Friday, January 18, 2008

DeLay Says McCain Has Betrayed Conservativism

Tom DeLay, the outspoken former Republican House Majority Leader, has leveled both barrels at presidential candidate John McCain, saying the Arizona senator has "betrayed" the conservative movement.

Speaking Thursday, DeLay told Republican staffers in Washington that McCain has no principles and that he would not endorse the senator if he won the GOP primary.

"If McCain gets the nomination, I don’t know what I’ll do,” DeLay said. “I might have to sit this one out.”

DeLay, a long-time critic of Sen. McCain, said that a McCain nomination would destroy the Republican Party.

Our take: DeLay was (and is) a conservative hot head, which is not what conservatism needs these days. In any case, DeLay's comments bode well for the Democrats. Eight years of Bush has left the right rudderless and well as leaderless, all the better for the return of common sense to foreign and domestic policy.


Dan Paden said...

...not what conservatism needs these days.

Ummm--I'm having a hard time flashing on exactly why anyone would take libs' opinion on what conservatism needs.

I mean, you wouldn't take mine on what liberalism needs too seriously, right?

In any event, two things: first, you'll find, I think, that DeLay's view of McCain is almost universal 'mongst conservatives and is also very common among Republicans (they are not necessarily the same thing); the pejorative "RINO" was practically invented for McCain, I think.

And second, don't count yer chickens before they hatch. When you can have your two leading candidates actually have a feud over race, your side ain't exactly coverin' itself in glory, neither. :)

Tulsan said...

How can McCain succeed without the coveted DeLay endorsement?

Tulsan said...

If only the non-"conservative" side would take to heart the converse of Dan's accurate observation...ignore the "concern trolls" who counsel against actions that might "damage" the Democratic party (like talking impeachment).

Tulsan said...

Regardless of the the general inadvisability of taking political advice from your opponents, AT's seems hard to fault:

"DeLay was (and is) a conservative hot head, which is not what conservatism needs these days."

The degree of DeLay's hot-headedness may be up for debate, but surely urging the recruitment of MORE conservative hot-heads would draw fire.

Interesting analysis of the results in S.C. at

"Huckabee ran evenly with McCain among mainline Republicans, and beat him by 2-1 among 'very conservative' voters."

That result suggests Dan's assertion, "DeLay's view of McCain is almost universal 'mongst conservatives and is also very common among Republicans," is somewhat on target (if you replace "conservative" with "very conservative.") Especially, given that Romney and Thompson no doubt split the "very conservative" vote.

But McCain won moderates, 47% to Huckabee's 18%.

"Indeed the non-evangelical vote in South Carolina was more emphatically against Huckabee than the evangelical vote was for him. He won just 12 percent of non-evangelicals, to McCain's 40 percent, Romney's 21 percent and Thompson's 15."

The question is: if and when Romney follows Thompson out of the race, how will their supporters fall? I presume Huckabee would come out with the greater share, but great enough to balance McCain's strength with independents, moderates, and non-evangelicals in the rest of the country? We shall see.