George Will, the syndicated columnist and television pundit, fancies himself the conscience of conservatism. But his endorsement of Linda McMahon in his newly published column on the Connecticut Senate race proves only the limits of conscience in politics.
Will didn’t always think so highly of the McMahon family. When Vince and Linda McMahon in 2001 launched their XFL football league, Will called it “God’s way of telling Amerca it has too much leisure time.” Will also wrote that, more than football, “the XFL will offer puerile vulgarity, vicarious danger and derivative manliness for couch potatoes, particularly those in the coveted (by advertisers) category of 12-to-24-year-old males.”
(The full George Will column from 2001 can be viewed at http://townhall.com/columnists/GeorgeWill/2001/01/28/lord_help_us,_the_xfl_is_getting_ready_to_rumble/page/full/.)
Asked about Will’s comments in a televised interview, Vince McMahon – playing the anti-elitist as only he can – replied, “You mean the guy with the bow tie?”
Will’s words above apply equally to Linda McMahon’s Senate bid. Just as the XFL was World Wrestling Entertainment’s brand extension into legit sports, her $50 million “self-funded” campaign is WWE’s brand extension into electoral politics. It is just as flawed and just as doomed to failure.
George Will, the conscience of conservatism, would be writing exactly that today except for one thing: its partisan inconvenience.