Monday, May 21, 2007

Evidence that John McCain is Quite Worried About Mitt Romney

Jim Geraghty of National Review Online reports this exchange on McCain's latest blogger conference call:

Ryan Sager of the New York Sun: Romney and Thompson trying to use immigration against you.

McCain: A little disappointed in Fred, he had a different position not long ago, but he's not an official candidate. As for Romney, maybe I should wait a few weeks and see if it changes. Maybe his solution will be to get his "small varmant [sic] gun" and drive those Guatamalans [sic] off his lawn.

Jim's reaction: Holy crap, that was a slam.

Wow. McCain does hit hard when he wants to, doesn't he? I suspect one of his staffers had that one written down for him. This could be interesting, because I am not sure McCain really wants to get into spitting match with Romney over inconsistency. Romney will probably just laugh this off and McCain will end up looking, well, angry. According to many reports, McCain is really good at getting angry.

Update: K-Lo comments:

Yikes. And it's only May 2007.

That's actually much more exciting than the fing Cornyn fight.
Full disclosure: I am a deeply committed Romney supporter.

Update 2: More K-Lo, with a link to audio of the McCain triple-slam.

Update 3: Romney's response, through his spokesman Kevin Madden:

“Governor Romney has been very clear that he opposes this immigration agreement, which clearly falls short of the American public’s expectations. It seems that certain candidates who brokered this flawed plan are having a very difficult time grappling with or coming to terms with the political fallout that has ensued in a substantive manner.”
Ouch. In other words, maybe it would be a good idea to respond to criticisms of your actions instead of attacking the critics personally?

Update 4: Dean Barnett and Hugh Hewitt have more. Dean:
Aaah, as Robert Duvall said in Apocalypse Now, I love the smell of a campaign imploding in the morning. At least I think that was the quote.


Blogger BillT said...

McCain should fear the Republican base more than he frets over his competitors. We have the memory of elephants and often the same approach as elephants in the china shops of political egos.

Monday, May 21, 2007 11:08:00 AM  
Blogger Robert said...

I wrote that the McCain campaign died this week. But...

It's possible that he's going to take Romney down with him. There are enough cases in evidence where he has changed his position that the predisposition is going to be for the charge to stick every time. And that was a classic slam, up there with "you're no Dan Quayle" (a lie, cause Benson didn't really know JFK) and "I'm paying for this microphone."

The saving grace for Romney is that a slam on a blogger conference call is not as widely reported as those....but it's going to circulate, and it's going to leave a mark.

Monday, May 21, 2007 3:00:00 PM  
Blogger The Hedgehog said...

Robert: Romney has moved in a steadily rightward direction with his changes of position (of which there are only two that are clearcut and major). McCain has been all over the map on many issues. He will look a lot worse if the issue of flip-flopping is scrutinized.

More important, this was a nasty triple-barrelled personal attack. Watch: Romney's response (if any) will be calm, classy and low-key. McCain comes off looking a lot worse here.

Monday, May 21, 2007 3:57:00 PM  
Blogger Robert said...

I'm no McCain fan. I think he's done and I'm glad. I lived in Arizona too long to trust him one inch.

That said, I'm not sure how it's a personal attack. He took a swipe at Romney changing positions. He took a swipe at the hunting thing. He took a swipe at hiring illegals. It seems more political than personal to me...but I'm willing to be persuaded.

Monday, May 21, 2007 8:09:00 PM  

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