In yet another sign that Sen. John McCain is aggressively leaving social conservatives behind, pro-choice Rudy Giuliani has been tapped to give the keynote speech to the GOP convention. This comes as speculation about McCain selecting a pro-choice running mate, either Tom Ridge or Joe Lieberman, is reaching fever pitch. By way of Politico.com, the announcement that Lieberman will also speak at the GOP convention, is seen by some top Republicans as a signal to the far-right to calm down, that Lieberman will not be the pick.
Tony Perkins from the Family Research Council has this to say about the Veep:
we received disturbing reports that McCain’s campaign manager Rick Davis had
been making phone calls to state leaders to gauge their reactions to the
selection of a pro-abortion running mate. Most signs pointed to former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge.
Big problem! Governor Ridge is not only aggressively pro-abortion, supporting
measures like the Freedom of Choice Act, which would have overturned most
state laws on abortion, while serving as a U.S. Congressman, he was well
known for publicly opposing many of President Reagan’s policies relating to
national defense and siding instead with liberal Democrats.
Social conservatives don’t even seem to have a real horse in the veepstakes race, and while McCain gets credit for mouthing the words the anti-choice community wants to hear, it sure seems that McCain is sending signals in every other possible way that their influence just isn’t what it use to be.
McCain could restore his maverick image with a pro-choice running mate, and even make a play for disaffected supporters of Hillary Clinton, even though McCain himself has been consistently anti-choice throughout his career and promises to appoint judicial nominees that will overturn Roe v. Wade.
The news that Giuliani is the keynote speaker has to be seen as more salt in the wound for social conservatives.