It is early, still over 3 years away from the 2012 Presidential Election, but it is always fun to try to prognosticate who will run against Obama. Unfortunately, I have not seen any leadership or a person that I think can beat Obama at this moment. However, a lot can change between now and then. Here are the early hopefuls:
Sarah Palin 15-1: I like Sarah, but to me she is damaged goods. The media and the left have done such a good job destroying this young lady’s political career, her approval ratings have dropped 25 points in her home state. Sarah has been trying to repair her image, but she has a long way to go to be considered a front runner.
Mike Huckabee 10-1: Huckabee finished a distant second behind John McCain for the GOP nomination in 2008. Unlike Palin, Huckabee’s image has not been destroyed. Also, Huckabee has been getting excellent exposure with his Fox News program on weekends. Huckabee, like Palin, will be fighting for the hard core conservative voters. Both Huckabee and Palin are true conservative candidates and do not stray from conservative beliefs. What I like about Huckabee is his tax reform to move to a fair tax, and he is one of the smoothest talking Republicans. I think a smooth orator is needed to beat Obama.
Mitt Romney 10-1: Romney finished just behind Huckabee during the GOP nomination process in 2008. Romney holds many of the core conservative beliefs, but Romney has been able to attract independents and Democrats to win the Massachusetts Governorship. Romney is an astute businessman and understands finances better than any candidate. With the federal deficit at record levels, Romney may be a good choice to bring fiscal responsibility back to Washington. However, all of that said, Romney has fallen into obscurity since he dropped out of the GOP race in 2008. Romney needs to be front and center telling Americans why Obama’s spending spree is bad. Romney has ties to Michigan, and that state may be vulnerable in 2012. Michigan is a solid blue state, but the economy and the car industry demise may give Romney a place to pick up ground on Obama if he were to win the nomination.
Bobby Jindel 20-1: Bobby is still very young and I do not think he is polished enough to win the nomination. However, he may have more opportunities in the future. He is a rising star for the GOP, but he has failed to show me he has the mental fortitude to be a solid leader that the party can depend on.
Rudy Giuliani: 20-1: A poor showing in the 2008 GOP race will not help his cause. Giuliani has solid leadership skills and understands fiscal responsibility, but his experience is soft. He may be the best candidate to fight the war on terror. He witnessed first hand 9/11 and it is something he will never forget. Giuliani’s Achilles heal is that he moderate on many moral issues. I personally do not have a problem with this, but it will cost him votes from staunch Republicans. Thus, Giuliani must excel at getting the votes from moderate conservatives. Even if Giuliani won the nomination, he would have a tough time beating Obama if he can not steal New York from its eternal liberal grasps.
Tim Pawlenty 10-1: Pawlenty is my underdog to win the GOP nomination. He has a solid record in a blue state. If he were to get the nomination, he would most definitely steal Minnesota away from its liberal tendencies.
Newt Gingrich 20-1: I doubt Newt would run, but he would be my top choice at this point in time. Newt is a gifted orator and a walking encyclopedia that would destroy Obama in any debate. The liberal left has claimed Gingrich was behind many scandals and insist skeletons remain in Newt’s closet. The constant accusations from the media and left will more than likely deter Gingrich from running.
The Field 2-1: Right now, I am willing to bet that the 2012 GOP nominee will not be one of the supposed front runners mentioned above and that is why I give the rest of field of 50% chance to win the nomination. I give each of the following candidates a 25-1 shot at the nomination: Texas Congressman Ron Paul, South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford, Utah Governor Jon Huntsman, Indiana Congressman Mike Pence, Florida Governor Charlie Crist, Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Nebraska Senator Sam Brownback, RNC leader Michael Steele, Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, EBay chief Meg Whitman, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, and South Dakota Senator John Thune. My personal favorite out of this group is Paul Ryan, but he is a little known commodity at this point.
My Blog: http://patrickbohan.blogtownhall.com/ (The Theory of Mediocrity)
My Book: Is America Dying? (Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com)