RUSH: You have to feel for Senator McCain a little bit. He goes on the Today Show yesterday, and Matt Lauer asks him when the troops are going to come outta there in Iraq, and McCain says, ‘When they come out is not important,’ blah, blah, blah, blah. He said we still have troops in Germany, still have troops in Japan. We got troops in places. Getting them outta there is not the important thing. Winning the war is important. He’s exactly right, folks. I must say, he’s exactly right. But he’s finding out today (he started finding out yesterday) just how his buddies in the Drive-Bys — and they’re just getting warmed up — are going to carry the water for the extreme leftists in the Democrat Party. You had John Kerry (who served in Vietnam), the haughty one, out there saying McCain’s old. He’s confused.
This is crazy. McCain can’t believe it. He thought he was best buds with Kerry. He’s got Dingy Harry out there saying, ‘Yeah, we can’t trust McCain. He’s got a bad temper. He can fly off the handle at any time.’ McCain was doing a little press conference somewhere this morning and he had the usual coterie of supporters standing behind him, and a reporter gets up and asks again about this comment. ‘Well, Senator McCain, why is it unimportant when the troops come back?’ And you could just see, you could just see. He took a couple pauses. He was ready to dive into that crowd and strangle that stupid reporter, something I would have applauded. But he stood there calmly and said, ‘This is why we need town debates. This is a sound bite problem. This is why we need town hall meetings; the American people asking the questions, so they can hear the whole answer in context,’ and so forth — and he repeated his Iraq position. I support this; I support that.
He didn’t directly answer the guy’s question. LA Times today: ‘McCain’s Remark Sparks an Uproar.’ They’re trying to say that McCain doesn’t care about the troops, by clipping his quote where he says getting them outta there, when they come outta there is not important. Lieberman is now mad. He’s responding. He says, ‘I’m disappointed by these reflexive attacks. The part that I find really most outrageous is the suggestion that Senator McCain is out of touch with the needs of our troops and insensitive to their families,’ which is what the Drive-Bys are saying. These were his base. The Drive-Bys were his base! He’s gotta be sitting there wondering, ‘What the hell happened? These people used to love me!’ Well, they never did love you, Senator McCain. They used you! You were willing to go on their stupid little shows and rip your own party and rip your own president. Of course they’re going to do that.
They called you the maverick! But guess what? Now you’re not a maverick. Why, you’re Bush 3! That’s like the worst thing a maverick could be called, is Bush 3. Get ready, Senator. This is only the tip of the iceberg of all the ammo they have aimed and trained on you. Here’s what I’m hoping, ladies and gentlemen. I’m hoping at some point relatively soon McCain gets ticked off enough about this that he comes to his senses on the issue of energy independence in this country. Do you realize that if you look at any poll out there taken of the American people, they want energy independence? They want drilling for our own energy supplies. They want nuclear. They don’t want all of this Kyoto stuff. They don’t want taxes to go up. They don’t want the price of gas to go up even a penny by 60 some odd percent, if the purpose of the increase is to fight global warming. They want cheaper gasoline, and they know how to get it. This is an issue. It is an issue made to order.
Now, McCain has changed his mind on a couple things. This would be a goody. This would be a huge one. Somebody could get to Senator McCain and say, Senator, you want to win this election? You want to contrast who you are with Senator Obama and the leftists in the Democrat Party? Here’s your issue. ‘Drill here. Drill now. Energy independence.’ Start now and get on this, and I’m telling you, he would see a miraculous thing happen in his campaign. But I don’t know who can tell him these things. It’s just a sitting duck. It’s a sitting duck. Victor Davis Hanson today has a piece. I think I read it in the New York Post. Victor Davis Hanson, as you know, is a classicist, a historian, he’s a brilliant writer. He’s occasionally been upset with me over my positions on Senator McCain, but nevertheless we’re still on the same team out there. Now, the Hoover Institution where he works is at Palo Alto at Stanford, and that’s the San Francisco peninsula. He lives there.
He also happens to be a framer in the Central Valley of California. And he happened to be driving down three hours south of where he lives. He ran into some rural Californians at a gas station, and he describes in this piece their cars, basically jalopies. And he talks about how the need to get around hasn’t lessened even though the price of gasoline has increased, but he notes that they’re driving these secondhand cars, these old jalopies; but it’s taking two days of work for these people to fill up their tanks — a major, major alteration in their lifestyle. Then he recalled the lifestyle of the liberals up in the San Francisco peninsula where we have all the liberal elitists elites and it’s a home to all the environmentalist wackos. He said, ‘They don’t seem to care about rising gas prices at all. They’re very happy about it. They’ve got the money to deal with it, where it doesn’t really count, and it doesn’t really faze them.’
And he said, ‘What’s fascinating about this to me is that liberals who have all this care and concern for the little guy, all this care and concern for the nation’s downtrodden, are oblivious to the impact on the lives of most Americans of the rising gasoline price.’ Well, good! If liberals are unaware and cavalier and don’t care about the impact of rising gasoline prices on the people who make this country work, then it is even more of a great issue for McCain and the Republican Party to latch onto and claim as their own. Now, I know he probably thinks he’d take a hit if he did a flip-flop on this, and he’s gone pretty much over the cliff here on carbon emissions and all this global warming stuff. But it’s not too late, here. He’ll needs his party on his side. Obama is already in trouble. This is a golden opportunity.