Secular Right | Reality & Reason

Apr/10

15

Cato on Mitt Romney

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I talked about this possibility before. Don’t know if it has legs to push into the 2012 primary season. If it doesn’t knock Romney out, I believe we can take this as evidence of the power of establishment Republicanism despite all the recent press given toward conservative populism.

14 comments

  • Susan · April 16, 2010 at 9:32 am

    The thing is, a lot of establishment Republicans are highly critical of Romneycare. So it could knock him out of contention.

  • Polichinello · April 16, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Who’s the alternative?

  • Susan · April 16, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    I suppose we’ll find that out in due course.

  • John · April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm

    “Who’s the alternative?”

    Exactly. John McCain won the 2008 nomination because it was “his turn”. He just barely won, though, because a lot of Republicans (including me) hated him. The trouble was, no other candidate could get most of the anti-McCain people. We may end up in the same position this time with Romney. A lot of people won’t like him, but he may win anyway unless people unite around an alternative.

    Clarence Thomas, will you run?

  • Susan · April 17, 2010 at 6:15 am

    The situation will probably be different in 2012 from what it was in 2008. One of the reasons–maybe the principal reason–McCain was the candidate in 2008 was a simple recognition of the reality that no Republican was going to win the presidency that November. So why not let the old boy have a shot and get it out of his system? Didn’t the same thing happen with Dole in 1996? Clinton was going to win that race, so why not throw Dole a bone?

  • A-Bax · April 17, 2010 at 9:09 am

    What about Lou Dobbs? He’s been kind of flirting with running. Or even Gingrich? At this point, Gingrich has more credibility that Romney or Palin (even if he does come with baggage).

    Romneycare would be a millstone around the GOP’s neck, and BO would have a field day hammering us for hypocrisy if Mitt gets the nod. Palin’s also a no-go, given that she quit her post. She and her supporters would be hard-pressed to rebut claims that she’s more interested in being a political celebrity than she is in actually governing. (But she could remain behind the scenes as a fund-raiser and even a bit of a power-broker).

    The Cato piece is pretty devastating. And didn’t Romney recently say something to the effect of “I’d be happy to take credit for his accomplishment” in reference to Obamacare? Tone-deaf at best. Geez.

    Maybe Paul Ryan?

  • Susan · April 17, 2010 at 9:57 am

    Lou Dobbs has apparently reversed his position on illegal immigration, and that cost him a lot of conservative support. Gingrich? The social conservatives hate him.

  • Susan · April 17, 2010 at 10:09 am

    And I agree that Palin seems to be more interested in being a celebrity than in a candidate: she has a second book coming out plus her 12-part tv documentary on Alaska. She also doesn’t seem interested in preaching to anyone but the converted, which is not a good method of obtaining broad-based support. Her book tour was an interesting example of this: she went only to southern and southwestern states and a few midwestern states. Nowhere on the west coast, and nowhere in the northeast except for one stop in Pennsylvania and one stop in Rochester, NY. That’s a good way to sell books–go where the fans are–but probably not a good way to build a political movement.

  • Author comment by David Hume · April 17, 2010 at 1:09 pm

    One of the reasons–maybe the principal reason–McCain was the candidate in 2008 was a simple recognition of the reality that no Republican was going to win the presidency that November.

    this seems wrong. the probability might be > 0.5 that a dem will win, but it will never be or have been ~ 1. look at 1991, george h w bush was coming off huge spike of support from the first gulf war. some you had “b-team” dems line up to get taken down. but then the economy hit, and ross perot jumped in, and bam, the dems won.

    iow, if the repubs made such calculations in ’96 and ’08, it’s not the stupid party, it’s the retarded party :-) as it is, i assume that most people who wish to be president would accept a nomination if they were told that they had a 10% shot at winning. after all, a 0.10 probability of becoming the most powerful person in the world for 4 is still a good deal.

  • Susan · April 17, 2010 at 1:23 pm

    Point taken. But I still think that, given the way George W. Bush in particular and Republicans in general were demonized, it might have discouraged some younger, brighter lights from running in 2008. (Don’t ask me for names.) And it might have discouraged some of the older hands from making a really vigorous shot at the nomination. I know a guy who voted for Obama because, as he told me, he wanted to vote against “that #$%&ing George Bush.” When I pointed out that George Bush wasn’t running for anything, he really didn’t have a reply. But I understood his meaning to be that he wouldn’t vote from any Republican under any circumnstances.

  • kurt9 · April 17, 2010 at 4:29 pm

    Romney has zero chance of being the nominee in ’12. The Massachusetts health care system will implode this year, just in time for the mid-terms this November. It will be a foretaste of what ObamaCare has to offer us by, say ’15 or so.

    Forget about Romney. He’s DoA.

  • muffy · April 18, 2010 at 10:41 am

    I think McCain was chosen because he was thought to be the only candidate who had a prayer of winning. That what all the match up polls were showing — All the other Repubs were losing significantly against Obama and Clinton (and Edwards), but McCain was running even. It was a close race. Had the election been held a month or two sooner, McCain likely would have won (I was religiously following the polling data). McCain wasn’t beloved among conservatives, but he did have an independent voter following, which was needed to win.

    That said, I don’t think Romney will be the nominee in 2012. Unlike McCain, he isn’t the kind of guy that has enough of a reputation as a moderate to appeal to independent voters. On the other hand, a lot of conservatives distrust him for a number of reasons, generally due to his past (and Mormonism). His primary strengths are A) money B) his reputation as a successful businessman and C) his charisma. And frankly, I think his pristine appearance could hurt rather than help him outside the Northeast.

  • Author comment by David Hume · April 18, 2010 at 10:08 pm

    . Unlike McCain, he isn’t the kind of guy that has enough of a reputation as a moderate to appeal to independent voters.

    another datum that independent voters are more retarded than average. romney has a much more moderate record of achievements than mccain over his career. some of this is structural because romney was a governor, but still (the only period when mccain was really a moderate was in the period early aughts when he was thinking about becoming a democrat).

  • muffy · April 19, 2010 at 10:52 am

    “another datum that independent voters are more retarded than average. romney has a much more moderate record of achievements than mccain over his career”

    However, McCain tried advertising his “moderateness” (or “maverick-ness”) much more than Romney as a point of pride. I watched one of his ads on TV in which he was described as “The Original Maverick.” Romney, on the other hand, tried moving very far right, distancing himself from his moderate New England past and presenting himself as the “true” conservative. Most voters are ill-informed and prefer to judge candidates by the way they present themselves then their actual track records. On a similar note, many moderate voters were duped into thinking Obama was one of them because Obama presented himself as a post-partisan candidate.

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