How could that be? The answer is that the same maverick streak and occasional departures from conservative orthodoxy that make conservatives queasy have the opposite effect on independents and even some Democrats. Mr. McCain's favorable numbers with independents exceed those of Barack Obama, who has emphasized his desire to work across party lines.
The self professed establishment of the GOP, the Limbaughs, Coulters and Hannitys think that to win it is important to be as right wing as one can be. They don't seem so concerned of the fact that they only represent a small faction of electorate.
Fund notes that only McCain can make inroads into the so-called "Blue States" and also hold the "Red States."
Fund then makes the case that McCain is the American version of Nicolas Sarkozy, the French President. His predecessor, Jacques Chircac was very unpopular and the Socialist candidate was offering change. Here is what Fund says:
In some ways Mr. McCain resembles Nicolas Sarkozy, the French conservative who won last year's presidential election even though the retiring president, Jacques Chirac, was unpopular and a member of his own party. "Like Sarko, who was of Chirac's party but not of Chirac, America's swing voters have intuited over the years that there is little love lost between McCain and George Bush," says the blog Race42008.
Mr. Sarkozy was able to convince a majority of French voters that he represented real change that would improve conditions, while his socialist rival, Segolene Royal, represented risky change that could make matters worse. That is precisely the challenge Mr. McCain faces this year against Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton.
I tend agree with the viewpoint. Of course, anything can happen, but McCain has a better shot at the White House because he appeals to people beyond the Republican base.
In short, it comes down to doing the math.
If Romney won the nomination, you would have probably have an energized base, but that's it. Independents would not vote for him and neither would Democrats. The GOP is too weak at this point to rely only on the hard right. McCain still has an allure with independents and Democrats and could swing them over to the GOP.
Why do people like Rush Limbuagh not see this?
Maybe because they are too busy listening to the sound of their own voice.
Or flunked math.