This is something that has been bothering me since the start of the general election cycle, but has become worse since I caught a glance at the RNC last night while at a diner with some fellow PSAP contributors: McCain is not a maverick. Not by a long shot. The word may have described him four years ago, but it is laughable to describe him as anything other than a party-line republican.
2) His Vice-Presidential pick is a hard-line conservative whose beliefs on abortion, creationism, and drilling are, if not identical to the republican platform, then to the right of them.
3) In addition to his recent love of President Bush, he has flat-out changed his position on a number of issues to- you guessed it- score political points among the conservatives. He opposed Bush’s tax cut before he supported them (what’s more politically expedient than offering tax cuts?). He made a good faith effort to develop a coherent immigration policy before switching to the well-worn strategy of obsessing with security over efficacy. Finally, as one last demonstration of his total rejection of the “maverick” label, he has actively courted the “agent of intolerance” (McCain’s words, not mine), Jerry Falwell. Have you no shame John?
Now, the issue that bothers me is that the media still refers to McCain’s “maverick” image as if it describes him anymore. It is time to lay it to rest. It is time to laugh off the stage all of the RNC speakers who have the chutzpah to suggest that “the McCain-Palin ticket is the real ticket for change this year.” (Who was ruling during the past eight years and has endorsed this ticket for change? Oh right, he-who-we-want-to-change-from-while-still-accepting-his-endorsement). Finally, It is time to see if Beltway Bob (and others) still clings to the ridiculous idea that somehow, under some obscure definition of the word, John McCain is still a maverick.