Wednesday, June 22, 2005
-- Nobody made John McCain the Arbiter of Justice while we weren’t looking. McCain has been pulling this stunt for some time now, ever since he set the rules for the 2004 presidential campaign. You remember that one: McCain decided that the Swift Boat Vets should not lie about Kerry’s service in Vietnam, and, in the interest of fairness and balance, that MoveOn.org should not tell the truth about Bush’s service (and mysterious disappearances) in Alabama. The Swift Boat Vets won that one, and the “referee” helped immeasurably.I count myself as someone who was genuinely intrigued by the McCain phenomenon in 2000, and who viewed him as one of the good guys long after he dropped out of that race.
But something happened to McCain in 2004. And it happened soon after an irreverent, Bush-bashing appearance on The Daily Show early in the year. (No longer archived online, unfortunately.)
Almost immediately after that appearance, his tone changed. He joined the campaign trail and, ultimately, spoke at the Republican convention. The rest is history.