Numerous right wing writers or press outlets have already proffered negative reviews of both Sarah Palin and John McCain. Chris Buckley, conservative and son of William F. Buckley, has endorsed Barack Obama outright.
Conservative publisher Wick Allison has endorsed Obama. Other conservative writers are supporting the Democratic candidate. It looks like Indiana is even going to go with Barack!
Perhaps the most startling event is the UN-ENDORSMENT of McCain by influential Republican William Milliken. Milliken had previously endorsed McCain, but is now un-endorsing him. I can’t think of anything like this happening before.
But what does it all mean?
I think this is kind of obvious. The Republican Party is too big for its own good, and, remarkably, had actually started to develop a bit of diversity. But in a bad way. The diversity within the Republican Party is not in the form of gender or ethnic background, or point of view about major political issues. No. The Republicans are still pretty much unimaginative, unabashedly fascist, total suck ups to the wealthy and big business, and in all these areas of policy in absolute lock step as a party. Republican ‘diversity’ comes in the form of approaches to campaigning, and approaches to how to deal with the truth.
The far right is comprised of two different groups: Religious fundamentalists and non-religious racist yahoos. Closer to the middle are the fiscal conservatives who are also socially conservative to some degree, then near the center are the fiscally conservative selfish bastards who vote Republicans because they think it will help their pocket books even though they publicly state that they support some of the social programs that they know the Republicans will either trash or pilfer.
Now, we have a similar thing going on in the Democratic party. Way over on the left we have, for instance, people who are activist atheists and would really would prefer to NOT vote for a candidate that insists on saying “God bless America” all the time, or who refuses to say “Gay marriage is marriage. Period. Get over it,” and so on.
But on the center/left part of the (oversimplified) political spectrum, we are all interested in being fairly straightforward and truthful, at least somewhat objective, fair (but vigorous) in the fight and respectful of others. And, we see enough overlap amongst our diverse-ass selves that we vote for the Democratic candidate almost all the time even if there are areas of disagreement. And when we don’t vote Democratic, don’t vote Republican either.
In contrast, on the center/right part of the spectrum, some people like the fair fight (those fiscal conservatives with some sense of social responsibility) while others are happy to, and in fact prefer to lie, bite the opponents ear off, throw sand in the face… whatever it takes to steal the lunch money.
McCain’s problem, very simply put, is that he has played the game of moving back and forth along this spectrum of behavior. He’s done that with the issues to some extent, but that is not enough to foster the wholesale tugging on the very rug on which he totters that we are now witnessing. Rather, I believe that it is McCain’s movement back and forth on the spectrum of campaign praxis that has enraged pretty much everybody in the Republican party but Bubba. The fundamentalists hate McCain because he raced up to Obama ready to cut off his infidel head and then pulled back. The centrists hate him because his bulldog (or lipsticked-pig or whatever she is) is remorselessly evil, and McCain fosters this. The only people sticking with McCain are the Bubbas. Because McCain is not black.
McCain will be left with the all too sizable but not nearly large enough “He’s Not Black” vote. There was a time in American politics when that was enough.
Not any more.