« The truth hurts: Newsweek's Palin cover | Main | My first Newsweek story: Senate May Thwart Stupak »

November 18, 2009

Comments

If Romney couldn't beat out such stellar candidates as Guiliani, McCain, and Huckabee in '08, I see no reason to think he'll do any better next time. Given a choice between a Mormon fake wingnut and an evangelical real wingnut like Palin, the GOP primary voters will surely go for the evangelical.

Von--do you think Romney's religion will cut him off from the fundie portion of the Republican base?

I confess, I *completely* fail to see the appeal of - or any appeal in - Mr. Romney, aka 'John Boehner, Sr.'. He is Ken to Ms. Palin's Barbie.

Mr. Empty-Suit, meet Ms. Empty-Swimsuit.

Add his Mormon heritage, and he loses traction immediately with the wing-nut wing of the GOP without gaining anything at all.

Maybe I don't remember Hugh Romney clearly enough, but I suspect he's rolling over in his grave, the way Bush 41 has been doing for the last 8 years.

Thank you for the 'Manchurian Candidate' excerpt. Amazing movie. Everyone who is inclined to vote Republican should watch it more than once: for the prescient view of the modern (*ahem*) GOP, for a reminder that we may have dodged a very big bullet in electing Obama, and for the swift kick in the smugness. And because it's an amazing movie.

I'm sorry: Giuliani a "stellar candidate"? What, due to name recognition? (Is he the Regis Philbin of politics? Or the Ed McMahon?)

That must mean Col. Sanders & Ronald McDonald are neck-and-neck for the lead....

I'm sorry: Giuliani a "stellar candidate"?

I think that was sarcasm.

Maybe I don't remember Hugh Romney clearly enough, but I suspect he's rolling over in his grave, the way Bush 41 has been doing for the last 8 years.

Hmmmmm. Given that Mitt's father was George, but Hugh Romney is Wavy Gravy (which I didn't know) (Wavy Gravy's real name, that is), and that Bush 41 isn't in his grave, rolling or otherwise, and that I sometimes can't see a joke when it konks me on the head, maybe I missed this one.

But chmood, did you mean George?

/quibble

HSH - yes - I was just pilling on....

JanieM - Yes, you're quite right - honest confusion, and not intending to imply that Wavy Gravy was father to Mittens: I did indeed mean his perennially-unelectable father, who always struck me as a decent man and reasonable public servant.

And yes, Bush 41 is *not* in fact rolling in his grave where he belongs...so yes, the snark was supposed to be strong in this one, but outweighed by the fail, methinks.

*sigh*

If Romney couldn't beat out such stellar candidates as Guiliani, McCain, and Huckabee in '08, I see no reason to think he'll do any better next time.

Romney only lost to McCain. And Romney isn't going to win the Palin voters in a primary anyway, for the reasons that others have noted. But that's why Palin is useful to Romney. She splits the votes for the other candidates: Romney can't draw votes from Huckabee, but Palin can. Moreover, every other Romney-like candidate (I'm thinking mostly of Daniels and Pawlenty) lacks Romney's one massive advantage: money.

chmood, I wouldn't say "fail." In fact, the concept of Mitt and Wavy being related is entertaining, as if they're each other's alternate universe anti-twin or something. ;)

Palin is hardly a threat to the country: right now, John Edwards has a clearer path to the presidency than she does.

Yeah, so I keep hearing. From the left, and now from the right, too. It makes me wonder whether the people who say this with such assurance were living in the same country as me over the last decade.

In case your memory needs refreshing:

- they took a child of enormous wealth and privilege, one who owed his entire adult career to his family name and connections, and made him a guy you'd like to have a beer with

- they took a scion of New England bluebloods--Andover, Yale, and Harvard Business School--and made him a rootin'-tootin' straight-shootin' Texan

- they took a man with a phobia of horses and made him a cowboy

- they took a man who chilled out in the Texas Air National Guard during the height of the Vietnam war and made him an archetype of militaristic toughness and resolve

- they took one of his opponents, who had actually served in Vietnam voluntarily, and turned him into a limp-wristed pansy

- they took an inarticulate, incurious, ignorant dullard and convinced people that there was something reassuring about these qualities

The dude in question served two full terms in the most powerful office in the world. Yet somehow, I'm expected to believe that Sarah Palin doesn't stand a chance.

