Skip to comments.Would a Romney Presidency Be Worse for the Conservative Cause Than a Second Term for Obama?
Posted on 02/02/2012 9:22:28 AM PST by libertarian neocon
Well, look, either you'll have an extremist conservative, be it Gingrich or Santorum, in which case I think it will make a big difference which of the two comes in. If it's between Obama and Romney, there isn't all that much difference except for the crowd that they bring with them. --George Soros
Since what I am writing is probably blasphemy to a lot of Republicans, let me just begin by saying that I have considered myself a Republican since I was 6 years old (when I first saw a Reagan press conference) and would never ever vote for a radical anti-American socialist like Obama. The purpose of this post is just to think about the future, past the 2012 election to what might happen in 2014 and beyond. It just seems that so many people are focused on "how do we win" instead of focusing on "what do we win?". With Mitt Romney, the answer is clearly "not much" and I would suggest that longer term, conservatives will be the losers with a Romney presidency.
Romney is what they used to call an 80%-er. A Republican who essentially agrees with the Democrats, but will only do about 80% of what they will do. Think about it, how exactly would a President Romney be that different than a President Obama for another 4 years (especially if Obama doesn't have a filibuster proof majority)? In both cases, Obamacare will still be intact as it has been clear that Romney will not repeal it. His 59 point plan uses the same kinds of class warfare oriented targeted tax cuts as Obama, and that is even before having to give up anything in negotiations with the Democrats. His big argument with Obama on Afghanistan is that Obama wants to remove surge troops in September 2012 instead of December, as Romney would prefer, a whopping 3 month difference. No talk of victory, just fine tuning the timing of withdrawal. His big argument with Obama on Israel is that he doesn't think he should have criticized him publicly. Big whoop. Most conservatives want to elect someone who actually agrees with Israel, not someone who will turn the screws on them. If Israel is being pressured to give in to terrorists, how does it matter exactly if it is public or private? Worst of all, because Romney won Florida and all his yes men seem to have told him that he has the nomination in the bag, he has already started veering left for the general. Just yesterday, he said he supported increasing the minimum wage despite the fact that most conservative economists believe this will be a "job killer" (which is what the Club for Growth said would happen if his plan were enacted). Essentially, he is a guy who only believes in the free market if he and his friends can make money, but not for the rest of us. No, we have to be taken care of by the government. He just doesn't see anything wrong with saying "I'm from the government and I'm here to help".
Now just think about what having a Republican like that will do to the conservative cause in 2014 and beyond. Time and again, when Republicans start acting like 80%-ers (or RINO's, Democrat-Lites, etc.) the base stays home and the Republicans get decimated at the ballot box. After all, what is the point of voting for Republicans if they act like Democrats? Just look at history. In 1952, after betraying the true conservative Robert Taft, the GOP nominated Eisenhower, who was by definition a RINO (he only decided on being a Republican instead of a Democrat not long before the election). This helped them in that election where they took control of both the House and the Senate but that didn't last long at all. Thanks to Eisenhower's Democrat-lite policies, the GOP lost control of both houses in the 1954 election. In fact, in the 1958 election the Democrats ended up with a whopping 64 seats in the Senate (vs. 34 for the GOP) and 283 in the House (vs. a paltry 153 for the GOP). The Nixon/Ford years were even worse as we never got even close to having a majority in either House of Congress. The high water mark seems to have been only 44 Senate seats after the 1970 elections and 192 House seats after the 1972 elections (which is pretty amazing given that Nixon carried 49 states that year!). That is not so surprising given that Nixon was soft on the Soviets, surrendered to the North Vietnamese and even implemented socialist wage and price controls! After the 1976 election, the GOP was down to only 38 seats in the Senate and an embarrassing 143 in the House (the equivalent of only having 33 Senate seats)! That was a pretty big hole, but thanks to Reagan and then later Newt Gingrich, the GOP was finally able to take control of both Houses of Congress for multiple elections, only losing control in 2006 after Bush started tacking to the center (though the ongoing Iraq war didn't help).
