Friday, May 6, 2011

Boring Republicans for 2012

I heard Chris Matthews of MSNBC say a while back, "Perhaps it's God's will that Obama not have a reasonable opponent out there." The weakness of the Republican field was demonstrated last night with the first candidates debate. While President Obama, newly perceived as cool, tough and decisive (for obvious reasons), was congratulating Special Operations Forces, five of the Republican candidates met in South Carolina for the first debate of this upcoming campaign. Did anybody watch?

Political junkie that I am, I had it on for a while, but it was so boooooring. I did hear Pawlenty's masterfully practiced line on Romneycare, "Well, Governor Romney isn't here to defend himself . . ." and went on with essentially trashing him anyway. Herman Cain was there, the right's favorite African-American, at least since Michael Steele. They were joined by Libertarian hero Ron Paul (apparently, he's not abdicating in favor of his heir this round), culture warrior Santorum, and a competing Republiterian, Gary Johnson, former Governor of New Mexico, pot-smoker, and my one-time dinner companion.

It's kinda funny because it first seemed that the Republican field was cautious to get out afraid to draw Palin's mean-girl tweets bringing down the wrath of her "real American" base. But the best news so far this campaign season is that Sarah and her influence seem to be fading. Yippee!

The one I am wondering about, and did not address in my earlier Republican field analysis, is Governor Mitch Daniels of Indiana. Does anybody know much about him? Maybe met him at a Scout dinner? Apparently he is still considering a run. He will have to make himself known as he is not presently. He has a sort of presidential look about him, at least in the Republican CEO-style (Eli Lilly). He claims a bunch of success with fiscal matters with experience as Governor and W.Bush's OMB Director. And he has declared a "truce" on culture issues. I don't know how that will play, but he seems to meet any litmus test the Republican culture conservatives may require. He could be a real challenge to Obama if he can somehow break out in the primaries and especially if the economy and budget issues are forefront come election time and Obama does not get a luckier break with more of a rebound out of recession.

In the meantime, they need to pick up the entertainment quotient. A little more Sarah? Newt? Michelle? 

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