THE PLANK JANUARY 23, 2009
Take note of one certain passage in this morning's Post story on the return of Maverick McCain:
The surest sign of McCain's return to his "maverick" ways came when he
caught wind of an effort by Sen. John Cornyn (R-Tex.) to delay
Clinton's confirmation vote by a day, pushing it from Tuesday to
Wednesday because he was seeking greater disclosure about foreign
donors to former president Bill Clinton's charitable foundation. McCain
found the objection gratuitous -- despite policy disagreements with
Clinton, he and most Republicans consider her well qualified -- and
said so publicly.
"I think that's indicative of the role that John McCain is going to
play," said Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who hatched the push-back
against Cornyn's gambit over dinner with McCain on Tuesday night, and
who followed him to the floor to support Clinton's confirmation (emphasis mine). "He's
going to play a very active role. He's going to try to forge bipartisan
coalitions. And he won't shy away from controversy."
If McCain becomes a lone public GOP ally of the Obama administration on questions like immigration or faith in its appointees, that's useful. If he can rally a troupe of mavericks -- longtime devotees of his in the Senate, like Susan Collins, Olympia Snowe, Lindsey Graham, and Joe Lieberman -- that'd be very useful.