Monday, January 21, 2008

McCain's buddies

Rich Lowry on McCain's two greatest allies:

McCain has the advantage of, as a couple of people have noted, having some de facto wingmen in this race. First, there's Fred, whose lackluster showing in South Carolina was just enough to help McCain win there. As Ryan Sager writes, "Fred Thompson surely has a claim on the vice presidential nod should McCain go all the way, given the votes he took from Mike Huckabee on the Arizona senator's behalf." Then, there's Huckabee in Florida. As Martin and Ruffini point out, he's a great asset to McCain, drawing votes from Romney. Not only that, Huckabee has verged into man-crush territory with McCain and can be counted on to call any attack on him unfortunate and unfair. What makes Florida different is that Rudy's vote is probably going to hold up better than in all the early states where he collapsed and his votes presumably went to McCain. (Indeed, I don't discount the possibility of Rudy winning in Florida). Also, I assume Rudy really wants this thing and won't have the inhibitions about seriously criticizing McCain that, for whatever reason, Huckabee and Fred have felt. This means that McCain could get a one-two punch from Rudy and Romney, and we'll get a chance to see how he holds up under the kind of fire a frontrunner usually gets. It all makes, needless to say, for an incredibly volatile race.

You got to wonder why McCain is getting the kid glove treatment from Huckabee and Thompson. Some people have suggested that Thompson is really running for VP in a McCain administration. I hope this isn't true. As for Huckabee who the hell knows what is going on in his head. Maybe he knows he can't win and is trying to help the next most liberal man in the race.