A reader sent me this, I assume it’s good-faith accurate:
If you haven’t seen the text of Rush “disagreeing” with your Go Dem column, here it is.
RUSH: “There is the most amazing piece at National Review Online today by Jonah Goldberg. Now, Jonah is a brilliant guy. He wrote a book recently that sold very well called Liberal Fascism, and in this book, he basically associates and points out how liberalism and fascism and communism are all interlinked, with great examples. It was a fascinating book. And yet today, he has a piece at National Review Online suggesting that McCain choose a Democrat as his vice presidential nominee. He writes a great book about liberalism and fascism and then talks about a national unity ticket in which John McCain would pick a Democrat. Goldberg is a very conservative guy. The Republican nominee promotes the Democrat Party, the 71-year-old McCain should pick a Democrat?
We have David Frum; we have Bill Kristol; we have David Brooks, and all of the learned conservative intelligentsia are all looking for ways to water down conservatism now. He just wrote this book slamming the left, but now we should unite with them, we should unite with the left. McCain, if elected, will be facing a heavily liberal Congress. Regardless what happens, we need a Democrat on our ticket. You know, I’ve got an idea. Why don’t we quit tiptoeing through the tulips? Why don’t we just shut down the Republican Party and all become Democrats, if that’s the way to go. If McCain picking a Democrat, if unifying with Democrats, if walking across the aisle to do deals with Democrats, if that’s the way to go, then to hell with Republican Partyism. Let’s just all become Democrats, why put up a fight? Just become Democrats and end it. Because we have to end the partisan rancor. We have to end the partisan rancor and show that we have a big tent. Well, we have rancor in a democracy. Rancor is a good thing in a democracy. Maybe McCain should pick a female Hispanic lesbian Democrat running mate. That would unite us. That’s the way to go.”
Me: A few quick points. Just for the record, I do not see eye-to-eye with Brooks or Frum on all sorts of things about the current state of conservatism. As for Bill, I’m just not sure where he comes down on various issues. Lumping me with them doesn’t seem all that accurate.
Second, I agree ENTIRELY with Rush that rancor is a good thing in a democracy. In fact, I think rancor is democracy. This has been a talking point of mine for years and it is central to the arguments of my book. But while I like rancor and think we’d be fine to have more of it, it’s a simple fact of political life that voters don’t like it. Part of my argument is that McCain could win if he did what I suggested, i.e. appeal to this desire of voters. The argument for compassionate conservatism (which I loathe(d)) is that it helped Bush win. Picking a Dem would help McCain win, and I think it would do less damage to the country or conservatism than CC did. . Anyway, it’s late in the day on a holiday weekend. I’ll have more thoughts later, if warranted.