Skip to comments.Romney: The Castor-Oil Candidate - Republicans are finding the prospect of nominating Mitt...
Posted on 11/25/2011 4:36:12 PM PST by neverdem
Romney: The Castor-Oil Candidate
Republicans are finding the prospect of nominating Mitt hard to swallow.
Nominating Mitt Romney is sort of like taking Grandma’s castor oil. Republicans are dreading the thought of downing their unpleasant-tasting medicine but worry that sooner or later they will have to.
By any logical political calculus, the former Massachusetts governor is an ideal presidential candidate. Ramrod straight, fit, and well-educated, he knows all sorts of facts and figures and comes across like a cinematic chief executive.
At any other time, an informed technocrat like Romney would seem a dream candidate. Yet in the run-up to this election, Americans are completely turned off by Washington’s so-called experts, such as Energy Secretary Steven Chu, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, Attorney General Eric Holder — and, increasingly, Barack Obama himself.
As a former governor and presidential candidate, Romney has been fully vetted. In these racy times, Mormonism is viewed as more a guarantee of a candidate’s past probity than a political liability. So there is little chance that a blonde accuser will appear out of Romney’s past, or that in late October 2012 the New York Times will uncover a long-ago DUI charge.
The calculating Republican establishment believes Romney has enough crossover appeal to independents to beat a shaky Obama. It still has nightmares of tea-party senatorial candidates Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell, whose 2010 primary victories led to inept campaigns and Republican losses in the general elections in Nevada and Delaware, respectively.
Although conservatives dub Romney a flip-flopper for changing positions on abortion, gun control, and health care, the base knew all about those old reversals in 2008, when it nonetheless praised Romney as the only conservative alternative to maverick moderate John McCain. Apparently the party has moved to the right since then. Tea partiers worry that, once in office, a moderate President Romney would prove a reach-out centrist — spending borrowed money like George W. Bush did on No Child Left Behind or the Medicare prescription-drug benefit, thereby ruining for good the now-suspect Republican brand of fiscal sobriety.
The result of those worries is that Romney has become the process-of-elimination candidate. The Hamlet-like governor of Indiana, Mitch Daniels, hemmed and hawed and bowed out, as most knew he would. The charismatic and controversial Rudy Giuliani and Sarah Palin decided they were making too much money to go through another nasty political race.
If finger-pointing magnate Donald Trump was going to bet a campaign on Obama’s reluctance to disclose official documents, he would have done better to demand the release of the president’s mysteriously secret college transcripts and medical records rather than his birth certificate. In the debates, the audiences liked what former Sen. Rick Santorum had to say, regretting only that it came out of the mouth of Rick Santorum.
Rep. Michele Bachmann once soared as the anti-Romney and then crashed when 90 percent of her statements seemed courageous and inspired — but 10 percent sounded kind of weird.
Then came the most promising Romney alternative, job-creating Texas governor Rick Perry. He looked as presidential as Romney but immediately proved even more wooden in the debates. His “brainfreeze” moments were made worse by occasional goofy explanations that seemed most un-Texan.
New Jersey governor Chris Christie and Florida senatoor Marco Rubio were always crowd favorites, and they’re certainly hard-charging conservatives. Yet at some point, both realized that their scant years in office were comparable, in theory, to the thin résumé of Obama when he entered the presidency clueless.
Rep. Ron Paul’s shrill talk on fiscal sobriety is as refreshing as his vintage-1930s isolationist foreign policy is creepy. Former Utah governor Jon Huntsman is a sort of weak Romney doppelganger, raising the same paradox that money, looks, polish, and moderation this year are cause for suspicion, not reassurance.
Many like businessman Herman Cain’s straight-talking pragmatism. Yet more are worried that he might not know that China is a nuclear power, or that we recently joined the British and French in bombing Libya. By now, former speaker of the House Newt Gingrich knows almost everything about everything. But lots of Newt’s original — and now abandoned — positions were as liberal as Romney’s. And not all that long ago, he seemed as brilliant and glib — and recklessly self-destructive — as his contemporary and antagonist Bill Clinton.
