**4.01am** I just noticed that this is my 4,000th post here at Thunder Pig, made sweeter that it is an anti-McCain piece. WooHoo!!!
The timing was impeccable. On the day after HarperCollins released the cover photo for Going Rogue — Sarah Palin’s highly anticipated autobiography — Steve Schmidt, John McCain’s former chief campaign advisor, predicted that if Palin were to win the 2012 GOP nomination, “we would have a catastrophic election result.” It was Schmidt, a veteran Republican strategist, who first advised Senator McCain to select Palin as his running mate in 2008. And it was Schmidt who first criticized Governor Palin within the McCain camp as “going rogue.” Asked how Palin’s book might describe their relationship during the election, Schmidt suggested that perhaps he was the “anti-rogue in the running of the campaign.”
Schmidt’s comments provide a nice backdrop to a recent report at Politico (”McCain’s Mission: A GOP Makeover.”) It turns out that the Arizona senator has been positioning himself as a major power broker within the Republican Party hierarchy. He is identified in the article as the party’s titular head; and the erstwhile presidential nominee has been raising money for moderate GOP candidates and hitting the campaign trail for pragmatic allies. As noted in the article:
“I think he’s endorsed people with center-right politics because he has an understanding that the party is in trouble with certain demographics and wants to have a tone that would allow us to grow,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham, the South Carolina Republican who is McCain’s closest friend and ally in the Senate.
“At a time when our party is struggling and has a lot of shrill voices and aggressive voices, he’s one that can expand our party,” said John Weaver, a longtime McCain friend and strategist.
This meme of McCain’s reemergence as the GOP’s elder statesman and centrist savior is not likely to go down well among grassroots conservatives. As Bruce McQuain has noted, with reference to Schmidt’s comments above:
Good lord … that’s like Jimmy Carter wanting to reshape the Democratic Party. McCain stands for everything that is wrong with the GOP today. If ever there was someone who found the wrong message for presenting the GOP to the voters, it was John McCain. And the economic problems the country has gone thorough since his defeat have only made his message less acceptable. Schmidt can bellyache all he wants about Sarah Palin, but without her McCain’s election night returns would have been much more dismal than they were.
Source: Pajamas Media (Donald also has an excellent blog called American Power, which has become the go-to site for us NeoCon bloggers)
Be sure to read the whole thing at Pajamas Media. As a grassroots activist, I can testify that John McCain is the second most detested Republican on my list. He is exceeded only by the charlatan snake oil salesman from Texas, Ron Paul..
In my eyes, he threw away the 2008 Election when he supported HR 1424 (TARP, aka Troubled Asset Relief Program) and voted for it's passage on October 1, 2008. He showed me that he couldn't be trusted to make the right call when it came to our economy...that vote was a signal to me to keep my recently withdrawn money out of the US Stock Market because, no matter who was elected in January would be a friend to those who wished to invest in the Free Market.
A personal anecdote regarding McCain being bad for the conservative grassroots. The team of people he had working for him in Western North Carolina (especially the person leading the charge in Buncombe County...a young college student from SC) could not have been any worse had he gone out and asked the WNC For Change people to run his campaign. They seemed to be more focused on establishing a patronage system for after McCain won the election than actually getting the guy elected.