Sen. John McCain’s victory in the Florida primary has led to a rough week in the world of talk radio.
Some of my colleagues have turned on each other with a vengeance. One host accused another one of acting like a liberal (which, in our business, is a low blow). Another responded by referring to the original host as a “talk show host wanna-be” (another deep cut).
And it all has to do with whether or not John McCain is the most conservative of the GOP bunch.
Seeing fellow Republicans devour other Republicans is a highly unpleasant experience. I don’t like seeing like-minded folks hit each other over the head repeatedly with a sledge hammer. And after watching Wednesday night’s GOP debate, I’m not going to participate in this mud fest any longer.
I couldn’t help but consider the irony of Gov. Romney and Sen. McCain taking potshots at each other over who is the more conservative of the two while sitting at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library. In case you’ve forgotten, President Reagan was the man many of us consider to be one of the greatest presidents who ever lived. And he had a simple rule about attacking fellow Republicans: never. He would always say, with that wink and smile, that he would never, ever attack a fellow Republican.
I guess we’ve forgotten that valuable lesson. Reagan didn’t say that because of some quaint, empty desire to be polite. He was a competitor. He loved his country. And he knew the value of keeping Democrats out of office.
If there was ever a time to prevent a Democrat from taking the White House, it is now.
On my radio show and during some of my appearances on Fox News Channel, I’ve been guilty of this game of “gotcha” with fellow Republicans. I, too, have engaged in this fairly fruitless effort to try and find the textbook Republican candidate with all the perfect conservative credentials.
But to do so simply damages the GOP and hurts our chances to win in November. I can promise you that loyal Democrats are positively delighted at all of this bickering between Republicans over whether or not John McCain is truly a conservative or not. Libs love every heated word that conservative radio hosts are using towards each other. Heck, I just saw one radio host as a guest on Fox News promise to NEVER vote for John McCain. I guess he relishes the idea of handing the White House to Clinton or Obama on a silver platter.
It’s enough already.
As I watched these four men – John McCain, Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee, and Ron Paul – I kept hearing Ronald Reagan’s words: Never criticize a fellow Republican.
And from this point on, I’m going to listen to the Gipper.