Skip to comments.The Conservative's Case for Mitch Daniels (Hear Me Out - Long)
Posted on 02/16/2011 8:46:31 PM PST by cartervt2k
I don't post here every day, but I do often enough that you to page through the archives and check my conservative bonafides. I am staunchly pro-life, pro-gun (own an AK-47, Glock .45 and a Ruger 9mm), anti-climate religion, anti-gay marriage, anti-VAT, and anti-Obamacare. I listen to Rush occasionally. I listen to John Gibson in the afternoons, Levin every night. I live in reddish-purple Virginia, in Jim Moron's district, specifically. I know a lot of Obama voters - some of them leftist automatons, some of them squishy Independents.
The conventional wisdom among conservatives on here and other blogs is to always elect the most conservative candidate - period. They say the reason we lost in 2008 was because we ran McLame on the top of the ticket, and had we run a real conservative, we would have won. This theory is mostly false.
The reason we lost in 2008 was because all the organs of the democrat machine were able to define McLame as a clueless establishment geezer and Palin as a ditz. Neither of them were able to shake these caricatures and often times made them worse. Obama had enough baggage with his associations with terrorists and racist ministers that the election was competitive until the bottom fell out of the economy. They were then able to successfully (however falsely) pin it on Republicans, and it carried them to victory.
The fact of the matter is, if you can define yourself and your opponent, you will win the race. We beat Kerry in 2004 with devastating video of him lying about Vietnam, betraying his unit and flip-flopping on his record. Rove further rallied the base with worries about proliferation of gay marriage, and Bush got more votes than any other president in history. While you may think we should go back to the gay marriage well, I would submit to you that with 9-17% unemployment or underemployment and the FACT public opinion has softened on gay marriage, this is not the trump card it once was. In fact, social issues specifically will not carry a candidate from either party to a presidential victory - especially in this economic climate.
I look at Obama, presiding over the worst economy, job market and housing market in a generation, and he somehow has around a 50% approval rating. This is as stupefying as it is disappointing. Then, I look at the field of candidates and really start to think this is going to be an uphill slog. Obama is damaged but still has the upper hand with his incumbency. Those of you pointing me to last year's elections, I would refer you to NV, CO, DE, CA, CT, and WA (the last 4 for reasons you might not expect).
Case study 1: Nevada. If you think beating Obama is going to be a slam dunk, here you have the most despised member of the senate pulling out a last minute victory with the sheer brute force of his bank and ground game. In fairness, I'm not sure Sue Lowden would have won, but I am certain it would have been closer. Angle or Lowden would have received the similar tons of money from groups looking to unseat Reid, but Sharron was not a polished candidate and stuck her foot in her mouth too many times ("2nd amendment solutions", etc.).
Case study 2: Colorado. Here we have another purple state with the wind at our backs and blew it. Buck is a smart guy and articulate, but he walked right into the gay marriage trap down the stretch, comparing homosexuality to alcoholism on Meet the Press. He never recovered. Even though I do think homosexuality is an identity disorder, if you're trying to get elected, shut up about it and keep hammering away on fiscal issues. You can get away with that in Alabama - not Colorado.
Case study 3: Delaware. I hate Castle, so this was the least significant for me. He was basically the 2010 version of Dede Scozzafava and glad we don't have to defend him in the senate. However, it hurt us from the standpoint in that it allowed the DSCC to mostly ignore the race, where Castle would have forced them to spend more money there (a point I'll get back to a lot).
Case study 4: California and Connecticut. Carly was the best we could have ever done there and had a lot of money. Linda may not have been the best candidate in CT, but she is also extremely wealthy. Both of them pulled a LOT of DSCC resources away from other states and really helped us, even in defeat (stop me if you see a pattern here).
Case study 5: Washington. Dino isn't uber wealthy like the last 2, but he is an extremely polished, solid candidate and forced the DSCC to spend a lot of money there.
Here's the thing: believe me if I tell you I could bring back Barry Goldwater from the dead and install him in the White House without having to worry about losing an election, I would. But I recognize we cannot win without a plurality of Independent squishes. This is just a fact. It is also a fact that conservatism will suffer more with the re-election of Obama than any Republican in the mix right now. We can win with 100% orthodox conservatives, but they MUST be able to connect with independents in a way so that they feel comfortable voting for them, even if the sources of their comfort are for superficial reasons. I felt like Pence could have been that guy, but he's running for IN governor. There's really no one else like him left right now.
