This Country and this Party Need Mitt Romney

By Leon H Wolf Posted in | | Comments (97) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »

I was at work today and thus had to miss the debate this afternoon. I am told by my friend Jim Geraghty that it was a spectacular spectacle of awfulness, from a debate standpoint. I am also led to believe that this may have been the first debate that non-Mitt partisans could believe that he won, which is an encouraging sign for the campaign.

Right now, the Republican primary field is more open than any Republican primary field I have ever seen. Less than a month away from the Iowa caucuses, five candidates have a plausible path to the nomination; three candidates have a very good path. Right now, it seems clear that "undecided" leads the pack. As we consider who to nominate, I think that it is important to consider what kind of President this country needs right now, and what kind of nominee our party needs.

More below...

One thing that is indisputably true about the American public right now is that they have lost faith in the federal government. Whether it comes to Congress or the executive branch, the people are not happy with the way things are being run. The federal government has become so huge that only the slightest amount of error can have catastrophic results. Furthermore, for better or worse, Republicans are taking the brunt of the public's current dissatisfaction with the way the government is being run. The next President needs to be someone who can restore the faith of the American people in the ability of Government to work well, and in the ability of the Republican party specifically to do that job. We desperately need to nominate a candidate with a proven record of fixing broken organizations; a candidate like Mitt Romney. In fairness, Rudy Giuliani had an admirable record of success in turning the defunct government of New York City around. However, Rudy Giuliani is not the candidate we need, for many of the reasons listed below.

The American people are also fed up with runaway spending. Tax cuts are nice when it comes to appeasing hardcore Republicans, but the part that really appeals to both Republicans and independents is a candidate who will cut government waste. Sadly, Republicans have thrown away the mantle of being the party that stands against wasteful spending. Our next nominee, for the good of the party and the country needs to have a proven record of standing against spending. To his credit, John McCain has a record of standing against spending, but Mitt Romney has a specific track record of using his veto pen against spending - and his ability to point that out will be beneficial on the campaign trail.

The image of the Republican Party has been damaged by scandal over the last few years. If our next candidate is one with significant skeletons in his closet, we risk losing an entire generation of potential voters to skepticism about corruption and the belief that all politicians - including (or even especially) Republicans - are merely in it for their own self-interest. Mitt Romney has no skeletons whatsoever in his closet. One of my friends, who is not a Romney supporter, once quipped to me that he doesn't think Romney even *has* a closet. It is highly likely that our nominee will be running against one of the more scandal-ridden public figures of the last 25 years - it is important that we not nominate a candidate who lives in a glass house.

It is also important that we nominate a candidate who can carry the mantle of life in the face of hostile opposition. Over the last three decades, pro-lifers have made important incremental gains in turning the tide of public opinion in this country. A large part of the reason for that is that we have, with the exception of 8 years of Clinton, had folks with the White House bully pulpit who took the side of life. Now is not the time to go in reverse.

One of the things that I often hear with respect to Mitt Romney is that people doubt his sincerity on this issue. I'd like to encourage everyone to watch this video, which is old, but which I watched myself for the first time last weekend. If you are short on time, begin at around the 9:00 mark. And I have to tell you, after watching this video, I came to believe for the first time during this campaign that Romney's conversion on life was a real and genuine event - I have wondered throughout this campaign how so many conservative leaders went into one-on-one meetings with Romney and came out with this conclusion; now I know:

Again, not enough to convince everyone, maybe, but enough to convince me. And I think, frankly, that if Romney let this guy out more often rather than the carefully scripted person we see on TV, more people might come to believe it as well.

And finally, let me speak frankly about something that I wish wasn't true, but is. The public at large, and independents in particular, have caricatures in their own mind about what the "bad" "Republicans" and "Democrats" look like. The Democrat caricature is the coddled Northeastern stuffy wealthy liberal. When the Democrats nominated the archetype of this caricature in 2004, Republicans used that to their very great advantage. the Republican caricature is the good old boy Southern bible-thumper. As a good old boy Southern bible-thumper, I obviously don't have any problem with good old boy Southern bible-thumpers, but I think it would be disastrous to nominate one this time around. Independent voters - a lot of them, at least - are coming around to the belief that the Republican party is using the issues that are important to this voting demographic as a wedge issue to cover up the fact that they are not capable of governing well. Our next candidate, if he is going to win, will have to walk a very fine line of projecting competence in governing as his main priority, while sharing the values that we hold dear. I believe that Mitt Romney is the only candidate who can successfully accomplish that goal.

