Posts Tagged ‘republican primaries’

One of the most important things a pol can do is to learn from mistakes.

The key reason why John McCain managed to win the nomination was the division among those who opposed him. McCain was clearly one of the least popular candidates among conservatives but the division of the conservative vote allowed John McCain to win with small relative percentages of the GOP vote.

Whatever Mitt’s faults on the leadership front on the brains and strategy front he is certainly first rate. I suspect he identified early the dynamics that would hurt him most:

1. Sarah Palin is the single biggest threat to his nomination in terms of a candidate

2. Romneycare is the biggest threat in terms of a policy

3. There are still plenty of people who consider Mormonism a cult who would vote against him in primary states

He also identified one huge benefit:

The establishment GOP hates and fears any Palin-like candidate and likes him.

So how do you manage to use these facts in your favor? Easy:

1. Use the MSM to neutralize Palin: Romney knows that he will need Palin supporters to defeat Obama in 2012, thus he can’t attack Palin directly thus he has used GOP proxies who are ostensibly not connected to him to do so. The media who hates Palin even more than GOP insiders are happy and thrilled to promote them any chance they get. Thus you get the narratives concerning Palin established while not dirtying your hands. The best example is the silence on her India trip while her mispronouncing of “skirmish” was news.

2. Support the Ringers: One of the oldest tactics in politics is to run a “ringer” to siphon off votes from an opponent. Right now if you look at the people running or “exploring” running you see quite a few strongly conservative folks. Herman Cain, Michelle Bachmann, Newt, perhaps Huckabee, Haley Barbour and of course possibly Palin. All are popular with tea party people, evangelicals and social conservatives. For Mitt Romney to win the nomination that strongly conservative tea party vote needs to be divided. With enough strong conservatives in the race the primary vote will be divided. There is always a danger that one of these people will “break out” (Herman Cain in particular is a danger to do so as I’ve not found a conservative or tea party person who dislikes him) and become a really big threat, but as long as that doesn’t happen it’s in Romney’s interest to keep the smaller or regional candidates in the game since very few of the votes they will siphon off would be from him

Expect Romney’s biggest donors to be approached to help fund any candidate that he thinks will drain votes early in the primaries. Once that happens and the damage is done, or if any of them get enough momentum to become a threat the spigots will be turned off.

As far as I can see this is the path to the nomination for Mitt since he certainly isn’t busy hitting the administration on its policies. Of course the nomination won’t be enough, he has to actually win the general, so when all is said and done he will have to copy McCain in one other way, picking a strong conservative as a running mate to keep the tea party and conservative wing from leaving in disgust.

Yesterday I was exchanging tweets with Melissa Clouthier and this rather surprising story was being discussed:

CNN is teaming up with the Tea Party Express for a first-of-its-kind presidential primary debate, both organizations announced Friday. The Tea Party debate, featuring 2012 Republican presidential candidates, is scheduled for Labor Day week 2011. It will take place in Tampa, Florida – the site of the 2012 Republican National Convention.

As a person who ever so briefly rode the tea party express I was tickled pink. Although Melissa knows some of the folks as well she had this to say:

I wasn’t happy with what happened in Nevada, though. Shoulda left that race well enough alone.

Quite a few conservatives say the same about Christine O’Donnell but (via Glenn) Kevin Williamson makes an excellent point:

Say what you like about Christine O’Donnell and her incompetent nut-cluster of a campaign, she showed the Republican establishment that the Tea Party, and the fiscally discontent at large, are willing to run a kamikaze candidate against any RINO target of opportunity. And not all of the challengers are going to be O’Donnell-type buffoons. Sharron Angle was a much more serious candidate and ran a much more serious campaign. Pat Toomey chased Arlen Specter out of the Republican party and then put the smackdown on his Democratic opponent — a retired admiral, let’s remember, not some wild-eyed hippie — in the general. Pat Toomey scares the old guard. They do not want to see a dozen Pat Toomeys showing up in Republican primaries next time around. Kay Bailey Hutchison does not want some Stetson-wearing Toomey showing up in her backyard.

This is the real reason why the GOP is holding the line on spending. Those primaries that ousted the GOP rinos (you know the No labels crowd) can easily be repeated and establishment candidates who know Tea Party supporters can muster both cash and votes in primaries have no desire to find themselves as an occasional commentator on a CNN panel rather than in the halls of power.

It would be nice if they did the right thing because it is right but if they do it out of fear that’s fine too.

who were so dying to get rid of Martha Coakley that they wrote in either GUY A. CARBONE ( * ) 9,505 or JAMES P. MCKENNA ( * ) 27,711.

This race reminded me of the Auditor race in that I liked both candidates very much and it’s a shame one had to lose, I would love to see Carbone and Jain both involved in government or as candidates in the future.

For the second time in one day I take exception to something Allahpundit says:

Let’s look at that exit question again:

Exit question for O’Donnell supporters: Assuming she wins tonight and falls, say, 10 points behind Coons, how long should the NRSC funnel money into Delaware for her knowing that dollars lost there can be spent on other races nationwide? To the bitter end, right?

Tell me what was the maximum number of points Scott Brown was down here in Massachusetts? At what point should we have just given up? Where would we be today if we did? Doesn’t anyone remember the political climate just 18 months ago?

When will some conservatives understand that winning involves hard work and persuasion, not just putting a finger to the wind and hoping to catch the breeze.

Sticking a finger in the eye of the tea party guarantees a fight for the soul of the party in 2012 and if the tea party loses that fight there will be a 3rd party and the republicans will not only be done but deserve to be done. This is what I’ve gotten from every tea party supporter I’ve talked to and I talked to hundreds from dozens of states.

Understand this, conservatives don’t support republicans because they love the letter R, they support republicans because they want conservative values to be advanced. if the republicans are unwilling to do this, or if conservatives are unwilling to fight for them, why are you even bothering?

Guys a chance like this comes maybe once every other generation, lets not blow it.

Update: Gateway pundit quotes Rush (without whom republican majorities are a pipe dream)

Rush Limbaugh was right… “They would prefer to have somebody like Mike Castle elected, who is not even as good as McCain. What good is that going to do the conservative movement?”
If only they fought this hard and nasty against the Obama-Pelosi regime.

Guys if you want to know why the national party’s coffers are empty, this is why.