A Commentary by J. D. Longstreet
In the interest of full disclosure, allow me to admit, right up front, that I LIKE Sarah Palin. I think she is a grand lady. She is gorgeous, talented, highly intelligent, a fiery orator, a great motivator, a heck of a fundraiser, and, apparently, a good wife and mother. She is, in my estimation, all those things, and yet, I am not convinced she can defeat Obama in a head-on campaign for President of the United States.
If I had any advice to offer to Mrs. Palin, I would urge her to seek a US Senate seat, or a seat in the US House of Representatives, FIRST, before tossing her hat into the ring for President. But, hey, I’m just an ole country boy in the swamps of North Carolina. What do I know?
Well, I know the GOP will be in trouble if any of the would-be candidates we already know capture the nomination.
See, the thing about conservatives that the establishment republicans do not understand, just do NOT GET, is our determination to vote for a conservative candidate of OUR choosing. That is to say: a CONSERVATIVE candidate.
The GOP continues to run out middle of the road candidates (so-called Moderates) and they expect conservative republicans to vote for them. And we don’t. For evidence, I refer you to the 2008 Presidential election. WE told the RNC that McCain would not get the conservative vote, even with Obama as the opposition.
Apparently they did not believe us, and McCain went on to lose… big. Conservatives either wrote in a name on the ballot, or stayed home on Election Day. Personally, I wrote in a name rather than stay home, or vote for McCain.
Of course, that is past history. However, as we all know history repeats itself. Frankly, I expect history to repeat itself in November of 2012. I also expect the GOP to maintain control of the US House and gain control of the US Senate, BUT LOSE THE RACE FOR THE WHITE HOUSE.
Honestly, I just do not see a way to win against the Democratic Party machine in the presidential race in 2012. This is where I disagree with Rush Limbaugh. It has been reported that Mr. Limbaugh, for whom I have great respect, has stated that Obama doesn’t have a chance of winning in 2012. I don’t often disagree with Mr. Limbaugh, but on this – I do. I not only believe Obama has a chance -- I believe he WILL win.
That doesn’t mean I am happy about it -- far from it. It grinds on me something awful. But I have to call them as I see them and, unfortunately, that is the way I see the race for President shaping up.
See, I DO believe the Tea Party, and unaligned conservatives, along with a fairly large portion of Independents, WILL support the candidacy of Sarah Palin. Either the GOP will bow to the pressure and Mrs. Palin will wrap up the nomination -- and lose in the election, or the GOP WILL NOT BOW to the pressure from conservatives, place the name of a moderate or liberal republican on the ticket -- and lose the presidential election. Either scenario will be bad for America.
There is already talk in the Mainstream Media about a possible “Dark Horse” candidate from the GOP stables. The Washington Post has an article entitled: “Republicans' 2012 dark horse still has no name.” You may read the entire article (HERE).
In the WaPo article the author, Chris Cillizza, names four possible dark horse GOP candidates. They are: Rick Santorum, the former senator from Pennsylvania; Mike Pence, former Congressman from Indiana; Scott Brown, The Massachusetts Republican, who became a national star this year when he won a special election to replace the late Democratic Party Senator Edward M. Kennedy; and Marco Rubio, the Florida senator-elect.
Looking at all four of the possible dark horse candidates above, I see only one that has a prayer. That is Mike Pence of Indiana. Pence has some influence with social and fiscal conservatives. Notice – I said SOME.
The one republican I felt had a chance of winning over conservatives, nationally, other than Palin, of course, was Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey. However, he has stated, emphatically, he has absolutely no desire to be President of the US … period!
If I am correct, shouldn’t we conservatives concentrate on gaining a veto-proof Congress?
From my viewpoint, we conservatives have a conundrum, of sorts. One might even compare it to the Gordian Knot. Alexander the Great solved that problem by slicing the knot in twain. An acceptable conservative dark horse candidate just might slice through the “GOP Knot” and gain entrance to the Oval Office. But WHO might that dark horse be? Ah. There’s the rub!
J. D. Longstreet