To beat an ever-more-vulnerable Obama, Republicans keep coming back to someone who resembles a Romney, with strengths in just those areas where Obama is so demonstrably weak: prior executive experience as a governor, success in and intimacy with the private sector, a past fully vetted, and an unambiguous belief in the exceptional history and future of the United States.
In short, if Republicans are happy in theory that Mitt Romney could probably beat Obama, they seem just as unhappy in fact that first they have to nominate him.
— Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and the author, most recently, of The End of Sparta, a novel about ancient freedom. © 2011 Tribune Media Services, Inc.
Victor did you have some holiday cheer before you wrote this? I can buy Christie being a fiscal conservative, but that's about it.
why try to imply that Romney is good for us?
He can’t win.
Mitt may end up being the candidate,,but he won’t be President. Obama and the Govt controlled media will suddenly turn on him and he will become a two headed cult religion fanatic.
I’m not sure anything short of a miracle is going to prevent Obama getting another term.
I’m just not going to do it.
It’s that simple.
He's already that, they'll just point it out.
Is this a condition of employment at NRO, supporting Romney?
I never took my castor oil - I spit it out and still remember how to do it. But they need to know, I don’t eat their propaganda either- the game is FAR from over.
But if he gets the nom - 3rd ‘PARTY TIME’!! Who should we invite to the Party?
That’s the fighting spirit.
I am big time in the ABO crowd...I have my deepest criticisms for Huntsman. Cannot stand him.
But I will run, not walk, to vote for him if he is the nominee.
My theory is this: all of the Republicans are flawed...but all of them love America. Hussein is not just flawed, but willingly so—and he hates America.
This is one reason Hussein is a worse President than Carter. Carter, inept and feckless, at least loved this country...Hussein doesn’t.
I’ll take a flawed person who loves America over one who hates our nation.
So yes, I question his patriotism.
My forecast and take it for what it cost you. The establishment Republicans will nominate Mitt and the GOP will lose.
The establishment “Powers that Be” actually funded and installed Obama, have used him for bailouts, etc, and they want to keep him there as their insurance.
They gave us McCain “the amnesty and the economy is doing fine” guy as our only other choice. Thus they made sure Obama would win. Then they kicked out Glenn Beck from having any independent influence.
Until we citizens have paper ballots and voting IDs do we have elections that count?
seems simple enough
Right there with you. No way. I’ll vote the ticket but not for Romney.
They can nominate him all they want too, I will not vote for him. He is simply a liberal, socialist, commie in RINO clothing. I don’t vote for liberal, socialists, or commies. Thus, he ain’t getting my vote.
He also said he was in favor of a full ban on semi-autos. The man's a gun grabber.
“Romney’s more like the Syrup of Ipecac candidate to me. “
Is that the stuff you take before you have a colonostpy?”
The 2008 Republican primary was composed of a much different crowd than the 2012 primary is. In 2008, Romney was the conservative alternative. That was part of the reason there were all those Tea Party-supported candidates (and Tea Party-supported candidate victories) in 2010.
Romney will never be the nominee, I don’t know why the media can’t see it, when it’s plain as day to be.
You can’t will the nomination with a plurality.... you have to get a majority 50+1% and I have never seen a poll even head to head where Romney ever polled greater than 50%.
Face it Romney like Paul has his little core of supporters ~20% and that’s about it, depending on who is being polled that number will vary by about 5 points, but that’s it.
I don’t know who will be the winner ( I personally hope Cain ) but I know who it wont be ... Romney, Huntsman, Paul... none of these will ever be nominated by the Republicans.
Amen... the states that have tried it are getting sued. It is becoming the the only event in our lives in which we need no identification to participate.
No,it’s used to induce vomiting.
You need Castor Oil for Newt even worse IMO.