Let’s dispense up front with the potential platitudes, supportive arguments and sundry “feel-good” comments. John McCain is an honorable man who admirably served our country and should be lauded for that valiant societal contribution. From my perspective that is an unquestionable accoutrement to the larger debate about Mr. McCain’s contribution to our party. With respect to the latter issue, Mr. McCain is an abysmal failure and has arguably more to do with our parties’ identity crisis than any other member in recent history.
Mr. McCain’s role and damaging posture are not really all that hard to understand. “Maverick” as he fancies being called, is more impressed with his own ideas for the party than anyone else’s. The self proclaimed acolyte of Reagan somewhere along the line forgot some of the “Gipper’s” endless teachings. Those would be the one’s focused on articulating our values and making the case for conservatism with those whom we may disagree. If memory serves me correctly, Mr. Reagan never said somewhat conversely, surrender your values for the sake of agreement- a posture which seems to follow Mr. McCain’s career. In this particular regard, Mr. McCain has been shamefully destructive and more endeared with the sound of his own voice rather than the philosophical calling of our party.
Do I blame Mr. McCain for some of the current morass and fundamental undermining of our society which now emanates from both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue? The rhetorical answer is a resounding- yes. His misguided quest for the presidency was simply a culmination of innumerable self-indulgent actions which started many years ago. The coupe de grace was his poorly attempted caricature of someone who embodied Republican values, which he spent years destroying. It is no small wonder or vexing philosophical conundrum why the voting public chose to elect a man with no experience, specific vision and questionable political values. The alternative was John McCain, who has largely forgotten the philosophical code by which we conservatives live and more appropriately resembles Don Quixote de La Mancha than any party leader or potential president.
Mr. McCain’s controversies and faux pas are probably more identifiable to the public than any of his alleged qualifications to be our parties’ candidate for President. The Gang of 14 which cost conservatives good judicial candidates and upheld unconstitutional filibusters, McCain- Feingold- much have which has been found unconstitutional, endorsing amnesty as a primary means of addressing immigration, originally opposing the Bush tax cuts, opposing the repeal of Estate Taxes, extending the Geneva Conventions to enemy non-combatants, closing Guantanamo Bay, pointing fingers at the “religious right”, originally supporting the offshore drilling ban and years of generally being the liberal media darling. Show of hands; how many held their noses to vote for Mr. McCain simply because the alternative was so (now proven to be true) unthinkable and destructive? Wow, too many to count.
So some free advice to Mr. McCain; take a back seat and stop saying you represent our party. Stop allegedly working on our behalf based on some imagined credibility you gained as our last presidential candidate. News flash- we ended up with no really good choices. Our mission is now to ensure that does not happen again. It is also to restore our image back to one which resembles the collective “we” rather than a party which is a cheap imitator of the opposition led by you.