MAIL CALL! Hill, Dell
Several people have asked me who I support in the Republican Presidential campaign. My answer is always the same. No one, yet.
There are several very good reasons why I’ve never locked on to one candidate at the expense of all others and I’ll give you my short list.
1. I never have to speak/write to defend my candidate, nor do I have to speak/write in hammering any of the other candidates. I follow the entire vetting process quite carefully and then pick the person I feel is best qualified to receive my vote.
2. It’s MUCH too early in the game to make such a choice. I want to see how each of the candidates handles the upcoming caucus votes, the remaining debates (which I don’t really put a lot of stock in) and the revelations that are bound to surface between now and the convention.
How About “Right Now” On The Candidates?
3. Could I support Mitt Romney? I’d hold my nose tightly, but I firmly believe the goal is to remove Barack Obama from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, so my answer is “yes”.
4. What about Herman Cain? I like Herman Cain. I’m still not sure if he’s experienced enough, or well-coached enough to handle the myriad of questions that are coming his way on topics that he has very limited experience. I consider the recent attacks on him are the direct result of his strong backing and position in major polls, and most Americans feel the same way. Thus far, I’ve seen no direct evidence of any wrong doing; only allegations, and I consider the source - politically motivated people.
I would vote for Herman Cain before I’d even consider staying home.
5. And Rick Perry? Perry is a far better politician than he’s shown thus far. He’s done good things in Texas - and some bad things, too. His tendency to shoot from the hip has hurt him tremendously.
I think one of Perry’s biggest drawbacks is the fact he’s almost immediately following President George W. Bush from the State of Texas. Bush is truly hated by the left...and Dick Cheney is despised. Many see Perry in that same light.
I would vote for Rick Perry if he was the Republican candidate.
6. OK, let’s move on to Newt Gingrich. Gingrich is a walking encylopedia of political knowledge and stands head and shoulders above all the rest in experience. He’s also a very strong debate operative. He thinks “big” and could sell refrigerators to Eskimos.
I don’t really care for the fact that he torpedoed the TEA Party candidate in last years New York congressional race and I have some doubts as to his claim to be a conservative. I see him more as a Clinton Conservative, than anything else.
However, if the election was to be held today and Newt was the Republican candidate, I would vote for him.
7. Next up, Michele Bachmann. A candidate who started her campaign with a distinct disadvantage - campaign manager Ed Rollins. Far too often, Rollins spoke...or misspoke early in the campaign and Mrs. Bachmann was forced to reshuffle her team and send Rollins back to an “advisory position”, which is the equivalent of being fired without all blood and guts.
Most observers felt Rollins was trouble...and that’s exactly what he turned out to be. Her campaign hasn’t recovered from the damage he’s done.
Having said that, I’d vote for Michele Bachmann if she was the Republican candidate.
8. Jon Huntsman, I’m sorry to say, doesn’t belong in this group. Despite his utterances to the contrary, I see very little potential for Huntsman to garner any consideration at the Republican convention. Some call him a dark horse; right now I call him a dead horse.
9. Gary Johnson’s stance on the major issues flies in the face of everything conservatives stand for.
10. And then there’s Ron Paul. I consider Dr. Paul a Republican by convenience, simply because most all of his domestic issues thinking dovetails more with Republicans than it does Democrats. His supporters are Libertarians, not Republicans and I feel strongly they’d write his name in rather than vote for any other Republican candidate, or worse yet, vote for Obama. And he has considerable support from like-minded Libertarians, so the potential exists for his supporters to be a factor in the outcome. How much of a factor remains to be seen.
Dr. Paul’s strong suit is finances at the federal and state level. I could see him doing great things as Secretary of the Treasury, for instance, but his policy of isolationism on the world stage is almost frightening.
I don’t consider Dr. Paul as a Republican and doubt he’d receive anything more than passing reference in the nomination process. Therefore, I wouldn’t have to even think about voting for him.
11. Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum doesn’t have the strong name recognition, nor the financial backing to play with the heavy hitters, but he certainly could be a decent Vice Presidential candidate, under the right circumstances. Pennsylvania is a key electoral college State and his popularity might be enough to keep his name “in consideration”.
12. There are several names I haven’t listed because - except for Tim Pawlenty and Sarah Palin - they simply don’t deserve my time or energy to consider. Congressman Allen West’s name has been bandied about, but he’s declined to enter the fray. I see West as a top contender for the Republican nomination in 2016.
I mentioned former Alaska Governor, Sarah Palin. And I truly believe she will play an extremely strong role in determining the Republican candidate. She can still draw massive crowds and has several million dedicated “fans” among TEA Party members. I really don’t believe any of the people named above could win next November if Mrs. Palin speaks out against them. If she says “Joe Blow” is her candidate, Joe Blow can count on several million votes instantly. I also see her as a huge drawing card on the campaign trail; not only for the presidential race, but the all-important senate races that will be decided on the same day.
I hope this gives you a little better idea of how my thought process works (or doesn’t work...take your pick), and I encourage you to give the process a chance to work right up until it’s time to make a decision.