The word Dilemma according to the dictionary means, “a problem offering two possibilities, neither of which is practically acceptable.” In the race for the Republican nomination conservatives are facing a true Dilemma! Well, actually it is a problem offering more than two possibilities but that is close enough to make the point.
Conservatives so much want to support someone who REALLY represents conservative values but at the same time they want to support someone they feel will take it to Obama in a way that will be effective. The problem conservatives face is that none of the potential nominees truly are what we want.
The closest in policy may be Ron Paul but Ron Paul is probably at the bottom of the scale when talking about effectively attacking Obama in a way that the general population will take notice and vote for him. Plus, Ron Paul turns off many with his comments that September 11th may have been caused by us and that we should allow Iran to get a nuke. If Ron Paul were in Mitt Romney‘s body and still had the same views we would be in better shape with the general public. Before the Ron Paul supporters attack me for that comment please just realize it is not a dig on Ron Paul but a sad commentary on the majority of American voters.
Why do you think so many say, “Mitt Romney looks like a President” as if that should matter at all. I remember one time eating breakfast at a restaurant and there were four older people dining next to me. They looked very “well to do” and smart until I heard one of them say, “John Edwards is such a great man and will make a great President.” One of the others said, “Why do you think that?” The first man says, “Well, you can just tell how smart he is by looking at him. He is a very good looking person.” They all agreed. Incredible but that is what we face in this country.
So who is next? Well, Newt is leading in most all the polls now. Newt is great in the debates and can no doubt go toe to toe with Obama on TV and win the day! But Newt has more baggage than any of the others and some of it will be great fodder for Obama and the media next fall. I know, I know a lot of people say that by then it will all be out in the open already and won’t have an impact but the truth is I don’t think a lot of the “middle of the road” independent voters pay any attention at all until a couple month before the general election so it will all be “new” to them.
Plus, how conservative is Newt in reality??? Sure, he sounds great right now but his recent past has a lot of ‘non’ conservative viewpoints and some of them are really hard to overlook. Just a couple (you can search for the rest) are that he many times said FDR was the greatest President of the 20th century (has he really forgotten Reagan?) and his support for the individual mandate on health insurance for many, many years. Troubling to say the least. But we all would love to see him beat up on Obama in the debates and no one else seems to be close to his skill level in that area.
Of course, there is Romney. But do I even need to talk about why a conservative would not want Romney? I remember when he was Governor of MA and came out with that law requiring people to purchase health insurance or be fined by the state. Right then I told myself I would never support him if he ran for President. (at times through the years I have said that about Newt too though!) And despite what the media says I really don’t think Romney is all that good in the debates. He seems too easy going, mild mannered and not a leader. I hate it the way he stands there with his left hand in his pocket a lot of the time. You don’t do that when you are standing in front of millions of people on TV. I am very worried he may be beat by Obama when Obama starts his class warfare theme on him. Romney IS a Wall Street guy. He is worth 300 million dollars they say and Obama and the media will make him out to be just like Gordon Gekko from the famous Wall Street movie.
Now Rick Perry. He is great lately! I love everything he is saying, part time congress would be awesome, cutting out entire government departments is perfect, states rights, and dismantling Washington DC is what we need. But is he too damaged to win now? Would Obama rip him to pieces in a debate and make him look stupid? Will the general public view him as just another slow talking Texan and it will be Obama’s chance to blame Bush again? He has the money, and he has the right ideas but many also say he is not a true conservative. Do we take our chances he will do ok in the debates against Obama and not be seen simply as another George W. Bush? Obama will tell you he is just another George Bush! We know that for sure.
Santorum might surprise everyone in Iowa. If he does not then he is finished. Bachmann is the same. Unless she gets in the top three in Iowa she is done. We can debate the merits of them but we will know in three weeks if they will remain someone we can support. Iowa will decide that for those of us in other parts of the country.
Huntsman is not someone I would consider and we will know on him after New Hampshire because he is betting everything there.
To me it is a choice between four people (assuming Santorum, Bachmann do nothing in Iowa to stay in the race), Gingrich, Perry, Paul and Romney.