Conservative activists are preparing to do battle with allies of Sen. John McCain in advance of September's Republican National Convention, hoping to prevent his views on global warming, immigration, stem cell research and campaign finance from becoming enshrined in the party's official declaration of principles.I don't think, in general terms, that a party's official platform makes much of a difference in an election. These things are about personality more than positions, and I'm far more worried about the media narrative that's been spun around McCain for the last 15 years than I am about what's actually in the Republican platform. After all, the Republican platform could state that the official position on the Iraq War is that the troops will be pulled out Jan. 21, 2009 and it wouldn't matter--McCain is going to keep them there for as long as he wants if he's president.
But anything that makes it more difficult for the media to write and broadcast that narrative of McCain as the leader of a unified Republican party is a good thing, especially since the things we're talking about here: global warming, stem cell research, campaign finance reform--those are issues where McCain's "positions" are often more popular than those of his party. Any Republican infighting--especially given that the Republican party has a well-deserved reputation of closing ranks--is good for us. So bring on the floor fights.