The one thing that does seem to be beyond doubt is that the media can't get enough of Sarah Palin, and in a world where there's no such thing as bad publicity, that can take you very far indeed. Short of getting Bill Clinton's penis to run for POTUS in 2012, there's nothing the David Shusters and Chris Matthews and Cokie Roberts would find more enjoyable than talking about President Sarah, Scourge of the Hippies, every Sunday morning.

Dismiss her at your peril.

Shorter Uncle Kvetch: Don't underestimate the stupidity of the American voter.

Yeah, seriously.

The idea that Palin has no hope of a nomination is premised on the assumption that Republicans would never choose a vapid sock puppet with populist appeal and place that sock puppet in the White House surrounded by a strongly partisan Republican staff.

But last I checked, that's what Republicans do. That's their thing. They've been doing this for DECADES.

I'm inclined to agree with Uncle Kvetch. Palin has a dedicated following in the GOP, who could quite possibly deliver the nomination to her in 2012. Limbaugh seems to be a fan, and check out the comments on this Volokh thread.

Can she beat Obama? Unlikely, though if we get another big dip in the economy it's just barely conceivable. And a Palin presidency would indeed be a massive catastrophe.

Yeah, I've heard this idea before* -- makes sense enough...

*via tnr

Sorry, Von, it's the Queen of Diamonds. (The Queen of Hearts is prominent in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Manchurian_Candidate

http://www.filmsite.org/manc.html

If the Republicans nominate Hugh Romney for President, they will have my vote.

President Sarah, Scourge of the Hippies

Not for nothing, but I know a fair number of hippies, and I can't think of one who wouldn't kick Palin's @ss royally in anything resembling a fair fight.

Hippies tend to be pretty mellow, but I wouldn't count on them taking a lot of crap, least of all from folks like Palin.

Just something for her fans to keep in mind.

Sorry, Uncle Kvetch, but GWB had one big advantage that Palin doesn't have: family connections to pull in money and support. Even with all the other points you make, Palin's lacks there probably mean that she won't make it to the nomination.

Not to say that, if she seriously tries, she won't give a fright to the folks who most object to her as a candidate. (Not to mention as President.) But make it to the nomination? No.

Obama spends the week talking to the leaders of two of the most important countries in the world...and OB opts to write two posts about Palin.

Don't blame the Palin media circus if you're just going to contribute to it.

Sorry, Von, it's the Queen of Diamonds. (The Queen of Hearts is prominent in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.)

Ahh, crap. You're right.

Sorry, Uncle Kvetch, but GWB had one big advantage that Palin doesn't have: family connections to pull in money and support. Even with all the other points you make, Palin's lacks there probably mean that she won't make it to the nomination.

Bingo. The parallel with Bush also fails because Bush had an actual record in Texas and bipartisan support there. He also had a considerable set of allies. Right now, Palin is only making enemies.

Always keep the following in mind: The support of the base is good, but not essential. The support of the party operatives, however, is essential. That goes for both Democrats and Republicans, but particularly for Republicans. Bush won the nomination in 2000 because he had connections, money, a good record as govenor, and a malleable image. Palin has none of those things.

Curiously, I frequently think of Bush in regards to that bit from THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE (except in this case, Iselin won).

Palin is not going to accept the second spot again and you are dreaming if you think she would.

And in the end, Mormons are not acceptable to Fundamentalist "christians."

Romney needs excitement, but she is the wrong kind. Everything about her negates his strengths; rational thought, no silly rhetoric....never work.

Bush won the nomination in 2000 because he had connections, money, a good record as govenor, and a malleable image.

What, specifically, was good (as distinct from not being as appalling as his Presidency was) about his record as governor? Making jokes about Karla Faye Tucker?

I'm not much of a fan of the kind of comment that says "Stop writing about X, write about Y!" except in the case where I want to write one (IOKIYMe?), so, let me just partially echo what Dane said - this is a blog that often does good coverage of significant national and international political issues. Palin is, regrettably, significant enough that she probably deserves some coverage.

But Obama just went to China to take on two issues of enormous importance to the US, to China, and to the world - currency manipulation and global warming - and was firmly rebuffed. From what I can tell the media is too busy looking up Sarah Palin's skirt to have noticed, but six months from now when import tariffs are passing Congress or three years from now when there is still no climate deal, the relative importance of the events of this week might look a little different. A thought, anyway.

