Friday, February 10, 2012

Did the President Just Give the Republican Nomination to Santorum?

Yeah, I know--it sounds like a Slate pitch. Based on all available data, Romney is still the overwhelming favorite. And yet...

Michael Walsh is deranged even by Corner standards, but he makes a solid case:
The contretemps over the HHS mandate can do nothing but help the candidacy of Rick Santorum. For months, Mitt Romney has been lamely defending Romneycare, hiding behind the shriveled fig leaf of the Tenth Amendment to obscure what everyone now acknowledges — that the Massachusetts program is the forebear of and inspiration for Obamacare....

Because now that the coercive evil of Obamacare is visible even to E.J. Dionne Jr., Romney’s “signature achievement” during his one term as governor ought to finish him as the GOP standard-bearer.
Walsh has the politics right: this puts the focus on Romney's big weakness (among Republicans), while making Santorum's signature issue a litmus test for the party. At the very least, it makes Santorum's chances a lot better than the 13% they give him on Intrade.

Santorum, of course, is a much weaker candidate than Romney in the general. I don't think this is 11-dimensional chess or anything like that; putting contraceptives front and center is smart strategy for lots of straightforward reasons. If Santorum gets the nomination, though, it'll be one more happy convergence of luck and strategy for the President.


ploeg said...

Let me know when they start stashing the condoms behind the pharmacy counter at Wal-Mart, because that's when I might concede that Santorum has even the most negligible chance of getting a mere plurality of the delegates at the convention. Contraceptives are popular. Santorum's position is a minority position among Catholics. Far from focusing attention on Romneycare, you're taking attention away from the more unpalatable parts of the ACA (namely the individual mandate) and shifting the attention to something that people might actually like.

Tom Hilton said...

In the general? Sure. In the Republican primary? Not so much.

ploeg said...

It doesn't seem like they've given a crap for Ricky in any Republican primaries at all (apart from Missouri, which means squat because there were no delegates up for grabs).

Just to expand a little bit, the whole big armwaving deal about the ACA is that it supposedly takes money away from Medicare and forces people to buy health insurance. This is what the Republican voters care about, and even then, Ricky has had limited success trying to use that against Romney. To move the focus away from those issues to something that is even more trivial (and arguably popular even among conservatives) is to lose the plot entirely. That's the sort of thing that might win you caucuses (where the people who care about those sorts of things will show up and be heard), but it won't win you any primaries, and you need to win primaries.

c u n d gulag said...

Why is there a fucking limit to characters?

Well, here's my comment in three sections (or more). I tried editing it - but I felt I had to take out too many of my word-turds.

c u n d gulag said...

This is hysterical!
(I hope...)

The Republicans have been looking for some Mitt-less candidate.

They have been all over the map, with everyone from "Brainless" Bachmann (at the Iowa straw poll) to Herman "Fucking the help" Cane, in the fall - to Newt "Tri-wives" Gingrich, in the winter of his contentment.

Maybe now, they've finally found their man!

Icky Sticky Ricky is relatively young, fairly decent-looking (in a weak-chinned, dorky, doofus-lookin' way), has a big family, and is solidly Conservative - to the point of being reactionary.
He has the benefit of being highly corrupt.
Rick is also stupid, ignorant, misogynistic, homophobic, and xenophobic - and will gladly don the white hood of racism. Remember, he doesn't want "blah people" getting too much of anything.

Those are all considered "positives" to many Conservatives.

Sometimes, we need to stand in awe of the suicidal stupidity of our enemies. If Rick is their standard-bearer this fall, they will have committed an act political suicide.

And I say - LET THEM!

c u n d gulag said...

Rick makes Goldwater look like Ike or Reagan.

I'd love to watch this moron debate Obama.

I'm sure the President won't mind asking Rick about his feelings towards contraception and abortion. "Former Senator Santorum, do you really want WalMart, BP, or your local deli or bar owner, to determine whether your wife or girlfriend has access to birth control? Or does your administration mean to ban it outright?
Please explain to the nation why that is a good idea.
And what happens if she does get pregnant? Will your administration FORCE her, as well as the man who impregnated her, to have that baby, and pay to raise him or her? Will your administration be willing to help support raising that child that you're forcing people to have? Will you help to pay them, or is that another "entitlement" you won't support?"