The most important thing for me, however, is that wherever the candidates stand from issue to issue, I believe that Mitt Romney will make the best President of the group. I believe that he will be the best person at managing the monster that is the federal bureaucracy, shrinking its size, and advancing conservative causes wherever there is opportunity.

This country and this Party need Mitt Romney.

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but it is clear to me that he is the best man for the job, for the reasons you state, and that's why I'm with Mitt.

This guy would be a disaster for the Republican party. He matches up THE WORST against any Democrat in general election polling and his flip-flops make John Kerry look like George Bush.

And I do think the attacks on his faith right now are GOOD because if he is the nominee, does anybody doubt that the Dems will do the same? He needs to be battle tested.

Outside of the relatively small circle of people who constitute Republicans paying close attention to the primary season. Head to head matchups against a person as well-known as Hillary at this point are meaningless.

The Red Sox Republican: Burkeanism, Baseball, and Sundries.

In the general election an attack against Romney's religion is an attack against Harry Reid.

Mitt is probably the furthest from a Democrat there is. He does NOT match up worse than any Democrat in general election polling, besides the fact that general election polling at this point won't really tell you much of anything other than a hunch.

"The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter."
-Winston Churchill

I don't know what you are talking about when you say Mitt does not match up the worse. Check out the numbers at real clear politics.

I couldn't disagree with you more. I think Mitt Romney is easily the strongest candidate the Republicans have. I frankly don't care what some stupid head-to-head match-up poll says. That is almost entirely name recognition. If you put any stock in those polls, Rudy Giuliani would have been wholly unbeatable as a candidate a few months ago. But once people learned more about him....

I actually think Mitt is a better general election guy that he is in the primaries. When it becomes man v. man, the resume starts mattering a lot more. What you have accomplished starts mattering more. You aren't running off of these vague, partial views, anymore.

A guy like Huckabee wouldn't take off the way he has for simply being seen as a nice, honest guy. The spotlight falls on him a lot more than previously.

That said, Romney is absolutely our best candidate. Especially against Hillary, who is badly dependent upon women for support. Men don't warm up to her well, and she's far more popular with women. That said, Romney polls very well with women for the same reasons that Kennedy and Clinton did. He's articulate, handsome, and successful. Add on top of that the added bonus of being a family man.

He's also perhaps our cleanest candidate. No corruption charges. No ethics violations. No divorces. No squabbles with mistresses or children. Just a clean guy. He's a much more difficult guy to drag up sleave about.

Further, I think Romney puts states like Maine, New Hampshire, Oregon, Michigan, and Minnesota into play. All states Bush was close in but couldn't close in 2004. Romney if far more articulate than Bush. His business persona will also play well in more moderate states.

He's also an outsider. A guy who has never lived in DC. A guy you can't say resembles George W. Bush in the slightest. He's change. And I think that's what the American people are looking for right now.

There's a reason the Dems have attacked him more than any other candidate.

"Don't ever be afraid to see what you see." ~Ronald Reagan

but I love you like a brother, and I'll leave it at that...I respect your enthusiasm, at the very least.

haystack's 12th:
Conservatives (and Presidential Candidates especially) shall offer no aid and comfort to the opposition in times of legislative conflict (and ensuing political campaigns).

I think either Mitt or Rudy would make an excellent VP for Thompson.

I hope you get many voters to agree. I would love to turn Romney loose on the overspending of our federal government. I would love to see him develop a think-tank that would cut and slash and trim all the waste. As I see it, he is the only candidate who truly could.

I would love to see him find a way to publicize every earmark. I would love to see him shame Congress members into treating our taxes like it's our money instead of theirs.

