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The darkhorse Republican from the South for 2012
Southern Political Report ^ | March 1, 2010 | Professor John A. Tures

Posted on 03/01/2010 8:31:12 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

Like Mike Huckabee did in the 2008 GOP Primary, a dark horse candidate from the South could rise up to win some big races in 2012. But who could that little known candidate be? I’ll offer some suggestions about who could be a household name in two years.

In my last column “Why Republicans are in trouble in 2012” I described the woes of the Grand Old Party for 2012. A combination of weak candidates with surprisingly thin resumes and potential nominees with bad luck in their state’s history could hand what might be a winnable race against President Obama to the Democrats. When a candidate who isn’t running in 2012 wins the CPAC poll, and “none of the above” beats your front runner in a Gallup poll of Republicans, you know your party has issues.

What the Republicans need is some new blood. It could come in the form of a “dark horse” candidate in 2012 that could surprise the establishment the way Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee did at the end of 2007.

We look at Mike Huckabee today. He’s very well known, given his combination of a strong primary run in 2008 and his role as a Fox News Commentator. If it wasn’t for having such a big heart and some unfortunate pardons leading to a deadly shooting of several cops in Seattle (as noted in my column “Will GOP voters pardon Huckabee in 2012 or 2016?” he would be the front-runner, given his executive experience (compared to Palin’s) and his credentials as a true conservative (as opposed to Romney’s historic flip flops).

It’s hard to remember that Huckabee came out of nowhere to take the Iowa Caucus and come within an eyelash of taking South Carolina and some Southern primaries, when he wasn’t even named in a series of 2007 polls, which picked Giuliani, Thompson, Romney, McCain.

So who could be the next Huckabee who might come out of nowhere in 2010 or 2011 to beat out a field of weak GOP candidates? Here are my choices for the Southern darkhorse GOP candidate of 2012.

1) Haley Barbour, Mississippi Governor. As RNC chair during the 1994 Republican takeover, Barbour defeated an incumbent governor, and guided his state adeptly through the Hurricane Katrina mess. His drawbacks include a state which tends to score the lowest on the H.L. Mencken list (poverty, test scores, etc.).

2) Jim DeMint, South Carolina Senator. The Senatorial foil to President Obama is already the darling of conservatives, and won’t have to run again until 2016. But boy has he said enough to rally the liberal base, which would make it tricky for him outside of the South.

3) Dr. Charles Boustany, Jr., Louisiana Congressman. Congressman Boustany gave the best nationally televised opposition to President Obama, though it was overlooked. He took over a once-Democratic Party district, and generally gets good marks. And it wouldn’t hurt to have a doctor in the house on the health care issue. But being a former “birther” may not help, though he did clarify his remarks on the subject. It’s been a long time since someone jumped straight from the House of Representatives to the White House too (Can you name that President? The answer is in the conclusion.)

4) Jeff Sessions, Alabama Senator. I’m still surprised that the GOP isn’t doing more to test the waters with this guy. He’s never had anyone lay a glove on him in an election. He’s a budget hawk and anti-earmarker. The only thing working against him might be his controversial judicial nomination hearings in the 1980s.

5) Bob Corker, Tennessee Senator. With real executive experience (as Chattanooga’s Mayor), real business experience, and an understanding of how Washington, DC works, Corker is emerging as someone with a modest penchant for bipartisanship. But that controversial 2006 election against Harold Ford, Jr. could haunt such a bid. Senator Corker would have to show that it was the national party behind those controversial ads against Democrat Harold Ford, Jr.

You might shake your head at this list, but remember that Huckabee came from nowhere to surprise the Republican establishment only a few months after not receiving so much as a sniff in the GOP polls. And with the current list of potential nominees, I’d look real closely at this list for 2012.

The last U.S. President to come directly from the House of Representatives was James Garfield of Ohio in 1880.

*********

John A. Tures is an Associate Professor of Political Science at LaGrange College


TOPICS: Mississippi; South Carolina; Parties; State and Local
KEYWORDS: 111th; 2012; 2012gopprimary; demint; demint2012; haleybarbour; huckabee; huckafraud; huckajoke; palin; snakeoilsalesman
Why the rush by the elites to halt a Palin presidential candidacy? It's only 2010. Their tears, wailing, gnashing of teeth and flop sweat amuse me.

