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Larger Than Life… Or At Least, Larger Than Reality

Peter Baker in the WaPo [1] this morning:

As he gets closer to the Republican nomination, Sen. John McCain has been trying to balance his unqualified support for the Iraq war by reminding audiences that he was also a tough critic of how it was managed until President Bush finally changed strategies a year ago. In recent weeks, McCain has gone so far as to tell audiences that he was “the only one” who called for Donald H. Rumsfeld’s resignation as defense secretary.

As he gets closer to the Republican nomination, Sen. John McCain has been trying to balance his unqualified support for the Iraq war by reminding audiences that he was also a tough critic of how it was managed until President Bush finally changed strategies a year ago. In recent weeks, McCain has gone so far as to tell audiences that he was “the only one” who called for Donald H. Rumsfeld’s resignation as defense secretary.

Look, let’s be honest enough to say that this was nothing more than political positioning and kowtowing to the left by Mr. McCain.  Indeed, it was actions like this that made me turn a sour glance his direction in the first place.  As for the successes in Iraq, subsequent to these supposedly in direction, that strikes me as a rather Clintonesque tactic… trying to take credit for something he had no part in planning, or executing, and something which was already in the works, anyway. Bill Clinton and me and my habit of getting out in front of the lynch mob, and acting like it was a parade he was leading.  That Mr. McCain is pulling the same stunt, is disquieting at the least.  I suspect I am not alone in those misgivings.

It is not clear why McCain would feel any need to overstate his public position on Rumsfeld, given that he had a clear record of hostility toward the former defense chief.

To my mind, the answer to that question is cut and dried; Certainly, exaggeration is part of politics as usual.  Mr. McCain or wants to project a larger image of himself than is true in real life.  The problem is that Mr. Rumsfeld had a good deal of support among conservatives in this country, and is still highly thought of amongst those conservatives.  So who is it that Mr. McCain is trying to project himself as larger-than-life to? Certainly not conservatives.

BBCT: Memeorandum