In 2014, after two years of Romney, Obamacare will have been implemented, costing much more than advertised and being a major drag on the economy, and none of his 59 point fine tuning will have done anything to help us solve either our short or long term problems. He will prove a squish who will use moderate GOP and Democratic support to pass big government programs in order to "alleviate the suffering of the middle class". I would expect no major changes on taxes or regulations and nothing that you can hang your hat on foreign policy wise. Midterm elections are usually bad for Presidents and I would expect 2014 to be unusually so as most of the Tea Party simply stays home, if they haven't started a third party by then. Plus, as he would have reneged on his promise to repeal Obamacare, he will probably be blamed for many of its failings (the fact that he implemented the model for it in Massachusetts won't help matters either). As primary challenges pretty much never work, we'd be stuck with Romney again for 2016 in which case we probably get a full fledged liberal democrat at the helm, potentially with a filibuster proof majority. Any benefit we will have gained in terms of judicial appointments from 2012-2016 will immediately be reversed. In other words, under Romney, we'd probably be almost guaranteed to have malaise until 2020 or even beyond as our long term problems will continue to get worse.
If Obama wins in 2012, as long as the GOP still has enough members of Congress to block most of his legislation, the situation won't be that different in the short term. Obamacare will be implemented, dragging on the economy and Obama will continue to mismanage everything under the sun. But by 2014, he will have to answer for that 2,000 page monstrosity he jammed down our throats without any Republican support, hopefully opening the way for another watershed year like 1994 or 2010. By 2014, the negative impact of Obamacare will no longer be theoretical, but real, felt by almost every American. By 2016, hopefully the Tea Party will have been able to get more influence within the GOP so that people like Romney and McCain aren't even considered for the nomination and we end up having a real conservative as President.
Now I do realize that this was an argument some were making in 2008, that it might be better for Obama to win as one term of someone like Carter will get us someone like Reagan. The difference in this case though is that Obama will not likely have a filibuster proof majority, so the dangers of him passing another Obamacare (as Cap and Trade would be) are minimal, if not almost nonexistent. Also, the Tea Party is still relatively new and wasn't able to get very close to the levers of power in the year since taking over the House. Given additional time, it is possible that the Tea Party will have the power within the GOP that they deserve.
Anyway, hopefully this argument turns out to be purely academic and Newt is able to be our Reagan, win the nomination and help save America. As I wrote before, this is very possible.
If Romney is the nominee and the FReeper establishment helps reelect Obama, will there be FR threads about how we "stuck it to the RINOs"? Probably.
Why would a Conservative move up the food chain when a Romney victory would prove that liberals get elected.
I am not real excited about Romney appointments to the court, but it would clearly be better than Obama. Secondly, a Republican Senate will have the impact of pushing Romney's picks a little to the right. As we saw with the GOP Senate rejection of Harriet Miers, we can influence his picks much better than Obama's far left picks. I'll take a Sandra Day O'Conner moderate over a Ginsberg/Kagan leftist.
I understand the question is about what is best for the “Conservative cause,” but I would ask instead, “What is best for America?” The thought of a second term for Obama scares the daylights out of me. To suggest that there’s not much difference between Obama and Romney seems remarkable to me. Really? I personally am in the Santorum camp at this time, but I would take Romney over Obama for several reasons: Supreme Court appoints, a Republican Congress and Senate will pull him to a more conservative side, and I do think Romney has become more conservative over time. It’s not just flip-flopping, it’s growth, as has happened to all of us!
Now, regarding a win for Obama is a win for conservatism, I think is making a big assumption. It suggests that America will finally wake up and see the light of conservative principles. I don’t think that will happen in such a short period of time because American education and media inundate us with the evils of conservatism. If people did vote in a Tea Party candidate in 2016 it will likely be a result of simply wanting change, not because they’ve converted to a conservative view of life. Most American’s simply are not conversant enough with political philosophy to see the ramifications of their vote. Seeking political office has become a PR scheme and with the media calling the shots a third-party conservative is many years away from the Presidency (as much as I’d like that option). The longer we fail to support whoever is running against liberalism the harder it will be to turn back the behemoth of socialistic, statist, trends in America. Having said that, I can hear the objection that Republicans are simply becoming more and more liberal and it requires a radical rebellion to put an end to it once and for all. That point is valid and many will embrace that. I just don’t think it will happen in my lifetime.
