Beyond the Cusp

January 13, 2012

The Electability Myth

The Republican mainstream pundits have been stressing the fact that Mitt Romney won overwhelmingly of people who claimed in exit polling that they had chosen who they thought could beat President Obama in the general election. For some reason I am having great difficulty justifying these voters with the number of polls which have claimed that any generic Republican would win against President Obama. If one is to believe that as long as the Republican candidate is not a serial killer they would defeat President Obama, then why not vote for the person you find most represents your views. I guess part of my problem with people voting this way is that they are simply voting the given Republican Party line which makes the claim that Mitt Romney is the most electable candidate. Remember this point four years ago when all of a sudden it was posited that John McCain was the strongest and most electable candidate against either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama? Remember how well that turned out? How was that President McCain Administration? Oh, that’s right; it turned out that Mr. McCain did not turn out as electable as first claimed. I just hope that should Mitt Romney, the apparent Party favorite and the one who was given the title of next in line and favorite son, become the Republican candidate for President as it has apparently been ordained that we do not end up with another lackluster, weak, tepid campaign leading to a reelected President Obama.

Is it wrong to question the wisdom of the republican hierarchy? I remember that it was this same Republican hierarchy that gave us such standout candidates as John McCain, Bob Dole, actually a really good man but not much of a candidate, and George W. Bush, not exactly the most strident of conservatives. Perhaps my problem is my desire for an honest and real conservative candidate from the Republicans for whom I can feel proud and enjoy pulling the lever and voting. I have grown tired of appearing to have some neural disease when voting for the lesser evil. Eventually one reaches a point where voting for the lesser evil becomes recognized as still voting for evil and one no longer can rationalize and pretend that voting as such is a necessary, let alone good, thing. It really should not be our desire to vote for somebody because they are the not Obama but to vote for the candidate who honestly represents our principles. This election is a rare opportunity to elect a through and through conservative, or at least the most conservative of the available candidates just as we were granted with the 1980 elections when incumbent Jimmy Carter made virtually anybody electable. Let’s not waste this opportunity by voting on a compromise candidate on the theory of electability over principle when honestly either will win in the general elections.

The reason I fear about Mitt Romney is that he has shown by past actions that he will swerve and shift leftward when pressured. Once Romney gets to Washington the pressures to slide down the slippery slope from the pinnacles of conservatism to the bogs of progressivism often appears to be the natural state of things. The pressure to bend to the left is an undeniable preeminent force built into the Washington culture. The press, the people, the air you breathe all draws people leftward and only the most strident and strongest of conservatives can survive and resist these influences. I do not believe that Mitt Romney has the pure conservative principles and steadfast conservative bearings to remain true to conservative principles with any more diligence and steadfastness than he did as Governor of Massachusetts. I want a candidate who I believe will resist whatever pressures and influences are placed upon him to force them away from their conservative promises and have a track record that proves they have such character. My belief is this is not Mitt Romney.

Yes, I plead guilty of being a Rick Santorum supporter and can give you what I feel is one convincing reason. I know there are people more conservative on some issues than Rick Santorum, but none of those are currently in the hunt for the Republican nomination. My personal choice if I could choose anybody was John Bolton, but we do not get our wishes as much as we might like. Sans Mr. Bolton, I will support Rick Santorum. I’m not going to repeat the campaign slogans and bullet points but instead will give you one action from Rick Santorum’s past that most who support him actually avoid, yet I believe is also one of the best reasons to support him. As we all know, Rick Santorum won two terms as Senator from Pennsylvania but lost a relatively close election for a third term. What most do not know or remember is the main reason Rick Santorum lost that election. Rick Santorum has the kind of conservatism that is earthy and holds people’s rights as paramount which is why he was able to win in a mostly Democrat State as Pennsylvania. He supported President Bush on many issues as President Bush was his party’s President. This included the surge which President Bush called for in Iraq. Rick Santorum was running for reelection that was held leading up to the surge and that was the big issue in the elections. All Rick would have needed to do in order to probably have easily won reelection would have been to abandon his principled support for President Bush and the surge in Iraq. Rick Santorum held his position proudly and had even stated when challenged about simply changing sides in order to win he stated his intention to hold to his principles even if doing such would cost him reelection. That is being principled, even if you disagree about the surge, which more people seem to have done with time, and shows that Rick Santorum will be exactly as advertised and has the intestinal fortitude to stick to his guns, or at least his ideals.

Beyond the Cusp

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