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That was the theme of the night. Fred Thompson reminded us how John McCain has stood up for his country. The President reminded us how Senator McCain has stood up to him. And Joe Lieberman reminded us how McCain has stood up to his party (reaching across the aisle on campaign finance reform, global warming and immigration legislation). But what no one pointed out is how this fiesty Maverick has so thoroughly caved in to his party’s base–– a base that never liked him, never trusted him and never appreciated his famed reach-across-the-aisle stances. No one celebrated the fact that John McCain has kowtowed to these social conservatives like topsy by choosing an inexperienced, half-term Governor who apparently has more street cred than McCain on the pro-life issue because of a pregnant unmarried daughter and a special needs baby. (Has anyone ever bothered to check McCain’s flawless 20+ year pro-life voting record?) Why is Palin so credible to this group and McCain so suspect? And the grand irony of the evening is that the last man on the platform reminding us how John McCain will never back down, is the supremely-qualified independent Senator who McCain really wanted to choose as his V.P. if he wasn’t so petrified of the base. Yup, John McCain is a stand up guy. He’s just not standing up this year.

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