Although the Rat is a loyal, card-carrying conservative, his frustration with the Republican Party boils over from time-to-time. It happened in 1996 when the GOP played it safe and nominated Bob Dole, who we all knew from the beginning would face certain defeat at the hands of Bill Clinton. Thanks for playing.

The same frustration surfaced twelve years later, when the party faithful once again nominated a party-regular whom most Republicans viewed as a “safe choice” – a safe choice that dutifully went on to “safely lose” to the inexperienced community organizer from Chicago in 2008. Same ol’ same ol’.

And in 2012? Betting money says that Republicans will once again play “Whose turn is it this time?” and nominate Mitt Romney – who will most likely go on to lose to the most unqualified and ineffectual president of my lifetime. Why do we do this every four years? Granted, we occasionally get lucky – as was the case with Ronald Reagan – but seriously, when was the last time the Republican Party nominated a candidate who was not a tried-and-true party-loyalist? When did the GOP last nominate a candidate who was not a known quantity to everyone on both sides of the political aisle? How’s that strategy worked out this century?

While hyperbole is part and parcel of all political campaigns, it’s not a stretch to say that the 2012 contest will be the most important in America since the presidential election of 1864, when a divided country reaffirmed the basis of Abraham Lincoln’s 1858 “House Divided” speech – and a nation was preserved.

America is more divided in 2011 than it has been at any time in my life – and yes, I lived through the 1960′s civil rights movement and the Vietnam war era. While this is not to diminish the struggles of those who fought the reality of true racism in America, nor is it to minimize the immorality of an unjust war we did not fight to win, the socio-economic chasm that threatens to tear this country apart in 2011 is at a tipping point; America cannot afford four more years of a president whose relentless pursuit of class warfare fans the flames of division to a level of potential violence unimaginable only a few short years ago. We must pull back from the edge.

While Obama’s approval rating has sunk to an historic low, (36%) the boy who would be king will not go quietly; Barack Obama will not heed the words of the veteran Democratic pollsters Pat Caddell and Doug Schoen, and step aside for the good of his own party – let alone the good America; he would rather lose the election and blame it on voter disgust with politics as a whole, (the fault of intransigent Republicans, of course) than have the integrity to withdraw from the campaign; this would be tantamount to admitting defeat, which is inconceivable on Planet Obama.

Therefore, power must be wrested from the Boy King. The Republican Party must play towin – vs. simply playing not to lose, as is historically its strategy. A “safe” choice will not get it done – nor will wishful thinking; the GOP must face facts this time and act accordingly:

First, the fact that most political opinion polls show that “any Republican” currently has more support than Barack Obama does not mean the Boy King will lose in 2012.

Second, Lord Obama is not going to run against “any Republican.” He is going to run against a specific Republican, who in turn will be viciously attacked, ridiculed and lied about every day of the week from the moment he is nominated until the final polls chose on election day.

Furthermore, as we’re well aware, the attacks will come not only from the Democrats, but from their sock puppets in the Obama Media Group, the Hollywood loons and every other high-profile liberal in the solar system as well. This is the essence of liberal political campaigns, folks, and the behavior of Democrats during this presidential campaign will make their attacks on George Bush look like child’s play.

This brings us to Mitt.

Romney seems to have integrity – which Obama does not; he seems to understand the difference between governing and campaigning – while Obama does not – and his political positions, principles and moral values certainly seem preferable to those of our socialist president. So what’s the problem?

While many Republicans seem to favor a Romney candidacy – his support is soft. Most of those who don’t support Mitt have bounced between the various un-Romney candidates for months. Conservatives distrust Romney, believing he has changed key positions for the sole purpose of courting them on the way to the White House. Others fear he would be vulnerable in the general election in a way that no other Republican candidate – including Newt Gingrich – would need to worry about:

Mitt’s flip-flops; it often appears that Mitt Romney doesn’t even know where Mitt Romney stands. Obama will run against this reality all day long.

The Democratic National Committee, assuming that Romney will be the GOP nominee, is already running ads highlighting his various flip-flops on critical issues. The DNC website, Mitt v. Mitt, highlights “the story of two men trapped in one body.” “Experts are predicting kind of a tough fight between Romney and his biggest ideological opponent: Mitt Romney from four years ago. Those guys don’t agree on anything.” – and this is just the website’s cover page.

Romney offers a target-rich environment of flip-flops on major issues:

On the subject of abortion, when Mitt ran for the Senate against Ted Chappaquiddick Kennedy in 1994 , he argued that the federal government should “sustain and support the right of a woman to make ‘that choice.’ I will preserve – and protect – a woman’s right to choose.” Now, Romney is pro-choice: “The right next step – to preserve the sanctity of life – is to see Roe v. Wade overturned.” 

Regarding the Boy King’s “stimulus” plan, Mitt claimed to never have supported it – “no time, nowhere, no how” – after having previously said, “I believe there is need for economic stimulus,” prompting Brit Hume to comment, “You’re only allowed a certain number of flips before people begin to doubt your character.”

On RomneyCare, he said, “Well that’s what we did in Massachusetts – we put together an exchange – and the president’s copying that idea – I’m glad to hear that.”Now, “ObamaCare is bad news – and if I’m President of the United States, I’ll repeal it.” 

On global warming: “I believe the earth is getting warmer – and I believe that human beings are contributing to that.” Now? “My view is, we don’t know what’s causing climate change on this planet.” 

TARP? “TARP got paid back, and it kept the financial system from collapsing. It was the right thing to do.”  Now? “TARP ought to be ended.”

The fact is, from his views on Ronald Reagan to the bailout of the auto companies, Mitt Romney has changed positions on dozens of issues – all for political expedience. Brit Hume was right: should we not question his character – or at least his core values – given that he has any?

In an election of this magnitude, Republicans cannot afford to give away this much ground – this early in the campaign; Barack Obama will not simply lose – he must bedefeated. If the Republican Party follows it’s history, it will nominate Mitt Romney next summer in Minneapolis. Remember, it’s his turn. Be that the case, Barack Obama will be reelected President of the United States. We must not let that happen.