The 2004 election cracked the once-close personal relationship between John McCain and John Kerry, the Washington Post notes, and differences over the Iraq war has left the bond between the former Navy men fractured. "The same intensity of their feelings as veterans which brought them together has pushed them apart on two big policy areas," one insider says of Iraq and national security. "They took away very different lessons."
The relationship soured after a possible Kerry-McCain ticket in 2004 was aborted—with the Dem's supporters saying McCain pulled away, and the Republican's camp charging Kerry was way off in thinking he’d ever agree to join. McCain’s refusal to appear in anti-Swift Boat ads widened the gulf—with Kerry now on the far shore, touting Barack Obama and blasting McCain's policies.