“John McCain believed in climate change,” Obama told supporters at a fundraiser in Minneapolis Friday. “John believed in campaign finance reform. He believed in immigration reform. I mean, there were some areas where you saw some overlap. In this election, the Republican Party has moved in a fundamentally different direction.”
President Barack Obama and his re-election advisers are waxing nostalgic about the Republican senator from Arizona who lost to Obama in the 2008 presidential race.
President Barack Obama seems to think that the world of politics would be better if someone like John McCain were running for the White House.
The Democratic incumbent and his re-election advisers are waxing nostalgic about the Republican senator from Arizona who lost to Obama in the 2008 presidential race. They’re embracing McCain as a reasonable voice on climate change and immigration, someone who took on extremism in his own party.
It’s all a way of drawing a contrast with Obama’s current GOP rival, Mitt Romney, and trying to convince crucial independent voters that the former Massachusetts governor is outside the mainstream.
But Obama’s flattering memories of McCain conflict with their campaign clashes of 2008. Back then, Obama hammered his rival as “out of touch” with many of the problems facing people in the United States.
Today’s platitudes also conceal the reality of Obama’s current dynamic with McCain. The senator is one of the president’s staunchest critics on everything from health care to foreign policy, and he’s a vocal Romney supporter.
To hear Obama tell it now, the McCain who ran against him in 2008 was an example of a principled Republican who knew how to reach across the aisle. The implication from Obama is that those qualities simply don’t apply to Romney.