb! vs Frist, and the idea of the GOP picking a black woman as its candidate is laughable (not even the Dems would do that).

Hmmm, a Hillary-less '08. Which Dems do you suppose will fight each other for the nomination? Bill Richardson? Elliot Spitzer? Howard Dean?

I have long believed that Republicans are actually more likely to put a black person or a woman at the top of the ticket, for a host of reasons.

Condi won't be it though. She could be, but she'd have to start laying groundwork now that she shows no signs at all of doing. Or Bush would have to put her on the ticket this year, which he's extraordinarily unlikely to do mostly out of loyalty (a Bush family strength AND weakness) and due to the fact that he relies so heavily on Cheney for the backroom inside-Washington maneuvering.

People who would vote for Bush over McCain (if given the choice) are foolish. McCain has this mystical sway over dems (who claim they hate Bush's policies, yet somehow support McCain), and could largely unite the country while carrying out much of the same foreign policy and domestic agenda (with less spending) as Pres. Bush. He's also an honest man. It's a no-brainer.

could largely unite the country while carrying out much of the same foreign policy and domestic agenda

Excuse me? Are we talking about the same John McCain? The same McCain who backstabbed Bush regarding tax bills, spending bills, budgets, etc. over the last 3 years?

Let me remind the moderates here that conservatives are the base of the repub party. If McCain ever gets the nod, conservatives will stay home in droves, so the moderates had better outnumber conservatives, or a democrat president is likely. Just look at the poll on this site - Bush is leading by leaps and bounds.

The last time we had a liberal republican president, we got liberal judges on the Supreme Court who made Roe v. Wade the law of the land, among other dumb decisions. We got wage and price controls as well.

If McCain represents the new thinking in republican candidates, consider me an independent.

TV (Harry)

Bush. But I have to admit there's no one on your list that I really care for for President. Bush just happens to be the best out of those four.

McCain is exactly the sort of Republican that Democrats would love to vote for: he's a Democrat.

Bush would be well-advised to NOT put him on as VP. He's already having enough trouble keeping his party base from bolting (and for much the same reasons it bolted out from under his father) without adding to his ticket someone who opposes tax cuts and supports gun control.
It would also de-facto position McCain as the Republican nominee for '08, and that WOULD lead to a massive party collapse.

Condoleeza Rice would be an excellent choice. She's smart, tough, personable, and experienced. Four years of VP, and she'd be very well positioned for the '08 Presidential run. First, however, I'd look at the ranks of Republican governors. Historically, they have an edge in presidential races.

McCain is a Democrat. McCain is a Democract. You are feeling very sleepy. McCain is a Democrat. Just keep chanting in the face of all fact and reason. McCain is a Democrat. He "backstabbed" President Bush by not supporting the $500 billion deficit that President Bush promised not to run up during the campaign. McCain is a Democrat, he cares about fiscal responsibility. Just keep up the chant and the world will believe. McCain is out campaigning for President Bush ... but he's a Democrat!

But ... but! But I can point out a couple votes where he doesn't vote the party line.

Good for you ... say do you know who's tin foil hat this is? Oh, yeah, I should have guessed. Here you go.


Since I've obviously touched a nerve (or you forgot to take your meds), allow me to elaborate.

For one, I don't care so much about the deficit. With any decent economic growth, it'll go away. The last one even went away during a democratic presidential term. As long as a smaller amount of my taxes are being used to support things I don't agree with, I'm happier. I won't see that with McCain.

For two, he was the architect of one of the most idiotic bills in the history of Congress - McCain-Feingold. I know Bush signed it, but that was due to political pressure. McCain came up with it because he's dishonest and doesn't trust himself (google "Keating 5" for details). For that, he helped take my rights of political speech away for the 90 days before an election. All because he doesn't trust himself.

Fiscal responsibility? Please. If it fits McCain's hit list, maybe. But he likes taxes, likes spending, and has made a name for himself by bucking his own party. If it quacks like a democrat, etc.

Third, he's a publicity hound. As long as the press thinks he's great, I'll be extremely suspicious.

If you want to vote him in, Soli, go ahead. Write him in. McCain does not reflect my conservative views, nor does he reflect the view of most republicans in general. Therefore, I won't vote for him. There's no mantra there - just hard facts.

TV (Harry)

Go back to the 2000 eelction, Soli- if you can remember that far back. Care to guess why McCain got shellacked by Bush in the primaries? Time's up... it was because McCain is way out of tune with what Republicans want as a president. We knew it then and he hasn't changed.
Just to remind you (because I think you might need it)- the primaries came BEFORE McCain had an opportunity to vote against ANY of Bush's policies.

Care to guess why McCain got shellacked by Bush in the primaries? - DaveP

Oh yeah, coming in 2nd in a Republican presidential primary proves that he's not a Republican. I'm sure Alan Keyes, Steve Forbes, Gary Bauer and Orrin Hatch are all Naderites because they got so horribly beaten by a "Democrat" in a Republican primary.

For one, I don't care so much about the deficit. With any decent economic growth, it'll go away. - Inspector Callahan

Deficits don't just "go away." Here's a summary:

The biggest spending administration in decades. With Bush's budget plan for FY2004, real non-defense discretionary outlays will rise 18.0 percent in his first three years in office (FY2002-FY2004). That growth far exceeds the first three years of any recent presidential term, including Ronald Reagan's first term (-13.5 percent), Reagan's second term (-3.2 percent), George H. Bush's term (11.6 percent), Bill Clinton's first term (-0.7 percent), and Clinton's second term (8.2 percent). - Chris Edwards

The spend and spend more policies that McCain "backstabbed" have once again pushed us into long term structural deficit. You might recall that only a few years ago, we took back congress with a "balance the budget" rallying cry. How long ago, those days of yore.

As for McCain-Feingold ... you said it, Inspector; President Bush signed it. Either he believed it would make improve the campaign system or he's betrayed his oath to protect and defend the constitution. "Bowed to political pressure"? That's such a lame duck excuse. Here's what he said:

Today I have signed into law H.R. 2356, the "Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002." I believe that this legislation, although far from perfect, will improve the current financing system for federal campaigns. - President Bush

Google "Keating 5" and you will find it sadly lacking in facts. I see a lot of "investigated," "implicated," "ethics probe." It's notable that you are resurrecting a Democratic smear campaign to try to prove that John McCain is a Democract. John McCain has admitted that he made mistakes in supporting Keating too much, but the facts simply do not support the charge that the Democrats (and you, apparently) want to imply: that McCain and the other Senators knew or should have known that Keating was a crook.

To summerize, your only slightly valid point is "the press likes him." I would have to agree, that is a drawback. As proof of Democrat-hood, it's sadly lacking. I'm still waiting for a hard fact, please.

If McCain is a Democrat, Bush spends all his spare time on DemocraticUnderground telling the world that he's going to grow a tiny moustache and retake the Sudetenland.

I'd LOVE to see Condi Rice as Bush's VP pick this time... but I don't think he's going to drop Cheney :(

My mother considers Rice her hero now. A successful business woman who just has it all together. My mother is struggling with a leadership position at work where she's actually in the press a little, etc. So this is very impressive to her. We're looking for a good book for a Christmas present.