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"If You Strike At The King, You Have To Kill Him"
By Ed Driscoll · March 14, 2006 11:13 PM · Bobos In Paradise · Democracy In America · War And Anti-War

Mark Steyn's superb obit of Eugene McCarthy, which ran on dead tree in The Atlantic last month is now online. It begins:

If you strike at the king, you have to kill him. And, amazingly, Eugene McCarthy did. On March 12th 1968, the not exactly barnstorming Senator got 42.4% of Democratic votes in the New Hampshire primary and denied the sitting President even a majority of his own party’s supporters: Lyndon Johnson secured just 49.5%. Within three weeks, he was gone: the President announced he would not seek re-election and effectively ended his political career. The king was dead, long live …well, not Senator McCarthy: the man who plunged the dagger in did not take the crown. But his few short weeks stumping the Granite State changed his party, with consequences it lives with to this day. The LBJ diehards who dismissed him as a mere “footnote in history” failed to understand how much damage one footnote can do when he doesn’t mind whose toes he steps on and all the bigfeet turn out to have feet of clay. Thus, the paradox of Gene McCarthy: the revered liberal icon who destroyed the last successful liberal presidency. His act of insouciant regicide was the defining moment in the Democrats’ modern history.
I agree; obviously, read the whole thing.

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