When CPAC rolls around, Feb. 5 will have told us much more about the state of the presidential race. If he's coming out of the tsunami a winner, he'll have to use the CPAC pulpit to preach some serious conservative conversion. Or, at least communicate that his disdain for border security and tax cuts have decreased dramatically, and his "Maverick" sensibilities won't turn him into the best friend of a Democratic Congress.
Perhaps the McCain of the "Gang of Fourteen" and hiring Juan Hernandez could allude to the John McCain of the past. The John McCain who was introduced by Ronald Reagan himself at the first CPAC, in the first paragraph of Reagan's "City Upon a Hill:"
There are three men here tonight I am very proud to introduce. It was a year ago this coming February when this country had its spirits lifted as they have never been lifted in many years. This happened when planes began landing on American soil and in the Philippines, bringing back men who had lived with honor for many miserable years in North Vietnam prisons. Three of those men are here tonight, John McCain, Bill Lawrence and Ed Martin. It is an honor to be here tonight. I am proud that you asked me and I feel more than a little humble in the presence of this distinguished company.He should have showed up last year, but maybe he can make some inroads this year. We shall see. He's gonna have to do something to help conservatives trust him on anything other than the war.