In my previous article, “Vote McCain in 2008 (if you think George Bush deserves a third term),” I wrote about how closely his policies are aligned with those of our current imperial president. It wasn’t always so. In fact, one of the tidbits never reported in the mainstream media (of course) was how John McCain was so upset with the 2000 election and the way the Bush campaign was run that he actually considered leaving the Republican Party and becoming an Independent. While he denies it, there is ample evidence that there were discussions between he and Tom Daschle, as well as several other prominent Democrats. But that was then and this is now.
This could be John McCain’s last chance to become president. If he is elected, he will be the oldest elected president at the age of 71. It is unlikely (never say never in politics) that he’ll mount this kind of effort at the age of 76. While the mainstream media preoccupied themselves promoting McCain as the straight-talk express in the years following Bush’s re-election, he began his transformation to a candidate that would be more acceptable to the GOP base, one of the most influential being evangelical Christians.
Back in 2000, John McCain referred to both Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson as “agents of intolerance” and called them an “evil influence” on the Republican Party. After making this statement, his campaign fell apart in Virginia and South Carolina. The rest is history, as George W. Bush became the GOP nominee. Looking ahead to a 2008 run, and seeking to repair any long-term political damage he may have done, McCain met with Reverend Falwell in 2006 to mend fences and discuss their differences. McCain apologized for his comments, telling Falwell that he had spoken in haste during the campaign. McCain also gave the graduation address at Falwell’s Liberty University on May 13 2006, where he defended the war in Iraq. The two men also discussed a federal ban on gay marriage.
In 2004, when the issue of a federal gay marriage ban first came up, John McCain broke with the Bush administration and the GOP leadership stating that the proposed amendment “strikes me as antithetical in every way to the core philosophy of Republicans” because it “usurps from the states a fundamental authority they have always possessed and imposes a federal remedy for a problem that most states do not believe confronts them.” However, the right had delivered the white house and it was time to pay up. The Republicans forced a vote on a gay marriage ban in 2006, and McCain was one of seven Republicans who voted against it. The bill was defeated. However, while “making nice” with Reverend Falwell, McCain agreed to support a federal constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman should a federal court ever strike down state constitutional bans on gay marriage.
While opposing a gay marriage ban on a federal level, McCain supported Protect Marriage Arizona’s 2005 efforts to pass a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage in his home state. Some may profess surprise, but that’s because the mainstream media immediately characterized McCain as a fair-minded moderate after he opposed the 2004 and 2006 federal ban efforts. Nothing could be further from the truth. John McCain does not support gay marriage in any context, nor is he open-minded about it. He firmly believes that marriage should only be defined as the union of one man and one woman. He just believes it should be legislated at a state level, not at a federal level.Setting his sights on Roe v. Wade
Let’s get in the “way back” machine and travel to 1999, when John McCain opposed overturning Roe v. Wade because he felt women would resort to illegal and dangerous abortions. Since taking office, President Bush has systematically appointed Supreme Court Justices with just that in mind, and there is now absolutely no reason to believe that McCain won’t continue that trend. He has again changed his position, stating that Roe v. Wade was a flawed decision that should be overturned. To cover his pandering to the religious right, McCain paints himself as a “states rights” champion, and the mainstream media sucks it up and regurgitates it back to the too trusting public without question or challenge, much in the same way it has handled the Bush presidency.
For good measure, McCain has also stated that, had he been South Dakota’s governor, he would definitely have signed on to that state’s proposed abortion ban. This was enough for the Reverend Falwell, who told ABC News that the pro-lifers in America are “comfortable” with where John McCain stands on the issue of abortion. Mission accomplished.Going deep to win it all
Unfortunately for McCain, Falwell didn’t make it to the 2008 elections. He passed away in May of 2007. It is unclear how much, if any, fence mending he has done with Pat Robertson. Other evangelical leaders, such as the Reverend Louis P. Sheldon (Traditional Values Coalition) and James Dobson (Focus on the Family) are still wary of McCain. Not to worry, McCain is continuing on his own path to right-wing acceptance.
McCain has sought and won the endorsement of the Reverend John Hagee, Pastor of the 19,000-member Cornerstone Church in San Antonio and founder of the pro-Israel lobby group Christians United for Israel. (So much for the separation between church and state.) Hagee harbors some warped beliefs, like all Muslims have a mandate to kill Christians and Jews because it is taught in the Quran and that Hurricane Katrina happened because New Orleans had planned a Gay Pride parade on the Monday that Katrina came ashore. Hagee also harbors some very dangerous beliefs. For example, in a 2006 address to CUFI, Hagee stated that the United States must join Israel in a pre-emptive military strike against Iran to fulfill God’s plan. The plan is “a biblically prophesized end-time confrontation with Iran, which will lead to the Rapture, Tribulation, and Second Coming of Christ.”
When questioned about embracing Hagee, McCain stated that he is “very proud of the Pastor John Hagee’s spiritual leadership to thousands of people…I am not endorsing some of their positions.” I’m not sure that would be enough for me because I do not know how you separate the two, but it was certainly enough for the mainstream media.
If Hagee isn’t enough to scare you, McCain has also received the endorsement of the Reverend Rod Parsley of the World Harvest Church of Columbus, Ohio, who called McCain a “strong, true, consistent conservative.” Parsley has written a number of books aimed at his targets: Activist judges, those who support separation between church and state, homosexuals, the “abortion industry” and the entertainment industry. In turn, McCain referred to Parsley as a “spiritual guide.”The mainstream media is asleep at the switch
The mainstream media is asleep at the switch when it comes to John McCain, but certainly not when it comes to Barack Obama. The media hounded Obama for days, even weeks, when it came to his association with the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, in spite of the fact that he took a stand denouncing Wright’s anti-American statements. In the final analysis, Obama told CNN that he would have left his church had Wright not retired. There has been no such grilling and dogging of McCain.
The media has instead chosen to focus on the insult Hagee leveled at the Catholic Church by calling it, among other things, a 'false cult system' rather than cover his more dangerous beliefs that could very well influence American foreign policy. As for McCain’s association with the Reverend Rod Parsley, it hasn’t even made a blip on the mainstream media radar screen. Yet, McCain has not renounced his association with either Hagee or Parsley. In fact, he proudly carries these endorsements on his sleeve, unscathed I might add, in his relentless march to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.