Oh, and former Governor Huckabee, besides his poor judgement on the parole issue, is a pro-amnesty RINO like Juan McLame and Linseed Grahamnesty.

1 posted on 03/01/2010 8:31:13 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Palin, Ryan, and DeMint are conservative treasures. I think that Pence has “it” and Mitch Daniels could surprise.


2 posted on 03/01/2010 8:33:24 PM PST by MattinNJ (Pence/Palin)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Forget all your wantabees!!!!


3 posted on 03/01/2010 8:36:05 PM PST by dalereed
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

What happened to Mark Sanford?


4 posted on 03/01/2010 8:38:46 PM PST by trumandogz (The Democrats are driving us to Socialism at 100 MPH -The GOP is driving us to Socialism at 97.5 MPH)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Leave it up to the Republicans to nominate another McCain or Dole. It wouldn’t surprise me.


5 posted on 03/01/2010 8:42:46 PM PST by unkus
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I just want Sarah to run so she can debate some of these people. I think the naysayers will be surprised by her performance if you runs in 2012. I just wish it was 2012 because we are going to suffer from election fatigue by the time the primaries start.


6 posted on 03/01/2010 8:43:23 PM PST by Sarah-bot (...but, but, but, she endorsed McCain)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
a dark horse candidate from the South could rise up to win some big races in 2012

Yes, his name is Allen West

7 posted on 03/01/2010 8:45:08 PM PST by Falcon28 (Allen West - 2012)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

John A. Tures is an Associate Professor of Political Science at LaGrange College


Yo, teach. Palin’s the one.


8 posted on 03/01/2010 8:50:33 PM PST by PaleoBob
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To: Falcon28

I don’t think you or I will see another black president in our lifetimes, but I could be mistaken.


9 posted on 03/01/2010 8:50:49 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet (I will raise $2 million for Sarah Palin & it won't be from Gaza, Kosovo or Nigeria!!)
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To: Falcon28
And to that I say Heck YA!! West rocks in such a good way. Not that Gov. Palin is bad...I've been at speeches presented by both, and like the message Col. West is talking.
10 posted on 03/01/2010 8:51:01 PM PST by b cool
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Its good to see none of the old horses from 2004 and 2008 on that list. We need a fresh face, conservative but yet able to draw independents the way Reagan did.


11 posted on 03/01/2010 8:51:11 PM PST by NavyCanDo (Palin 2012 Teleprompter Not Required)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

ditto.


12 posted on 03/01/2010 8:53:00 PM PST by ken21 (i am not voting for a rino-progressive.)
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To: trumandogz
What happened to Mark Sanford?

We lost Mark on the Appalachian Trail.

13 posted on 03/01/2010 8:56:33 PM PST by The_Media_never_lie
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To: The_Media_never_lie

Send them all to ‘survivor’ island and who is left on the island after 3 months.


14 posted on 03/01/2010 8:57:53 PM PST by techno
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
One of the reasons Huckabee became a dark horse was the lack of other good conservative candidates in 2008. Lots of people were looking for one to emerge and Huck kind of became an odd default for a lot of people.

If Sarah Palin runs, there will be no need for a dark horse, she will hold conservative votes and the moderates will all divide the remainder of the GOP vote. With the moves she has made and is making, the nomination is hers to win if she decides to run; run, Sarah, run!

15 posted on 03/01/2010 9:00:12 PM PST by Lakeshark (Thank a member of the US armed forces for their sacrifice)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Are we allowed to say “darkhorse”?


16 posted on 03/01/2010 9:00:21 PM PST by bigbob
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

imho, Huckster was the Christian candidate, not the southern candidate. I just cannot see Senator Corker running TV ads with a dancing cross in the background.

And I think to win Iowa, you are now required to include a dancing cross in at least one TV spot.

Maybe it was a bouncing cross. Not sure.


17 posted on 03/01/2010 9:04:42 PM PST by campaignPete R-CT ("pray without ceasing" - Paul of Tarsus)
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To: MattinNJ

Totally agree with you. I have personally met Pence and Daniels- Both are sincere and really can connect with “the common man”. Pence is a great all around conservative, and Mitch Daniels an able executive who has brought Indiana out of the red!


