Barnes To McCain: Misuse The Gays

Harking back to Republican strategies past, conservative icon Fred Barnes, who edits The Weekly Standard, advised John McCain to “touch on” gay social issues, which will “energize” the right his way

Here’s what he needs to do, he needs to touch on some of the social issues which energize the right… In particular, gays in the military for one. We know Barack Obama is for allowing gays in the military, and Bill Clinton tried to do, but backed off. This is not a popular issue. Gay marriage is another one. These are both issues that I think McCain’s going to have to use. You can’t ignore the right. If he does, he’ll lose

While such a plan may have worked in 2000 and 2004, recent polling suggests gay rights aren’t as much of a wedge issue. As On Top points out, a June, 2008 Gallup poll shows that Americans are evenly split on the morality of homosexuality. Meanwhile, a survey from last year found that 55% of citizens feel gays should be allowed to serve in the military. Even more compelling are the youth voters, who overwhelmingly support Obama and gay rights. If McCain tries to exploit the homos – well, he could further alienate that increasingly important voting bloc.

Could it be that Barnes is simply out of touch with electoral politics? We sure as shit hope so!

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  • hells kitchen guy

    I’d be more discreet in my use of the word “icon.” Bill Buckley: conservative icon. Fred Barnes: hardly.

  • blake

    Somehow, I doubt Church-Nazi or R2D2 will have anything bad to say about Barnes since he is their ideal kinda guy…

  • todd

    Barnes, an Icon? Just another blowhard praying on the racist homophobia of the Greatest Generation and their devil spawn.

  • Tom

    Two weeks ago a Republican strategist said a terrorist attack on American soil would be an advantage for McCain. Now, another strategist proposes that McCain invoke the fear of gays in the military and gay marriage for his political adavantage.

    If the last 8 years has taught us anything, it is these people (bigoted and murderous Repuklicans) can only win by fear?

    I’m glad to be gay and a Democrat.

  • Tom in Houston

    Isn’t Barnes a member of Akinola’s “Church” of Nigeria in America? If true, I guess a man who chooses to hold up as godly a man (Akinola) who directly advocate throwing virtually all Gays and many straights that support Gay rights into prison would take a stance like Barnes.

  • Craig Garver

    I live in Arizona, and right now McCain is favored to win the state by 10 points. Um, ten points in his own freaking state? What a looser! This isn’t the only republican freak that’s in serious trouble. The Republican state senate president just flip-flopped on every conceivable side of an anti-gay marriage amendment here, then after saying it wasn’t important to him, broke all the senate rules to bring the thing to a vote to put it on the November ballot, casting the deciding vote in favor. He’s running against a first term Democrat for the US House, Gabriele Giffords, who has amassed a huge war chest against this fool. On top of this, he’s already been involved in a political ad scandal, and this gay marriage fiasco is in a district where we defeated the same amendment two years ago by 65%. Phoenix is conservative, Tucson is very liberal. Way to go Tim Bee!! Oh I am so going to relish helping to vaporize this idiots political future!

  • RPCV

    Craig Garver: Gore did not carry his own state – Tennessee. McCain will carry his – Arizona, presumably your home state!! Love it.

    As for Barnes’ statements, I would advise McCain to go soft on very emotional issues duing the campaign. Hard core republicans will vote for him regardless of his spoken stances on these issues for they no other alternative and Obama is anathema to them and me. McCain needs to be inclusionary, but not pandering in the Obama mold of late. Obama makes me sick as to the manner in which he’s dumping his true beliefs and supporters (as demonstrated by his 100% liberal voting record in the senate) and faux reaching out to evangelicals, etc. Barf. Those to whom he is pandering will see through it, and either vote for McCain or not vote at all. Either would be acceptable to me.

    Once McCain gets into office, he can pursue his conservative agenda – naming 2-3 constructionist justices while avoiding closet-case activists who want to legislate from the bench; pursue an incremental but deliberate withdrawal from Iraq; issue executive orders compelling that no appropriated funds be spent in order to “zero out” worthless Federal agencies/programs; extend the Bush tax cuts allowing big business to hire and hire and hire; issue executive orders to have the Department of Energy contract with drilling firms to search for and extract off-shore oil for domestic purposes; continue with strong national defense; and completely rewrite entitlement programs to get lazy-assed minorities out of their house and into a job to eliminate dependence on welfare, medicare, and social security. I despise those who leech on my taxpayer dollars. So should you….

  • blake

    “Lazy-assed minorities out of their house and into a job to eliminate dependence on welfare, medicare, and social security.”–R2D2

    Spoken like the true racist, selfish gay Republican he is.

