Axis of Right

Three Native Rhode Islanders Commenting From the Right on Politics and Anything Else

Bush: McCain a “True Conservative”

Posted by Ryan on February 10, 2008

In a taped interview for Fox News Sunday, President Bush called John McCain a “true conservative” who may have trouble convincing skeptics otherwise.  Bush cites taxes, defense and abortion as areas where McCain is somewhat right-of-center.

Although I’m not sure Bush’s idea of a “true” conservative is the same one I would use.  Bush did adopt all those high-spending budgets, he did expand entitlements and oversaw the largest growth of the federal government since the Great Society of Lyndon Johnson.   Though, Bush was great on Life issues, the military, and tax cuts. 

Yet, Bush was also great on judges and would have been even better if not for that extra-constitutional “Gang of 14” led by John McCain.  Uh oh.  The 2004 Election could have been a cake walk if Moveon and other kook groups hadn’t been able to receive unlimited 527 contributions under McCain-Feingold.  Uh oh.  Bush would have even had his pet amnesty if it wasn’t for McCain-Kennedy being so absolutely back-room horrible, creating white-hot rage amongst conservatives.  Uh oh. 

“True” Conservative, huh?  It would have been nice if Bush had come out claiming the conservative credentials of real conservatives like Hunter and Thompson, and luke-warmly for Romney.  But a Bush endorsement is not likely to help any Republican in the Fall Campaign.  Who knows, maybe that’s what Bush is getting at…

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2 Responses to “Bush: McCain a “True Conservative””

  1. Mike said

    I agree with everything except your point about the Gang of 14. That deal, even if ill-intentioned, created an environment which allowed Roberts and Alito to be confirmed with relative ease. At the Supreme Court level, no one could have done better than Roberts and Alito.

    As for the lower courts, that deal assured the confirmation of three all-star Judges Owen, Brown, and Pryor. It’s true some judges fell by the wayside under that deal, but no President ever gets everyone he wanted.

  2. Salinger said

    I disagree slightly on your take that Bush endorsed McCain. I watched the interview this morning, and Bush explicitly stated that he wasn’t endosring anyone and hasn’t up until now. Bush is doing what any President does, and tries to work to have his party keep power. I don’t fault him for that, even if as you say, his ideas of what is conservative and what isn’t are not the same as ours. McCain and Bush have similar views on Conservatism. As Bill Buckly once said about Bush, he is conservative but not a Conservative. The same could be said of McCain. He is conservative on many issues, but philosohpically he is not a Conservative, and he is probably a little less conservative than Bush.

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