Remember the heat John Kerry took because he once said that he voted for the war before he voted against the war? The media and the Republicans had a field day with him. Kerry is still known as a flip-flopper as a result of that.
Four short years later we are seeing McCain flip-flop on every single issue – except the war. I can’t keep up with them all.
He was against the Everglades restoration before he was for it.
He was against the MLK holiday before he was for it.
He was against Katrina investigations before he was for it.
He was weak on the economy before he was – well, weak on the economy.
He was for 100 years in Iraq before he was against it.
He was against the Religious right’s endorsement before he was for it before he was against it again.
Sadly, the list continues on and on.
The latest flip-flop occurred yesterday when McCain decided he was for oil drilling off the coast of Florida after he was against it. It appears this change is motivated because Bush is going to put pressure on Congress in order to allow drilling off of Florida.
We should have seen this coming because Darth Cheney recently lied that China was drilling offshore only 60 miles from the Florida coast. The right wing parrots moved the oil rig closer to 45 miles from Florida. Except that it isn’t true. How do we know this? Mel Martinez, Republican Senator from Florida said so. Yes, Mel Martinez. Yes, a Republican.
“Despite what is cited as fact here in the Senate and in other places, China is not drilling off the coast of Cuba.”
(Just another brief aside: Florida Governor Charlie Crist – a Republican – and big environmentalist, who has been steadfast is his fight against drilling off of Florida, yesterday changed his position too. You think this has anything to do with a hopeful VP spot for Mr. Crist?)
What will cost McCain this election, though, is that he’s flip-flopping to the right and towards the unpopular president. Usually, the Democratic candidate already has the more progressive voters sewn up so they move to the right to get the moderates, independents and some Republicans. The Republican candidate usually pulls the other way since they usually have the right in the bag.
This year, the right is unconvinced about McCain so he has pulled to the right. In fact, he is going so far right that it should cost him the moderates, independents and even some of his less conservative Republicans. The longer McCain stays out in Right Field, the harder it will be for him to pull back and recapture the middle. In fact, he also risks losing that moderate Republican label he has enjoyed for so long. The one that had him poll strongly against every Democratic candidate.
What’s worse for McCain is that it’s not like these far right voters would vote for Obama. Some may stay home. Most would have voted for McCain just to beat Obama. By pandering to them, McCain is turning away a larger bloc of voters and they won’t stay home. They’d, instead, vote for Obama.
And if the Quinnipiac poll from June 9th – 16th is any indication, Obama is now ahead of McCain in Florida 47% – 43%. As recently as last month, McCain enjoyed a 10 point lead over Obama in Florida.
Before the election slips away from him, McCain better flip back toward the center.