Sunday’s GOP Presidential candidate debate was more of a free-for-all than a discussion of the issues as participants attacked each other, Hillary Clinton, and anything Democratic.
Then they argued among themselves over who is, or is not, a real conservative.
With the rabid right wing of the Republican Party threatening to bolt and back an as-yet unnamed third party candidate, the GOP Presidential wannabes behaved like a group of schoolyard bullies, each trying to claim they were tougher than the others.
Republican rivals Fred Thompson, Mitt Romney and John McCain sought on Friday to become the favorite of anxious social conservatives, each suggesting he offered the best chance of thwarting abortion rights supporter Rudy Giuliani.
“This is not the time to turn our back on the progress we’ve made on the issues that matter most,” McCain, the Arizona senator, told a receptive gathering of “values voters.” “I have a record that can be trusted.”
If Americans really cared about the annual deficit or the $9 trillion national debt, they would choose Hillary Rodham Clinton or Ron Paul to be the next president. They’re among few candidates for the White House whose campaign spending is well within their means.
Lynne Cheney said Tuesday that her husband, Vice President Dick Cheney, is a distant cousin of his political polar opposite: Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama.
Cheney said she made the surprising discovery that her 66-year-old Republican husband and Obama, 46, are eighth cousins while she was doing family research for a book about her experiences growing up in Wyoming.
The vice president’s wife said she traced a common ancestor of the two men to a 17th century immigrant from France.
The sociologist Peter Berger once observed that, if India is the world’s most religious country and Sweden the least, the United States is a country of Indians ruled by Swedes.
He made this comment at a time when there was something of a consensus among our elites that religion was a basically private matter — one which ought to play little or no role in public policy debates.