My Latest on out today in response to Fred Barnes’ recent piece in the Weekly Standard.

McCain Must Resist Increasingly Surreal Hubris of GOP Elites
By Gregg Jackson
Wednesday, March 19, 2008

This week Fred Barnes wrote an article in which he suggests that McCain’s best VP choice is Mitt Romney.


Mr. Barnes is correct that McCain’s VP selection is vital because of McCain’s age (71) and because McCain needs to select an authentic conservative with widespread appeal to the GOP base-Evangelical and Catholic Christians, millions of whom have started to gag on the regularly scheduled forced doses of the GOP’s shut-up-and-do-as-you’re-told concoctions.

Mr. Barnes believes Mitt Romney is exactly the man to get them to swallow yet another bitter dose.

Such a claim could only issue forth from the increasingly bizarre, even surreal, consensus in which the “conservative” elites — pundits, consultants, lawyers and self-styled “pro-family” power brokers — swim.

First, Mr. Barnes writes that McCain’s VP should be acceptable to conservatives-especially social conservatives. Perhaps Mr. Barnes does not quite understand how right he is on this. It has long been apparent that among the conservative elites “pro-life” is merely a uniform that one puts on like a free agent ballplayer joining a team in search of a championship.

“You’re now ‘pro-life,’ Mr. Romney? Why should we believe that?”

“Because I said so, and that ought to be proof enough. And only a fool would turn away a convert to the pro-life cause.”

“Maybe so, Slick, and maybe not. But the question remains, why should we believe that?”

“Well, after my conversion to the pro-life side, with every bill that came across my desk I came down on the side of life.”

“Hmmm. Well, does that include your massive government health care plan with which you delighted Ted Kennedy by establishing taxpayer-funded abortion on demand at fifty dollars a pop?”

“I thought Jay Sekulow, James Bopp, Gary Bauer, Tony Perkins, Tom Minnery, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Laura Ingraham and the kids running the National Review had taken care of all that for me.”

Mr. Barnes, like most of the chattering “conservative elites,” has missed the glaring lesson of a Republican presidential primary in which millions of social conservative and constitutionalist voters just said no to all the RINOs the party nomenklatura stubbornly forced on them, preferring to pick from among the diverse options of Mike Huckabee, Ron Paul, Tom Tancredo, and Duncan Hunter. Does Barnes not grasp how much intellectual credibility and moral gravitas the “conservative” mandarins have squandered — outside the beltway and away from the studio lights of Fox News?

rest here