And wouldn't it be great to have a President capable of expressing complex ideas fluently. I'm a fan of President Bush, but I long for someone that the media can't treat (unfairly) as a bumbling idiot just because he has a hard time verbalizing his thoughts.

I'm still a Fred fan, but that's conditional on his acquiring a campaign. I'm not overly optimistic, so that leaves Romney and McCain as reasonably well-rounded conservatives.

But I'm leaning towards McCain, despite Romney's positions being the more conservative of the two. That's because I like McCain's character. I don't agree with all his stances, but there's a true conservative under there who's not overly impressed by poll readings. I'm not going to threadjack a Romney thread with details, but I'd like to see similar philosophical depth and firmness from Romney.

I'd really like to hear more about how Romney has fixed problems, either governmental or corporate. Change doesn't come easy; surely he's earned a few scars doing what he thinks is the right thing. These are the kind of stories likely to impress me.

I don't agree yet, but you make a compelling case nonetheless. I do wish Romney would spend more time talking about his business experience though. It strikes me as his comparative advantage in this field, and he does not spend enough time telling voters about this part of his background (except for mentioning the Olympics, which sounds a bit lame).

"The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions."

"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
-Thomas Paine: The American Crisis, No. 4, 1777

only after election.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
-Thomas Paine: The American Crisis, No. 4, 1777

The Red Sox Republican: Burkeanism, Baseball, and Sundries.

Please note I didn't say he was doing it. If I wanted to say that, I would have said wrapped themselves.

The imagery in your post is over the top hence my reply. It hit like the written equivalent of a Rivera mural.

The loss of faith, restoration of value, the stakes being so high (completely slighting all the other candidates). Followed by a litany of complaints that could have been lifted at any time during my life ( Except the times when we have been fully committed to winning wars). Finally you have a recurring metaphor of Romney raising the fallen.

Just what is he running for ?

BTW He will probably be an above average president if he wins.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
-Thomas Paine: The American Crisis, No. 4, 1777

I really want to elect Romney as the next Christ.

Man, you're goood.

The Red Sox Republican: Burkeanism, Baseball, and Sundries.

Or maybe, you reeeallly want to elect Romney.

No harm in that. If he's the nominee then he's got my vote. Then again if Huckabee is the nominee he also gets my vote*.

*With the reservation of no credible third party candidates in the race.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
-Thomas Paine: The American Crisis, No. 4, 1777

must have been used by the Democrat from Wisconsin's 7th District.

The "Third Worst Person in the World" and aiming higher.

I said some ill-considered things about RedState directors being biased against Romney. This eloquent post gives me the lie.

They that are with us are more than they that are against us.

I'll agree with you on the "this country" part. I think this party needs Mitt Romney like it needs a hole in the head. I really think he'll give up two or three points nationwide between the whole phony flip flopping thing and the Mormon thing, and I don't see him being a huge crossover draw.

What was Alexham's post from a few weeks ago about all settling on McCain and drinking bourbon? Can we do that?

"Some people believe football is a matter of life and death. I'm very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that." - Bill Shankly

...according to the polls. Romney consistently does best among the independents who are likely Republican primary voters. McCain also usually does well, and after that, none of the candidates usually get much.

Now if only that translated to any general election matchup. If you look at the head-to-heads it's hard to see what "crossover" votes he's picking up. He's running at or below 40% in most of the battleground states. That's not even solidifying the Republican-identified voters, let alone "crossovers."

...are even more worthless right now than national nomination polls. Anyone who thinks otherwise had better throw all of their support behind McCain and start praying immediately.

The reason those numbers don't "translate" is because Romney's huge crossover support is coming from states where he's actually campaigned.

I'm settling with McCain. Four years of bourbon is very desirable. If Clinton is the nominee, I will need to drink everclear.

Oops, meant to say "if clinton is president"

"There isn't a man alive who hasn't wanted to boot an infant." - W.C. Fields

I like your username.

"I'm just beginning...The pen's in my hand...Ending unplanned"

By the way, Romney comes across like a snake oil salesman to many "average voters." I know this is anecdotal evidence, but I hear this quite a bit - how he looks "too slick, too perfect."

I wish he'd let himself be unscripted more, like in the video clip there.

