Four years later and Evangelicals are back to square one, they do not have a solid Republican candidate to back. Where is Karl Rove when you need him?
Thankfully four remain and we can all get over the fantastical notion that any of them (sans Santorum) really are as conservative as they gleefully proclaim on the trail. At the moment, they will say anything they can to become the nominee and then make a sweeping shift to the center to reign in independents so that they can proclaim that they ended the worst presidency ever.
Personally, I was over this whole Evangelical political charade early into the second Bush term. Too many promises, too many broken and feeling quite used after. In the end, politics and religion really do not mix well. The Evangelical idea that we can get “God’s chosen” into the White House and all will be well is complete idiocy.
So here are my thoughts on the remaining candidates:
He has worked very hard to make everyone forget that it was only four years ago he lost, badly, to John McCain. He wants all of us to forget that he supported Romneycare; that he has flip-flopped on every issue under the sun; that he has a ton of money; that he hasn’t been successful in any major political office; he just wants us to forget.
He has worked very hard to follow President Obama’s playbook, guarded, on message and no leaks from his initial campaign. Yes, he has worked very hard to create a sequel to a very bad movie to hope that we all forget that this is still the same man that noone liked then and really don’t like now.
As you can tell, I don’t like Romney.
What can you say about Rick? The only reason he is still standing is because he drew the last straw of the conservatives in Iowa and happened to win. Being under the radar was a good thing for him and I can’t imagine how many times he has thanked God for being placed on the end during those debates.
While the guy has the most conservative record, he is also the most ideologically goofy. To list the silly notion that radical Islam was the sole reason for 9/11 and to completely disregard very smart analysis by Ron Paul that Bin Laden would wage a war against Western Orientalism shows how ignorant Santorum is to sociological research on this subject.
I couldn’t take him seriously in the beginning of the campaign and honestly can’t now. Getting someone like that into office would be Obama in reverse and we simply can’t have another person come in on the far right who will ostracize the entire Democratic base, creating another stalemate of political activity.
Nope, not a fan.
Paul has been the consistent “Libertarian acting as a Republican” voice in the race. In many cases, he talks and makes so much sense that you wonder why he isn’t taken more seriously; and then other times, he talks and sounds so senile that you wish he would just retire. He is this year’s Ross Perot.
He has been able to do what many other candidates could not, pull from the left to the right based on a myriad of political stances (anti-war, anti-interventionist, removing government from most things). If Paul doesn’t win the nomination, expect an increase in Libertarian membership.
To me, Paul comes off as a pipe-dream candidate. You think, it would be nice to do everything he is stating but the consequences of a one term Paul presidency would be devastating for the country, much less the world. Like it or not, we are in a global world now; by pulling out in the ways that Paul suggests, we would devastate other nations by simply not being present either militarily or fiscally. If there is one way to start a war, that would be one.
While I appreciate Paul and many of his logical approaches, I feel he simply wouldn’t be able to bring serious solutions or be able to work with a Congress that has too many pet projects that Paul would want to abolish.
Evangelicals like my friend, Matthew Lee Anderson, are pretty much stating that Gingrich winning South Carolina is the end of many moralistic views. I guess Gingrich must represent some form of modernity within the Republican party that makes them just cringe.
Gingrich is far from perfect. However, to state that you wouldn’t support Gingrich because of his past marriage issues would pretty much disqualify a good chunk of our current pastorates, many of our church leaders and overall half of the Evangelical church in regards to divorce.
Is it any worse that Romney blatantly lies about his flip-flops or spins how Bain made their money? They are all politicians, attempting to say anything to win your vote. If we were voting on a purity scale, Paul and Santorum are definitely better in that category.
With Gingrich, I will admit that while I find his past unappealing, I also find my own in the same light. I am not voting for a person who will best be able to fill the role of Jesus Christ, Superstar; I am voting for a person that I feel can actually make considerable change in DC. In that regard, Gingrich has a record of being able to work with Democrats (aka Bill Clinton) to get good bills passed.
Now, when Gingrich gets into some of his grandiose ideas, I simply shake my head. Stick with what you know you can accomplish and you should be good.
I believe Gingrich has bucked the trend of narrow-minded Republican approaches and can at least be more of a centrist in the long run. Hence, why I currently support him. That could all change in a day though, depending on what other truths come out.
If Romney became the Republican nominee, it would be very difficult for me to vote for him. In fact, it would probably be his Vice Presidential candidate that pulls me in. Otherwise, I may have to really research alternative party candidates. Maybe you feel the same way.
Overall the Republican group of candidates are underwhelming and I wish that someone, anyone else would be running. But until Americans demand better, this is what we get. Pretty sad eh?