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How would a McCain presidency differ from Bush's presidency?

 
 
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 05:07 am
Let's get this right on the table (this theme has been kicking around in a few threads)-- but let's attack this straight on. Several A2Kers have been claiming that McCain (called "McSame" by some) will be little more than a third Bush term-- others have disputed this account.

So.. is this charge valid? Of course different people will lead to some difference... but as far as policy and positions, how much difference is there?

Here is my list of topics that I think are important and interesting in this matter (of course, you can add topics).

- Taxes and Spending
- Labor Issues
- The war in Iraq
- National Security, civil rights and torture
- Immigration
- Education
- Abortion
- FISA and amnesty for telephone companies
- Same-sex Marriage

So are there significant differences in policy or position between Bush and McCain? If so, what are they?
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 05:40 am
McCain is closer to Obama when it comes to Education and Same-Sex Marriage then he is to Bush. Haven't looked at the rest of your laundry list yet...
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 05:49 am
National security, civil rights and torture are all distinct issues. I suspect your attempt to link them is based on a desire, conscious or otherwise, to associate failures of Bush with a putative McCain agenda. I'm no supporter of McCain, and the more i learn of him, the less impressed i am. However, civil rights is traditionally seen as an issue of ethnicity or gender, while it seems to me that you have narrowed it to a focus on fourth amendment rights, rather than that traditional view. As is the case with torture, i suspect that McCain would not differ much from most Presidents, giving lip service to virtuous attitudes, while turning a blind eye to convenient covert policy decisions. And i have reason to think that Obama would act any differently.

If you mean potential violations of people's fourth amendment rights, you should say so, and not hide it behind a much more emotive label such as civil rights.

I also note that you have left out environmental issues, which is the one area in which McCain might substantially differ from the Shrub, and one area in which he has a pretty good track record.

All in all, i'd say this thread has a distinct partisan (and anti-McCain) slant, and intends to reach a conclusion already dear to the heart of the author.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 05:54 am
Be specific Fishin.

The important disagreements in Education are
- No Child left behind (with testing and accountability tied to funding
- School Choice
- Vouchers
- Sex Ed
- Is there something else?


And could you show me a quote where McCain's position on same-sex marriage differs from Bush's. (I haven't seen any difference).

I am looking for specific differences. Even in the areas you list (Education and same-sex marriage) I haven't seen any.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 05:58 am
Set,

For you first point... I linked national security to civil rights because the national debate we are having is how to balance the two. Most everyone believes that both of these things are important-- but there is a legitimate discussion on the tension between the two. I was simply trying to address this important campaign issue (in a concise way).

First your second point... do I really need a disclaimer? Everyone here more than a day knows my political position. I wasn't trying (or expecting) to mislead anyone.

You are, of course, right about the Environment.... and I concede the point.
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 06:01 am
Civil rights is more than putative violations of fourth amendment rights--it is also about anti-discrimination based on ethnicity, gender or disabilities. It is also about voting rights. It is about equal opportunity and equal access. Using the term civil rights when you mean fourth amendment rights is a melodramatic emotive appeal--and i acknowledge that that may well not have been your intent.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 06:06 am
Setanta wrote:
Civil rights is more than putative violations of fourth amendment rights--it is also about anti-discrimination based on ethnicity, gender or disabilities. It is also about voting rights. It is about equal opportunity and equal access. Using the term civil rights when you mean fourth amendment rights is a melodramatic emotive appeal--and i acknowledge that that may well not have been your intent.


That wasn't my intent. Let me clarify...

Many of us feel that the current policies that have made it easier for authorities- in the name of national security- to do things (like wiretapping without a warrant) that, in the opinion of many, violate civil rights.

Other people feel that giving the authorities the ability to do these things is essential for our national security.

The question is how Bush and McCain differ in their approach to these issues.
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 06:06 am
ebrown_p wrote:
Be specific Fishin.

The important disagreements in Education are
- No Child left behind (with testing and accountability tied to funding
- School Choice
- Vouchers
- Sex Ed
- Is there something else?