The Red Sox Republican: Burkeanism, Baseball, and Sundries.

huge strides in this area at today's debate (12/12). It seems to me that he slowed his delivery down and didn't try to get every talking point into every answer. If he keeps that up, he won't have to worry about seeming too slick again.

Maybe he just took a deep breath before the show.

The "Third Worst Person in the World" and aiming higher.

He came off, to me, as a man literally reading a list on more than one occasion. Of course, many of the questions amounted to: “list some stuff”, but we need not go into all that.

His exchange with Thompson was pretty funny and he showed some spirit there. Wolf is right that it would serve Mitt well to be a bit less scripted, but I am not sure he can do that.

I think of Romney as a living power point presentation. The purpose of his existence is to reflect delicate preparation. Any other asset is secondary, and probably coincidental, to the preparation itself.


He was relaxed but still sharp. Never seen him better.

If he could come off like that everytime he would win it all.

with someone who looks so good, acts so good, family appears perfect, etc. The thing with Romney is that he actually is that succesful, he is that intelligent, he has an amazing family life, he does have strong values.

The problem is that most of us have dealt with someone like that only to quickly realize it is all fake. Mitt's track record from business, to family, to devotion to religion, etc. all shows that he's the real deal. I understand people having issues with the "flips" but as far as the snake oil salesman stereotype - he is in fact what he appears to be.

I've never got the "He's too perfect" line. It simply makes no sense to me whatsoever.

We're electing the leader of the free world here, people. The most distinguished man in the nation. Not the next guy to take over for Joe down at the pool tavern. *rolls eyes*

"Don't ever be afraid to see what you see." ~Ronald Reagan

Have you ever known anyone who wakes up listening to motivational tapes? Those uplifting little peptalks have helped many an insurance salesman make his monthly quota.

I can't help but see Mitt as the guy who has been doing this all his life, always ready to reprogram himself for the next accomplishment.

He worked out the plan for taking Massachusetts--with all the intricate pandering that was necessary. His action plan included convincing the voters that his 'deeply-held views' matched their own.

And now, after studying the market like any good businessman, he's ready for the NEXT BIG SALE.

Mitt has succeeded at everything he has done. His life is exemplary. Two things you can not deny are that he has been an amazingly successful manager and father - two things that you don't come across as often as we should in our country (when I say successful manager I mean at the level he achieved).

Phonies are pretty easy to spot - you just scratch off the surface and underneath lies the truth. With Mitt, the more you find out about him, the more success you see, there just isn't any dirt.

Most politicians have some sort of "flip-flop" in their past. Mitt is no different. He hasn't been dishonest about it. I had major problems with him months ago but I'm convinced. He has the skills this country needs and it's there for the taking. I hope we don't miss out on this opportunity.

Mitt said he was going to increase the size of the Massachusetts Republican party. It shrank, and in 2006 we fielded fewer candidates for office than the Rainbow/PUSH coalition.

Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock.

Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock.

Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock.

For the record, you're the one who brought up the "we ran less candidates than Rainbow/PUSH in 2006" thing that I was responding to.

Romney recruited, funded and trained some 131 candidates to run for the legislature in 2004 and they got their clocks cleaned. Lesson learned? Building a party from the top-down is not going to work.

So, they decided to focus their efforts in 2005-2006 on building and re-building local town committees and, as a result, there are now more functioning town committees than were in place in 2003 (by about 15%, I believe). The number of registrants is down slightly, as are the number of state reps. But local organizing and activity is better now than it's been in a long time and that process was started by Romney and Crate - and Tork is the perfect guy to carry it forward, too.

So fault Romney all you wish for not raising the MA GOP, Lazarus-like, from the dead. But I hope you recognize there is plenty of blame to go around for the sorry state of the MA GOP these days.

Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock.

I sure did bring that up, because it looked pretty sloppy to me to not even field candidates in 2006. And the proper defense for that isn't that we fielded candidates in 2004.

But I was responding to the extraordinary claim that Romney has succeeded at everything he's undertaken. He undertook to increase the size of the GOP in MA, and he failed. He's the one who undertook to increase the party's size. It didn't work, which most would say means it failed.

