Bob Novak has a column today about McCain’s attempts to reach out to Christian conservatives. He argues that McCain hasn’t managed to close the deal with them. There are a variety of reasons for this, and Novak lists a few of them. There’s one he overlooked. McCain, despite his personal faith in God, does not have much in common with evangelicals. He doesn’t speak about his faith very much, if at all. He doesn’t speak their language, and he’s not George W. Bush (who was much more comfortable doing both of those things). McCain isn’t one of them, and they knew that before he (out of political necessity) threw John Hagee and Rod Parsley under his bus.
McCain may have gotten popular with some Democrats and with the media by opposing some of the policies of the Bush administration, but those days are long gone. It doesn’t help him to lose leading evangelicals from his camp, but losing conservatives would be far more damaging in November. I hope that the McCain people recognize this weakness, and that they try to fix it.