john mccain

I used to think McCain could actually lead this country. He doesn’t know if condoms help prevent the spread of sexually-transmitted diseases? Who does he think he’s kidding besides mouth-breathing single-issue voters that could care less about the health of others when it comes to their moral imperatives?

The unthinkable has happened. Senator John McCain met a question, while sitting with reporters on his bus as it rumbled through Iowa today, that he couldn’t – or perhaps wouldn’t – answer. [Emphasis added – Ed.]

Did he support the distribution of taxpayer-subsidized condoms in Africa to fight the transmission of H.I.V.?

What followed was a long series of awkward pauses, glances up to the ceiling and the image of one of Mr. McCain’s aides, standing off to the back, urgently motioning his press secretary to come to Mr. McCain’s side.

The upshot was that Mr. McCain said he did not know this subject well, did not know his position on it, and relied on the advice of Senator Tom Coburn, a physician and Republican from Oklahoma.

His press secretary, Brian Jones, later reported that Mr. McCain had a record of voting against using government money to finance the distribution of condoms.

So McCain knew exactly what was going on, he was just acting stupid to avoid talking about his voting record. Then again, considering that he’s let Bush use him like a cheap whore in Subic Bay during fleet week I’m sadly not surprised.



  1. Greg Allen says:

    Like many liberals, I used to like and and respect McCain. Clearly he is a conservative but he’s one of the few in the GOP leadership who had moments of honesty and integrity.

    All of that has gone away since he has been trying to appeal to the “values conservative” gang.

    I seriously doubt that he’s ever convincingly going to pass himself off as one of those guys and now he has lost the respect of the middle.

  2. Tom 2 says:

    Yea McCain has just made himself a punching bag of the left and the right, he was in the middle, very respectable, which led to republicans bashing him, now he has tried to appease them and the left are trashing him too, he really should just get out now, because he wont have any of the swing voters, cause if history has been any marker, McCain will keep on digging his grave deeper and deeper, until you cant see him anymore.

  3. Greg Allen says:

    I never thought of McCain as in the middle, exactly; he always struck me as a conservative.

    But he never struck me as one of these ideologue “values conservatives” who refuse to alter their views based on the real world. Nor was he such a party loyalist that he’d sell America down the river to help the GOP.

    For example, his opposition to torture:

    Like most of us true patriots he understands that torture is an shameful betrayal of the American Way.

    So, he opposed torture even though it made Bush uncomfortable.

    But, best I can tell, McCain caved on the issue as his candidacy approached.

  4. Chris Swett says:

    I used to like McCain, back before he was pandering to the “conservative base”, but he’s recently said himself that he lost in 2000 because Bush “had the base”. So, in the intervening years he’s re-invented himself and squandered his credibility with moderates by sucking up to the far right.

  5. Misanthropic Scott says:

    I agree with Greg Allen that McCain always seemed conservative, at least when I bothered to pay attention to him. However, his current stance on overturning Roe v. Wade, teaching abstinence only, and now dropping an AIDS bomb on Africa as part of the extreme right’s crusade have led me to believe that he can no longer be seen as anything other than an extreme right wing radical. I think we must assume that, if this gains him any support at all, and possibly even if it merely loses his old support base, that he will have no choice but to stay way out in right field, hopefully out in the parking lot wondering what’s going on inside.

    (Strange to catch myself making a baseball analogy when I don’t watch sports. Hmm… maybe I need more coffee.)

  6. Greg Allen says:

    The problem with McCain trying to take the GOP “base” is that the these are hardcore Bush loyalists and McCain has to become a little Bushie to appeal to them.

    While “the base” still loves Bush, in the rest of America he is polling just above anthrax.

  7. Best part of the article was at the end, where a reporter really takes him to task:

    This went on for a few more moments until a reporter from the Chicago Tribune broke in and asked Mr. McCain about the weight of a pig that he saw at the Iowa State Fair last year.

    I bet McCain wasn’t prepared for the tough followup about the Iowa State Fair!

  8. Hvac says:

    He has always been mixed up, you just got around to noticing!

  9. Al says:

    McCain actually said: “Brian, would you find out what my position is on contraception.”

    I must be naive. Before reading this, I thought people had positions and that they knew what they were. I need an aide to tell me how I feel about this.

  10. doug says:

    #3. The thing is, he even sold out on the torture issue, leaving too much discretion in the hands of Bush, Cheney and their gang of water-boarders.

