Arizona Sen. John McCain has raised the ire of conservatives over and over and over again. He wore the label of "maverick" as a badge of honor, but rather than use it as a moniker for standing up for conservative values against the party, he used it to support the party over conservative values. Now, rather than an easy primary, McCain faces former six-term congressman and conservative talkshow host J.D. Hayworth.
For me, McCain is summed up by the following:
He voiced opposition to President Bush's tax cuts and said he favored "targeted" tax cuts. The word "targeted" is code for social engineering and not based on conservative principles that the money does NOT belong to Washington.
He repeatedly supported attempts to push amnesty for illegal aliens unto the American people. Americans spoke out, and neither effort such as the McCain-Kennedy bill went anywhere, but McCain continued to push.
He supported the McCain-Feingold campaign finance bill which has been ruled UNCONSTITUTIONAL.
He joined the "Gang of 14" which allowed quality, conservative judicial nominees to fall by the wayside.
While understandable that Palin would support the man who put her on the national stage, other candidates who vouch for McCain's "conservative" credentials are doing a disservice to the movement. And it doesn't look like it's going to fly this time around. The groundswell of grassroots attitudes are emodied in the Tea Party movement, and McCain represents everything they are against. We need smaller government, citizen legislators, and a respect for the Constitution. Hayworth has been there... then been back in the private sector, working to promote conservative principles. Now, he's looking to go back to replace a man who is an icon for establishment Washington.