I don't have much time right now - got to get to work - but... I don't see sex-ed as a major issue but I'd include the "ID vs. Evolution" debate in the laundry list.

I'll come back to the rest of them later.


Quote:
And could you show me a quote where McCain's position on same-sex marriage differs from Bush's. (I haven't seen any difference).


http://www.cnn.com/2004/ALLPOLITICS/07/14/mccain.marriage/

McCain and Obama both have said that gay-marriage is a state issue and the state's should be able to decide for themselves. Bush is against it at any level.


Quote:
I am looking for specific differences. Even in the areas you list (Education and same-sex marriage) I haven't seen any.


Take the blinders off. Wink
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 06:15 am
I didn't doubt that it was not your intent, E_brown . . . but wiretapping is a violation of the fourth amendment, under certain circumstances, which violates a single civil right--it is not a civil rights[/u] issue.
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Zippo
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 06:27 am
Quote:
McCain: Don't call me Bush

By BEN FELLER -- 4 hours ago

WASHINGTON (AP) ---- Barack Obama is fond of using a four-letter word to describe John McCain: Bush.

Weary and wary of being linked so closely with the president, McCain says Obama is spreading a falsehood voters won't buy when he says McCain as president would deliver a third Bush term.

Oh, to be the president of the United States these days.

Time was, it wasn't so awful to be associated with the leader of the country.

But the political reality is that Bush's approval ratings are near record lows, which makes him an easy target. Or at least not a guy being sought out for bear hugs.

The White House likes to point out that Bush is not on the ticket. Yet he remains in the thick of it.

Consider McCain's speech as Obama clinched the Democratic nomination Tuesday night.

Predictably, he spoke about his differences with Obama. Pre-emptively, he outlined a history of differences with Bush to undermine Obama's line of attack.

"You will hear from my opponent's campaign in every speech, every interview, every press release that I'm running for President Bush's third term," McCain said. "You will hear every policy of the president described as the Bush-McCain policy. Why does Senator Obama believe it's so important to repeat that idea over and over again? Because he knows it's very difficult to get Americans to believe something they know is false."

In other words, America, I'm not Bush.

Yes, McCain said, he shares views with the president, particularly on national security. But he proudly listed a pattern of splitting with the president on energy and climate change, on spiraling spending and budget gimmicks, and on the administration's "mismanagement" of the war in Iraq.

It so happens that this distancing came exactly one week after Bush was with McCain, in McCain's home state of Arizona, raising money for him at a big-dollar fundraiser. Bush raised an estimated $3 million in private that night. His public appearance with McCain was so short it was measured in seconds.

Obama had Bush on his mind too on the historic night he clinched the Democratic Party's nomination.

The Illinois senator lumped McCain with Bush on the economy and on current war policy in Iraq. And he called McCain's claims of independence dubious.

"There are many words to describe John McCain's attempt to pass off his embrace of George Bush's policies as bipartisan and new," Obama said. "But 'change' is not one of them."

Bush administration officials expect such rhetoric from the Democrat in the race. Yet even when it comes from the Republican, the White House line is: No offense taken.

"Look, Senator McCain is different than President Bush. That's a fact. We understand that his campaign will reflect his policies and his vision for the future of the country," White House spokesman Scott Stanzel said. "I think it's worth remembering that President Bush's father didn't exactly emulate President Reagan. Vice President Gore did not copy President Clinton. Even Hillary Clinton demonstrated differences from President Clinton — and she's married to him."

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jeALP1BoYpvb0BSRitTgiv2AxiuQD913PNVO0


Just call him McBush

http://bp3.blogger.com/_FdzzVlZj6so/SARoy7uuEPI/AAAAAAAAAMY/H1krERfcuQA/s400/mcbush-2008.jpg
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 10:16 am
So far we have Environmental issues (and I agree that in this one area McCain is significantly different than Bush).

I find the idea that McCain will be substantially different than Bush in the issues of same-sex marriage to be almost laughable (particularly compared to Obama). McCain supports the DOMA (and even suggests he would support the Constitutional Amendment if DOMA fails).

