Thursday, November 12, 2015

"Establishment" Republicans Want To Draft Mitt Romney Again

by JASmius

And we ask the same counter-question yet again: WHY?

Well, the immediately proximate reason appears to be because it's been five months, and the "establishment" candidate - Jeb Bush - is still in negative polling territory, while any acceptable alternatives are beyond the fringe (Lindsey Graham, John Kasich) and the most viable even quasi-non-Tea Party candidate - Chris Christie - doesn't exactly fit their country club milieu, stylistically or gastronomically.

Which is a circuitous way of saying that it's dawning on them that Dr. C or Hairboy

Fearing one of the two current front-runners, Donald Trump and Ben Carson, might actually hang on to win the GOP nomination, some top Republicans are in panic mode, beginning to think of drafting Mitt Romney as their presidential nominee, the Washington Post reports.

Trump, the billionaire businessman, and Carson, the retired neurosurgeon, are drawing support for their outsider status and lack of political background, but party elites fear that their ideas won't play as well with general election voters likely to face Democrat Hillary Clinton, who has been on the national political stage since the early 1990s as first lady, U.S. senator from New York and as Barack Obama's secretary of state.

And that could hurt the party downticket, even threatening to turn the Senate back over to the Democrats, many fear.

This is so convolutedly wrong I'm not even sure where to start.  First of all, they're right about Trump being a general election disaster waiting to happen, but that's because that is his appointed mission - to pave the way for Mrs. Clinton's triumphant return to the White House in her own right, like John The Baptist did for Jesus Christ.  Whether by running as a Ross Perot-like independent spoiler by splitting the GOP vote or by swindling his way to the Republican nomination and then playing the leftwingnut caricature of a GOP nominee, portraying every caustic stereotype of conservatives imaginable so as to bury the party of Lincoln and Reagan once and for all.  So yes, the ideas Trump would portray wouldn't play well with general election voters, but that would be deliberate.

Ben Carson, on the other hand, is blowing out Her Nib in hypothetical general election matchups by double-digit margins, largely on the strength of his biography and his personal integrity, which is in such gaping contrast to her execrable, comprehensive corruption.  Would he make rookie mistakes that she could exploit?  Sure; he's already making them now (Have the Education Department police politically correct speech on college campuses, make Puerto Rico the fifty-first State, etc.).  But on balance, Gentle Ben's ideas would play just fine with general election voters, ironically, because his skin color would serve as a teflon shield thanks to his predecessor.

It's not ideas with which the GOP "establishment" is concerned (because they don't have any), it's the frontrunner's and Trump's absence of political experience - and, LORD knows, they're right about that:

"I'm not a happy camper," said Peter A. Wish, a member of Romney’s 2012 National Finance Committee. "Hopefully somebody will emerge who will be able to do the job," he said. "I'm very worried that the Republican-base voter is more motivated by anger, distrust of D.C. and politicians and will throw away the opportunity to nominate a candidate with proven experience that can win."...

And you're just noticing this now, Pete?  Sheesh, where have you been for the past five months?  But, of course, they thought that Trumpmania would be a flavor of the month fad, like the early stages of Republican nomination contests of recent vintage have tended to be.  Except Herman Cain and Michelle Bachmann and whomever else from the 2012 cycle were not national celebrities and multi-billionaires with larger-than-life personas who could command billions in free media attention just by picking up a phone.  And Trump's rise is the one and only reason for Carson's rise to counter him; in essence, the Doc is the "political immune system" reaction the "establishment" is looking for, but within the boundaries of the "We want somebody who doesn't know what he's doing!" dynamic that is intractably afflicting this election cycle.

This guy, at least, seems to get the dynamic:

"This business has turned into show business," said former Ohio Senator George Voinovich, a John Kasich supporter. "We can’t afford to have somebody sitting in the White House who doesn’t have governing experience and the gravitas to move this country ahead."

I agree with you 100%, Senator.  Which does little to explain why you're backing a candidate who (1) was never going anywhere even without this "outsider" mass psychosis and (2) would move this country sideways at best.

Which brings us back full circle to the central question: Why draft Mitt Romney?  First of all, he ain't running, he's said he ain't running, and he ain't gonna run.  "Draft," in other words, is a figure of speech, not a literal verb.  Second, Mitt Romney is a two-time presidential loser, both at the nomination and at the big prize itself.  I guess that does technically qualify as "experience," but why on Earth is that the experience you people are looking for?  Third, the Dems tried to "draft" Joe Biden and he declined.  Why?  Because it's too late in the cycle to whip together a campaign, the apparatus, the organization, the resources.  Plus Biden didn't want to run, which is why he stalled for two or three months until it was too late.  And that was a month ago.

So what would be Romney's path to actually winning if he jumped in now?  Answer: A bitter convention fight/coup seeking to usurp the nomination from the candidate that had actually earned it.  Yeah, THAT'd unify the party and create unstoppable November momentum that would overwhelm Herself or Weekend Bernie.

What this is is preemptive sour grapes.  The "establishment" usually gets the candidate it wants and inflicts it on the party grassroots.  This time it's turning out oppositely, even if the finalists turn out to be Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio.  Given that Rubes is the closest the "establishment" is going to get given his rudimentary political experiences, "reasonable young stateman" image, and unquestionable electability, I would suggest that they stop wasting time trying to kidnap the Mittster and do what they've forced us in the grassroots to do for many a cycle: Make do with what you've got, even if you have to hold your noses in the process.

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