Republican conservative patriarch Barry Goldwater jokingly pronounced himself and Sen. Bob Dole "the new liberals of the Republican party" on Sunday and called Pat Buchanan "a good Democrat."
Dole made a pilgrimage to the 1964 GOP presidential nominee's hilltop home on the outskirts of Phoenix in advance of Tuesday's Arizona primary.
Asked whether the party had moved to the right of him, Goldwater, 87, said: "I don't think the party's changed much."
However, in recent years, Goldwater has taken some stands that have displeased the most conservative Republicans _ his support for gays in the military and his earlier alignment with a possible candidacy of Gen. Colin Powell.
"Barry and I, we've sort of become the liberals," Dole said.
"We're the new liberals of the Republican Party. Can you imagine that?" Goldwater said.
Goldwater, asked his opinion of Buchanan, at first gave the impression he wasn't sure who he was.
"I think he's a good Democrat," Goldwater said, a glint in his eyes.
The Dole campaign released this statement from Goldwater: "I, for one, see no similarity at all between what Pat Buchanan is trying to do today and what Barry Goldwater was fighting for in 1964.
"The conservatism of Barry Goldwater is hopeful and inclusive. The message of Pat Buchanan is fearful and divisive. It's not conservative to play to people's fears and anxieties, it's not conservative to spread seeds of division and it is not conservative to flee from freedom's role in the world. Bob Dole is the true conservative choice."