Alex Blaze

McCain needs to pick on the gays more?

Filed By Alex Blaze | July 08, 2008 6:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics, The Movement
Tags: Barack Obama, Don't Ask Don't Tell, Fred Barnes, gay marriage, John McCain, same-sex marriage, Weekly Standard

One of America's sharpest conservatives, Fred Barnes, editor of the Weekly Standard, on Fox News on how McCain needs to start gay-bashing:


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Oh, where to begin.

First, Obama doesn't support same-sex marriage. We already knew that. He was saying "one man, one woman" as recently as a couple of weeks ago. Fred doesn't say it straight out, but we all know what he means: make it seem like Obama supports same-sex marriage so that he'll have to shoot so far to the right on that issue that he'll piss off the gays on the left, just like Kerry did.

Second, Obama's on the winning side of DADT. A majority of the country is fine with gays and lesbians in the military. Demonizing us on this issue is only going to further plant him in the "four more years" narrative and give credence to the idea that he's just some old guy who hates change. (That's not change you can believe in!)

Third, not campaigning hard enough on gay issues wasn't the reason the GOP did badly in 2006 compared to 2004. There were plenty of Congressional races that came down to gay-bashing where the Republican lost and there's really little evidence that gay issues actually lost the race for Kerry in 2004. As much as our media attached on to those issues, people just don't care enough about them to make them change their votes when there are other pressing issues (like the war, the economy, government corruption, high gas prices, failing health care, loss of civil liberties...). I'd frankly be surprised if a significant portion of Americans cared enough about us to come out to vote against us in droves big enough to deliver a victory for McCain.

Besides that, I guess he has a point.

What's more interesting here is the fact that a magazine editor is appearing on a television circle jerk (albeit a conservative one) to tell a presidential candidate that he has to drift away from the center in the general. Can we imagine a supposed liberal like Chris Matthews on one of these programs telling Barack Obama that he can't forget his liberal base, so he should make a stronger statement in favor of same-sex marriage? Of course not - Democrats need to move rightwards to the center while Republicans need to more rightwards to the right. It's the only way these pundits will be happy.

All the while, Fred Barnes thinks he's all clever for suggesting that McCain cynically abuse a minority in order to garner votes for the two things he really wants to do: kill people and get money. Sure, the GOP's been doing that for years, but, gawsh Fred, y'all are supposed to be more subtle!


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They're trying to hold onto to power by any means necessary.

The conservatives know that after this election, they may be out of power for at least 10-20 years, and the best part about it is that they did it to themselves.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | July 9, 2008 5:10 AM

I think the biggest danger remains apathy.

Too many "liberal" and young voters still have no faith in the system to be changed after the election fiasco of 2000 and government by fear in 2004. I fear that on the full range of issues many still lack a full attention span.

After all, we know the conservatives will march lock step over a cliff over just being anti abortion.

While he supports the California anti-gay marriage amendment, McCain is otherwise gay bashing stealthily. He is sending his message to "values voters" by pledging to nominate "strict constructionist" judges to the Supreme Court.

This imperils not only our community but Roe v Wade.

At least they are finally admitting that a big part of 2000 and 2004's campaign strategies were simply "Bash gays." That's a step forward! Now they can at least be honest about their hatred instead of claiming "compassionate conservatism."