I understand that it was a difficult job and I wouldn't have done any better, but let's stop gushing over the guy. Romney is not the ultra-successful dynamo his proponents make him out to be, especially when stacked up against the accomplishments of some of the other candidates. That doesn't mean he fails at everything or he's incompetent, but there's a bit too much willingness to impart greatness on a man who hasn't done anything great.

I would never have made such an indefensible claim. Wasn't aware that was what I was defending - sheesh! Talk about poor ground to defend on.

Look, I like Romney a whole lot, but Superman he ain't.

Sorry for the argument. I withdraw. :bows, walks away:

Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock.

You guys are so neurotic. I need to be more careful with every word that I choose so that the main point of my post isn't lost. It's a good thing it gave you an out so you didn't have to have the discussion anymore.

Your poor wives.

I'm sick of Mitt-worship. I had the pleasure of voting for him once, and the same "behold, the great Mitt approaches!" language was used back then.

The end-result? He's gone and it's like he was never even here.

Romney is not the ultra-successful dynamo his proponents make him out to be, especially when stacked up against the accomplishments of some of the other candidates.

Uh, actually he kind of is. Your argument seems to be that he can't be ultra-successful unless he's fully succeeded at *every single thing* he's tried. I don't buy it.

My argument was that Mitt has not succeeded at everything he's done, in response to a claim that he has (proof by counter-example). The OP is claiming the statement was hyperbolic, but it's one which Romneybots make rather frequently - that Mitt is perfect.

Mitt is certainly a successful businessman, but there businessmen more successful businessmen than he is. He ran the Olympics, but lots of people have done that without the moniker of 'dynamo'. And Massachusetts? Well, he had an uphill battle here, and it didn't go so great for him. I would expect a dynamo to do better, like say, how Rudy did in liberal NYC (and no, I don't think Rudy is a dynamo).

plan that includes abortion and gay marriage as benefits...
I'm truly worried about what his next 'sale' is going to be - and that anyone would be foolish enough to buy anything he says.
"Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm." -- James Madison

It was a market-based healthcare system. And those supposed benefits you speak of were not introduced by Romney!

"The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter."
-Winston Churchill

I doesn't matter if he introduced them or not. That's the problem with big government 'solutions', it's a broad brush that paints a color no one wants, at a cost 15 times more than is necessary.
"Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm." -- James Madison

HIS plan didn't include those benefits. The Massachussetts legislature added them in.

Plus, it wouldn't have passed without them.

"The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter."
-Winston Churchill

I like who Romney was in 2002. I like the candidate who ran for senate in 1994. I like the executive who offered a different perspective and a willingness to go against party orthodoxy. I see the former, and I like that side of him. I no longer see any of the latter.

It is just very strange to me. He is a businessman but sees no problem with government interference with the market in the form of farm and ethanol subsidies. He is an efficiency expert who opposes a guest worker program. He used to champion a campaign finance reform policy that was even more liberal than McCain, but now aggressively attacks the very idea of campaign finance reform as unconstitutional.

I cannot reconcile these things without coming to the conclusion that he is lying. Not just standard pandering by emphasizing agreements and shading over disagreements… but lying.

If he were running as Mitt circa 2002, he would not be my first choice, but I would take him over Rudy or Huckabee.

As is, I simply cannot see myself supporting him.


Mitt has gone through so many metamorphoses, I have lost track. If Mitt is the candidate, it will be the Dems running "I was for it before I voted against it" commercials. The man campaigned in Iowa for months with an unlimited budget and no opposition. He should be polling 40% in Iowa. Instead, Mitt is losing to Huckabee who barely had enough money to buy a plane ticket to Iowa. What does that tell you? There is something about him that people don't like. Is that simple.

Be honest. I've examined your other posts and you have made many anti-Mormon comments. You, sir, are a bigot - congratulations.

that you chastise Chekote on one of those specific comments. The above comment isn't bigoted, so it weakens your character point. I think the above is wrong, but not bigoted. If other stuff is, then peg him for it at those comments.

Just my two cents.

