Launching a new "Catholics for McCain" group and rolling out new leadership for his "Iowans of Faith for McCain" group last week, broadcasting a television ad about bonding with a prison guard over a cross as a POW, and airing recent ads on Iowa Christian radio, the presidential candidate who famously denounced the Christian Right's leaders as "agents of intolerance" in his 2000 White House bid is making an 11th-hour appeal for the movement's support.
Perhaps more than anyone, the person responsible for John McCain's turnabout is Kansas Senator Sam Brownback, the evangelical-turned-Catholic religious conservative who endorsed McCain shortly after ending his own presidential campaign in October. In recent weeks, Brownback and advisors from his defunct campaign have counseled McCain and his aides about stepping up conservative Christian outreach and have arranged meetings between the campaign and evangelical Christian leaders.
"They are redoubling their efforts," Brownback said of the McCain camp's religious outreach effort in an interview on Saturday. "For quite a while, they just didn't think it was their best zone of opportunity, and then we pushed them a lot and they've seen that McCain has a message that resonates in that community."
"I don't think they'd been very aggressive on reaching out the faith community... or showing respect for faith and issues of faith," Brownback added about McCain and his team. "More than anything, he had to show respect for authentic faith, and you're seeing that now in his language."
Jeez, I just love how the Republicans are trying to out-theocrat one another. (/snark) The question is whether these "faith voters" have such short memories that they'll forget McCain's dismissive words during the 2000 campaign. Don't you find it curious that the MSM isn't really picking up on the rather large flip-flop on McCain's part the way they dissected every single vote or statement John Kerry made in 2004?