    Dumbass, read a book. The majority of people on welfare are white, rural Americans. The largest growth center of people on welfare older white males who lost their jobs and are now on disability.

    Reagan’s mythic welfare queen schtick was disproved while most of us were in diapers.

    The real welfare leeches are Haliburton, the other war profiteers and the corporations that don’t pay taxes.

    The more I read R2D2’s words, the more convinced I am that he is a robot who can only repeat the same tired, racist conservative cliches the Right Reich has spewed for the last 30 years.

    Cut taxes, cut taxes, cut taxes! Yeah, that’s really smart economic policy in war time. When deficits are exploding, lower revenues! Build up more debt with China! Got to love the Republicans who want to destroy America’s national security by outsourcing everything to China. (What happens when the Chinese wise up and realize that it might be smarter to invest in the euro than he dollar?)

    America’s economy is the crapper? Do you think that there is a correlation between the Bush economic policies and the decline? Hmm? Could it be that as the average American worker has see his/her take home pay decrease that he/she has less money to spend? I wonder? In a consumer driven economy, if the middle class shrinks, thus decreasing the number of people with disposable income, would there be a connection in the decline of corporate profits because there are fewer people to buy their widgets?

    Let’s ask GM, Ford, and Chrysler! Could there be a causation between the decline in the value of the U.S. dollar and the rise of the price of oil? If the price of oil, and thus gas prices increase, would the cost of distribution of goods and food increase? Would that cause consumers to buy fewer goods? Would that drive the economy down into a spiral?

    R2D2, what do you think? Forgot, robots don’t think. They follow the party program: think and say what they are told to do so.

    Vote McCain! Robot R2D2 lacks the ability to make considered opinions based on McCain’s long history of anti-gay voting patterns. Electronic blinders engaged!

    Drill offshore! Yeah, by the way, the oil companies own 61 million acres of oil real estate that in the U.S. that they have yet to tap. Offshore oil drilling off the coasts of Virginia or Florida could lead to ecological disasters that would destroy tourist economies.

    Stop Obama! Beep, whir, spin! Admitted white supremacist, gay robot R2D2 criticizes Obama! Shocking news. Obama courting Christians? Gee, hasn’t Obama spent the last year speaking in churches? Hasn’t he spoke against in homophobia in front of church audiences? Didn’t Obama write about his faith in his two books?

    How terrible of Obama to vote with those liberals to secure rights for GLBT Americans. Darn those evil liberals!

    Oh, R2, where’s a young Skywalker when he’s needed to fix your control circuit?

    Like Mr. Finkelstein, RCPV/R2D2, is one of those gay parasites who hate the liberals but gladly accept the benefits of hard work liberals to secure laws that protect him against discrimination.

    Robotic parasite! How science fictional!

  • Trenton

    Nothing (explicitly) against RCPV, but my what a lovely post that was, Blake. I may forgo lunch to read it again.

  • RPCV

    Blake: Liberal diatribe. No basis for your assertions. Only solution is to lower taxes, eliminate constraints on big business, open the hatch to dump the environmentalists in the middle of the Atlantic, and force people to get off their asses and go to work – or starve cause it ain’t my problem……….

  • Craig Garver

    RPCV – 1) True, but of course Gore did actually win the popular vote in this country. 2) McCain will win Arizona, but loose by a landslide in the national election. 3) Why on earth do you begrudge the poor? Are you truly that shallow and callous? Why are you so violent? Have you no sense of shame?

  • Craig Garver

    Oh by the way RPCV. I work with someone just like you. Daily diatribe about cutting taxes, says that no one that employs more than ten people should pay a dime in taxes because they’ve “done enough already.” And same drivel about shunning the poor to die – he’s fixated with a Darwinist view that only the strongest humans are fit to survive.

    Strangely enough, he says this as he has to beg food himself from shelters, because for whatever reason, he cannot survive on what he makes. The fact that I made sure that I bought food for him every day I worked with him, just to make sure he didn’t go without when he couldn’t afford to buy his own, seemed a lesson lost on him.

    Republicans are truly a strange lot.

  • Brian Miller

    Barnes couldn’t be more wrong on the gays in the military issue. 3/4 of Americans support an integrated armed forces and favor the repeal of the ban.

    Same-sex marriage is also losing its “wedge appeal” as years have gone by without any of the threatened social ills the right spews. In fact, the rate of divorce in Massachusetts — “the gay marriage state” — is the lowest in the country by a significant margin.

    And same-sex divorce rates there are even lower than the very low opposite sex divorce rates.

  • Mr C


    Pay R2D2 no mind she’s bitter for a reason. Just pray for her and move on!

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