UPDATE: Newt Gingrich, John McCain, and Dick Cheney appeared as scheduled on Sunday's morning talk show circuit, unleashing a torrent of attacks on President Obama and arguing that the Republican Party should resist efforts to "moderate."
On Fox News Sunday, Gingrich called Obama a "McCarthyist" and "radical" who wants to "put terrorists on welfare."
There was, he claimed, a "weird pattern" of Democratic administrations "defending alleged terrorists," as opposed to Bush officials, who "defend[ed] Americans."
"You look at the Obama administration," he said, "the number of attorneys that have been appointed who were defending alleged terrorists. There's this weird pattern where the Bush people wanted to defend Americans and were pretty tough on terrorists. These guys are prepared to take huge risks with Americans in order to defend terrorists."
And yet, even as he was asking the Obama administration lawyers whether they are now or have ever been representing terrorists, Gingrich managed to make accusations of McCarthyism. On the topic of investigating the authorization of torture by the Bush administration, he claimed: "What we're seeing now, in a very sad way, is as bitter a partisan attack on the Bush people, as much as we've seen since the McCarthy era. The degree that they're putting specific people at risk for criminal prosecution is unprecedented in modern America."
Sen. John McCain told ABC's George Stephanopoulos that he agrees with Dick Cheney that the Republican Party shouldn't "moderate":
"I think we're kind of in a word game here," said McCain, when played a segment of a recent interview in which the former vice president said moderation was not the best course for the GOP. "I don't want to moderate either. I think our policies, the principles of our party, are as viable today as they have been in the past. In all due respect, the previous administration, by letting loose spending get completely, out of control, by betraying some of those principles of our party, cost us a couple of elections. And maybe I didn't do good enough job communicating with the American people. But we have to improve our outreach and our communication, and that doesn't mean betray our principles. I think it means adjusting to the 21st century in communications, in values, in goals, in all the things that American people want."
And on CBS's Face the Nation, Cheney himself said he has "no regrets" over the Bush administration's interrogation policies, and would rather have Rush Limbaugh in the GOP than Colin Powell:
Former Vice President Dick Cheney said on Sunday, that he had no regrets about the course of actions he and the Bush administration pursued when it came to interrogating suspected terrorists or, more broadly, waging the war on terror.
"No regrets," Cheney declared during an appearance on CBS' "Face the Nation." "I think it was absolutely the right thing to do. I am convinced, absolutely convinced, that we saved thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of lives."
* * * *
FROM FRIDAY: A source sends over a list of guests who are set to appear on this week's Sunday Shows. And for those GOPers hoping to see newer faces representing the party it is not a pretty sight.
2008 presidential nominee, Senator John McCain will be on ABC's "This Week." Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich will be on "Fox News Sunday." And former Vice President Dick Cheney will be on "Face the Nation" on CBS. ("Face the Nation" confirmed that Cheney would be getting the full half hour.)
The Obama White House and DNC must be salivating at the slate. The latter two officials have been actively elevated by Democrats as the face of the GOP. In fact, just yesterday, Cheney himself was discussing the need to have fresh names representing the party if Republicanism was to experience a resurgence.
"I think periodically we have to go through one these sessions," he said. "It helps clear away some of the underbrush... some of the older folks who've been around a long time (like yours truly) need to move on, and make room for that young talent that's coming along. But I think it's basically healthy."
Get top stories and blog posts emailed to me each day. Newsletters may offer personalized content or advertisements. Learn more