The Final Nail in Coffin for the Campaign of Senator John McCain?

Per John McCain, from Meet the Press on Sunday morning: “Do we share a common philosophy of the Republican Party? Of course,”  – and with that, perhaps McCain added the final nail to the coffin of the McCain/Palin ticket.

In context, what McCain was trying to do was say that both him and George Bush are Republicans and share an ideology.  However, the last thing McCain needs to say is that he shares anything similar to George W. Bush.  To me, this is a gaffe and on par with that of Biden claiming Obama will be ‘tested’ on the international stage in six months.  Obama’s biggest issue has been foreign policy experience.  For McCain, it’s being tied to the failed policies of President Bush.  Obama already is using the line in his stump speeches and I would expect, as was Biden’s gaffe, a commercial will be produced shortly with McCain’s gaffe.

But the reality is that there is some substance to Obama using McCain’s words against him.  The ‘philosophy’ that McCain and Bush share is one of a conservative.  What does that mean?  It means they believe in less regulation, it means providing tax cuts – particularly to the wealthy in support of supply-side economics, it means less social programs, it means less tolerance for social issues such as abortion and gay marriage.  Beyond that, it goes to associations.  Conservatives, in the guise of Republicans, are supported by big business and Wall Street.  This is their philosophy and this is what has failed the nation economically.

What McCain may have inadvertently done is make a distincition between he and Bush, but also build the argument that they are actually similar.  McCain can argue his methods for achieving Conservative goals are different (i.e. his policies).  However, at the end of the day, the goals (philosophy) are the same.  Bush has had failed with policy – such as the Iraq War or his economic plan.  But Bush has also failed in the Conservative ideology – deregulation and tax cuts.  And that, my friends, is why four years of McCain is four more years of Bush’s ideology.

Obama rightly should be calling out this similarity.  The power of today’s comments and those of McCain’s past – “there are studies that show I (John McCain) voted with the president 90% of the time, more than my colleagues” is a damning one two punch.  These previous comments, boasting about his support for President Bush also builds the argument he supports, not only the ideology, but the policies of the President.

Let’s roll a couple of videos:

also (see 5:45 in for the ‘philsophy’ comment):

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