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Comments

Europhile, Gay and One Nationl Conservative

I should have added that McCain is also in favour of a federal Europe. I just hope he can convince DC for the merits.

Sally Roberts

Although I agree with what Europhile Gay and One Nation has to say above, I am afraid I can't support McCain because of his stance on (a) abortion and (more particularly) (b) guns. IMO the gun law in the US is madness although I do understand it is enshrined in the Constitution and therefore pretty much untouchable! I hope we never go down that road here in the UK.

Mary Fernandez

This is a bit disengenuous. Cameron and McCain may have the same position on some issues but for completely different reasons. For instance, McCain only opposed the Bush tax cuts because there weren't commensurate spending cuts. He'd never support spending increases the way Cameron does! McCain doesn't support the Constitutional Amendment against gay marriage (something the UK doesn't have either, btw) because marriage is a State issue not a Federal one. It has no bearing on how he feels about homosexuality. (Of which, I have no idea.)

If I were Cameron, I wouldn't cross McCain too many times (like once). He has quite a temper. See Romney's video of McCain's top ten moments of cursing at fellow Senators.

IRJMilne

Very unlikely to be "the conservatism of the future". Just "the conservatism of now". There have always been "softer" Tories and more "forthright" Tories. This is a liberal age, so we have a somewhat more liberal leader. I expect it will come around again in time (I think it will have to ultimately).

Tony Makara

Foreign policy remains a worry for me, particularly over relations with Tehran. Both men have made hardline rather than diplomatic statements over Iran. I fear that a president McCain and a prime minister Cameron may just be too close to have a working relationship and we could be back to Bush/Blair all over again only with Iran as the whipping boy rather than Iraq.

On the subject of compassionate conservatism, I feel that the Conservative party is starting to drift away from compassion now that a lead has been established in the polls, and I don't believe McCain represents anything close to a compassionate position.

Jon Gale

I think "Immigration" should be in the Disagree pile - McCain supported reform and amnesty as you say, while Cameron's policy is a strict quota on non-EU immigrants and border police.

Andrew Ian Dodge

Using the term "conservative" in conjunction with either of these two men is pushing its definition. Alas, this will be a centrist election in the US and I think McCain is the only man who can defeat either Democrat.

We can only hope he gets a decent VP candidate. On domestic policy McCain's record is frankly awful (McCain/Feingold, McCain/Kennedy. voting against tax cuts etc).

Moral minority

Both Cameron and McCain are liberal centrists who have a record of deliberately antagoning the conservative grassroots in their respective countries. I hope that Ron Paul and/or Pat Buchanan (possibly as a joint ticket) will run as anti-war traditional conservatives.

Adam in London

When did a conservative fiscal policy stop being about balanced budgets and start being about funding tax cuts with profligate borrowing?

Donal Blaney

I don't think the delegates in Washington this week for CPAC will agree with you, Tim, that McCain will be the leader of the conservative movement!

rightsideforum

If anything, it shows how far behind Cameron is.

Very poor on the pro life matter - the Tories like our other parties shamefully ignored the disgraceful rubber stamp approval of the status quo for our out of touch liberal abortion laws.

- on civil liberties, the Tories did support extending the detention limit and control orders did they not? The fact they didn't jump as high as the government baselessly wanted to is not important.

As for the surge - it worked. Shame on our Tories for not supporting it, and continuing to ignore its success.

- As for the UN, it is corrupt and so pathetically inclusive of the most despicable regimes on the planet, it's another success of McCain over Cameron.

Lindsay Jenkins

Mary Fernandez @7.14 is spot on. The difference on tax between Cameron and McCain stands out a mile.

Furthermore the US has a substantially lower tax take than the UK.

Dan Mitchell of the Cato Institute in Washington has just produced this short punchy video on the Laffer Curve - Cameron and Osborne should watch and learn!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fIqyCpCPrvU

Free Marketeer

Can we please stop calling George Bush a traditional conservative. This is a man who reportedly exclaimed in frustration that the Constitution "is just a damn piece of paper."
There is nothing conservative about treating the Middle East like a chessboard that can be re-ordered at will.
A conservative would not have Bush's exaggerated faith in the ability of democracy to yield good government and social stability in the Middle East.

And for good measure, McCain's campaign finance legislation, which took a hammer to the First Amendment, is not the stance of a civil libertarian.

Nick Locke

John McCain will never be the de facto leader of American conservatives. He may become the "leader" of the Republican Party as a presidential candidate, but he will never be accepted by U.S. conservatives.

Buckinghamshire Tory

Andrew Ian Dodge. You are quite wrong. The American Conservative Union gives John McCain’s voting record 83%. That is only 3% less than Fred Thompson and 7% less than Newt Gingrich. I do not think you would have called Newt Gingrich or Fred Thompson “centrists”. McCain is a consistent conservative, unlike Mitt Romney for example.

Moral minority.A Ron Paul/Pat Buchanan-ticket? Now that would be rich. That would only drain votes from the serious Republican candidate, and help the Democrats win the White House.

James

Cameron/McCain's conservatism: an offer to try taking the nation over the cliff at a slightly slower speed than that of a Labour/Democratic government.

Sally Roberts, I'm not American, but I don't see how you can be pro-civil liberties and not in favour of the right to bear arms.

David

It seems to me that John McCain becoming the Republican nominee would be like a strong pro-European becoming leader of the Conservatives. Much infighting and bitterness is likely to follow.

David

Sounds good, and good to see Cameron is sounder on abortion.

All this isn't really new though; they are strands of Conservatism that have always been there, and have been at the forefront before. Once again, it's the view that the Conservatism espoused in the 1980s is the one true model.

pro_usa1776

Hey Sally ROberts, I am American and I support the second ammendment. You know the same ammendment that allowed us citizens to send firearms to the UK in 1940. If I was you I would be more worried about the growing population of muslims and the allowance of muslim men with multiple wives to go on the dole. 25% of the UK is suppose to be on the dole, is that true?

Jon

Surely a parody?

Ben Stevenson

"25% of the UK is suppose to be on the dole, is that true?"

Lots of people in the UK work in the public sector, or get various benefits, and so may personally benefit from high taxation.
However, we don't have 25% of people claiming unemployment benefits, if that is what you mean by on the dole.

Eddie Heath

Cameron would be more likely to side with former Governors George Pataki or William Weld.

jdun

pro_usa1776 wasn't joking and he is right.

To conservatives in the US, Britain's conservatives and US Democrats are the same. So yes McCain is center left and not right or center right. McCain is a RINO.

Joanna

I think the analysis is missing something elses that's huge: abortion is a make-or-break issue in the U.S. It's something with consequences. There are plenty of people who vote Republican kicking and screaming because their first issue is abortion. It is not a minor issue to be tucked in under the heading: things McCain and Cameron disagree on. It's a major difference in political culture.

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