If you want to know why it's going to be next to impossible for Focus on the Family's James Dobson to publicly support John McCain (R) -- at least in a manner that he can straight-face -- you need only look at the condemning statement of McCain that Dobson issued in 2000:
February 17, 2000, Thursday
Dr. James Dobson's Statement on Gary Bauer's Endorsement of Senator McCain
DATELINE: COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., Feb. 17
Speaking as a private individual and not as the president of Focus on the Family, Dr. James Dobson expressed disagreement yesterday with former presidential candidate Gary Bauer's endorsement of Senator John McCain as Republican nominee for U.S. President. The Senator has offered no assurances that he intends to appoint a pro-life running mate or pro-life justices to the U.S. Supreme Court. Indeed, he voted for pro-abortion Stephen Breyer and pro-abortion ACLU-activist Ruth Bader Ginsburg for that Court and for David Satcher for Surgeon General, who supports partial-birth-abortion. McCain also voted in support of President Clinton to expand fetal-tissue research.
Furthermore, McCain has accepted huge contributions from the gambling industry and apparently is comfortable with the proliferation of gambling in American society. He has also accepted large contributions from producers of alcohol. McCain is in favor of combat assignments for women in the military, and has sought and received enormous financial and political support from the Log Cabin Republicans and other homosexual activists. McCain also supports Most Favored Nation status for the brutal regime in China, and voted against our nation's monitoring of Communist Chinese commercial fronts operating in the United States. He seeks to appease the bloated Federal public school bureaucracy and has refused to support vouchers.
"The Senator," Dobson said, "is being touted by the media as a man of principle, yet he was involved with other women while married to his first wife, and was implicated in the so-called Keating scandal with four other senators. He was eventually reprimanded by the Congress for the 'appearance of impropriety.' The Senator reportedly has a violent temper and can be extremely confrontational and profane when angry. These red flags about Senator McCain's character are reminiscent of the man who now occupies the White House."
Gary Bauer's endorsement of the Senator is troubling for another reason. When Clarence Thomas was being considered for Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, Mr. Bauer actively championed his candidacy. However, Warren Rudman who is John McCain's National Campaign Chairman and his most likely choice for U.S. Attorney General was a pro-abortion Senator who opposed confirmation of Clarence Thomas, despite the fact that he voted for him in order to get three federal judgeships approved. He said about the Thomas decision, "It's a vote I'm not proud of."
Given these concerns about McCain, it is difficult to understand how Gary Bauer can support him "with great pride and with absolutely no reservation."
This statement is not intended to imply Dr. Dobson's endorsement of anyone else's candidacy for the presidency -- simply to clarify his lack of support for Senator McCain.
SOURCE Dr. James Dobson
The biggest problem that Dobson would have in backing McCain -- which he has recently hinted at -- is that the reasons he castigated him for in 2000 -- adultery, Keating Five, ethics, violent temper, profane behavior, courting the Log Cabin Republicans, stem cell research, and his acceptance of gambling and alcohol money -- haven't gone away. McCain still has those same character flaws and though he rivals Mitt Romney (R) when it comes to the speed and reach of his flip-flops, even McCain hasn't shifted on all the issues that Dobson cares deeply about.
We'll soon find out if Dobson is really a man of principle or just another political hack that drapes himself in religious clothing in hopes of electing more Republicans.
Mark Nickolas is the Managing Editor of Political Base, and this story was from his original post, "Dobson Calls McCain Unethical Adulterer, Compares Him To Bill Clinton"