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Thread: John McCain not yet energizing conservatives

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Default John McCain not yet energizing conservatives

    McCain not yet energizing conservatives
    By JIM KUHNHENN, Associated Press WriterFri Feb 8, 10:56 AM ET


    Typically, a gathering of conservative activists and the presumptive Republican presidential nominee is no cause for unease.
    Enter John McCain a Republican with a history of clashing with his party's right flank.
    For the first time in three decades, Republicans are likely to nominate a presidential candidate who lost the conservative and evangelical votes in the primaries. Even as McCain reached out to them Thursday during the annual Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, some made no attempt to hide their distaste.
    Amid the cheers, there were boos. Placards denounced McCain's past support for changes in immigration policies. In the halls, public and private arguments erupted over his candidacy.
    "We're really in uncharted waters," Republican strategist Ralph Reed said as he surveyed the conservative scene from the wings of a ballroom. "You have to go back to 1976 when (Gerald) Ford beat (Ronald) Reagan when a presumptive nominee has walked into this room and the overwhelming majority of these people voted or supported somebody else."
    McCain is reaching out. He skipped the conservative conference last year. This time, he addressed the gathering only hours after rival Mitt Romney used his own speech to the conference to bow out of the race.
    "We have had a few disagreements, and none of us will pretend that we won't continue to have a few," McCain told the gathering. "But even in disagreement, especially in disagreement, I will seek the counsel of my fellow conservatives."
    McCain has angered conservatives over the years for working with Democrats on changing campaign finance laws, on climate change legislation and on immigration. They also see him as a renegade for voting against President Bush's tax cuts and helping organize a bipartisan group of lawmakers to preserve the right to filibuster some judicial nominees.
    On Friday, however, President Bush urged the conservatives, without naming McCain, to back the party's presumed nominee.
    "The stakes in November are high. This is an important election. Prosperity and peace are in the balance," Bush told about 2,000 people attending the conference. "So with confidence in our vision and faith in our values, let us go forward, fight for victory and keep the White House in 2008."
    And on Thursday, after Romney announced his departure from the race, speaker after speaker Thursday beseeched the activists to unite behind the party's eventual nominee. Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., who had endorsed Romney, said conservatives need "to empower Senator McCain to carry our conservative values."
    "We need him as much as he needs us," DeMint said.
    Another Romney backer, Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., did not attend the conference but offered McCain a lukewarm endorsement despite recently raising questions about McCain's temperament. "I am supporting John McCain for the Republican nomination for president," Cochran said in a statement. "I supported Romney because I thought he would be the better choice for president."
    Several evangelical leaders, including former presidential candidate Gary Bauer and Jonathan Falwell, son of the late Jerry Falwell, also appeared willing to give McCain a hearing and had planned to meet with him privately Thursday. McCain had to reschedule due to votes in the Senate.
    Others gave McCain no quarter. "I'm heartsick," Ray Pickles, an electrical engineer from Vienna, Va., declared as he held up one end of a banner that equated McCain with amnesty for illegal immigrants.
    The question left lingering is whether conservatives will rally for McCain with the kind of enthusiasm core Democratic voters are showing for Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama. Several conservatives interviewed Thursday at the conference said McCain could signal his embrace by selecting a running mate with credibility with the right wing, by talking more about conservative values and the nation's culture in addition to tax cuts and fighting terrorism.
    "If John McCain does nothing, he's nominated and wins the nomination of the Republican Party, most conservatives will vote for him," said David Keene, chairman of the American Conservative Union. "But 'most conservatives' is not enough to win the election, it's not enough to secure your base."

    For McCain, it is a delicate dance. The Arizona senator is on the verge of locking up the nomination thanks to the votes of moderate Republicans and unaligned voters. During this week's coast-to-coast Super Tuesday contests, McCain had more than a 2-to-1 edge over Romney among moderates. Romney compensated by getting almost half the votes of people calling themselves very conservative, well ahead of McCain and Mike Huckabee. Among white, born-again and evangelical Christians, Huckabee won, taking almost four in 10 of their votes.
    McCain has won over independents and moderates by burnishing his image as a maverick and straight talker willing to buck his own party.
    "Those are candidate attributes of his he doesn't want to surrender," said Reed, the former director of the Christian Coalition. "So he's walking a very fine line. But in a closely fought, competitive campaign that I think will be decided by a few points, Senator McCain is going to need the conservative grassroots of the party in the boat."
    One option openly discussed Thursday by religious conservatives was the possibility of McCain picking Huckabee, an ordained Baptist minister who is staunchly anti-abortion, as his running mate. Huckabee picked up the endorsement Thursday of the prominent evangelical leader James Dobson.
    "That is the only thing that is going to bring the evangelicals and the right-wing base of the organization into the camp," said Robert Upton, a Pentecostal minister from Indiana.
    But that is where religious conservatives and fiscal conservatives part ways.
    Economic conservatives complain that Huckabee's tenure as governor of Arkansas was marked by tax increases and liberal policies on immigration and law enforcement.
    Keene noted that among the conservative criticism of McCain is his stance on immigration and his votes against Bush's tax cuts. "The problems that conservatives have with Huckabee are what? Immigration and taxes," he said. "I think you're doubling up your problem."

