McCain: One of Us!

A mostly political Weblog.
Feb. 18 2008 5:23 AM

McCain: One of Us!

Liberals' secret feelings about the GOP leader.

(Continued from Page 16)

[2] Obama can't even bring himself to say that the problem of losing control of the borders is the number of illegal immigrants who come in. No, it's just that we don't know "who they are"! The suggestion to his target constituency is that he's happy with unlimited immigration as long as all those tens of millions of immigrants are identified. ...

[3] Most pathetically, he says he wants to crack down on employers who violate minimum wage laws, etc, but can't even bring himself to say he would crack down on employers because they hire illegals. Sanctions against such employers--even if they pay the minimum wage--are the conventional core of the "comprehensive" enforcement-for-amnesty deal. Often Democrats overeemphasize these sanctions as a way of bashing employers instead of immigrants and avoiding talk of a fence. But this week, apparently, mentioning the completely respectable Bush/McCain/Kennedy sanctions idea is too comprehensive for Obama. Risks upsetting some Latino voters. They don't "need to know," I guess. ...

Swoontime is over here at kf. ... 2:56 A.M. link

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Thursday, January 31, 2008

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It sure sounded like a concession speech to me. ... Rush Limbaugh could have called on conservatives across the country to rally to Romney and stop McCain. He didn't. That seems like a big signal. ... 1:37 P.M. link

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Maybe you can figure out if McCain actually answered Janet Hook's question last night [E.A.] [Update: Transcript has been corrected. See below]:

HOOK:  Senator McCain, let me just take the issue to you, because you obviously have been very involved in it.  During this campaign, you, like your rivals, have been putting the first priority, heaviest emphasis on border security.  But your original immigration proposal back in 2006 was much broader and included a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants who were already here. 

What I'm wondering is -- and you seem to be downplaying that part.  At this point, if your original proposal came to a vote on the Senate floor, would you vote for it? 

MCCAIN:  It won't.  It won't.  That's why we went through the debate...

HOOK:  But if it did? 

MCCAIN:  No, I would not,[**] because we know what the situation is today.  The people want the border secured first.  And so to say that that would come to the floor of the Senate -- it won't.  We went through various amendments which prevented that ever -- that proposal.

But, look, we're all in agreement as to what we need to do.  Everybody knows it.  We can fight some more about it, about who wanted this or who wanted that.  But the fact is, we all know the American people want the border secured first. 

MCCAIN:  We will secure the borders first when I am president of the United States.  I know how to do that.  I come from a border state, where we know about building walls, and vehicle barriers, and sensors, and all of the things necessary. 

 I will have the border state governors certify the borders are secured.  And then we will move onto the other aspects of this issue, probably as importantly as tamper-proof biometric documents, which then, unless an employer hires someone with those documents, that employer will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  And that will cause a lot of people to leave voluntarily. 

There's 2 million people who are here who have committed crimes.  They have to be rounded up and deported. 

And we're all basically in agreement there are humanitarian situations.  It varies with how long they've been here, et cetera, et cetera.

We are all committed to carrying out the mandate of the American people, which is a national security issue, which is securing the borders.  That was part of the original proposal, but the American people didn't trust or have confidence in us that we would do it. 

So we now know we have to secure the borders first, and that is what needs to be done.  That's what I'll do as president of the United States. 

COOPER:  So I just want to confirm that you would not vote for your bill as it originally was? 

MCCAIN:  My bill will not be voted on; it will not be voted on. I will sit and work with Democrats and Republicans and with all people.  And we will have the principals securing the borders first. 

And then, if you want me to go through the description all over again, I would be glad to.  We will secure the borders first.  That's the responsibility and the priority of the American people. 

COOPER:  Actually, we're going to be taking a short break

At first I thought he'd answered "no," which would be one interpretation if the boldfaced words were punctuated "No. It would not ..." But on second and third thought it's pretty clear Anderson Cooper let McCain bully his questioner and escape without answering. It was a straightforward and relevant query: 'Would you still support the bill you spent much of your recent Senate career championing?'  ...

Update: It turns out he did answer "no," as the corrected transcript shows, but then followed it up with a lot of language suggesting he was simply denying the hypothetical--e.g. "No, I would not sign it simply because it would never come up."

P.S.: I don't quite understand why McCain can't just simply say, "No" without crabbily disputing the question.  (He could then give the same little talk about securing the borders, how he's gotten the message etc.) Unless, of course, the real answer is "Yes." ...

**Transcript corrected.I had originally posted CNN's transcript, which reports what McCain said as "No, it would not."  In fact, he said "No, I would not." You can view it here. Thanks to Ace of Spades. ... 1:17 A.M. link

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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

When is Rielle Hunter due? Soon, I should think. If her baby's first words are "I'm the grandson of a mill worker!" that will be a clue. ... Update: Comes now news that Edwards is dropping out.  That was sudden, no? It seems like only yesterday--because it was--that his Deputy Campaign Manager Jonathan Prince was quoted boasting to reporters that in the "worst case scenario" Edwards would control 20 to 25 percent of the delegates at the convention and would probably play a decisive role. ... Alert reader D.E. reports that the headline in his print edition of today's Los Angeles Times  is ""Edwards, onward  He's told skeptics before, he's in it 'for the long haul.'" ... More: Edwards was still sending out fundraising appeals Tuesday morning. ... 2:01 A.M.

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You can glimpse the rip in the Republican party in raw blog form over at The Corner. [Search for "lecture."] Should they rally against McCain to preserve their ideology, or rally around McCain, mainly for foreign policy reasons? I'm all for protracted civil war--but then I'm not a Republican. (I find it hard to believe that either of my party's likely candidates is going to snatch defeat from the jaws of satisfactory in Iraq). Still, you'd think that even a Republican would require McCain to pull more than 40% of the vote in at least one primary before deciding that he's the inevitable nominee. ... P.S.: Dick Morris argues that only McCain can beat Hillary. What if the nominee's Obama? And is the Latino vote really a Hillary weak spot, where pro-legalization McCain could make big inroads? I thought Latinos were, so far, on Hillary's side (in that other civil war). ... P.P.S.: Come to think of it, the Dual Civil Wars (orthodox vs. heretic in the GOP, brown vs. black on the Dem side) is a pretty good Neutral Story Line for the MSM. It beats "Is this any way to elect a president." ...  1:26 A.M.

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