I already have done this a couple of times, directly after the specific comment. I don't know why I bother though.

Protecting our farmers is the right thing to do in this global economy. If we were talking about American farmers competing with other American farmers, then I'd agree. But we aren't. We are talking about keeping our products competitive against a world market that is subsidizing their farmers also. Our farmers, just like all Americans, can compete AND win on a level playing field. Once our farmers have that, then the need to protect them will be moot.

Another point.....We CANNOT allow our food sources to be sent outside of this country. If our farmers cannot compete, then foreign sources will start providing our food. If a person thinks we have problems relying our foreign sources for oil, wait until we have to rely on foreign food.

I agree with your second paragraph.

Over-production is what started the idea of subsidies.
Paying farmers not to plant to prop up prices.

sees no problem with government interference with the market in the form of farm and ethanol subsidies

And who doesn't, exactly? He hardly singles himself out on this one. McCain is the one guy who has been critical of ethanol subsidies but I don't expect him to do anything about it, either. Congress wouldn't go along with him on this even if he is really serious about it and made it a priority... which I don't expect him to do.

opposes a guest worker program

That puts him in the mainstream. Most Republicans oppose a guest worker program. I don't see the problem with having a mainstream position here.

used to champion a campaign finance reform policy that was even more liberal than McCain, but now aggressively attacks the very idea of campaign finance reform as unconstitutional

I don't know about the former being accurate (maybe you got a link?), but a lot of people have changed their minds on CFR after seeing how McCain's attempt at fixing the system turned out. Fred Thompson for one.
Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. - Milton Friedman

Check his CFG profile for the evolution of his position on campaign finance reform. He has gotten away with pretending to be against it because everyone else on stage was for it at one point or another, too.

His job at Bain was, more or less, to find cheaper ways to get the same production for the companies that hired him. That is all a guest worker program is. I cannot reconcile his knowledge of the business world with that position.

As for farm and ethanol subsidies… if one candidate is willing to stand up for fiscal conservatism then good for him. If it is all about the food supply why do we subsidies the crap out of only a few crops and ignore the rest? If it is all about food supply, we would pay some attention to how much money went where (and in what way is cotton food?)

Elected leaders who follow the pack like sheep and endorse collective stupid decisions got us badly beaten in 2006. Mitt does not seem to want to change that practice within the party. It is surprising to me that we may be willing to accept it as voters.


After three decades of pro-life Presidents, Senators and Representatives, Roe vs. Wade is still intact. Why is that? Because the American people don't want to live in a country were the government is going to rifle through people's medical records looking for illegal abortions.

Even though the majority of the people think that abortion is wrong. Clear majorities still support Roe vs. Wade. I am personally fed up with good candidates being passed up just because they are not pro-life. In 1996, Pete Wilson was rejected because he was pro-choice. Does anybody here think we would have the illegal immigration problem we have to day had Pete Wilson been elected POTUS? But nooooooooooo. He was pro-choice. A baby killer. We can't nominate him. If the country hungers for a POTUS who will restore confidence in government, Rudy is the only choice. It is time to stop putting so much emphasis on the life issue. Enough already.

Wow, aren't people like you lucky that peta has decided to focus on animals as opposed to children.

There will never ever be enough emphasis on the life issue. Never. You can keep saying it and I'll keep knocking it back.

Life is ALL we have. It's all we come into the world with and it's the only true thing taken from us when we die. So if you don't want to put any emphasis on LIFE, and if LIFE isn't important, you tell ME what is.

That the focus on electing pro-life officials have done nothing to overturn Roe vs. Wade. The point is that the answer to reducing abortion DOES NOT reside in electing pro-life politicians. The American people, no matter how much they dislike abortion, will NOT go along with the police investigation women and getting into their medical records. Abortion will only be eliminated by reducing unwanted pregnancies and changing the hearts and minds of women. Finally, 55% of American consider themselves pro-choice, are you saying that they all are opposed to children? Ridiculous. People are pro-choice primarily because the understand what the enforcement of any ban entails.

That us pro-life rubes should grow up and get over being pro-life.

If you don't understand why you're beclowning yourself here, I can't really help you.