As president McCain will be able to impact the issue of gay marriage (and broader gay rights issues) in two ways. He can sponsor/sign or veto legislation. And he can appoint judges "with the character and quality of Roberts and Alito.

Based on his philosophical statements that "Marriage is between a man and a woman", his actions in Congress supporting the DOMA, and his promise to follow Bush's choice of conservative judges... I don't see any significant differences between a McCain presidency and Bush's.

As far as "civil rights... I choose not to quibble with Setanta over whether wiretapping, concerns of racial profiling, data sharing and even habeas corpus concerns constitute one right or many. I will drop the term.

Let me propose the title "Prosecution of the domestic war on terror" to encompass disagreements over what actions by government agents are appropriate and necessary to provide national security.

Again, the general question is whether there is any significant difference between Bush and McCain on how these issues would be addressed.
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 02:51 pm
ebrown_p wrote:
I find the idea that McCain will be substantially different than Bush in the issues of same-sex marriage to be almost laughable (particularly compared to Obama). McCain supports the DOMA (and even suggests he would support the Constitutional Amendment if DOMA fails).

As president McCain will be able to impact the issue of gay marriage (and broader gay rights issues) in two ways. He can sponsor/sign or veto legislation. And he can appoint judges "with the character and quality of Roberts and Alito.

Based on his philosophical statements that "Marriage is between a man and a woman", his actions in Congress supporting the DOMA, and his promise to follow Bush's choice of conservative judges... I don't see any significant differences between a McCain presidency and Bush's.


I find your lame response laughable. Just because you refuse to see the differences it doesn't mean that they don't exist. How he (or any other President) might impact the issue has no bearing on whether or not his position matches Bush. Apparently you forgot your claimed intent for this thread.

Bush has always been very clear that he doesn't not support ANY sort of accomodation for same-sex relationships. He doesn't support marriage, he doesn't support civil unions and I'm not entirely sure he supports allowing gays/lesbains to continue to live.

McCain on the other hand has stated (in an interview with Ellen DeGeneres on her program...) "people should be able to enter into legal agreements, and I think that that is something that we should encourage, particularly in the case of insurance and other areas, decisions that have to be made. I just believe in the unique status of marriage between man and woman. And I know that we have a respectful disagreement on that issue.".

According to This IPS Article and Cnn's Election Center McCain's position is that same-sex marraige is a state issue.

The Obama Campaign's position (as stated in his response to the recent CA Supreme Court ruling) is "Barack Obama has always believed that same-sex couples should enjoy equal rights under the law, and he will continue to fight for civil unions as President. He respects the decision of the California Supreme Court, and continues to believe that states should make their own decisions when it comes to the issue of marriage."

What is the distinction between "legal agreements" and "civil unions"? (Answer: None. A Civil Union is a legal agreement...)

According to the same IPS article I linked above "All three major candidates, Democratic Party Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton and the Republicans' McCain have been in basic agreement on the issue: they oppose same-sex marriage and also oppose a federal constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage." and the NY Times follows that with their own
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 03:26 pm
Compare McCain's sleight of hand to that of George W Bush (since that is what we are doing)...

George W. Bush wrote:

I don't think we should deny people rights to a civil union, a legal arrangement, if that's what a state chooses to do so,
...

I view the definition of marriage different from legal arrangements that enable people to have rights



http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6338458/

The similarity between these Bush and McCain positions is striking.
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 03:38 pm
ebrown_p wrote:
Compare McCain's sleight of hand to that of George W Bush (since that is what we are doing)...

George W. Bush wrote:

I don't think we should deny people rights to a civil union, a legal arrangement, if that's what a state chooses to do so,
...

I view the definition of marriage different from legal arrangements that enable people to have rights



http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6338458/

The similarity between these Bush and McCain positions is striking.


And it's the exact same position taken by Obama and Clinton as well... OMG! Obama is just like Bush! Maybe we should start calling him "OBusha"??
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 03:54 pm
This thread is about what differences are between Bush and McCain (not Obama and McCain).

