Friday, April 15, 2005
McCain won't run for president: Arizona Sen. John McCain announced today on MSNBC's "Hardball" program that he wouldn't be running for the GOP nomination for president in 2008.
MATTHEWS: But bottom line, would you vote for what’s called the “nuclear option,” to get rid of the filibuster rule on judgeships?
MCCAIN: No, I will not.
MATTHEWS: You will stick with the party?
MCCAIN: No, I will vote against the nuclear option.
MATTHEWS: You will vote—
MCCAIN: Against the nuclear option.
OK, so McCain didn't say anything specific about the 2008 presidential race, but he can't honestly believe that he will win a single GOP primary after having caved on judicial nominees.
What's even more sad is McCain's lame, naive and borderline crazy rationale for allowing the Democrats to get away with their extra-constitutional use of the filibuster.
MCCAIN: Yes, because I think we have got to sit down and work this thing out. Look, we won’t always be on the majority. I say to my conservative friends, some day there will be a liberal Democrat president and a liberal Democrat Congress. Why? Because history shows it goes back and forth. I don’t know if it’s a hundred years from now, but it will happen. And do we want a bunch of liberal judges approved by the Senate of the United States with 51 votes if the Democrats are in the majority?
Second of all, we ought to be able to work it out. Third of all I don’t want to shut down the Senate. We’re in a war. We’re in a war. Shouldn’t we be doing the people’s business?
McCain can't actually believe that 20 years down the road when we have a Democrat president and Democrats in control of the Senate that they will feel somehow bound not to change the rules when Republicans use the filibuster? Does he think The New York Times editorial page won't flip again and decry the use of the filibuster by Republicans to deny qualified, liberal judges a place on the bench?
McCain's right about the fact that they should be able to work it out -- but that means that Democrats will have to stand up to their liberal base. It's not going to happen.
Finally, Republicans wouldn't be "shutting down the Senate," Democrats would. If they were to take that highly irresponsible tack, then maybe it would show the citizens who elected them just how big a mistake it was -- and they wouldn't do it again. McCain shouldn't be in the business of protecting the Democrats from themselves.