Republicans in a tizzy over McCain’s “centrist” policies

Color me astounded. No, really. For years, conservatives have told me that Dems need to be willing to work with Conservatives and reach across the aisle, be more centrist, blah blah blah. As it turns out? All horse crap.

Witness the histrionic hand waving over John McCain’s moderate stances on the  environment and stem cell research.

McCain has not yet signaled the changes he plans to make in the GOP platform, but many conservatives say they fear wholesale revisions could emerge as candidate McCain seeks to put his stamp on a document that currently reflects the policies and principles of President Bush.

“There is just no way that you can avoid anticipating what is going to come. Everyone is aware that McCain is different on these issues,” said Jessica Echard, executive director of the conservative Eagle Forum. “We’re all kind of waiting with anticipation because we just don’t know how he’s going to thread this needle.”

Can you imagine?! The HORROR! John McCain, the Republican nominee, actually trying to be centrist during an election year! Much as I’m sure most Republicans would like to forget this, it should be pointed out that George Bush ran on a centrist platform his first term as well. “Compassionate conservatism.” Remember?

Here’s the thing. Conservatives have got to get over the idea that they get to put a candidate into office who doesn’t reach across the aisle. The last four years have completely hosed it for them. And John McCain is going to need those centrists to have a hope in hell of being elected, because short of asking Mitt Romney or Mike Huckabee to be his running mate, the religious base is going to take a pass on this one.

Republican special interest groups are acting like spoiled children throwing temper tantrums:

“That is the one issue that we’re always ready to fight on,” Echard said. “We will never take that plank for granted. We want zero changes in it. We don’t want a comma changed. We don’t want a word inserted.”

(this in regard to the anti-choice platform, of course. We can’t have these women thinking they have control over their own bodies! Make ’em raise that baby as a punishment! That’ll larn ’em.)

Okay, I’m obviously being less than objective, but quite frankly, I’m flabbergasted at the sheer refusal on the part of conservatives to recognize that some re-tooling of their platform is not only advisable, but necessary. We’ve spent ourselves into a major recession. The dollar is worth bupkis. When the peso starts to look better against it, it’s time to panic, kids. The bitter and divisive war of entitlement waged by the religious right is getting less and less easy to ignore. Our infrastructure is falling around our ears. And while Nero plays on in the Oval Office, an aging conservative tries to rally the troops back to a sane position. But the troops are having none of it, because they want what they want.

Remind me again…Dems should be more like conservatives….why?