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Thursday, March 01, 2007
Dick Morris Should Stick to Getting His Toes Sucked

Okay, now that I've got that out of the way, how about this trenchant piece of analysis from Morris on John McCain? That is, if trenchant means pulled out of a trench.

Morris claims, and the headline states, that John McCain's campaign has collapsed:

The John McCain candidacy, launched amid much hope, fanfare, and high expectations, may be dying before our eyes.

Even worse, it may go out with a whimper instead of a bang.

Now, gee, pardon me for not being shocked that Townhall, which features Hugh Hewitt, might be a little less than impartial with regard to McCain. But get the slim reed that convinces Morris that it's all over for the Arizona Senator:

Throughout all of 2006, McCain sat atop the polls right next to Rudy Giuliani. In the Fox News survey of December, 2006, he was getting 27 percent of the Republican primary vote to Rudy's 31 percent. But, after Giuliani announced that he was running, the Arizona senator fell to 24 percent while Rudy soared into the stratosphere at 41 percent of the primary voters.

So to Morris, collapsing is the loss of 3 percentage points, which is probably below the margin of error. And Giuliani's rise is to 38%, according to Time. Obviously the real story in this poll is that Mitt Romney, who, by the way, Townhall's Hugh Hewitt has been pumping, has vanished:

In addition to McCain's swoon, the other possible top contender, Mitt Romney has stalled and is falling backwards. His flip-flop-flip from pro-life to pro-choice and back to pro-life again is not winning him any converts.

Again, McCain's "swoon" is the loss of three percentage points, from 27 to 24. Mitt Romney? Down to 7%.

Obviously, Giuliani's strength has to be of some concern to McCainiacs like me. Some conservatives are reacting to Giuliani's undeniable heroics on 9-11. Dick Morris said something on Medved's show about how it may come down to who Americans want in charge in the first seven minutes of a crisis. Morris is an entertainer, which is not a knock, but no president in history has needed to be amazing in the first seven minutes of a crisis, and God willing, none ever will.

Giuliani will enjoy a honeymoon with the national press, but sooner or later the sine wave of political coverage demands that he'll get pressured about his second divorce and his pro-choice beliefs, and somebody will remember that hey, wasn't Rudy about to get beaten by Hillary Clinton in 2000 when he dropped out of the race because of the former?

McCain fans should be happy that the race is evolving into a two-man showdown, especially given that the usual complaint I hear about McCain is that he's not a true conservative. Compared to Rudy he looks pretty good.

Oh, and the "wasted" comment was clearly a mistake. Unfortunate, but nobody can say that John McCain's a quitter, either on Vietnam or Iraq. And in order to believe those lives will be really be wasted, you have to think John McCain's going to quit on Iraq.

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