Saturday, October 09, 2010

President McCain's Midterm Woes

If the 2008 presidential election had gone the other way, would there be a Tea Party today?

Unless the economy had magically recovered with nothing but tax cuts, a voter uprising seems inevitable. And would it have targeted only Congressional Democrats without spreading to "the treachery" of President John McCain, never accepted as a true believer by the Rush Limbaughs of his party and fervent followers of a Vice-President Sarah Palin?

A new Vanity Fair piece reports McCain's primary opponent in Arizona this year arguing "the country was better off with Obama as president than it would have been with an unreliably conservative McCain."

In office, the former maverick would have resisted a Detroit rescue, the stimulus and health care reform but arrived with the TARP bailout in place and irresistible momentum to do something in the face of economic collapse and soaring unemployment

After battles, cutbacks and veto threats, that "something" would surely have been enough government interference to rouse Tea Party patriots, particularly with their poster girl presiding over the Senate a heartbeat away.

In that event, Sarah Palin would surely have become the most activist VP since Dick Cheney--only not as loyal. Could she have resisted airing her campaign struggles in "Going Rogue" and sharing her thoughts with other Momma Grizzlies on Facebook?

What McCain called "background noise" when Palin's book appeared would have come front and center with her Congressional admirers like Jim DeMint, instead of predicting Obama's Waterloo, targeting their own President for defeat.

The blueprint for a GOP midterm revolt to take over the party and make McCain a one-termer would be in place. Karl Rove wrote it in 2000 to get W the Republican nomination, and one of its pillars was that five years as a POW had unhinged McCain.

A decade later, at 74, under the pressures of the Oval Office, that case would be easier to make, and there would be millions of Tea Party patriots out there making it.

Update: Back here, presumably on planet Earth, today's Sarah Palin has left McCain far behind and is pushing her 2012 electability with comparisons to...wait for it...Ronald Reagan The widow Nancy may have a word or two to say about that.


hking said...

Yes, I like this thinking. Alternative history. Great insight.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Stein:

I will raise $2 million dollars for Governor Sarah Palin, should she decide to run and I know others with similar goals.

Fuzzy Slippers said...

Well, we don't just want tax cuts, we also want to cut spending. The two go together, of course. And yes, if McCain were president there'd still be a Tea Party because McCain is a big-government big-spender just like Bush turned into . . . only more progressive (i.e. regressive).

The roots of the Tea Party actually go back to Bush and were reflected in the 2006 and 2008 elections, too. As usual, people who don't actually know any of "the people," think this sprung up either via some fantastical vast right wing conspiracy or in response to BO himself. It didn't. This isn't about race or party, it's about off-the-rails government spending and overreach. It's actually quite simple.

By the way, you do understand that if the left had let up on Sarah Palin, she'd have sunk into obscurity after quitting her governor's gig. Who really ever heard from Ferraro again after her VP run? Hardly anyone, and she's only dug up now and paraded around because she was the first woman VP; Sarah wouldn't have even had that. So, I guess what I'm trying to say is thank you. She's been a driving force in getting the country motivated, and the left has been a driving force . . .driving her. Much appreciated. ;)

Fuzzy Slippers said...

Just read this comment again when it got posted/emailed. I of course meant Ferraro was the first woman VP candidate, not VP.