Thursday, May 15, 2008


(UPDATE: Oops -- I meant 2010, didn't I? Math is hard!)

We get a peek into right-wing thinking from Hot Air, which links a clip from New York radio talker Mark Levin.

Levin accepts the notion that McCain is a "maverick" and -- ignoring the fact that the press is selling the public that line and it's basically working (McCain's numbers against either Democrat are about 20 points better than Bush's approval ratings) -- he makes the familiar but always startling argument that Republicans have been losing congressional elections because they're not conservative enough.

Well, let me give my two cents' worth to conservatives running under the Republican banner this year. If I were you, I would cut your ties to the Republican National Committee, cut your ties with the McCain campaign, because he's basically running a one-man race anyway, and run on your principles, come up with some creative policy ideas that promote your principles -- it's the only chance you have. Don't tie yourselves to a pre-Reagan, Gerald Ford-type philosophy in which you will lose. That is the lesson from the three House seats that have been lost. It's also common sense. When have you ever tied yourself to moderates, mavericks, and independents? They're unreliable. There will be no coattails in this presidential election. There'll be the opposite effect. Positive advice to our conservative friends who are running as Republicans? Run as conservatives, under the Republican banner, because it is our party, but distance yourselves from the -- I don't know what to call them. The mush Republicans? Or the Repubeicans, as I do like to call them from time to time. Distance yourself from the Repubeicans at the RNC, the Repubeicans around McCain and McCain himself. Do what's right, do what's in your soul and your conscience, and you'll have a shot. If you follow -- if you follow these other Republicans, you will go down. Just advi-- hey, look, take it or leave it, that's just Mark's opinion, and not only that, it's more honorable, isn't it? Why compromise your principles for -- well, for what, as a matter of fact? For nothing.

Please, Mark -- keep saying this. If it's a bloodbath for the congressional GOP in November, say it even louder. In fact, I hope all your right-wing colleagues say this. I hope it continues to be conventional wisdom on the right. I hope all other explanations are ignored and you all agree on this one.

And then let's make a date to do this again two years from now, OK?


UPDATE: Today's New York Times suggests that Levin will get his wish:

...Mr. McCain's advisers said the Mississippi race underlined his intention to distance himself as much as possible from Congressional Republicans....

So this may be a case of "You can't break up with me, I'm breaking up with you" on Levin's part.

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