I’ve said before that I would vote for McCain before voting for Hillary a number of times, especially given his strong record of advocating for consumer rights. But he really seems to have lost it recently. First the whole condoms/aids/africa thing, now the whole “the president is doing a great job in Iraq, you can walk down the street in some parts of Baghdad, hey let’s go to Baghdad to prove my point, but I need a whole platoon of soldiers with me to do it” insanity. McCain seems to have been hitting the crazy juice pretty hard, or at least riding the party line in order to bolster his appeal for the upcoming presidential run.
Needless to say, he’s disqualified himself from my vote. Republican or Democrat, Independent or Libertarian, I don’t care what party you belong to, Iraq is a fucking unqualified disaster. We went in with no plan for the country after deposing Saddam, and Bush steadfastly refuses to deliver a plan now. His refusal to commit to a timeframe for withdrawal has nothing to do with the timeframe itself, but on having any sort of accountability for his actions in the region. No one is going to tell him what to do regardless of the cost of money and lives. I agree with Joe Klein that the arrogance, incompetence and cynicism of this administration is finally catching up with them. And hey, big surprise, turns out there were no links between Iraq and Al Queda before the war, the intelligence community knew that and told the administration and the vice president installed his own intelligence group to cook up the right intelligence to justify their invasion. Wow.
Backing the president uncritically doesn’t seem to be the most prescient political move at the moment, especially with more and more republicans turning away from the president over the numerous scandals that are coming to light in the democratic congress.
I’m not sure who will emerge as strong contenders to the presidency, but McCain had better shape up quickly, and figure out where he stands on key issues before he hits the campaign trail for real. Hopefully he can emerge as a leader with his own opinions on the tough issues rather than the mealy mouthed yes-man of the bush administration he has become.