[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/25/art.mcainmother.gi.jpg caption=" Roberta McCain, mother of Republican U.S. presidential hopeful Sen. John McCain on the 'Meet the Press' May 2007 in Washington, DC.."]
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
John McCain is getting no love from the Republican base…so says his 95-year-old mother, Roberta McCain.
She claims she's seen her son get no help whatsoever from the party base. Nonetheless, Mrs. McCain says he can go on to win the nomination, adding quote "I think holding their nose they're going to have to take him." You gotta love it.
She also had this to say: “Now I'm really popping off, but he worked like a dog to get Bush re-elected… He's backed Bush in everything except Rumsfeld. Have you heard other senators and congressmen backing Bush over eight years? Find me it, give me a name. I've not seen any public recognition of the work that he's done for the Republican Party.”
When asked about his mother's comments, McCain said that although he loves her, they disagree on some things. He joked that given his mom's age, she should get a little latitude for her candid remarks. McCain also pointed to the fact that he won more Republican votes than any other candidate in both South Carolina and New Hampshire. He says the support he got from independents should show conservatives he's the most electable candidate come the general election.
But his mother may have a point. McCain has some tough critics within the conservative establishment, including people like Former House Majority Leader Tom Delay, Former Senator Rick Santorum and conservative talk radio hosts like Rush Limbaugh. Many of them are disgusted with positions McCain has taken on issues like immigration, campaign finance reform, his decision to work with Joe Lieberman on global warming, and his opposition to President Bush's tax cuts.
Here’s my question to you: John McCain’s mother says he has no support from the Republican base. Is she right?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Bob from Louisville, Kentucky writes:
Jack, This begs the question: how do you define the Republican "base"? If it is defined as the extreme conservative wing of the party, the type of people who listen to the likes of Rush Limbaugh, he will not receive the support of the "base". If you define it as those who were supporters of Ronald Reagan who never did subscribe to views of those on the extreme right, then she is wrong. This contest for the Republican nomination is much like that between Eisenhower and Taft. In that election the party proved that they could reject the candidate of the extreme right and win the Presidency.
He lacks support from the Republican Party now, but you better believe those same people will be standing in line to ride his tailcoat if he comes out as the front-runner. He is less conservative than the people that criticize him and they just can't stand it when he crosses party lines to unify the country!
Mother McCain is right on the money. Not only about the Republican base disliking McCain, but also about him being a staunch backer of President Bush. Unfortunately, Mom is cutting John off at the legs. Hanging that support of Bush around his neck is going to destroy him in a general election.
Considering the Republicans you named who are opposing him, McCain's mother should have said "the base Republicans" instead of "the Republican base."
I'm a registered Republican, but the way the party is now, to hear that John McCain doesn't have the support of the "establishment" only makes me want to vote for him even more. Maybe this time I won't regret my vote in 4 years!