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    aww poor dear.. not fascist enough for your religious theocratic freaks? Poor baby. Maybe if you pander more and tell them you'll make the bible the constitution and stone anybody who wers blended fibres they'll vote for you.

    *eyeroll*

    I hope Repukes stay home in droves. The planet can't take another 8 years of them.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member nycgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    aww poor dear.. not fascist enough for your religious theocratic freaks? Poor baby. Maybe if you pander more and tell them you'll make the bible the constitution and stone anybody who wers blended fibres they'll vote for you.

    *eyeroll*

    I hope Repukes stay home in droves. The planet can't take another 8 years of them.
    me too, I'd be happy if they stepped aside and let our team win this time.

    So I guess the bible thumpers won't be voting this year? Unless Huckabee is the VP that is.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    aww poor dear.. not fascist enough for your religious theocratic freaks? Poor baby. Maybe if you pander more and tell them you'll make the bible the constitution and stone anybody who wers blended fibres they'll vote for you.

    *eyeroll*

    I hope Repukes stay home in droves. The planet can't take another 8 years of them.
    I think the Repugs will still come out in droves to vote for McCain if Hillary gets the nomination. Because as much as they may not agree with McCain on some issues, they HATE Hillary with a passion.

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    This is great. The Republican party is imploding because of their own hubris. Beautiful, isn't it? I'm just going to sit back, pop some popcorn, and enjoy the show.

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    Bronze Member snpage2001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    aww poor dear.. not fascist enough for your religious theocratic freaks? Poor baby. Maybe if you pander more and tell them you'll make the bible the constitution and stone anybody who wers blended fibres they'll vote for you.

    *eyeroll*

    I hope Repukes stay home in droves. The planet can't take another 8 years of them.

    Actually, there is another option for the conservatives: Ron Paul. I consider my self a moderate independent with Right Leanings. I am not about making anyone elses issues my own. That being said, Ron Paul is a breath of fresh air. Lower taxes, taking the military out of places they really dont need to be in. leaving Iraq ASAP. Rebuilding the dollar. Everyone being responsible for their own lives but living by the rule of law.

    What is there not to love? More people are pro RP than you think. The movement is not even close to being over.
    "All they do is sit around and argue about 'who said what and when'." ~RON PAUL re: McCain and Romney arguing about 'time tables'.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    aww poor dear.. not fascist enough for your religious theocratic freaks? Poor baby. Maybe if you pander more and tell them you'll make the bible the constitution and stone anybody who wers blended fibres they'll vote for you.

    *eyeroll*

    I hope Repukes stay home in droves. The planet can't take another 8 years of them.
    I agree. I love that McCain doesn't kowtow to the religious conservatives, or at least not that I've noticed. The religious conservatives have been getting their way for far too long and look what's happened.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    He's trying to kowtow to them now. He's been spewing the same anti-abortion, anti-gay shit that the rest of them have been crapping out.

    Fuck him and the crazy vietnamese horse he rode in on.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    He's trying to kowtow to them now. He's been spewing the same anti-abortion, anti-gay shit that the rest of them have been crapping out.

    Fuck him and the crazy vietnamese horse he rode in on.
    Pro-life rhetoric from him is nothing new. What has he said that's anti-gay? I confess I haven't been paying a lot of attention to the election so far. I figured I'd wait until the field narrowed a little bit.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    the usual "pro-famly" crap which is not so subtle code for "no gay marriage"
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    the usual "pro-famly" crap which is not so subtle code for "no gay marriage"
    I'm pro gay marriage, but I'm not sure I'd interpret a lack of support for it as homophobia. Even the Democrats pussyfoot around that issue. Wasn't Kerry only pro civil union? Don't a lot of people in the gay community think that anything less than gay marriage is unacceptable?

    I don't think the legalization of gay marriage in this country will come via Congress or via support from the President. I think it will come from the courts. I suppose McCain's position on gay marriage is relevant only because as President, he'd have the power to nominate SCOTUS justices. Plus, there is no way the Republican party would nominate a pro gay marriage candidate. It's not just McCain; it's the party. What are Clinton and Obama's positions on the issue?

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    The usual Dem lameness.. nobody wants to say anything, and when they do (like obama) they get some ex-gay retard to get on stage and rarrangue people about how he was cured, while obama just sits there and later tenders the obligatory apology. Got people in church seats to see him though.)

    Hill has been relatively quiet on the issue.. not sure what her stance is
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    The usual Dem lameness.. nobody wants to say anything, and when they do (like obama) they get some ex-gay retard to get on stage and rarrangue people about how he was cured, while obama just sits there and later tenders the obligatory apology. Got people in church seats to see him though.)

    Hill has been relatively quiet on the issue.. not sure what her stance is

    The Democrats will puss out on the issue just like they always have. To me that's even worse than just coming out and saying they're anti-gay marriage...to pander to the gay community, then turn around and completely fucking ignore them until re-election time comes. At least McCain is being honest.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Yeah, honestly evil.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    Yeah, honestly evil.
    Which would you rather have, though...someone being honest and up-front about being anti-gay marriage, or someone skirting around the issue and getting the gay community's hopes up, then letting them down? Either way the end result is the same, right?

    To me, the Democrats are chickenshits when it comes to gay rights and even though I'm not gay, it disgusts me.

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