Chuck Muth’s latest op/ed (“Muth’s Truths”) is a welcome reminder of why I like him so darn much. There might not be another pundit I more frequently agree with.

Enjoy his latest on the GOP’s efforts to ram the McCain nomination down conservatives’ throats:

How Not to Win Votes and Influence Conservatives

I understand the frustration of many Republicans who just can’t understand how some conservatives just can’t bring themselves to support John McCain even though Barack Obama would likely be an even worse president than Jimmy Carter. I really do feel your pain. However…

It’s still a long, long way to election day. Many conservatives who are saying today that they can’t vote for McCain will come around and vote for McCain in November. Heck, I might even be one of them. But let me warn partisan Republicans that you’ll catch more wayward conservatives with honey than you will with vinegar.

For example, here’s what NOT to do if you want to persuade disgruntled (legitimately so) conservatives to vote for McCain in the fall rather than push them further away and force them to dig in their heels. This came to me recently in an email from an unknown McCain supporter:

“John McCain is THE Republican nominee, and though you may think he’s not ‘this,’ or ‘that’ enough for you, he is 10,000% better than the alternative. SO, enough of the ‘He’s not my first choice…’ crappola. McCain is your choice, period. Got it? Because, if you can’t suffer your personal political problems in silence, we don’t want to freaking HEAR from you. This ain’t the Whining Party, this is the Republican Party. Get over yourself, and get with the program.”

It is impossible to overstate exactly how stupid something like this is.

Conservatives, by definition, are independent thinkers. Liberals embody the herd mentality, where being told to “get with the program” actually works. But when you tell a conservative to “get with the program,” there’s a very good chance the conservative will go the other way just for spite. We are, at our core, anti-authoritarians. We don’t like being told what to do. By anybody.

And while John McCain might be the Republican nominee, he wasn’t MY choice…or the choice of a great number of Republicans. In fact, John McCain won the nomination by winning a lot of states in which NON-Republicans were allowed to vote for the Republican nominee.

It is not MY obligation to vote for John McCain just because he’s the Republican nominee. It is John McCain’s obligation to earn my vote. So far, he hasn’t. Doesn’t mean he can’t. He just hasn’t yet. But I can tell you this: Telling me to suffer the McCain nomination in silence and get with the program ain’t gonna cut it. That dog won’t hunt.

I could not agree more. I’m not required to vote for Senator Stiff just because he’s the nominee. I’m sick-to-death of hearing that I must support McCain because he’s the lessor of two evils. It’s almost always better on the soul to make no choice than a bad one.

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