Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Maverick in his own words (3): Roberts and Scalito

That famous Maverick McCain was pandering hard to the Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) last week. He promised the conservative hordes:

I intend to nominate judges who have proven themselves worthy of our trust that they take as their sole responsibility the enforcement of laws made by the people's elected representatives, judges of the character and quality of Justices Roberts and Alito, judges who can be relied upon to respect the values of the people whose rights, laws and property they are sworn to defend. (my emphasis)
In the Republican vocabulary - which is becoming cult-like enough that those outside the charmed circle don't always catch the meaning of phrases - "Roberts and Alito" is a slightly briefer way of saying:

You can kiss Roe v. Wade goodbye.

But as Joseph Romm recently explained in No climate for old men Salon 02/08/08, despite the Maverick's acknowledgement that, yeah, this global climate change thing is happening, his judicial promises to the Republican right mean that he intends to appoint judges that will shoot down envionmental laws. He provides the gruesome details that remind us that for the Maverick, "Roberts and Alito" has a broader meaning:

You can kiss Roe v. Wade and our coastal cities goodbye.

Yep, that's our Maverick! Oh, and he also thinks it's bonkers to talk about ever getting our troops out of Iraq:

Yep, that's our bold Maverick!

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DeadElephant.ORG said...

Where's McCain's "straight talk" on Cheney's torture?

We can check-mate John McCain in the next 5 days. Here's how:

Last week, the Administration was finally cornered by their torture videos - forced to admit to waterboarding prisoners. Now, their only way out of criminal charges is to try to make torture NOT ILLEGAL. That's why last Thursday (Feb 7th) Cheney publicly admitted to, and defended, torture. He stood in front of an Ultra-Right audience (CPAC) and, in-effect, dared the country to arrest him: "Would I do it again? You're damned right I would."

This places McCain in the ultimate no-win political bind. Torture is John McCain's signature issue. The best-known fact about McCain is that he was tortured. He lead the fight in the Senate to ban torture - and won the issue, over stiff White House resistance, 90 to 9! Right now he's in a fight with the Ultra-Right for his political life. Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, et. al., are attacking him relentlessly and refusing to support the Republican ticket. He went before that same CPAC audience, just before Cheney, to beg for conservative support. He can't win the general election without it. So he can't cross the Ultra Right right now. But Cheney is defiant about breaking McCain's torture ban. And what has McCain done about that? NOTHING.

If McCain is going to give us "straight talk", he'll have to accuse the President and Vice President of war crimes. That would finish his campaign. BUT, if he fails to stand up for his principals and call them to account, he will brand himself as history's preeminent flip-flopping, pandering, wimp. It would destroy the McCain brand. If we demand that he answer the question, any answer he gives is his doom.

So our task is simple: for the next 5 days we hold John McCain's feet to the fire over torture. Our demand for his answer should be lead by both of our Democratic candidates.

And the price of failing to do so? To wake up tomorrow in an America in which torture is forever legal.

Bruce Miller said...

The Maverick has now shown us once again where he really stands on this: he supports the Cheney-Bush torture policy.