    I used to have a modicum of respect for McCain, too. I think his effort to appeal to the Bushies in the GOP is absolutely futile. They hate, hate, HATE him for his criticism of how the war is being fought. You know, these are the people with the “Stand behind our president” signs at the pro-war demonstrations. Also, a lot of the moneybags types in the GOP hate him for leading the charge on campaign finance reform.

    He is going to wind up betraying his own beliefs and also not becoming president, and that’s a real shame.

  11. Calin says:

    To play the Devil’s Advocate here…I can see a part of the question he might not have an answer for. It’s the “tax-payer” question. Should the American tax-payer fund condoms for Africa? That’s billions of dollars of government expenditures.

  12. Jägermeister says:

    A politician who turns out to be a slimeball…. How shocking!

  13. doug says:

    #11. I think part of the point of the article is that he was floundering about to give an answer, as if he did not even know what his position was. For a guy who claims “straight talk,” the impression he gave was that he was grappling for a response that would not offend anyone.

    Kind of like Hilary’s non-answer to the “is homosexuality immoral?” question the other day.

  14. Calin says:

    Oh, yeah, he’s a politician to the core. All of them pander, it’s in the job description.

    I’m just not sure it had anything to do with “values conservatives” as has been claimed by other posters. I don’t think he’s Catholic (not sure really) and the Pope is the only person against condoms for adults.

    But yeah, “Brian, would you find out what my position is on contraception.” is pretty damn funny. You would think he would know his position on an issue. I’m sure there are issues out there which I might not know enough about to have a position on….but I don’t know anyone I could ask to tell me my position. Sounds like he wrote down his answers somewhere and promptly forgot, like Alzheimer’s.

  15. Brian says:

    McCain is a tool, plain and simple.

    Back when he was courting the left vote, he was in favor of keeping abortion legal. Now that he’s trying to portray himself as a moderate or conservative, he’s actively against it.

    He’s been on both sides of the fence on just about every single topic there can be.

    A couple years back, he tried to introduce legislation – twice – that would have banned any and all betting on collegiate sports. Now, he encourages people to go to his website and check out his NCAA men’s basketball tourney bracket.

    The guy is an out and out two-faced liar.

  16. TJGeezer says:

    “…find out my position on contraception”

    That pretty much says everything that needs to be said about Mr. Integrity.

  17. ArianeB says:

    Many here in Arizona are not happy with McCain’s recent flip-flopping either. In this mostly Red state, most of the conservatives here are not of the “social” or “neo-con” variety. They are more of a libertarian variety like Barry Goldwater and Sandra Day O’Connor. Pro Life is a minority position, and Arizona is the only state to vote down a constitutional ban on gay marriage (it is still illegal here). John McCain’s pandering to the right for the 2008 election may cost him his senate seat in 2010.

  18. MikeN says:

    Why spend any money on Africa? Aren’t you guys always compaining about deficits leading to America’s imminent demise?

  19. Shane says:

    There is a McCain add on the left side of this blog…. : )

  20. TikiLoungeLizard says:

    John McCain only wishes he had half the integrity of Barry Goldwater. I grew up in AZ and while I didn’t often agree with Goldwater, I respected the man and his independence. He grew up a Jew in a state (AZ) with few Jews, and he resisted the conflation of religion and politics. He would never have allowed himself to become a toady for the neo-cons.

  21. Mr. Fusion says:

    McCain has taken on some Bush staffers for his campaign. I wonder how much they are influencing his positions. Fred Thompson is looking better all the time.

  22. Grrr says:

    #3 – extremely well said.

    #9 – (sigh) kudos.

  23. Sounds The Alarm says:

    Sadly he is a good man that disparately wants to be President.

    His best chance was 2000 until he let Bush and rove swift-boat him in South Ca.

  24. Smartalix says:

    He must be toast, not one of the Usual SuspectsTM came to his defense. Even the most shrill knee-jerkers that come to the defense of Anything Remotely Republican (ARR) here are silent. McCain is dead meat on a stick.

  25. Anne says:

    McCain’s dishonesty and stupidity have become legend in the months since he and Obama clinched the Republican and Democratic nominations, respectively.

    Rather than the media-created myth of a “maverick,” he has exposed himself as a mean-spirited, dishonest, and quick-tempered man who will say and do anything to win. He can’t run on the issues, so he has to manufacture things, such as the idea that celebrity is a liability.