Think of it this way: a Romney nomination surrenders to the GOP-E all the gains of the Tea Party. The Tea Party did not take to the streets to nominate an elitist, Rockefeller Republican. Romney is not nor ever has been an ally of the Tea Party Movement or Reaganism.
Exactly/ You know that the “socially acceptable” Romney would promote “socially acceptable” justices (think Souter and Kennedy).
Does the name David Souter ring a bell? Harriet Miers would be there today if conservatives had not stood up. A Romney president is no guarantee at all of a conservative SCOTUS appointment. Odds are it would be a squish who would go full-blown lib after a year on the bench.
IMO, a regional non-union party with strong ant FedGov underpinnings and a return to the old republic vis a vis the US Constitution would be the way to go....
Palin was right, we really need to concentrate on house and senate. The GOP is not ‘large’ enough to control/manipulate every election.
I’m not going to argue anything for Romney, nor even consider that as a calculation at this point. However, I will address these disaster points if he is re-elected.
1. People do not ‘learn how bad liberals are’. Liberals create greater and greater dependency classes that is almost impossible to move out of their ‘comfort zone’ where they are taken care of by big brother. It is easier to win someone over by giving someone something than it is telling them to be independent.
2. Winners control the message.
3. Turn-out. If more people get out to vote for Obama, that most likely will also mean there will be a greater turn out for “D” voters in general, potentially harming or eliminating the House lead and eliminating any chance of taking the Senate.
4. Supreme court judges (and other lifetime judge positions) At least 4 SCOTUS judges are over-due to retire. Whoever is the next President will basically set control of the judicial system for the next decade or more.
5. Mandate. Obama and his people will see a re-election as a stamp of approval on what they have done the past four years.
6. Ego. Imagine Obama with the knowledge he was re-elected and frame what he will look like in history books.
7. Power. Imagine Obama knowing he has just four more years to fundamentally change the Country with no other opportunity after that. He also will have no more elections to face to account for his actions over the next four years. (Thinking about this one, this is actually the most frightening.)
I’m sure there are a lot of other reasons, but be it through a Republican candidate or a new party, Obama must not be re-elected.
No matter who is elected, if the course of our country doesn’t change soon, we will see a catastrophe.
The 2008 financial crisis has shown that the American people are not interested in “why” a catastrophe happens or “who” caused it, they’re only interested in removing whoever was in charge when it happened.
My big fear is that Romney gets elected and does very little to correct our course. Then when catastrophe hits all of us will be blamed. Republicans will be decimated.
If we’re not going to change course, I’d rather see them blamed for the inevitable than us.
True. However, an 0bama president IS a guarantee of a liberal SCOTUS appointment.
“CA would’ve been better off had RINO Arnold Schwarzenegger lost the governorship to Cruz Bustamonte.
He didn’t do a damn thing to change the state’s destructive glide path. What he did do was quiet the popular outcry against the state careening leftward, because now we had a republican in charge.”
Yes! Yes! A thousand times Yes! Arnold made the GOP appear as bad as the dems and as a result, the GOP is nearly dead in CA. Why vote for 3/4 of a socialist when you can get the real deal?
Look, Romney just came out and said that he supports automatic increases in the minimum wage and that he has always supported it.
Romney might win the nomination, but he won’t win the election because he is not giving the independents any reason to support him. There is NO difference between Romney and Obama.
I would NOT vote for a republican just because that person calls him or her-self one. Conservative priciples and policies carry more weight. Bye bye Mitt.
Doesn’t mean anyone else has that vote yet either.
No difference except for the crowd that they bring with them???? Are you kidding, Romney’s advisors ARE NOW Obama’s advisors!
Listen to Levin’s thoughts on the matter from yesterday. The same radical guy (forget his name) that helped design the Massachusett’s plan helped design Obamacare.
I think FUBO in his 2nd term would push harder for socialism that Mittens in his 1st term.
I know, I think that there are three of them from the Romney administration in Mass that are now part of the Obamacare plan. I think that Sunstein is the guy that you’re thinking about.
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