Skip to comments.Who Could Emerge As The GOP Compromise Candidate At The Convention?
Posted on 02/21/2012 12:48:36 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
Even without a competitive Republican primary, the GOPs presidential nominee would not have been able to lock down the required 1,144 delegates required to cinch the nomination until May. Given the trajectory of the Republican presidential race, it is more than likely that the nominating contest will go on until the summer and may even stretch all the way to the convention.
There has been a lot of talk in recent weeks about the possibility of a brokered convention where no candidate has the required delegates to secure the nomination outright. In that scenario, multiple ballots would be required by the convention delegates to determine the nominee. In that scenario, there is the not unprecedented but still unlikely possibility that the conventions delegates could be deadlocked, forcing the party to select a compromise candidate from the list of Republicans that for one reason or another declined to run for president in 2012.
Who could emerge from the partys compromise candidate? Despite all the talk of a weak field of candidates this year, there is a lot of GOP talent on the back bench to choose from.
Advantages: Ryan is a young, articulate policy wonk and the head of the powerful Budget Committee. He will have authored two federal budget proposals by the time the convention rolls around and will be the focus of national debate on tax policy. Ryan hails from a swing district in a swing state and has positive favorability numbers there amidst a national campaign by unions to recall the states sitting Republican governor. He was the subject of a withering series of Democratic attacks for his proposed Path to Prosperity budget and emerged unscathed. Many Republicans would salivate over the potential for an Obama / Ryan debate.
Disadvantages: He is extremely polarizing and as the face of Republican budgetary math, would be vulnerable to the Republicans want to hurl grandma off the cliff argument. It is unlikely that he could deliver his light blue state in a presidential year. As a member of the House, he faces daunting historical odds of being elected directly from his present office to the White House. If he were to accomplish this feat, he would be the first to do so since James Garfield in 1880.
Advantages: the outspoken Republican governor of New Jersey was subject to an exhausting drafting effort in 2011 to run for president he repeatedly refused, but the pro-Christie sentiment within the GOP remains strong. He backed Mitt Romney and would likely unite the pro-Romney bloc of delegates at the convention, his ability to take the rhetorical fight to Democrats would win over the Gingrich delegates and his relative lack of concern for social issues (save his recent veto of gay marriage legislation in New Jersey) would make Ron Pauls delegates comfortable. Only Santorums folks would balk at Christie for his lack of sufficient commitment to compassionate conservatism.
Disadvantages: He is very unlikely to carry his own state; a key indicator of electoral success on the presidential level. Christie is also very polarizing and would alienate many Reagan Democrats and liberal-leaning independents. Furthermore, his unequivocal rejection of draft efforts may be overcome at the convention, but would leave lasting scars ahead of a general election. Christie may simply not be up for the grueling pace of the 10-week race to the finish line in November.
Advantages: If you will recall, hes done this before. As the Republican nominee in 2008, McCain knows the pace of the general election and how to fundraise for it. McCain enjoys relatively positive favorability ratings and he will be uniquely positioned to take President Obama to task for promises made last year that he has been unable to deliver on.
Disadvantages: Remember when McCain was too old to run for president in 2008? Well, hes four years older now. Furthermore, as a 2008 retread, he alienates the conservative base of the party that perceives Mitt Romney as being too liberal (recall, he was the conservative in the race four years ago). It is unlikely that he could survive a series of ballots at a Republican convention that where Santorum, Gingrich and Paul delegates will have a defining say is extremely limited.
Advantages: There has been more than private speculation that the GOP could get behind Jeb Bush at the convention, one anonymous U.S. Senator told ABC News as much last week. Bush is the popular two-term governor of must-win Florida. He is bilingual and has a Puerto Rican wife and a politically active son who has a Latin American hue to his skin. Of all the declared candidates and possible compromise candidates, Bush is in the best position to capture the 40 percent of the Hispanic vote that was George W. Bushs threshold for election in 2000.
Disadvantages: His last name. If Bush were at the top of the ticket in 2012, it would be the third such occasion in four election cycles. In fact since 1976, a Bush has been a primary candidate or on the Republican ticket in every presidential cycle but 1996 and 2008. There is no way to precisely measure Bush fatigue in the electorate but Americans are not predisposed to support political dynasties. If America were a more aristocratic culture, the Republicans would probably be seeking a nominee to challenge President Hillary Clinton today.
Advantages: Palin has the primogenitor factor going for her as the GOPs vice presidential nominee, 2012 was her turn and she would be a major factor today if she had decided to run. Palin is the quintessential populist and, while she does not perform particularly well among independents, she is uniquely positioned to capture a segment of conservative Democrats dissatisfied with the president.
Disadvantages: There is no more polarizing politician on the right or left today than Palin. The fact that she was unable to capitalize on the primogenitor factor speaks volumes about her electoral chances. Her brand was substantially damaged in the intervening years between her presidential race and today. Given that she is soon to be the subject of what has to be a negative portrayal in the upcoming original HBO movie Game Change, her brand is soon to be subject to even more damage. Furthermore, Romneys convention delegates would probably sooner sever a beloved digit than cast their votes for Palin.
Advantages: A two-term, sun-belt Republican with an Indian-American heritage, Jindal has the benefit of being able to negate Democratic identity politics (e.g. Republicans hate women, gays, Jews, blacks, the Easter Bunny and newborn kittens). Furthermore, Jindal has a great story to tell: the rebirth and growth of Louisiana after the destruction wrought by Hurricane Katrina. Jindal is also very popular among conservatives and moderates within the GOP and would emerge out of a brokered convention as fast if not faster than Jeb Bush.
