But it is the immigration issue that could sink McCain. For it is hard to believe today's GOP and Middle America, which wants the U.S. border sealed with a security fence and troops, will vote for a senator who favors amnesty, voted for welfare benefits for illegal aliens and sponsored with Teddy Kennedy a bill to bring scores of millions of new immigrants in over the next 20 years.
A McCain nomination would sunder the GOP between corporate conservatives and populist conservatives, and might generate a third party movement that could return the country — to Bill and Hillary. RealClearPolitics Bad Month for McCainBy Patrick Buchanan,June 09, 2006
And here's Ruben Navarette on McCain vs. Americans, starting with Brian Bilbray.
Exit John McCain. In a last-minute e-mail to the Bilbray campaign, a McCain spokesman noted that the two men "disagree on some of the issues related to immigration reform.'' And, the spokesman said, McCain wanted to "avoid distracting'' from the event.
Bilbray supporters called the snub petty and vindictive.
It wasn't. It was principled, honest and morally consistent. How could McCain have appeared at a fundraiser for someone who has tried to get political mileage from blasting a major McCain initiative? McCain's Stand & Bilbray's DemagogueryJune 04, 2006 By Ruben Navarrette
Party loyalty is how everyone but McCain manages these things. But that's not the McCain style. After all, the "major McCain initiative" is also a major Ted Kennedy initiative. And that was Pat's point above; McCain isn't going to get many actual Republicans to vote for him for President.