McCain: George Bush who?

McCain has continued his “don’t call me Bush the third” tour in the past couple days making it quite clear that he intends to be his own presidency, not mired in the shadow of the current Bush administration.

A report on it from AOL News:

WASHINGTON (May 2) — Slowly but surely, Republican presidential candidate John McCain is putting some distance between himself and unpopular President George W. Bush.

This week it was the ill-timed “Mission Accomplished” banner that the White House hung behind Bush five years ago when Bush declared major combat operations over in Iraq.

“I thought it was wrong at the time,” McCain said in Cleveland on Thursday, proceeding to criticize Vice President Dick Cheney’s various comments over the years that the Iraqi insurgency was in its “last throes” with “a few dead-enders” all that was left.

Last week, McCain surprised some in the White House by declaring Bush’s leadership “disgraceful” during the crisis over the 2005 Katrina hurricane that walloped New Orleans.

“Never again,” McCain declared.

It is a strategy born of necessity for McCain, facing uphill odds as he tries to win a third straight White House term for his party, a feat that has happened only once in presidential politics in the past half century.

McCain has to do what he can to not be bogged down spending his entire campaign defending the Bush administration’s policies. He’s been doing a fairly good job but the Democratic Party and the liberal group MoveOn.org have already begun putting big bucks into running ads painting him in the opposite light.

First, this spot from MoveOn.org via ABC News:

Also, the Democratic National Committee took the same theme and ran with it:

I’m guessing that McCain is now regretting that “hug” with President Bush as it will probably appear in every single anti-McCain ad run by Democrats. Plus, his statement about the “100 years” is being twisted and used to make it appear as though he advocated 100 years of war in Iraq.

I think the “100 year statement is explainable though it will be used against him repeatedly.