Jon Henke has a interesting piece up about the freak-out over McCain, and points out exactly what has confused me the last couple of weeks:
So, why is the Right so angry about McCain? I understand the vehemence of the disagreements, but the anger – including my own, in the past – is disproportionate.
For instance, McCain is perceived as an almost wholly unacceptable Republican (primarily) for his positions on immigration and campaign finance reform, with additional anger directed at him over a few other issues. Yet, President Bush presided over/supported, e.g., No Child Left Behind, the immigration reform bill, McCain-Feingold, the Medicare Drug Bill, a massive expansion of federal spending, egregious agriculture and energy bills, a badly conceived and conducted war in Iraq, and myriad other anti-limited government positions. And he did most of that with a Republican Congress.
Bush is worse in almost every respect – having actively introduced and supported outrageous violations of the putative ideals of the Right – but he is not regarded with the same anger. Why?
Years from now, when people look back at this administration, Bush will have turned out to be less conservative than Bill Clinton in almost every regard, yet he gets a pass. Not only that, his most ardent supporters, people who absolutely refuse to say a bad word about Bush are the same folks who reject McCain.
Go read the whole thing.