December 29, 2013

I Have To Agree

Former Maryland Governor Robert Erlich offers a number of hopes for the coming year. I agree wholeheartedly with his first one.

1.) Our Libertarian and tea party friends would stop nominating candidates who screw up winnable races.

Recall Nevada (Sen. Harry Reid in 2010), Delaware (Sen. Mike Castle in 2010), and last month's race in Virginia (more below). All probable GOP pick-ups. All lost opportunities due to primary challenge or third party candidacy.

A factoid from Virginia: The petitions that helped the Libertarian gubernatorial candidate get on the ballot (and draw votes from Republican Ken Cuccinelli) were paid for by an Obama campaign bundler.

No, we are not opposed to the Tea Party. And no, we are not opposed to libertarians. I'm in sympathy with them both. But the reality is that we have in recent years seen the nomination of libertarian and tea party candidates by the GOP who went on to lose races that should have been won. Was Sharron Angle REALLY the best the GOP had to offer in Nevada in 2010? That is open to debate. We know, however, that Christine O'Donnell was not the best the GOP had to offer in Delaware in 2010 -- she is the perfect example of why William F. Buckley advised voting for the most conservative ELECTABLE candidate.

To those who insist that voting for the Libertarian Party (or Constitution Party or some other minor party) is a vote for principle, I must respond that it is also a vote for irrelevancy and the election of the major party candidate furthest from your views. Did your vote against Barack Obama AND Mitt Romney do anything to keep the greater of two evils from winning that election? Heck -- in 1992 did a vote for Ross Perot bring about better government and smaller taxes by swinging the race to Bill Clinton?

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I say vote for the right person, regardless of party. Was "Republican" Arlen Specter a better senator than Democrat Arlen Specter?

If memory serves me, I think Mitt Romney was considered the most "electable" in 2012. How did that work out?

|| Posted by Tom Zakes, December 29, 2013 06:11 PM ||

Let's be honest about the 2012 GOP field -- Romney was the most electable of the bunch. Do you really think Gingrich or Santorum stood a chance against Obama? And let's not get into the question of the electability of Bachmann or Perry. Unfortunately, we were handicapped by a long primary process with so many debates and a hostile media. Follow that up with a conveniently timed natural disaster that allowed Obama to look presidential while the press took its collective eye off the campaign, and Romney's loss is not hard to understand.

As for your comment about old Arlen -- given that Republican Specter kept a more liberal Democrat out of the seat, I'd argue that Republican Specter was on balance a good thing.

My point is that the sad reality of American politics is that unless and until we adopt a parliamentary system like in Israel (where small parties hold the balance of power and have influence over policy as a result), the only effective ballot is one cast for a candidate of one of the two major parties except in exceedingly rare instances. I'll vote for a candidate who I agree with 75% of the time when the alternative casting a vote for someone I agree with 90% and thereby swinging the election to someone I agree with 10% of the time.

Let's take a real example here -- in 2012, we had the choice between Cruz and Dewhurst for Senate in the runoff. I really didn't like Dewhurst and would have supported any runoff candidate against him -- but given the choice between Dewhurst and Paul Sadler in the general election, I would have cast a vote for Dewhurst rather than a third party/independent candidate because the latter option would have made a Sadler victory more likely -- and Senator Sadler would certainly have been a greater disaster than Senator Dewhurst.

|| Posted by Rhymes With Right, December 29, 2013 10:26 PM ||

A few years ago I would have agreed with you. I guess I'm older and wiser now. To me the choice is between a Republican who wil stab me in the back and a Democrat who will stab me in the back. To make it worse the Republican will run claiming to believe in all the same conservative beliefs I have while the Democrat will tell me upfront he will stab me in the back. So which is better? I liked Romney. I thought he was a good man had a good head on his sholders and would have been a fair president. He would not have prevented the recession we are still in. He wouldn't have repealed Obamacare and he would do the really tough thngs that must be done to reverse our decline/crash. What that would mean to all of us is that we would be in the same really bad place today and the Republican/conservative brand would have been seriously harmed with no chance of a Republican takeover of congress. So in what way is that better then Obama? Next presidential election wil probably see Clinton vs Christie. I liked Christie when I first saw him and what he was doing. But I have since lost that "tingle" and I don't think he is even close to being a conservative. Christie will bring us gun control, higher taxes, more spending and do it all while spitting in our faces. Screw him! I will vote for Hillary before I would vote for Christie. Yes she will screw up the country but as I said at least it won't be "our" guy stabbing me in the back.
One last point: The Republicans are fools. They cater to the illegal and will undoubtedly pass amnesty and yet they have declared wae on the tea party simply because we want to reduce spending and reduce the size of government. This is incredibly short sighted. Amnesty will GUARANTEE that we will have a virtual invasion of ilegal aliens looking for the third version of amnesty and this will destroy America. It is absolutely incredible that it will be Republicans that will do this while at the same time targeting the tea party. They do not deserve to be reelected.

|| Posted by GoneWithTheWind, December 30, 2013 11:51 AM ||
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