Friday, February 15, 2008

McCain is a liber- ... I mean, never mind!

So ... Mitt Romney's come around to John McCain. From CNN:

Former Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney announced Thursday that he is backing Sen. John McCain in his bid for the Oval Office.

"I am honored today to give my full support to Sen. McCain's candidacy for the presidency of the United States," Romney said in a joint news conference with Sen. McCain by his side ...

One source said Romney wants to endorse McCain "in the interest of healing."

Healing, right. And let's remind ourselves, shall we, of why that "healing" is necessary. From Newsday:

Yesterday's endorsement apparently did not come easily, after McCain and Romney slashed each other with charges of duplicity, flip-flopping and being too "liberal."

Romney and McCain both noted their past battle as they sought to put it behind them.

"In the thick of the fight, it's easy to lose sight of your opponent's finer qualities," said Romney, who waited a week after his emotional withdrawal to make the announcement.

"But in the case of Senator John McCain, I could never quite do that," Romney said. "Even when the contest was close and our disagreements were debated, the caliber of the man was apparent."

McCain and Romney had a seriously contentious relationship during the campaign. There were times when the Arizona senator could barely mask his downright contempt for the former Massachusetts governor. And there were times when he didn't bother to try.

As for Romney himself, it's no secret that although he has noted McCain's experience as a POW and introduced him Thursday as a "true American hero," he also believes McCain to be a traitor to true conservatism -- at least, that's what he said in his campaign commercials when the two were rivals.

What precipitated this change of heart? Romney's statements Thursday are at pointed odds with statements he made about McCain before Super Tuesday. So that begs the question: when was Romney distoring McCain -- during the campaign, or on the stage Thursday?

Or both?