The 2010 mid term is behind us with the results being a devastating political blow to Barack Obama and his bid for reelection in 2012. There is considerable speculation as to whether Obama should even run for reelection much less his chances of winning. Much of the polling for the 2012 Presidential race shows Obama with only slightly over a 30% show of support among voters for a reelection bid. With more than two years left in his Presidency and such low numbers of reelection support a GOP landslide for the White House looks like a possibility.
But it is this possibility that poses a very troubling problem for Republicans when it comes to beating Obama and making him a one term President. Though his popularity has fallen considerably and when a generic question is asked as to whether voters would choose to reelect Obama or not shows very low support, the polling numbers are quite different when Obama is polled against those thought to be the GOP front runners for 2012.
When particular specific Republican candidates, all considered front runners in the GOP field, are polled in a head to head race with Barack Obama each either lose to him or the race is so close it is well within the margin of error. Which exposes the dilemma facing a now resurgent GOP as we draw closer to the 2012 Presidential election. Though voters don’t care for Obama and also don’t want him reelected, they aren’t exactly head over heals for ANY of those who are believed to have aspirations for the Presidency in the Republican camp either.
So where does that leave conservatives as we look forward to Obama being a two year lame duck President with a, “one and done,” Presidency. Who do we throw our support behind and what are their chances of actually winning not only the Republican nomination but the Presidency in 2012. Let’s take a look at those considered the front runners and how they stack up from a Conservative view point.
Mitt Romney – Romney has made his 2012 aspirations well known. Many believe he is THE top candidate in the GOP field. While he has the Presidential, “look,” he has major problems for conservative support in 2012. Anyone who opposes Obamacare and must consider Romney a dead horse because of his record as Massachusetts Governor. Romneycare, as it has been called, is almost a State image of Obama’s debacle and Romney supports some sort of Universal Health Care. His program has cost Massachusetts millions and he still brags about how, “good,” it is. Though he polls well at GOP gatherings in straw polls, remember those are easily manipulated by getting supporters for a given candidate to flood the poll. Romney also has the loser curse on him. Only Richard Nixon has won the Presidency AFTER losing the election in a prior election year. Ronald Reagan won after losing the nomination in 1976 and Bush 41 did also but only because he was Reagan’s VP. Once a candidate loses they are usually cursed to lose again.
Mike Huckabee – The former Arkansas Governor has become quite the celebrity with his Fox News television show. But again Huckabee has some political baggage when it comes to garnering real conservative support for 2012. While Governor of Arkansas Huckabee though talking as a fiscal conservative actually raised the tax rate in the state during his reign as State Chief Executive. He raised taxes as Governor MORE than Bill Clinton who held the states previous record. Why would a Huckabee Presidency be any different. Also Huckabee holds the same loser curse as Romney voters don’t elect former nomination losers.
Sarah Palin – Sarah is a true conservative through and through. She helped catapult the Tea Party into the national spotlight and has an excellent record of victories with conservative candidates she has endorsed, supported and campaigned for. She is a power house on the campaign trail and her support is almost election assurance. She has avoided specifically saying yes to a 2012 run but has also NOT ruled it out and her actions are definitely pointed toward the Presidency. Among possible 2012 candidates Palin polls much lower than others when head to head with Obama mostly because she is very polarizing and voters while liking her are not sure they trust her or want her for the Presidency. She also has a lot of undeserved baggage because of the liberal press and her resignation as Alaska Governor.
Newt Gingrich – The former Speaker of the House is probably the most knowledgeable and politically savvy of Republicans considering a 2012 run. His experience in the political field combined with his excellent knowledge of history and grasp of the issues makes Gingrich a highly qualified candidate for the Presidency. He has strong conservative credentials but has angered conservatives several times because he has shown a tendency to set aside conservative principles momentarily to favor what is supposedly best politically which sometimes does not see eye to eye with conservative values and ideals. He like Palin also has a considerable amount of undeserved media driven baggage, but unlike Palin, Gingrich has some personal baggage due to an affair which would hound him in a Presidential run.