The Red Sox Republican: Burkeanism, Baseball, and Sundries.

Uh, no. Its because
(1) only the Supreme Court gets to vote on abortion and
(2) most Americans don't understand what Roe v. Wade actually does. Even then, support for it is at perhaps the lowest ever

They that are with us are more than they that are against us.

Since when is this post about Rudy?
Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. - Milton Friedman




The Unofficial RedState FAQ
“You are not only responsible for what you say, but also for what you do not say. ” - Martin Luther

Now he needs to unfind it.
Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. - Milton Friedman

"I am also led to believe that this may have been the first debate that non-Mitt partisans could believe that he won, which is an encouraging sign for the campaign."

He is the farthest thing from a "need" of the Republican Party! He "needs" to stop trying to redefine himself. He is the most disingenuous candidate on our ticket! Hell, he'd sound better on the Dem's ticket.

He is no more than a good CEO for the private sector. Kudos; but, he still wants to talk to attorney's about Ntl Security and detainee interogtions. He takes the position that he thinks will get him the nod, not the positions that he believes.

Again, here is a guy who grew up in a "moderate" Republican household; said his Mom influenced his "effectively pro choice" stance (until he needed the Rep. nomination), his father was dangerously close to liberal and lost a bid for te Rep. nomination to Nixon, he grew up in Michigan, spent time in France, governed Massachusetts, financially supported Planned Parenthood. If we showed his resume without his name you would swear that you were dealing with liberalism. But oh now Mitt is "conservative". We'll just call him the chameleon of the group.

****Some of those same people in that focus group also said that Mitt was 'effectively' an empty suit and they hated his pander to Iowa; as did I.

This guy can run the Commerce Dept or something like it; keep him away from public policy!!!!

If the conservatives who support Romney were honest with themsleves they would see right thru this guy! He and Paul should hook up.

The Red Sox Republican: Burkeanism, Baseball, and Sundries.

And I think that he or most of the leading Republicans can trounce Hillary. She's starting to fall apart and I predict that we will finally start to see some vulnerability in the Clinton machine.

We need a government that is 40-50% smaller than what we currently have. That includes eliminating government money for abortions, NCLB etc, etc, etc, etc. Mitt's not a small government guy - hence the RNC doesn't 'need' him.
"Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm." -- James Madison

Said much better than I.

Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock.

Leon, out of all the candidates left in the race after the demise of Brownback, I'm still surprised you've settled on Romney. Respect your decision, of course, but wouldn't have called it. I read your announcement about that decision a few months ago, but I wasn't persuaded then and I'm still not now. It's almost like you're forcing the argument so that it makes sense to you. Some of your prose when you talk about Romney seems, well, different than on other topics. Maybe I'm utterly imagining things.

Mark me down as even more astonished your wife backs McCain. This is shaping up to be a fascinating Republican primary :-).

FWIW, I don't think Romney can close the deal with the American public. Like the guy, but he has authenticity problems that remind me of Gore. Much better and lively than Gore, but I think strategery has mattered more than substance in his campaign. I fear Giuliani like the dread pirate Roberts as the one candidate we can't beat unless the social conservative movement shoves off and I think Thompson or McCain could make it interesting in different ways.

Primary - No , General - Yes

As a fellow Southern Bible-thumper, I agree 100%. Mitt Romney is the best candidate for President in the entire race, bar none. He represents party ideals and will make an excellent standard-bearer going into this election. There's no doubt in my mind that he's the right man for the job.

"The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter."
-Winston Churchill

I like Mitt - I have for a long time. In 1994 I had a Mitt Romney sticker on my motorcycle despite the fact that I wasn't living anywhere near Mass. just because I liked him. I think he'd be less of a conservative than many who are supporting him, but that's a good thing for me as I'm not really down with the whole SoCon thing. I won't be at all upset if he's the nominee.

But...even if I didn't have an 8 year man crush on McCain, I'd vote for Rudy over him, and here's why. I don't think he's electible.

I don't think the Mormon thing is going to bug too many voters in the general, it's not that. But he does look 'too slick' - I've heard that from too many people to think otherwise. If I were him, I'd do a lot of interviews outdoors with his hair blowing in the wind and not looking so perfect.

