In her just released interview with NBC news, Sarah Palin confessed that McCain’s biggest obstacle with voters was President George W. Bush. She didn’t realize how very right she was.
When President Bush ran for office in 2000, he asserted that he was a “compassionate conservative” out of the “Reagan mold.” Dan Quayle had the correct response to Bush’s tribble: “We don’t use the phrase ‘compassionate conservative’ because it implies that conservatism isn’t compassionate.” Once elected to office, however, did Bush run as an heir to the Reagan legacy? Let’s see. Ask yourself: Would Reagan have sponsored the largest increase in medicare entitlements in 30 years–450 billion? Would Reagan have invited Ted Kennedy to the White House to draft $68 billion in education reform legislation? Oh yes, would Reagan have nominated a sycophantic Harriett Miers to the Supreme Court! With the sole exception of Reagan’s tax cuts and perhaps the war on terror, Bush, across-the-board, has governed as a “moderate.” In other words, Bush went left to appease his critics. (The “leftward lurch” is a malady which afflicts most Republicans as they enter the beltway)
McCain now complains that Bush is being hung around his neck like an albatross. But, understand this: McCain is so much less like Reagan that his only substantive difference with Bush was that he opposed Bush’s Reaganesque tax cuts! Yes, it’s true that McCain opposed Bush’s handling of the Iraq War, for which he is to be commended, but with with respect to policies and legislation wherein McCain doesn’t agree with Bush, his fews departures from Bush take him further from Reagan’s policies.
Solution? Ah, you have to read my diary for that.