The best result that could come of conservative obstinacy is that Republicans fracture themselves, with the conservative base driving them to nominate an extreme candidate who cannot win in a general election. More likely, in my opinion is that the party will coalesce behind John McCain--or maybe Mitt Romney--whose conservative loyalties the right-wing will continue to exact. (McCain has already shown himself willing to abandon his past statements against this wing, such as his attempt to submerge his previously-expressed opinion that Jerry Falwell is an "agent of intolerance" by speaking at Falwell's own Liberty University). Right now, McCain wants to have it both ways: he wants to be a maverick and be the Conservatives' candidate. However, if the media does its job and the Democratic opposition does their's McCain's true colors as a political opportunist will be exposed.
Glen Greenwald makes a great point over at Salon on just how blatantly hypocritical are Republicans and members of the media who point to diffuse blog commenters as representative of liberal anger and hate and ignore the bile of blatant bigot Ann Coulter, who is a prominent fixture at CPAC. In a speech made there this past Friday, she called John Edwards a "faggot" and last year at the same event directed slurs at Arabs. As Greenwald says, the media has held Democrats responsible for anyone that makes an off-color remark on a blog while summarily ignoring the hatred and bigotry expressed by the Republican party's top brass:
But that's all fine. There are much more important topics to discuss -- like the anonymous commenters at Huffington Post and the bad words said by the bloggers hired for low-level positions by the Edwards campaign. Those are matters of the gravest importance meriting the most solemn condemnation and righteous outrage from all decent people. Those HuffPost commenters have uttered terrible thoughts, and that shows the anger, venom and hatred on the left, among liberals. It is cause for great alarm -- and for headlines.
But the single most prestigious political event for conservatives of the year is a place where conservatives go to hear Democrats called faggots, Arabs called ragheads, and Supreme Court justices labeled as deserving of murder -- not by anonymous, unidentifiable blog commenters, but by one of their most popular featured speakers.
As Greenwald says, the sanctimony of conservatives against liberal bloggers is disingenuous at best if they continue to give a pass to the fulminations of their own:
This is why I wrote so extensively about the Edwards blogger "scandal" and the Cheney comments "scandal." The people feigning upset over those matters are either active participants in, or passive aiders and abetters of, a political movement that, at its very core -- not at its fringes -- knowingly and continuously embraces the most wretched and obvious bigotry and bloodthirsty authoritarianism. They love Ann Coulter -- and therefore continue to make her a venerated part of their political events -- because she provides an outlet, a venting ground, for the twisted psychological impulses and truly hateful face that drives the entire pro-Bush, right-wing spectacle.
As Greenwald says, Coulter "is the face of what the hard-core Republican Party has become."