An aura of inevitability appears to be growing around his prospective candidacy, like the one Bush built in the run-up to his nomination, though McCain says he won’t make a decision about running until after the midterm elections this November.
The Republican Party primary voter rewards loyalty to party and long service. Sebator McCain may yet win over that base, though there is almost no evidence that he has made significant progress in the effort, and every gathering of party faithful solidifies the impression that while Senator McCain is indeed a great American, he has been a lousy Republican and a terrible senator. On this last point McCain-Feingold and the Gang of 14 are the two most obvious episodes of McCain’s separation from the base.
The more that MSM tries to create “inevtiability” around McCain, the more the base will see him as a creation of elites these voters do not trust. That’s McCain’s second dilemma –he has all the wrong friends inside the Beltway.
If McCain is going to make a serious bid for the base vote, he has got to get in the habit of wading into conservative circles and admitting the obvious problems with McCain-Feingold (the 527s and the ban on ads criticizing incumbants to name two) and the Gang of 14 (still frozen in place judicial nominees and a missed opportunity to reform the deeply diseased judicial nomination process.)
I’ll issue my 400th invite to the senator to appear on the program. Perhaps he’ll surprise and say yes, but I suspect so long as he keeps MSM fooled, he’ll keep fooling himself as well.