Romney – Between a Rock and a Hard Place

The GOP’s race to the bottom carries on and the man who once said,

“I believe in an America where millions of Americans believe in an America that’s the America millions of Americans believe in. That’s the America I love.”

…reaffirmed his position as the Inevitable One. Mitt Romney won Super Tuesday which should not have been a surprise to anyone. Romney had this thing wrapped up three months ago but is being dragged further to the right by his fellow candidates, Gingrich and Santorum, who refuse to leave the race.

Gingrich is hanging in there because of a) an oversized ego which fuels just about everything the man says and does…and b) the millions of billionaire backer, Sheldon Adelson.  Those two factors alone will keep Newt in his book tour presidential race for as long as the money lasts.

And what keeps Rick Santorum trudging on? This: he honestly believes he’s been chosen to sweep down from his lofty perch at the right hand side of God and save America from itself. He does. He believes this. Santorum might talk about budgets and deficits and Iran and other domestic and foreign policy issues but they’re not his main concern. Nope. He wants and needs to save you from the gay, abortion and contraceptives. He wants and needs to restore America to some fictional, moralistically perfect time which he believes once existed but which in truth exists only in the sick, little mind of a sanctimonious jerk.

As long as Rick Santorum keeps on winning a state or two as he did last night, he’s not going anywhere.

Combine the presence of those two bozos with Romney’s desperate need to prove his conservative bona fides and you’re left with a man forced to adopt extreme right-wing positions on just about ever issue. In a normal nomination race, a candidate can edge back toward the center once he or she is chosen as their party’s nominee. Not this time. A Republican base which is already dubious about Romney’s conservatism will eat him alive if he ever attempts to retreat an inch from his stated positions.

Yep, it must suck to be a Republican these days but as long as they believe in an America which believes in millions of Americans who believe in an America of millions of conservative Americans who believe in Mitt Romney who believes in anything and everything that millions of Americans want him to believe…well, you get the idea.

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Ricky Santorum Going Broke (Literally) For Love of Country

Aww. You almost want to cry.

Rick Santorum told voters at a school here that he’s spent down his savings running for president, and walked away from the money he was making in the private sector.

“I walked away from all of the jobs that I had and all the money,” Santorum said at the Dayton Christian School. He and his wife Karen have been “spending down our savings,” he said.

“That’s not necessarily the best thing to do when you have three kids entering college in the next three years, but our country is worth it,” he said.

Santorum can put away the violin. No one is buying his story. People are well aware he’ll be making a bundle once he’s back in the private sector. He may have hurt his brand big time with his extreme religious views but there are enough wingnuts out there who will be more than willing to pay for the services of a conservative who made a presidential run. And there’s always the Fox News gig for proven liars and clowns. You can count on Ricky making a lot more than the $1 million he made in 2010.

In the meantime, throw Rick a nickle or two should you run into him at a street corner holding a tin cup.

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(The base source photograph for the above illustration is a Library of Congress digital image. The Rick Santorum source photograph is a Creative Commons licensed image from photographer Gage Skidmore. )

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GOP Rendition of ‘The Tracks of My Tears’

As the economy continues to improve (DOW closed above 13,000 for the first time since May 2008), Republicans are discovering that they’re losing the only ticket they had to a November victory, a faltering economy. And with that discovery comes the further realization that they are going to be stuck with a lame presidential candidate. Mitt Romney.

Redstate’s the Son of Erick expresses his anguish.

Seriously, putting it bluntly, conservatives may not like Barack Obama, but most other people do. And when faced with a guy you like and a guy you don’t like who says he can fix an economy that no longer needs fixing, you’re going to go with the guy you like.

If Republicans in Washington are not panicked and trying desperately to pull Bobby Jindal in the race tomorrow, or someone like him, the party leaders must have a death wish. Mitt Romney continues to run an uninspiring campaign only able to win by massively outspending his opponents to tell voters how much worse the other guys are. That may work in the primary, but it will not work in a general election where the President of the United States won’t be outspent 5 to 1.

[...]

But I suspect he [Romney] will be the nominee. At least we can be rid of him and, hopefully, his most ardent cheerleaders on November 7th when what the rest of us know will happen unless an economic catastrophe happens.

We feel your pain, Eric…but Bobby Jindal? That’s your great savior? You’re joking, right?

If Jindal were to enter the race tomorrow, how far could he possibly get with no campaign structure in place and no money to fund that campaign? Jindal would be unable to get his name on the ballot in most of the remaining primary states. And even if none of those matters were vital to waging a successful campaign, Jindal lacks the dynamic personality required to compete against a Barack Obama…to say nothing of what Jindal’s image would look like after a zillion dollars worth of attack ads from the Romney camp did their dirty work.

It must suck to be a Republican these days.