As for Sarah Palin, I think this is the culmination of the anti-empiricism that has taken over the Republican Party. If you really, truly believe that adherence to the small canon of conservative beliefs is the only thing that matters, regardless of performance in the real world - economic or political - then sure, you'll nominate someone who is ideologically pure no matter the odds. Lots of political parties do this. It's just that they're fringe parties that draw a minute fraction of the vote. And that's where the Republicans are headed. Fine with me.

This blogger describes the real threat from Palin:

Her winning some election isn't the danger, it's the beacon she provides for assassins who think they're god's special employees:

http://archivist1000.blogspot.com/2009/11/going-enabler-xtian-taliban-and-her.html

Rachel Maddow and Frank Schaeffer are onto something.

Seems like there are three outcomes for the GOP:

1) It continues to maintain the current circular firing squad and loses several more elections.

2) A relatively intelligent, relatively ideologically pure candidate comes along, makes the hard right fairly happy, and pulls most of the center-right folks along, which pretty much restores the old Reagan coalition. Beats me whether this coalition can win elections any more--demography is not its friend.

3) A charismatic know-nothing captures the hard right and forces the center-right into a coalition with the rest of the moderate independents, with some economic conservative leading the charge. I'm pretty sure that this coalition could win at least one election.

#3 is by far my favorite outcome, and Palin and Romney fill the bill nicely, as long as Romney runs as the former governor of Massachusetts, rather than the artificial creature that his campaign created in 2008, and as long as Palin continues to be, well, Palin.

But it still requires a perfect storm: Palin has to be so scary that she alienates every single last moderate, and Romney has to be so compelling that he attracts independents into the GOP primary process. I'm not holding my breath, but it could happen, especially if Obama keeps scaring the bejesus out of the independents.

but doesn't excite it in any useful direction... no plans, no proposals, no platform.... just exists, sucking air and denying oxygen
Sorry von, but some of us feel exactly this way about the Republican party and conservatism in general.

TheRadicalModerate: I'm pretty sure #3 already happened. Palin ran away with the far-right and Barack Obama became your center-right President.

elm: Ah, but you will find (or perhaps already realize) that there are a huge number of people who are simply incapable of recognizing that a Democrat (let alone a black Democrat) might be anything but left. And probably far left. Evidence of cautious and careful decision-making, or policy choices which mostly avoid radical changes, will simply be ignored.

So they won't accept that we ended up with a center-right President. No matter that he is, on current evidence, to the right of every Democratic President for at least the last half century. And probably longer, but I don't know enough about Truman to be certain.

There is a self-damning comment of mine somewhere on RedState.com, but I haven't the heart to track it down.

Fortunately, von, some of us are just full of heart today. :)

http://www.redstate.com/ben_domenech/2008/08/29/its-palin/#comment-282

"Dilutes the experience brand, but threads the needle exactly."

OMG, Von, for that mixed metaphor you really deserved a hangover. :-(

"No matter that he is, on current evidence, to the right of every Democratic President for at least the last half century."

I see President Obama as vulnerable. Sooner or later, the unpopularity of his policies/performance will hurt his personal popularity.

He could turn things around, of course, or he could become more vulnerable -- which will be answered by the direction of the economy and jobs, and how the stimulus and bailouts are viewed.

If he stays vulnerable, just as voters inexplicably turned to Bush 43 -- twice -- some Republican will benefit. Palin? Romney? Someone who has yet to materialize?

What I wonder is, will there be a brave (foolish?) Democrat who will challenge Obama? And I don't mean a Dennis Kucinich type.

Left-leaning Dems and many others don't have the warm fuzzies they felt for Obama this time last year. Realizing we won't vote Republican, what are the alternatives?

Any thoughts?

wj: I had a long post written agreeing with you, but I just don't have the heart.

Clearly, there's no such thing as far-enough-right for Republicans and Internet Independents. Why two wars when you can have three? Why 15% Capital Gains Tax when you can have 0%?

Naturally, the Democrats are ever-willing to meet them halfway. Naturally that's never enough.

As I see it, the only feasible change from the status quo is for the Democrats to acknowledge their center-right tendencies and drop their mild pretense of liberalism, for the Palin Party to continue its slide to the margins, and for progressives/liberals to form a center-left party. The Democrats could encourage that outcome by strengthening smaller political parties: proportional representation and abolishing the filibuster.