Time is narrowing for Conservatives to make a choice for who's going to oppose President Obama. And if Rick is it, I'm all for it!

Maybe there's some mechanism that I haven't heard of, which will allow them to choose a different candidate at their Convention. Maybe, if they can, they can choose someone who'll have a chance in November.

But they're as likely to choose Jim DeMint as they are Jeb Bush - or Chris Christie. "Throw Grandma from the train" Paul Ryan is as likely as Nikki Haley, or some relative moderate.
Is Sarah "The Whore of Babblin' On" waiting on the sidelines, hoping that this is her big chance?

The base of the party is fucking insane. If they want to make "fucking" and issue, I beg them to do it.
Their party is a tree with rotted and decayed roots, just waiting to be pushed - and down it'll go. And Obama is a stellar campaigner.

Sure, there's a chance the nation is crazy and stupid enough to vote for Santorum, or Jeb, or DeMint, or Ryan. Or even Sarah. But that's a chance I'm willing to take right now.

They'll all have to pick-up the mantle of the Teabaggers, and the rest of their crazy reactionay party members in the general election - while at the same time trying to appeal to the uninformed and stupid independents.
We reality-base people will already know what they represent.

And I can hardly wait to hear how their candidate explains that they want the rubbers for the truckers out of the gas station bathrooms, and out of the ubiquitous drug stores (which have sprouted up like mushrooms in the past few decades), and how THE GOVERNMENT will be denying access to "The Pill" to their wives and girlfriends - meaning they have to either buy that pill, or used rubbers, on the blackmarket. OR STOP FUCKING!

And if they DO decide to fuck, and the woman gets pregnant - they'll now have to find an illegal abortion provider on their lunch breaks.

c u n d gulag said...

I want the Bubba's out there, the ones who want to fuck their teenage babysitter, to understand that if they DO get lucky, and find themselves UNlucky a month or so later, how they'll have no choice but to explain to 'The Old Ball-and-chain' how they dipped their dick in the sitter, Lil' Cuz'n' Missy, in the backseat of the cab of their pick-up while driving her home the night they came back from their anniversary at "Olive Garden." And how now he'll have to also have to pay to support Lil' Cuz'n Missy's child, as well as the brood he sired wid Da Missus.

It'll be Lil' Bubba "Bobbit" time!!!

So, yeah, explain to the nation that under their administration, they can't fuck without consequences.
Even the fucking stupidest, most ignorant, motherfucker wants to fuck someone.
Even 'somethings.'
Men have fucked vacuum cleaners, and lost their dick's to their rapidly-rotating lovers, in the process.

And most people, if they DO fuck, they don't want AIDS, other STD's, or B-A-B-I-E-S.

And if Conservatives can sell THAT shit - they deserve to win, and we deserve to lose.
And hope no one they fucked doesn't NOT have hers anytime soon.

Or, will Bubba be forced to "Go Gay" to get off, and then have to explain the "santorum" residue in their tighty-whitie Hanes?

So, yes please - make Rick Santorum your candidate!!!

c u n d gulag said...


I sure am long-winded sometimes!!! :-)

Steve M. said...

I don't see why ploeg is so adamant that a Santorum nomination is impossible. Ricky's taken the lead in the latest Public Policy Polling national GOP survey.

Sure, wingnuts use contraception. They also like the idea of depriving other people of them. They always like the idea of depriving other people of stuff.

Danp said...

If Romney is the nominee, the national discussion will be about wealth inequality and fairness. With Santorum, it will be about the very essence of what is real and what is imaginary. Republicans have a tough choice to make. I'm not optimistic.

Tom Hilton said...

Exactly, Steve.

Romney's numbers have been enough to keep the lead in a 3-man (+Paul) race. What I think happened in MO/MN/CO is that it effectively became a 2-man (+Paul) race, and it isn't Romney getting the third man's votes.