In February, David wrote:
Perhaps I’m just venting, but I am growing a bit weary of this emerging theme that there’s “room on the right” for a “true conservative”….And who would that be, pray tell? You name any–and I mean any–politician with the resume to be president, and I can immediately give you a position or statement they’ve made that would anger some significant part of our diverse and amorphous conservative movement.
Just as he was when he advised my wife and me not to miss Talladega Nights, David was exactly right. I’m ever more convinced of this as the 2008 presidential campaign continues. Consider the path of the “True Conservative Watch” so far:
1. Senator McCain makes conservatives nervous for reasons that need not be enumerated here.
2. Mayor Giuliani is not only pro-choice, but he’s in favor of public funding for abortion. ‘Nuff said.
3. Governor Romney has a record of conservative accomplishments in Massachusetts, of all places. However, TCW-ers dislike the fact that he’s changed his mind on abortion and hesitate in the face of unfair attacks by misguided conservatives and the MSM. TCW continues.
4. Senator Brownback is considered momentarily; after condemning “flip flops” he flip-flops on immigration himself and seems to have changed on abortion as well. Haven’t heard his name in a while.
5. TCW-ers turn their focus to Senator Thompson. It is now clear that he, too, has changed his mind on abortion. And the other day, David Brody reported on some of the campaigning he did in the 2000 cycle as national co-chairman of the presidential campaign of…John McCain, including dismissing the negative effects of McCain-Feingold on Christian groups.
Look, Senator Thompson is a good man. So is Senator Brownback, as we’ve said. But after all this silliness, is anybody not convinced yet that any possible presidential candidate will have some significant flaws? If not, please allow me to summarize even more briefly where the TCW has gotten us: We aren’t satisfied with the idea of nominating Senator McCain or a former pro-choicer, so we’re infatuated with…a former pro-choicer who co-chaired McCain’s 2000 campaign?
Look, if Senator Thompson is what it takes to unite the party and rev conservatives up for 2008, fine. I’ll go along post-primary, and you won’t find anybody happier to see the likes of Senators Clinton and Obama merely watching on Janary 20, 2009, than yours truly. But that won’t make it even the tiniest bit logical or fair–and put me down as unconvinced that such fickle behavior is sustainable in a successful movement.
P.S. After (a) reading Brody’s piece and (b) losing approximately 50 IQ points taking David’s movie advice on Saturday–although it was worth it–I keep having this mental picture of John McCain and Fred Thompson bumping fists circa 2000 and proclaiming, “Shake and bake!”