Friday, March 10, 2006

I find this somewhat bizarre: There's going to be a meeting in Memphis of the Southern Republican Leadership Conference, and National Journal is planning to conduct a 2008 presidential straw poll there -- and the conferees are being urged to write in George W. Bush as the party's preferred '08 candidate. Patrick Hynes talks about this scheme at Ankle Biting Pundits, and Hotline is confirming the story. Here's the point, according to Hynes:

...more that a couple friends of mine on hand in Memphis are considering using the straw poll as a device to show consistent and strong support for President George W. Bush. If just enough people write in the name of George W. Bush on their straw poll ballots, their thinking goes, maybe they can show the snarky media that Republicans are unfazed by its relentless and dishonest negative assaults on the President and his administration.

The Hotline story says John McCain is solidly behind the plan, and Hynes, in a follow-up, adds that " McCain will not be alone in urging conferees to 'Write in Bush' -- we haven't heard the last of this developing story, I suspect."

This is what Republicans think is going to turn everything around for the Bush administration -- not putting noses to the grindstone and actually doing a good job, not responding to the legitimate anger of the public, but a forced display of solidarity that makes it seem as if the Bush presidency is wildly successful and overwhelmingly popular among the Republican hard core. They think they're the norm and two-thirds of America is outliers. They think their only problem is bad PR.

(Via Memeorandum.)


Incidentally, does anyone else with some knowledge of the civil rights era find it offensive that an organization even exists with the name Southern Republican Leadership Conference?

(And yes, just to rub it in, they're calling this year's confab "Red, White, Rhythm & Blues," and holding it in the city where Martin Luther King was killed.)

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