This can’t make Republicans happy.
And this can’t make John McCain happy:
Barr took issue with McCain’s Iran policy. “I’m not going to go around making up songs about such a serious matter as going to war with a sovereign nation, as Senator McCain did,” the former congressman said, tut-tutting McCain’s “Barbara Ann/Bomb Iran” episode.
He quarreled with McCain’s Iraq policy. “These troops need to be brought home,” he offered.
He ridiculed the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law, which, he said, means McCain “cannot ever lay legitimate claim, at least with a straight face, to…being labeled as a conservative.”
He put down McCain’s plan to do away with pet-project earmarks, claiming it “would make barely a drop in the bucket with regard to the national debt, the deficit.”
And he disparaged McCain’s fiscal policy, saying “there are some legitimate questions that have been raised over whether Senator McCain is simply a Johnny-come-lately to the modest tax cuts.”
How exactly will this affect the race? Well, he obviously has serious name recognition among conservatives in Georgia, his home state, and with a large turnout among African Americans throughout the state, one can see a scenario where he helps Obama pick off Georgia.
Additionally, in states where independents and libertarians tend to do well, he helps Obama by taking votes from the GOP–states such as New Hampshire, Nevada, Maine, Alaska, Montana and a few others that run the gamut from east to west, with the one rule being that all are in the North (this has to do with history, a tradition of New England reform-minded politics that accompanied settlers as they headed west from that part of the country–a topic for another time).
Even more interesting, conservatives in Arizona are already hopping mad at McCain over his stance on immigration, and could stay home on election day (I interviewed many of them for The Real McCain, and the problem, for McCain, is real). If they do indeed stay home, and Barr peels off independents, might McCain have to fight for his home state? (If this poll is to be believed, McCain is only up a shockingly small 11 points in his home state).
Finally, it is important to remember that in recent primaries Ron Paul, who is long out of the race, has been garnering between 5-10% as a protest vote. Well, now that protest vote has a place to go.
Boxes of Xanax are on their way to McCain HQ as we speak, I would surmise…