18 posted on 03/01/2010 9:08:01 PM PST by Puritan Idelette (( 2 Corinthians 4 : 6) "For God who said,"Light shall shine out of darkness...")
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To: trumandogz

Ask Mrs. Sanford...


19 posted on 03/01/2010 9:10:26 PM PST by achilles2000 (Shouting "fire" in a burning building is doing everyone a favor...whether they like it or not)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Answer to #3.....James Garfield.


20 posted on 03/01/2010 9:14:57 PM PST by nonliberal (Graduate: Curtis E. LeMay School of International Relations)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Associate Professors are junior faculty trying to get tenure. They have to make some kind of name for themselves. This sort of speculative rubbish is a dime a pound and means nothing.
21 posted on 03/01/2010 9:33:09 PM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: campaignPete R-CT

22 posted on 03/01/2010 10:05:29 PM PST by iowamark
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Corker is a RINO. He beat out the good conservative candidate because a spoiler split the conservative vote in the primary.


23 posted on 03/01/2010 10:09:06 PM PST by Grammy (Politics. .......( poli ) many ( tics ) blood suckers)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
But that controversial 2006 election against Harold Ford, Jr. could haunt such a bid. Senator Corker would have to show that it was the national party behind those controversial ads against Democrat Harold Ford, Jr.

The Left will call any Republican a racist.

24 posted on 03/01/2010 10:09:48 PM PST by iowamark
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To: trumandogz

What happened to Mark Sanford? Mark Sanford. He did himself in and he was too ‘elitist’ in his actions afterwards to save the party. It was all about him. Why would we want to elect another ‘The One’?


25 posted on 03/01/2010 11:15:40 PM PST by Shery (in APO Land)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
I don’t think you or I will see another black president in our lifetimes, but I could be mistaken.

What does color have to do with anything?

Swearing off black presidents based on Obama is what an idiot does.

Recognizing a Red President (and convincing the Sheeple of their mistake) is the path of true wisdom!

26 posted on 03/01/2010 11:23:56 PM PST by cynwoody
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To: 2ndDivisionVet; jdirt; Vietnam Vet From New Mexico; wardaddy; KLT; montesquiue; Downsouth55; ...

I know I know, he’s too old , too fat and he talks to slow
Mississippi ping.


27 posted on 03/01/2010 11:24:36 PM PST by WKB (From "Handout" to "Bailout")
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To: trumandogz

Mark Sanford got lost on a “hike”. LOL


28 posted on 03/01/2010 11:33:04 PM PST by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: WKB

He also is a successful politician and expert in disaster recovery, and if there has ever been a disaster, Obama is it.


29 posted on 03/02/2010 3:20:30 AM PST by ejonesie22 (Palin bashers on freerepublic, like a fart in Church...)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
I love Haley... my Governor... he will make a fine VP for PRESIDENT PALIN!

LLS

30 posted on 03/02/2010 4:11:52 AM PST by LibLieSlayer (hussama will never be my president... NEVER!)
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To: campaignPete R-CT

>> I think to win Iowa, you are now required to include a dancing cross in at least one TV spot <<

Even if your main opponent isn’t LDS?


31 posted on 03/02/2010 6:02:30 AM PST by Hawthorn
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To: Puritan Idelette

>> Mitch Daniels an able executive who has brought Indiana out of the red <<

And his Indiana twang almost sounds like a Southern accent!


32 posted on 03/02/2010 6:04:57 AM PST by Hawthorn
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To: cynwoody

>> Recognizing a Red President (and convincing the Sheeple of their mistake) is the path of true wisdom! <<

The current TØTUS is a Red, even farther to the left than a Pinko. Why would we want another one?


33 posted on 03/02/2010 6:07:09 AM PST by Hawthorn
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Comment #34 Removed by Moderator

Comment #35 Removed by Moderator

To: 2ndDivisionVet
Blatantly Obvious 2012 Presidential Campaign Platform
36 posted on 03/05/2010 6:05:08 PM PST by D. Brian Carter (Check out http://the28thAmendmentProposal.org/home.html)
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