Senator John McCain showed signs of cracking under stress -- a very un-presidential trait -- when he lashed out at Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) last Thursday during a meeting on the Immigration bill.
At a bipartisan gathering in an ornate meeting room just off the Senate floor, McCain complained that Cornyn was raising petty objections to a compromise plan being worked out between Senate Republicans and Democrats and the White House. He used a curse word associated with chickens and accused Cornyn of raising the issue just to torpedo a deal.
Things got really heated when Cornyn accused McCain of being too busy campaigning for president to take part in the negotiations, which have gone on for months behind closed doors. "Wait a second here," Cornyn said to McCain. "I've been sitting in here for all of these negotiations and you just parachute in here on the last day. You're out of line."
McCain, a former Navy pilot, then used language more accustomed to sailors (not to mention the current vice president, who made news a few years back after a verbal encounter with Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont).
"[Expletive] you! I know more about this than anyone else in the room," shouted McCain at Cornyn. McCain helped craft a bill in 2006 that passed the Senate but couldn't be compromised with a House bill that was much tougher on illegal immigrants.
McCain has been absent from Washington for some time now, and as of last week had missed 42 roll-call votes in a row.
Since the first-quarter fundraising period for presidential candidates ended March 31, McCain has made just three floor votes. He hasn't cast a single vote since the full details of his wildly disappointing presidential campaign's fundraising report were revealed in mid-April.
Is there anyone out there, besides McCain and his family, who think he might still have a chance at the nomination?
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