Beyond the Cusp

February 14, 2012

The False Chimera of a Brokered Republican Convention

The idea of having the Republican Convention going well enough beyond the first ballot without producing consensus on a candidate appears to have increasing appeal to some conservative commentators. But would there be any advantage to having a brokered convention produce a compromise candidate drafted from some ephemeral list of alternate choices from those who will have endured over a year of the primary season with its travails, trials, exposure and disclosures. Granted a compromise candidate would have been spared the barbs and scorn from the press and thus may have the appearance of a clean slate. They would be able to take that magic combination of a base from Mitt Romney’s best policy positions, moderated by a smattering of Ron Paul financial and foreign policy restraint, with a moral spine from Rick Santorum, adding some spice and disdain for slanted posing of the press from Newt Gingrich’s arrogant ripostes and then fill in the gaps with Tea Party banter and smooth it all out with classic Republican rhetoric. Such a candidate would be a package of goods assembled a few short months before Election Day which may allow them the advantage of not being pinned down and fully vetted by an overly aggressive press. So, what could possibly be the problem of such a candidate? It appears on paper to be all benefit and little risk, a kind of the best of all worlds rolled neatly into one assembled package.


It is the best of all worlds rolled up into one neatly assembled package that would be the problem. Such a candidate would have all the appeal of a dress-up doll. Such a candidate would compare to President Obama in the same manner as a manikin shows off a clothing line compared to a model walking the runway. President Obama comes off well-spoken and relates well with the crowds when on the campaign. He may not be all that smooth when it comes to actually doing the job of President, but he can sound and appear very Presidential on the campaign. He will be as polished as polished can be. Hand-picking a candidate outside of those who endured the primary campaign and paid their dues to get the nomination will give the impression of a manufactured candidate which would be a grave misstep against President Obama. By the time the Republican Convention rolls around at the end of the summer the primary contest will present well vetted and known entities and the American people will expect one of these who have persevered and gained the support of at least a significant portion of the Republican electorate to be acknowledged and chosen to carry on to the election. To place somebody chosen in what we refer to as smoke-filled backrooms filled with faceless impersonal powerbrokers would be an insult to those who had toiled with their chosen candidate through the trials and tribulations to get to the convention. Such a move would be perceived as insult by many conservatives who have faith in a system which includes the votes and voices of the people. If we did not want to have a real influence in choosing the eventual candidate for President from our party, then we would not spend the time, effort, and wealth in a primary campaign season and would not even bother with a convention, we would just rent a conference room at a Motel 6 and be done with it.


But there is an even better argument against the brokered convention. Who? Simply, who? Give me the name of who it is that would be such a magnificent name that they would have the vast numbers of voters necessary to win the election and realize that this is the candidate of candidates. Bobby Jindal? Chris Christie? Paul Ryan? Sarah Palin? Glenn Beck? Rush Limbaugh? Clint Eastwood; after the Super Bowl commercial, why not? Really, who is there that would make such a wonderful candidate that it would be worth throwing all the toils and tribulations suffered by those who sweat and bled through the grueling primary endurance trial a wise and intelligent move. No, a brokered convention would be the closest thing to a disaster as the Republicans could pull. We need to continue with the people who have shown the willingness to ante-up and play the hand they are dealt. We need to choose from the warriors who have taken up their armor and survived the barbs and arrows of outrageous fortune and earned the right to represent the Republican voters on the ballot this fall, or is the plan to broker away the people’s trust and support. Note, they are the Republican Party candidate but they represent the voters who came out and supported them in the primaries. No brokered candidate can make that claim.


Beyond the Cusp


June 21, 2011

They Say Mitt Romney is Leading the Republicans

I have been reading and hearing ad-nauseum that Mitt Romney is the leading Republican candidate who is apparently so far ahead of the rest of the field that there may be no need for the primaries. Let’s just give him the nomination right now and save ourselves the messy democracy stuff. Well, maybe not so fast. If I recall correctly, four years ago we had Republicans that were polling as the unapproachable leaders in the pack. I remember those names went through a number of changes as the primaries moved along. And finally, I think it was somebody given up by the press whose campaign managers had left the campaign for dead who miraculously came out on top. Unfortunately, that was all the miracles John McCain was able to pull out of his bag and he lost the Presidential election rather convincingly. But this is a new election even if many of the potential candidates are retreads from last election or even the far distant past of the 1990s all saying that they are the one with the answers and the plan.

This early on, do we even have the faintest idea of who all of the players are going to be? Nope, there are likely to be more entries and some fade outs or even a burn out or two between now and New Hampshire and Iowa. Remember that for many the game doesn’t really start until sometime this fall, and most won’t pay any really serious attention, assuming they will even care about the primary season at all, until about a week or so before their State’s primary elections. What they are reporting to us right now are not real, or even pretend, poll numbers. Any poll taken now is simply a name recognition poll. They might as well go out and ask people to check off each name they recognize and I would bet those results would mirror most of the “real polling numbers” that are reported with deep breaths and anxious seriousness. Honestly, unless you are an even more serious political junky than am I, then you probably couldn’t even name everybody who is running for the Republican nomination, I know I cannot. For all the press that ex-Alaska Governor Sarah Palin has garnered, it might appear that she would be the front runner, not Mitt Romney, yet Mrs. Palin isn’t running, at least not at this time. Currently, good money is on Mrs. Palin not taking the plunge into the swamp of the political theater. Then there are people such as Herman Cain, John Thune and Tim Pawlenty who are about who many have yet to hear more than their names. And then there is Charles Elson “Buddy” Roemer III who was listed on the Politics 2012 Republican Presidential Candidates Guidebook I found on-line. I would have to list him as a remote chance and might ask who he is except he is listed as Former Governor of Louisiana. Not quite as recognizable a name as, say, the current Governor of Louisiana, Bobby Jindal, also listed as a possible. The problem with guessing who might run and who won’t is similar to the problem predicting the Democrat candidates in the 1992 Presidential Primaries. When there is a sitting President who is running for reelection, many will not attempt to unseat his chances as it usually poses a more difficult challenge. Back in the 1992 primaries, Bill Clinton not only won the primary, but also unseated incumbent President George H W Bush in the elections. President Clinton was about as remote a pick before the start of the primary as you could find but chose to try as the field was not very strong as most presumed viable Democrat potentials decided not to challenge a President Bush who was at the pinnacle of his popularity at the start of the election cycle. Some say that does not apply to this election as President Obama is not as popular at this time. My answer, he is still the President which makes beating him an uphill battle that is why we hold elections and play the games.

So, we have, reputedly, Mitt Romney as the man to beat to even get to run against the real man to beat, President Barack Obama. The press repeats this claim at least four to thousands of times a week, depending if you are rating one anchor or all the news forms. Even if you just landed here from half way across the Milky Way, within fifteen minutes of understanding our language you would know that Mitt Romney is the leading Republican candidate. This, in some ways, begs a question, why is the press pushing Mitt Romney so hard? Since most of the people I have spoken with do not particularly prefer Mitt Romney, and a number of them would not vote for him if he were to become the Republican candidate. I am sure a few of those people mean what they claim and most would vote for Romney should push comes to shove. That does not mean they would actively support Romney, merely pull the lever on that fateful day in November. With such negatives and the doubts of Mitt Romney’s conservative pedigree, might not the press be pushing him along with their other favorite claim that the Republicans can only win if they run some form of Democrat lite candidate? I think this might be some of the explanation for the pushing of Mitt Romney so hard by the mainstream press. If so, the only thing left to see is if it works, and if it works, will it kill the Republican hopes of defeating President Obama, the real objective behind much of the press in America.

Beyond the Cusp

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