Bobby Jindal – The Louisiana Governor has not made Presidential aspirations known but because of his rising star in GOP circles his name falls into the mix. He has brought good conservative governing to a state that was plagued by years of liberal dominance and is turning the states fortunes around because of it. Though carrying no baggage like other front runners, Jindal has the unfortunate situation of being an virtual unknown to most voters and Governor of a State that only makes headlines in a disaster. He was also not at all impressive during his big national opportunity when he gave the GOP response to Obama’s first State of the Union. While saying good things his delivery was poor and sounded almost childish which does not play well on a national stage.
Jeb Bush – Many conservatives like Jeb and rightfully so because he has a decent conservative record. But Bush’s problem is simple which is why this evaluation will be short. He is a Bush and the American people will not vote another Bush in no matter how likable he is because it looks to much like a Presidential Dynasty.
Jim DeMint – Of all the 2012 possibilities DeMint has the strongest conservative credentials. He has been an unabashed in the trenches Constitutional conservative who has shown no fear of taking a principled stand alone as long as it followed strict Constitutional muster. His willingness to buck the party political system has drawn anger from party officials but if he makes a Presidential run that can easily be overcome with voter popularity. DeMint has stated he has no Presidential aspirations but has also not closed the door either choosing to rather support another but showing a willingness to run if no other steps forward taking a principled conservative stand. He could be a 2012 dark horse.
Chris Christie – Like DeMint, Christie does not run from a fight nor back down when it comes to principles and tough decisions. He has gained considerable popularity among conservatives as he has taken strong stands making touch decisions to turn New Jersey around even taking on the powerful special interests without blinking an eye. Also like DeMint, Christie has made it clear he has no Presidential aspirations but again like DeMint he has been in the spotlight recently because of his tough stands and statements which anger the party elite and has gained a good national following. Christie could be another 2012 dark horse.
There are several others who are considered by most as 2012 GOP possibilities which I will bunch into one category for now because even with some national spotlight none have excited voters in the least and at best are considered extremely long shots. They are Tim Pawlenty, Rick Santorum, Mike Pence, ( a quick note on Pence, his star is rising and his conservative credentials are impeccable, but only James Garfield successfully went from a sitting Congressman to the Presidency so there is a historical precedence to consider with voter response), Haley Barbour, John Thune, Mitch Daniels and some have even suggested Jan Brewer. This is not saying that in the long run to 2012 any of these could rise to prominence but at the moment their ticket is weak.
This is the dilemma the GOP faces as 2012 now takes center stage in election politics. While there are good conservatives among those who are considered possibilities for a Presidential run none are showing support among voters enough to defeat Barack Obama much less provide a landslide like the lashing handed to him in the 2010 mid terms. There are still two years until the election and several months before those wanting to run must officially throw their hat into the ring.
One of the problems that helped to destroy GOP chances in 2008 was far to many candidates jumped into the Presidential fray much to early which caused a tiring of election politics by the time the primaries came around. Early front runners faded because of too much face time before the primary elections and a general boredom by the electorate caused low primary turn as no candidate excited the masses. As a result the lack luster John McCain won the nomination and crashed against the unknown, unsubstantial but very charismatic Barack Obama. Even with the sub prime crisis which hurt the GOP more than Democrats a strong Republican candidate could have beaten Obama in 2008.
So there you have it the GOP dilemma and why Barack Obama though unpopular and failing completely as President could still pull out a reelection victory even with the lashing he took earlier this month and the expected conservative change in Congress who are already indicating will follow the will of the people and have learned their lesson from the failure of a GOP majority of the past. Even with a battle ready House standing with the American people against Obama’s agenda who has made it known he is not willing to compromise and listen, the lack of an strong Republican challenger who can excite voters in 2012 still gives Obama an inside track for now.
Now don’t get me wrong, there is a long time and a lot of additional Obama failures that could cause even a weak, or baggage filled GOP candidate to rise up and defeat Obama. I still believe he is going to be a one term President because he has failed so miserably and will continue to do so. He is a complete liberal/socialist/Marxist political ideologue and that will not change because he is far to arrogant to change his stripes and admit he is wrong.
But that also does not change the dilemma facing the GOP and the candidate prospects for 2012. If we the people want true strong conservative leadership in The White House than just as we did in the mid term it is up to us to make our voice known and support a candidate who stands with us in our fight to restore our Republic to strict conservative Constitutional government. Research the field and let those who stand for what we believe know of our support and urge them to step forward for us and America.
Ken Taylor The Liberal Lie, The Conservative Truth