2008 February 05 Tuesday
Bad Press Coverage As Soon As McCain Sews Up Nomination

Once John McCain's winning of the Republican presidential nomination becomes certain watch for a big change in media coverage of him. When he was running against other Republicans for the nomination the media treated him pretty favorably because he was seen as the most leftward leaning Republican candidate on many issues. But once he is only running against Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama he will be the most rightward leaning candidate still in the race and then the media will likely go much more negative on him.

In spite of the fact that I'm rightward leaning myself I'm looking forward to this coming change in the tone of McCain press coverage. I think Republicans will be better off if McCain loses. Republicans will find it much easier to oppose a given set of policies if Hillary Clinton advocates those policies than if John McCain does. Well, I want to see Republicans oppose immigration amnesty and the continuation of the war in Iraq and other foolishness. With a Hillary presidency the intensity of Republican opposition to bad policies will rise.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2008 February 05 08:47 PM  Politics American Presidency

Ned said at February 6, 2008 6:26 AM:

Amen. Charles Hurt of the "New York Post" says we can expect a sharp leftward turn from McCain if he is elected, although this will be no more than reversion to form (http://www.nypost.com/seven/02062008/news/columnists/once_john_wins__hell_make_a_left_852521.htm). He is the fourth most liberal GOP senator and the most liberal from outside the northeast. So what we'll get from a President McCain is amnesty for illegal aliens, no tax cuts, more neocon "wars of national liberation," restriction of First Amendment rights (McCain-Feingold), no conservative judges (Gang 0f 14), slippery ethics (Keating Five) and more global warming malarkey. This stuff from a Democratic president would fire up the GOP base in opposition, but RINO McCain might just get away with most of it.

Bubba said at February 6, 2008 7:34 AM:

I'm curious - is this the first time in history when an 89% liberal press has been able to select the nominee for the conservative party?

Looks like history's being made this year in more ways than one.

Greg said at February 6, 2008 7:39 AM:

Ironically, might this not help McCain in the general?

All those conservatives who are contemplating staying home in November if McCain's the nominee might get worked up and vote for him if the MSM hates on him hard enough. It would be kind of the same way that conservatives stuck with G.W. Bush for as long as they did primarily because of the fact that Dan Rather hated him so much to falsify records. Or how liberals stuck by Bill Clinton because they hated Ken Starr more than they hated his rightward moves (welfare reform, for one).

Maybe I'm wrong, though. I know that I do have a tendency to defend someone being attacked from the left even if I don't agree with them. For example, I defend Obama from Hillary's misleading "present vote" advertisements. I don't want Obama in the White House, but gosh darn it, there is such a thing as the truth.

They say the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Once John McCain becomes the enemy of the mainstream media, who knows if that old adage will prove true.

Dragon Horse said at February 6, 2008 8:58 AM:

What about the 2 Supreme Court justices that will likely retire?

daveg said at February 6, 2008 12:36 PM:

Yes, a lot of angry "extremist" conservatives would actually help McCain's centrist image.

Bubba said at February 6, 2008 1:41 PM:

"Yes, a lot of angry "extremist" conservatives would actually help McCain's centrist image."

With who? Liberals don't have to vote for McCain, because they have someone more liberal to vote for. It is conservatives and us only who are being told "Vote for McCain because you have no choice."

McCain might be able to pick up some of the "centrist" vote, but he'll have problems holding onto his own voters or even encouraging conservative independents to show up to the polls.

Randall Parker said at February 6, 2008 5:50 PM:


Yes, there will be some of that "the enemy of my enemy.." reaction. But I don't think that will compensate for McCain's general image among those on the Right who closely follow politics.

Dragon Horse,

Yes, the Supreme Court is very old. In the next 8 years I expect more than 2 retirements. Hillary or Obama will definitely shift the court leftward.


I think the biggest thing McCain has going for him is Hillary's high negatives.

I'm not going to vote for either party this fall.

Bubba said at February 6, 2008 9:22 PM:

"Yes, the Supreme Court is very old. In the next 8 years I expect more than 8 retirements."

Eight years being two presidential terms, not one. Something about the times we live in tells me that no matter who wins in 2008, Republican or Democrat, it's going to be very hard getting re-elected in 2012. There are just too many problems facing this country that are politically difficult to face - illegal immigration, budget deficits, a graceful withdrawal from Iraq, the trade deficit and the growing economic threat from China and India, declining quality of life as exhibited by increasing commute times (which, of course, has nothing to do with the "I" word).

Giving the Democrats a go might just give the public a chance to see that they don't have any politically palatable answers to these problems, either.

Randall Parker said at February 6, 2008 9:31 PM:

I meant to say more than 2 retirements and I fixed that. Sorry you responded to my mistake.

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