Campaigns/Elections

Republicans Drank Whiskey Neat

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While some Republicans rehearse their blame-the-liberal-media oratoria for John McCain's likely loss next Tuesday, and others set their scope rifles on fashion-chasing Obamacons (or, in the Weekly Standard's case, uh, analogize John McCain to the Tianenman Square guy facing down a tank full of elitists?) … there remains one stubbornly unhelpful figure contradicting all those narratives while consistently scoring the deepest blows against the Republican candidate: Conservative syndicated columnist George Will. Who, from what I understand, is still planning to vote for the guy about whom he writes stuff like this:

From the invasion of Iraq to the selection of Sarah Palin, carelessness has characterized recent episodes of faux conservatism. Tuesday's probable repudiation of the Republican Party will punish characteristics displayed in the campaign's closing days.

Some polls show that Palin has become an even heavier weight in John McCain's saddle than his association with George W. Bush. Did McCain, who seems to think that Palin's never having attended a "Georgetown cocktail party" is sufficient qualification for the vice presidency, lift an eyebrow when she said that vice presidents "are in charge of the United States Senate"? […]

Perhaps Palin's confusion about the office for which she is auditioning comes from listening to its current occupant. Dick Cheney, the foremost practitioner of this administration's constitutional carelessness in aggrandizing executive power […]

Palin may be an inveterate simplifier; McCain has a history of reducing controversies to cartoons. A Republican financial expert recalls attending a dinner with McCain for the purpose of discussing with him domestic and international financial complexities that clearly did not fascinate the senator. As the dinner ended, McCain's question for his briefer was: "So, who is the villain?" […]

McCain revived a familiar villain—"huge amounts" of political money—when Barack Obama announced that he had received contributions of $150 million in September. "The dam is broken," said McCain, whose constitutional carelessness involves wanting to multiply impediments to people who want to participate in politics by contributing to candidates—people such as the 632,000 first-time givers to Obama in September.

Why is it virtuous to erect a dam of laws to impede the flow of contributions by which citizens exercise their First Amendment right to political expression? "We're now going to see," McCain warned, "huge amounts of money coming into political campaigns, and we know history tells us that always leads to scandal." The supposedly inevitable scandal, which supposedly justifies preemptive government restrictions on Americans' freedom to fund the dissemination of political ideas they favor, presumably is that Obama will be pressured to give favors to his September givers. The contributions by the new givers that month averaged $86.

Whole thing here. My take in May about the GOP coalition dissolving here.