If I were Obama, of the names being mentioned, I would fear Daniels the most. How could they label him? He's a competent, accomplished, books-balancing, budget-slashing, Harley riding, ivy league educated state executive. They would be unable to easily label him a racist (hello Mississippi Barbour), an idiot (hello Palin), a hypocrite (hello Romneycare), or a Bible beater (hello Huckabee). What are they going to attack him for - his height? Having once worked for Bush? If that's the worst he's got in the way of baggage, he's in good shape. If he put Christie on the ticket with him (a true RINO to be sure, but a star with gravitas nonetheless), Obama would have to go and dump money into NEW JERSEY. The midwest would be an electoral killing field from PA to WI. There would only be a few states Obama wouldn't have to defend. I think we'd have a similar shot with T-Paw, but he hasn't really impressed me in one-on-one interviews.
Back to the social issues, all I want out of our next president is to reinstate the Mexico City Policy and to elevate as many Scalias to the bench as possible - bonus if he can defund Planned Parenthood. Ginsburg is probably going to expire pretty soon, and Kennedy is wanting to step down soon. Do you want to risk their seats with a candidate likely to lose?
I'd be interested to hear your feedback of why you think I'm right or why you think I'm wrong. I'm on your team, so let's keep it civil.
That’s an excellent post.
One question: Why do you think Kennedy wants to step down?
mitch daniel is an idiot though
I am interested in Daniels. Please give me your opinion on his record on the issues of guns,spending,taxes,abortion,immigration,global warming.etc..
He did that all by himself. He started to get some traction with the Rev. Wright coverage and Obama's "spread the wealth around" gaffe. The nomination of Palin brought enthusiasm. He totally killed it all when he said Obama was a good man and we didn't have to fear him as president.
I want a conservative who knows what to talk about and when to do it.
I also want to win.
I think we can have it all with the right candidate. We can’t afford to get this one wrong.
That much I know.
“Carly was the best we could have ever done there and had a lot of money”
No she wasn’t. She had no record to encourage conservatives to support her. She suffered from having to run along with the hideous opportunist Meg. And there are plenty of Hewlett Packard alumni in California who despise her. Carly was just one more in a long series of colorless moderates that the GOP decides to run for state office, only to lose.
He said he was going to retire sometime after 2012, according to one of his friends. Google it and you’ll find the articles. I take that to mean he wasn’t thrilled with Obama’s appointments, but who’s to say he wouldn’t let Obama appoint his successor if the replacement has to go through a Republican majority senate?
Carly was running in CA and had the most most money. CA is a lost cause - but she kept it as close as was possible.
I just cant picture Daniels effectively campaigning. I am a political wonk and get bored after a couple minutes. The presidential race demands charisma.
One more question: Why do you believe the scumbags have successfully caricatured Palin as "an idiot"? As far as I can tell, the scumbag Democrats and their newsrooms have succeeded only in convincing themselves that Palin is an idiot, and they are smugly patting themselves on the back for how clever they are. I believe that normal America will embrace Palin once she begins to campaign in earnest.
Do you think Palin is an idiot?
McCain also said that he wanted to lose "honorably".
That's real good, John. What a moron.
You could have just said the Tea Party is screwed up because it wants social and economic conservatives.
He’s solid down the line on all. On taxes, he’s raised some taxes but lowered others. They have the lowest property taxes in the country - cappped at 1%. He once entertained the idea of a VAT (worrying), but he wants to make taxes flatter for all. I don’t think (hope) he would give the keys to the VAT car for future democrat majorities without some constitutional safety mechanisms.
He has a very solid pro-life record, despite his truce comments (which will be like candy to independent voters, by the way). He has said he will reinstate the Mexico city policy. He is anti-cap and trade, saying he’s an “agnostic” on climate change, I think were his words.
not sure about immigration - not sure he’s been on the record about that yet.
So which conservative do you think was electable in deep blue Cali?
Don’t name any one who could not even win in the Repub primaries. Those dudes would lose in a landslide with demorats included in general.
You’re not going to out-Obama, Obama in charisma no matter who you pick. The american idol voting bloc will not be a big factor in 2012 like it was in 2008.
Christie is the flavor of the week. He is NOT running
Last weeks flavor was Daniels, he will probably run, but no one will vote for him. The man has no facial features.
The week before that was Jeb Bush. Not Running. They are desperate to find someone to stop Palin, especially as Romney fades.
DeMint, not running. We need him in the Senate anyway and he know this.
There will be no dark horse emerging to ‘save the day.’
The nominee will be either Romney or Palin. A vote for anyone other than Palin in the primaries is a defacto vote for Romney.
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