McCain’s Winning Strategy

Kathryn Jean Lopez has some good advice for GOP Presidential Candidate John McCain. Mostly, it has to do with emphasizing experience over empty optimism.

Even MSNBC’s Hardball commentator Chris Matthews hammered an Obama supporter by asking: “What has he accomplished, sir? You say you support him. Sir, you have to give me his accomplishments. You’ve supported him for president. You are on national television. Name his legislative accomplishments. Barack Obama. Sir.”

The Obama supporter could not answer the question.

So, in her column appearing over at TownHall.com, Lopez has the following to say:

McCain can adopt the “ready from day one” meme the former first lady has unconvincingly and patronizingly used with Democratic primary voters. He can do it with a legitimacy Clinton never has had.

He needs to make the fullest possible use of this obvious advantage. He needs to embrace the fact that he doesn’t have a naive belief that he can wave a magic wand and remove our troops from Iraq the day he is inaugurated. He’s a responsible leader, so he knows that left-wing promises to “end the war in Iraq” are euphemisms for losing the war in Iraq. However, he who campaigned for his early primaries on a “No Surrender Tour” needs to go beyond what has been his saving grace with conservative voters — the fact that he was the leading advocate of the “surge” policy that Gen. David Petraeus has successfully executed in Iraq, at a time when that position was very unpopular in Washington.

And Senator McCain should especially drive home a part of his victory speech after the Wisconsin Primary:

After winning the Wisconsin primary the following week, McCain took aim at Obama. He declared: “I will fight every moment of every day in this campaign to make sure Americans are not deceived by an eloquent but empty call for change … that promises no more than a holiday from history and a return to the false promises and failed policies of a tired philosophy that trusts in government more than the people. Our purpose is to keep this blessed country free, safe, prosperous and proud. And the changes we offer to the institutions and policies of government will reflect and rely upon the strength, industry, aspirations and decency of the people we serve.”

He was clearly taking a shot at Obama. He needs to do this more often; to start drawing the comparisons now.

If he does so, McCain has a good chance for victory in November.

You can access the complete column on-line here:

McCain’s Winning Strategy
Kathryn Jean Lopez
TownHall.com
February 23, 2008

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