The status quo remains more likely. The Democrats will lay claim to the left but govern from the right -- I assume they believe that covering the entire political spectrum brings broad support. In their next election loss (whether in 2010, 2012, 2014, etc...) they'll blame the hippies, homos, and Ralph Nader should have just STFU.

I Can see the Love that Romney generates on this post. To many to comment on. couple of Observations:

1. GLEN BECK is a MORMON! that will help neutralize some of the IDIOTS that keep bringing it up!

2. Huckabee WON'T RUN. He's got a Guaranteed Fox Contract, not a Guaranteed Nomination. Where else can he play Hillbilly music?

3. Palin Vs Romney for nomination, NO CONTEST!

ROMNEY / DeMINT in 2012!
2 FULL TERM Public Servants

President Obama didn't have much of a record to run on last time. This time, he will. And he better hope headlines like this go away before long or he will be ripe for the picking.

With so much disgust with Democrats and Republicans, maybe we are witnessing a perfect storm for the emergence of a true third-party threat.

bedtimeforbonzo: I'd like to think that the notion of creating a center-left third party is feasible, but that's a whole lot of apparatus to assemble in 3 years.

It's also not at all clear that a nascent third party should target the Presidency for its first few elections. It's probably better to target elections for Mayor, Governor, School Superintendant, State Representative, Attorney General, Public Utilities Commissioner, etc... first.

If Obama loses in 2012, he's much more likely to lose to Palin than to a third-party candidate. In that event, you can be sure the Democratic party will blame everybody to the left of Joe Lieberman. Remember that if your politics are left-of-center, you owe the Democratic party your vote. At some point in the future, they'll stop actively opposing your interests.

Good points, elm.

So are these and these, all points made by University of Texas professor James Galbraith.

From what Galbraith, son of famed economics guru John Kenneth Galbraith, points out, I am worried that the Obama Administration either has its head in the sand about the real economy or is simply trying to shim-sham us.

For what its worth, local right wing radio was talking about Palin today.

Apparently she's really, really smart. And an absolute expert on energy policy. The sort of person who should really have a role in the next administration. Maybe she shouldn't run, but she should be involved. And she should be a kingmaker for other candidates.

Nearly thru the Palin-tateuch:
Palin-Genesis: Take McCain’s offer, head into American airspace.
Palin-Exodus: “I’m quitting because I’m not a quitter!”
Palin-Levi-the-cuss: Keep the home fires from burning.
Palin-Numbers: 1) Sign book deal. 2) ??? 3) Profit!
Palin-Do-to-Romney: Next election cycle ...

(recycled material)

#3 is by far my favorite outcome, and Palin and Romney fill the bill nicely, as long as Romney runs as the former governor of Massachusetts, rather than the artificial creature that his campaign created in 2008

Odd to see an endorsement in the same breath as an admission that the man does not have a shred of principle in his body.

The only candidate that conceivably benefits from Palin is Mitt Romney.

Maybe in terms of getting the nomination- but I wonder what it would do to him in the general? It's bad enough that he's got lots of non-conservative skeletons in his closet, but the sort of unfocused passion whipped up by a Palin candidacy may not easily be mollified by eg Huck as Veep.

The Obama-Hillary matchup had a similar tension, but was more easily resolved because the two candidates weren't fighting for different parts of the base, they were both fighting for the same part (ie the center-left, the 'respectable' wing of the party).
If two candidates from either party had a long, contested primary fighting from opposite wings, I dont think it would be easily healed.

On the gripping hand, a Palin candidacy might cause the powers that be in the GOP to coalesce early around a candidate to avoid exactly such a scenario (or worse, a Palin victory)- and early name-recognition makes Mitt one of only a few candidates here.

In the end, in depends on whether the GOP views this election as a base election or (like the Dems did in 2004) a 'most electable' sort-of race. My money is on the former, both bc of the climate and bc of the failure of the McCain campaign- failures usually lead to changes in strategy, whatever their actual origin.

I think that, if a third party was to emerge as a significant force, it would more likely be a rightwing one than a left wig one. Rightwingers seem to me to be more invested in purity and righteousness and the sacred nature of their vote which can only be cast for exactly the right politician. There are people on the let like that, but it doesn't seem as common. Of course I have no data for this;it's just an impression.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Blog powered by Typepad