But don’t be fooled by any of this. When Republicans have their nominee in place, Erickson and Limbaugh and Fox and the Christian right and every other conservative who despise the current President, will rally behind their man and proclaim him to be the greatest conservative since Jesus Christ.

And that applies even if their nominee is an out of touch rich guy whom no one likes.

Musical interlude. Sorry, Smokey…but I like this Adam Lambert rendition.



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(The source photograph for this illustration is a Creative Commons licensed image from photographer Gage Skidmore.)

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Making The Case For Chanting ‘Go, Santorum, Go’

Former Reagan strategist Ed Rollins made this observation (as quoted by John Heilemann in New York Magazine) regarding the 2012 Republican primary:

Six months before this thing got going, every Republican I know was saying, “We’re gonna win, we’re gonna beat Obama.” Now even those who’ve endorsed Romney say, “My God, what a fucking mess.”

Given Rick Santorum’s quest for an American theocracy, Mitt Romney’s insistence throughout the campaign on portraying himself as a somewhat less compassionate version of Gordon Gekko, Newt Gingrich’s moon colonies and hope of eradicating from the judiciary every judge who does not follow the Gingrich Doctrine and Ron Paul…well, Ron Paul’s refusal to be anyone else but Ron Paul…one can only think, a fucking mess, indeed. Which begs the question, why so, why now?

Because any party which is composed in large part (in Robert Reich’s words) of “birthers, creationists, theocrats, climate-change deniers, nativists, gay-bashers, anti-abortionists, media paranoids, anti-intellectuals, and out-of-touch country clubbers” cannot possibly be appeased by a single candidate and when the attempt is made, the result is the three (four?) ring circus Republicans now have before them.

In this Republican age of insanity, finding credible, rational conservatives willing to risk their political careers to take on an incumbent president while courting the vote of teabaggers, bigots and religious fundamentalists (not all mutually exclusive) is no easy task. Just ask Jon Huntsman. Intelligence and a record of staunch conservatism is simply not enough to satisfy the GOP’s current base – a base which insists that their candidate be every bit as irrational and loopy as them. It is a request which the four remaining candidates vying to become the Republican nominee are desperately attempting to fulfill.

Given the current state of the Republican party, John Heilmann theorizes on the consequences of an Obama win or loss in November.

…it’s still perfectly conceivable that Obama might lose this thing.

If that happens, the implications for the Republican Party will be straight­forward: It will be reshaped in the image of whichever of the candidates becomes president-elect. A Romney victory would signal the resurgence of the regulars, while one by Santorum would usher in an era of red-hot regnancy.

But if Obama prevails, precisely the opposite dynamic is likely to kick in: a period of bitter recriminations followed by a reformation (or counterreformation) of the GOP. This, please recall, was what many Republicans were counting on to happen in the wake of their party’s loss of the White House and seats in the House and Senate in 2008. Instead, Republicans seized on a strategy of relentless opposition to Obama, which proved politically effective in 2010 but left the party as bereft of new ideas, a constructive agenda, or a coherent governing philosophy as before.

And this bit of reasoning for hoping that Rick Santorum prevails against Romney but loses to Obama.

Only the most mindless of ideologues reject the truism that America would be best served by the presence of two credible governing parties instead of the situation that currently obtains. A Santorum nomination would be seen by many liberals as a scary and retrograde proposition. And no doubt it would make for a wild ride, with enough talk of Satan, abortifacients, and sweater vests to drive any sane man bonkers. But in the long run, it might do a world of good, compelling Republicans to return to their senses—and forge ahead into the 21st century. Which is why all people of common sense and goodwill might consider, in the days ahead, adopting a slogan that may strike them as odd, perverse, or even demented: Go, Rick, go.

You might want to start making your ‘Sick Rick for President‘ posters.

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(The Rick Santorum source photograph for this illustration is a Creative Commons licensed image from photographer Gage Skidmore.)

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Presidential Nominee Clarence Thomas?

Oh yeah, this is definitely a wonderful idea.

With the Republican presidential nomination still up in the air, the possibility of a brokered convention is looking increasingly likely. Under the party’s rules, the delegates won by Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, and the others in the primaries and caucuses are obligated to vote for their assigned candidate only on the first ballot. If no candidate wins the required number of votes, the delegates can throw their support to anyone. There’s speculation that party insiders, unhappy with the current field, might float the candidacy of someone not now in the race, like New Jersey Governor Chris Christie or Jeb Bush.

While Christie and Bush might be fine candidates, perhaps the Republicans should consider a more inspired and game-changing pick: Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Far-fetched?  Maybe. But a Thomas candidacy would energize Republicans in a way that few other Republicans can and would steal tremendous media attention from President Barack Obama.

Has Republican desperation now reached the point where they’re forced to scrape the bottom of the barrel in search of a savior? Clarence Thomas? President?

Funny.

 

(The source image for this illustration of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas is a photo in the public domain by Steve Petteway and availble via Wikipedia.)
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