Reid Wilson of RCP checks in with an article
that raises the argument I have harped on since election day 2006: If Republicans want their best chance of winning in 2008, they'd better nominate McCain.
But it is John McCain whose electability argument rings truest. And, in fact, McCain's point is the simplest to make to Republican primary voters: In poll after poll, he runs closer to Clinton than any GOP contender other than Giuliani, with whom he is approximately tied. The latest RCP Averages show Clinton leading McCain by 2.8 points, about the same as Giuliani's 2.5 point deficit. Thompson trails by 8.1 points, while Romney is 11 points back.
Pollsters say that is no accident, and if Republicans who head to the polls really do make electability a priority, then swallowing doubts about the maverick would give them the best shot at winning the White House.
What is interesting about the poll results is that again, they show that it is not the Iraq War that is hurting the Republicans. McCain has been the most steadfast supporter of the war, and he's doing very well in polling. I don't really consider McCain a centrist; he's a conservative with some centrist positions, but from what I can see, it appears that the center is the place the Republicans need to be in 2008 if they want to compete.
Labels: 2008 Candidates, John McCain