Here is something else - I don't think Mitt looks good when he's attacked. I watched his debate with Teddy back in 1994. When Ted attacked him (responding to Mitt's suggestion that Teddy might have profited from something), he looked very awkward, almost guilty. And when Rudy attacked him again over his lawn crew I got the same feeling. Rudy looked stupid as well, but if a Dem in a debate launches a sound attack on him the way Teddy did, I don't think he's going to be able to respond well. And I think that will lose him votes that he can't afford.

My top three choices are still, in order:

1) Fred
2) Dalton
3) Thompson

but Leon makes the most compelling case yet for any candidate not in my top 3.

0 (Zero) - that is exactly how many traditional Southern states Mitt is going to carry in the GOP primary. Traditional southern conservatives are not going to vote for a moderate from Massachusetts when there are other conservative candidates from the South running.

With the possible exception of Florida, the traditional Southern states will be won by Thompson, Huckabee, McCain, and heck even Ron Paul.

If Mitt is going to win the nomination, he is going to have to win it mostly in the NE and Western US.

Eliminate the IRS and all payroll taxes!

...that tells us something.

How about instead of a Massachusetts Flip Flopper (isn't one time enough?), we elect the candidate with the most military and foreign policy experience since Eisenhower?

Blogging at

I'm late to commenting on this post but I don't see a real good explanation here of why we should prefer Romney to McCain. Sure, McCain has a few scandal dings in his armor, but those are decades old and well-trodden, and well-balanced by displays of truly extraordinary character. Otherwise there's executive experience, but as I have noted before, Romney's experience in the public sector isn't really all that extensive or impressive, and there's limits to how much his private sector experience translates.

I know I won't sell you on Rudy, but I still can't see Romney as remotely electable, and if you are rejecting Rudy for not being pro-life but are willing to take someone as minimally credible on the issue as Romney, why not McCain? Seems to me he has many more offsetting virtues to balance his flaws than Romney does. And certainly McCain is not seen as a Southern bible-thumper.

"No compromise with the main purpose, no peace till victory, no pact with unrepentant wrong." - Winston Churchill

McCain's got a lot of virtues that are appealing to me right now, as you point out. However, I think that executive competence is going to be something we need to project, and that pushes Romney into the lead for me.

FYI, I count the SLC Olympics as quasi-public executive experience. YMMV.

I think the biggest problem that McCain has right now is that people just don't see a very believable path to the nomination for him right now. It seems that he's holding a narrow lead over Giuliani for second in NH... and then what? He's fourth in Michigan. Fourth in South Carolina. I don't know that he's registering to any significant degree in Nevada, and fourth in Florida. Even if he makes up the 15-20 points that he is currently behind Romney in NH, I just don't see how he turns that into a victory.

The Red Sox Republican: Burkeanism, Baseball, and Sundries.

However, I agree with your #2. Does anyone else get the sneaking suspicion that we eventually are all going to unite behind McCain? I do.

Believable path?

If Huckabee wins Iowa, I think McCain wins New Hampshire, the top tier becomes Huckabee, McCain, and a fading Giuliani... with Mitt teetering on defeat, McCain then wins or comes in second in Michigan and wins Nevada... Huck wins South Carolina... and Rudy holds on in Florida keeping his campaign barely alive.

Anyhoo, Super Duper Tuesday could be a blast.

If Mitt wins Iowa and New Hampshire, it's over. How boring would that be?

I think this is why the MSM seems to be pushing more for Huckabee and McCain right now... It is a better story.

"I believe in grace, because I have seen it. In peace, because I have felt it. In forgiveness, because I needed it."

-George W. Bush

Didn't watch more than a couple of mins the debate. Was enough of Keyes that i ever wanna hear to.
But a clip on Rush just now sent my Alarm bells off. Romney said... Paraphrase, To be honest, i dont lay awake worrying about rich peoples taxes.
Reagan must be spinning in his grave, that we consider this man to be the "Conservative" in the race.

... only liberals stay up at night worrying about rich people not paying their "fair" share of taxes.

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