"But McCain's 21-year record in the U.S. Senate, as well as many of the positions he has taken as a candidate, shows he is a solid conservative who generally supports the Republican orthodoxy," Allison writes. "In terms of ideology and matters of peace and prosperity -- taxes, health care, economic policy, the war in Iraq -- McCain and President Bush are nearly indistinguishable, favoring the free market over government intervention, cutting taxes for the rich and corporations, and preferring pressure or estrangement over negotiation with America's enemies."
And who does the defense establishment really want as president? "In more than two decades in Congress, Senator John McCain has earned a reputation as a leading defense hawk, using his perch on the powerful Armed Services Committee and his war-hero status to advocate for a stronger military," Bryan Bender writes in The Boston Globe. "But in the plush office towers of some of America's leading defense companies, the recipients of billions of dollars of Pentagon contracts each year, the presumptive Republican nominee for president has another label: persona non grata."
The Democratic Leadership Council's "national conversation" wraps up Monday in Chicago -- with just enough possible vice presidents to make it interesting, but the presumptive Democratic nominee himself not in his hometown for the occasion.
McCain campaigns in Pennsylvania, with a 12:30 pm ET news conference in Harrisburg, in his last day on the trail before traveling to Latin America.
Obama follows Harry Truman's footsteps to Independence, Mo., for the 10 am ET patriotism speech Monday. Per his campaign: "On this Fourth of July week, Senator Obama will discuss what patriotism means to him and what it requires of all Americans who loves this country and want to see it do better."
(Who's Dewey and who's Truman this year? Some interesting historical parallels, courtesy of Tom Abrahams of KTRK-TV, ABC's Houston affiliate.)
Peace in Our Time:
Unity achieved (physically, if not spiritually), Bill Clinton is ready to make nice: Terry McAuliffe told CNN Sunday he expects the former president to pick up the phone and reach out to Obama "in the next 24 to 48 hours."
"Is he somewhat angry, as I am, and others, at some of the treatment Hillary Clinton received from the press? Sure. But, you know, that's life," McAuliffe said. "They'll talk, and off we will go."
But it may take more than a phone call: "Barack Obama quickly determined what Hillary Clinton wants in the aftermath of defeat: a major role in the general election campaign, a star turn at the convention, help with her debt, and Obama's support for elected officials who backed her," Tom Edsall writes for Huffington Post. "The big-time holdout turns out to be her husband. Bill is more complex. He wants respect, absolution and love."
Clintonistas are still seething, but this may help: Gov. Bill Richardson, D-N.M., tells ABC's David Chalian that he's ready to help pay down Sen. Clinton's campaign debt. "We've been asked to help. So in principle we are going to help," Richardson said.
It's not easy being loaded: "When you're poor, it can be hard to pay the bills. When you're rich, it's hard to keep track of all the bills that need paying. It's a lesson Cindy McCain learned the hard way when NEWSWEEK raised questions about an overdue property-tax bill on a La Jolla, Calif., property owned by a trust that she oversees."