Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

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Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Thoughts on last night

I know readers are wondering what my thoughts on on what happened last night. I knocked off blogging the treturns earlier than I would have liked, but as I said then, my fingers were really bothering me. So, I gave a couple of quick thoughts on the night, and signed off. Last night I wrote of the possibility of a brokered convention. Now a few people (in e-mails this morning) say that I'm nuts for even saying that because McCain clearly walked all over Romney last night, with the assistance of his sidekick Igor Huckabee.

But I'm not the only one talking about the possibility. As Glenn Reynolds points out The Anchoress is also seeing the race going that direction:

And the other day I wrote:

While I am not a “dittohead” I have listened and found Rush to be funny, articulate and smart - I thought his payback to Harry Reid re the Senator’s letter to his network was brilliant. What I have heard lately has been bombastic and rather a lot about himself…which leads me to believe…

6)A brokered GOP Convention is already in the works and should surprise no one. The hard-right conservatives will try to get their own candidate onto the top of the ticket. Don’t know who they’ve got in mind for it, but these folks are not going to stand for McCain and Limbaugh is curiously silent on Romney…


As we all know, he had been curiously silent on Romney until there was, really, no one left to love except John McCain.

Hence, Mitt Romney has become “the boy who can do no wrong, for now.”

Watching the far right fall into fervent and shrill love with Mitt, I observed that there is a passionate, rigid determination behind some of this Mittmania that is entirely inappropriate to the relative newness of his support. Sort of like a whirlwind romance you get into on a cruise…because you’re alone and you want so badly to have a romance with someone.

And yeah, that all means something.

So, the other day I
wrote:

Should a magically pristine “true” conservative (perhaps from the private sector or the military) suddenly appear from on high (or from behind Kingmaker Rush) and begin to woo the right and right-leaning moderates, they will desert Romney in an instant.

I will be VERY surprised if either of these two men - McCain or Romney - is at the top of the ticket when you go to vote in November. :::CLARIFICATION::: Or maybe what I more properly mean to say is that they may or may not top the ticket, but there may be a third party candidate. Bottom line: I’m saying everything is still fluid.:::END[…]A game is afoot - and masters are playing it. Right now everything bears watching; observation, not hyperventilation. Don’t let yourself get sucked into a news cycle and a strategy; you’ll be worn out by summer.

Yes, Romney lost last night, and some "frank discussions" are supposedly going on today in his camp. Some are speculating (Bill Kristol last night on FOX) that Romney may announce he's bowing out of the race at CPAC given the fact that to truly challenge McCain at this point he would have to run the rest of the table perfectly. That is not a prospect that appears to be panning out for him. ?Will he withdraw then? Only Mitt knows.


But where do we go from here? Well, it's obvious that neither one of our candidates (Rudy or Romney) is going to be the nominee. Hey, you win some and you lose some. Maybe, like the rest of the pundits out there, we overrated conservatives. Then again, maybe conservatives sucked it up last night, and voted for McCain. If that's the case, and I've yet to see any demographic breakdowns yet, then there are two possible reasons for that outcome.

1) Mitt clearly did not enunciate his message well enoug, and failed to get it out to the public.

2) He is still a virtual unknown to most people whereas McCain isn't.

As to where do we go? That answer is simple. We support the man who will be the nominee, no matter how much it pains us, and no matter how much we detest the idea. As Hugh points out today, there are seven reasons to vote for John McCain: The war, and six Supreme Court justices.

Justice Stevens is 87
Justice Ginsburg is 74
Justice Kennedy is 71
Justice Scalia is 71
Justice Breyer is 69
Justice Souter is 68

For Marcie and myself, these would be the seven issues coming to the forefront of the debate for us. Yes, I have written that the economy and immigration are also issues that are important to us, but when it comes to the war, it's an issue that we can't afford to blow off. We must win it. And the courts? Imagine a Hillary presidency where she could nominate her husband to the high court, or an activist like Laurence Tribe to be seated. No one can predict who Obama might send up, but it surely won't be originalist jurists.

John McCain, like Rudy Giuliani, like Mitt Romney, has said he will nominate constructionist judges to the high court should vacancies come up. I know a lot of people won't be happy with hisas president, but we'd rather have him appointing justices than Hillary or Obama. If the Democrats get the chance, they'll swing the court in their favor, and put it out of our reach for decades. (It'll be bad enough if this year turns into the rout the Democrats are hoping for. Republicans will be wandering in the desert for a long time.)

And despite a couple of things he's just flat-out wrong on regarding the war, John McCain will remain on offense. We can't play defensive ball with this enemy. John McCain gets that; the Democrats don't. So we'll go with the nominee, and right now that appears to be John McCain. Of course, the Anchoress and I could be right. A brokered convention could very well be on the horizon for the GOP. It is looking increasingly like that could happen. However, given last nights results, we doubt that will benefit Romney much. Yes, the delegates would be able to switch their votes, if they so chose, but with McCain running up the delegates last night that possibility is not very likely.Some might actually prefer a brokered convention to see if Romney can storm back there. But again, the idea is a long shot, at best.

So in November, when it comes to election day, we will pull the lever for John McCain. We'll vote for him. We'll do our best to defend him. And we will support him. For the Democrats in 2004, it was "anybody but Bush." This time around, for us, it's "anyone but a Democrat." Even given his failings, McCain is still the better man. As for Ann Coulter, and those that are siding with her on the idea of not voting for McCain, you all obviously never had this bit of wisdom dropped on you from a relative:

"No matter what, the worst Republican is better than the best Democrat. At least with a Republican, you can control them through Congress, and you'll still have a few bucks left in your pocket at the end of the day."

That was my grandfather's wisdom. I'll take his words to heart when I vote rather than the words of a pundit I've never met, and find their "wisdom" to be highly suspicious, and not all that logical.

Publius II

2 Comments:

Blogger Brother J said...

I'm just down the orad from you in Gilbert. I heard one of you (Vaughn?) on Hugh Hewitt on my way home tonight. I picked up on the same Bill Whittle comment via Instapundit this morning and have it posted on my blog too. Nice to know there are a couple of kindred-spirited bloggers nearby.

Bill is dead on (isn't he always?)about voting for McCain. I'm a FredHead too but voted for Romney yesterday. Even though he's my last choice among the Republican candidates, I'll support McCain in the general election. The alternatives are far worse.

February 6, 2008 at 8:41 PM  
Blogger Brother J said...

That should have been "just down the road" (preview is my friend) and my blgo is http://takemetoyourlizard.blogspot.com

February 6, 2008 at 8:43 PM  

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