But the differences between Obama and McCain on this issue are clear and significant.

Obama opposes the Defense of Marriage Act. McCain and Bush support it. Obama wants to increase rights of same-sex couples and their families. McCain and Bush do not.

But this dicussion of Obama's posiitons is off topic. The point is that McCain's rhetoric and policies on this issue are very similar to those of Bush.

Start a "How will an Obama presidency differ from Bush" thread. Then we can discuss Obama's position there.
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 04:13 pm
I'll go back to Set's original post in this thread:
Setanta wrote:
All in all, i'd say this thread has a distinct partisan (and anti-McCain) slant, and intends to reach a conclusion already dear to the heart of the author.


You've managed to find exactly one sentence that are similar between Bush and McCain and the DOMA. That's it. And then you ignore numerous news articles, Op-ed pieces and Candidate's position links that point out distinct differences between Bush and McCain and McCain's similarities to Obama.

Why don't you just admit that you've already decided that you won't accept anything that doesn't fit your predetermined outcome and quit trying to pretend that you are in any way open-minded about it?
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 04:35 pm
You have done no such thing... the articles you have posted not shown distinct differences. Quite the contrary, they have shown distinct similarities, with one exception.

You have shown that McCain uses rhetoric that suggests he is more moderate on this issue (depending on the audience) than the Republican party. You suggest that this makes him different then Bush.

Of course this is not a difference considerting that Bush used the exact same "moderate" rhetoric in each of his presidential campaigns.

- Bush supports civil unions. McCain supports civil unions.
- Bush invokes state's rights. McCain supports state's rights.
- Bush rails against activist judges. McCain rails against activist judges.
- Bush supports Don't Ask Don't tell. McCain supports Don't Ask Don't tell.
- Bush supports DOMA. McCain supports DOMA.

The minor issue that you are correct is the Constitutional Amendment.
- Bush supports the Constitutional Amendment, McCain doesn't support it (unless it is needed).

There are lots of similarities between Bush and McCain with one minor difference (that everyone knew would never pass).

Other than that... the policies of these to men on same-sex marriage and homosexual rights in general-- even down to the rhetoric and phrases they use, are strikingly similar.

Why don't you just admit that you've already decided that you won't accept anything that doesn't fit your predetermined outcome and quit trying to pretend that you are in any way open-minded about it?
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 04:43 pm
The gay marriage topic is getting old.

I am curious about the differences in education policy you started to explain earlier.
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 04:53 pm
- Bush supports civil unions. McCain supports civil unions.

-- And Obama supports civil unions which make that particular point irrelevant unless you are also willing to concede that Obama is just like Bush.

- Bush invokes state's rights. McCain supports state's rights.

-- And Obama supports state's rights which make that particular point irrelevant unless you are also willing to concede that Obama is just like Bush.

- Bush rails against activist judges. McCain rails against activist judges.
- Bush supports Don't Ask Don't tell. McCain supports Don't Ask Don't tell.

-- Neither one of which has a damn thing to do with positions on same-sex marriage which makes them both irrlevant.

- Bush supports DOMA. McCain supports DOMA.

--- Oh! Ya got one!

Quote:
The minor issue that you are correct is the Constitutional Amendment.
- Bush supports the Constitutional Amendment, McCain doesn't support it (unless it is needed).

There are lots of similarities between Bush and McCain with one minor difference (that everyone knew would never pass).


So lets see... McCain supports a law that Bush supports so that's a "major" issue yet he disagrees with Bush on a Constiututional Amendment which would override any law anyway and that somehow makes it a "minor" issue. Yep, way to try to skew that in your favor...

Quote:

Why don't you just admit that you've already decided that you won't accept anything that doesn't fit your predetermined outcome and quit trying to pretend that you are in any way open-minded about it?


When you present some facts that support your contention without the spin nonsense I'll consider them. That's significantly more than you can claim to have done.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2008 05:09 pm
The question here is how would McCain differ from Bush. You keep on bringing up Obama even though this has nothing to do with the topic at hand.

Let discuss how Obama will differ from Bush in this thread.
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