Disadvantages: Jindal was one of the first and highest profile politicians to endorse Texas Gov. Rick Perry. This will allow his detractors to call his judgment into question he can defend his position, but as a rule once you have to defend a position youve already lost. Furthermore, he has not had to debate national policy or be even particularly well versed on issues that transcend the borders of Louisiana. As much as they like Jindal, convention delegates would know his candidacy would be a big gamble.
Advantages: Thune floated a bid for the presidency in 2011 but declined early on in the process. As a multi-term Senator from South Dakota, Thune has a folksy, Midwestern demeanor about him. Furthermore, he is no radical and his stability is likely to be attractive to skittish delegates that are loath to bet their vote on an untested candidate. Thune, as an early supporter of Romney, would be the path of least resistance for convention delegates that hope to limit the length of a contested convention.
Disadvantages: Thune has represented South Dakota in Congress in some capacity since 1997 and has taken more than his share of controversial votes. This condition is compounded by the fact that he has not been a leader in Congress and has preferred to support his colleagues legislation. Thune has a very limited national profile and can be defined by Obamas reelection team and pro-Democratic groups relatively easily. He also supported the deeply unpopular TARP bailout legislation and has been a protector of agricultural subsidies that encounter sharp resistance outside the Heartland.
Advantages: A prime candidate for the presidency, Daniels declined to run last year (speculation surrounding his deferral surrounded his wife Cherries lack of enthusiasm for the prospect of a national campaign). Daniels is a budget pro and a turnaround artist with a firm grasp of the wonky economic issues that will dominate the general election in 2012. He has also run a light red state that voted for Obama in 2008. Daniels can appeal to multiple segments of the GOP and was the first to propose that there be a truce on social issues in this presidential campaign as it muddies what should be the sole focus of the Republican party: the economy. Santorums convention delegates will balk at Daniels campaign, but the rest of the GOP may embrace him.
Disadvantages: Daniels is a soft-spoken type who is unlikely to engender much enthusiasm, even among his supporters. At the convention this could be overcome, but in a general election for the President of the United States it is the fiery politician and not the technocrat that usually carries the day. Also, as President Bushs director of the Office of Management and Budget, Daniels is perilously well positioned to allow Democrats to reframe the terms of this election as a choice between Obama and a return to the Bush years. That may not worry many Republicans who see the Bush years as the good ol days, but in a general election that would likely be a profound liability.
Marco Rubio. If the GOP nominates him it will be a landslide victory against Obama.
Advantages: A prime candidate for the presidency, Daniels declined to run last year...
Good thing, too, because there was no presidential race last year...
It will not be anyone but one of the people who have devoted money, time. and energy into actually running.
A compromise would be made with those people.
Now you’ve done it....birthers inbound!!!
Btw I agree with you 100%
Daniels has already said no again yesterday. Who would want to after declining to run earlier?
All that would do is cause resentment instead of making people happy.
As if we needed any more proof that the establishment is out of touch - and we don’t - they keep floating Jeb Bush. How can they be so tone deaf? There is no way in hell anyone will accept another Bush.
Jeb is probably the best of the three, but no way we’ll ever elect another one.
You are correct, any other answer is day dreaming.
I’d vote for him.
For everyone who thinks a brokered convention is the conservative salvation, keep in mind that a moderate is more likely to emerge than someone seriously to the right. Just for a little historical perspective the last Republican candidate to come out of a brokered convention was Thomas Dewey in 1948. Remember his first term?
It is the same reason sports writers like to talk about, for example, the upcoming NFL draft.
But, while there will be an NFL draft, there will not be a brokered Republican convention.
It will be a woman—But Not Sarah Palin.
Rubio articulates conservative values better than any other candidate I’ve heard so far.
Sure Rubio’s record is spare but all the other self-styled conservatives running have records which paint them as hypocrites since their deeds belie their words.
Santorum and Gingrich are frauds using the conservative base merely as tools in their grab for power, and don’t give a wit about any of us or our values.
Santorum and Gingrich are frauds
. . . and add Romney to that list of frauds, of course.
This silly notion is to sow continued discord and keep people from getting behind a candidate. It is a folly and it isn’t going to happen. Notice that one of the sources was Politico today. Yeah, right.
If people can’t decide amongst the people who are actually running, there isn’t going to be a candidate imposed as the nomineee who hasn’t spent one minute doing any of the work and investing of themselves to run, that includes Jeb Bush.
Do you seriously think that is the biggest reason so many Republicasn like him? Rubio's strength is that he articulates the conservative vision and conservative values in a way that appeals to the greatest number of Americans. There hasn't been anyone in his league in that regard since Reagan.
If there was someone else equally adept at that on the national stage, he/she would be running away with the nomination.
Personally, my choice would be Daniels, especially considering the education reforms he pushed through last year, and the Right to Work legislation that passsed this year. He's got the experience and record to challenge Obama, even if he is somewhat lacking in terms of charisma.
But heck, considering our other options at this point, I'd take Rubio over the current contenders in a heartbeat.
Fax me some of whatever you’re smoking. I worked for President Reagan, so don’t pee on my leg and tell me it’s raining.
Chris Christie - Decent on economic issues, awful on social issues, basically a fat Mitt Romney.
John McCain - No! No and h*ll NO! I would not vote for him even if my vote decided the election. THAT is how much I hate him.
Jeb Bush - I agree with Jesse Jackson for once, Stay out da Bushes. We don't need a political dynasty in this country, especially one made of RINO's.
Sarah Palin - Would vote for her in a heartbeat, but don't think she wants it.
Bobby Jindal - I'd vote for him, although he doesn't really, as Chris Matthews put it, send a tingle up my leg.
John Thune: - Really don't know enough about him to say...
Mitch Daniels - Another establishment RINO, I'll pass.
I get your point, but his ethnic group is....(drum roll)...white, as in caucasian.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.