Last night’s lesson: Romney Republicanism is alive and well

posted at 7:21 pm on May 21, 2014 by Allahpundit

That’s according to, er, Team Romney. I’ll grant them that it’s alive, but if we’re defining “well” as losing to an incumbent by more than 100 electoral votes when unemployment is close to eight percent, we’re in deeper trouble than I thought.

Was last night a testament to Romney’s enduring influence within the GOP or was it a testament to the enduring influence of the business lobby and the GOP’s donor class, which is overwhelmingly pro-business and thus was overwhelmingly pro-Romney in 2012?

The elections featured a trio of Romney-endorsed Republicans beating back challenges from the tea party by filling their coffers with establishment cash, and appealing to electoral pragmatism. In Idaho, Rep. Mike Simpson defeated his primary opponent with $4 million raised by allies like the United States Chamber of Commerce. In Pennsylvania, incumbent Rep. Bill Shuster triumphed over a challenge from the right. And in Oregon, Monica Wehby, a pro-abortion rights neurosurgeon who many Republicans have touted as a rising star, emerged victorious despite a last-minute character assault led by Democrats…

“I think Republicans are sick of losing,” said Robert O’Brien, a Romney family friend who served as a foreign policy adviser to the campaign. “I think the Romney brand has had a real resurgence after the campaign, and a lot of Republicans realized, hey this guy was right about a lot of things, and they realize his endorsement carries significant weight.”

Similarly, Ryan Williams, a former Romney campaign spokesman, boasted, “Tonight was a good night for Gov. Romney and his endorsed candidates.”

He went on to add, “For too long our party has been without a powerful voice who has been able to help the most electable conservative candidates build support and raise the resources needed to navigate competitive primary contests. Governor Romney has filled that void.”

Six weeks ago, BuzzFeed’s Ben Smith pronounced Jeb Bush dead on arrival in the 2016 primaries, his candidacy “a fantasy nourished by the people who used to run the Republican Party.” Six weeks later, BuzzFeed’s McKay Coppins finds that those same people, the Romney backers of yesterday and the Bush backers of tomorrow, pretty much do still run the party. “Romney Republicanism” is really just establishment Republicanism, broadly simpatico with grassroots conservatives on their approach to the economy (fewer taxes, less regulation) but far more corporatist and culturally remote on issues like gay marriage and immigration. More than anything, these people hate what fiscal brinksmanship does to their bottom lines. I know I’m a broken record on that subject, but if you want to know why tea-party identification has dropped over the last few years, pay attention to the dip in 2011 after the first debt-ceiling standoff. The donor class will make some concessions to conservatives (e.g., pro-life as a litmus test for candidates) in the interest of keeping the coalition together, but they’re not going to stand for shutdowns and debt-ceiling standoffs that threaten their money. That, above all, is why you’re seeing the Chamber of Commerce and “Romney Republicans” coming out swinging in the primaries this year. It’s not because there’s some rich vein of nostalgia for Romneymania 2012. It’s because they want to punch tea partiers in the face for “defund” and the ensuing shutdown last fall.

But don’t take my word for it. Here’s Business Week marveling at Republican business owners launching GOTV efforts and voter education drives among their employees for the express purpose of beating tea-party challengers in the primaries:

The aim of the corporate coalition is to avoid the nomination of untested candidates who could hurt Republican chances of taking control of the Senate away from the Democrats in November, as happened in the 2010 and 2012 elections. Republicans need a net gain of six seats to retake the chamber.

It’s also a mission to boost candidates who are better steeped in and more supportive of the business community’s agenda, including ensuring that the nation doesn’t default on its debt.

From Kentucky construction companies helping employees take on volunteer campaign jobs to company-branded websites in Idaho that allow workers to look at side-by-side comparisons of candidates on issues important to their employers, businesses are introducing a variety of political programs to engage their workers in typically low-turnout primary races.

“You never tell them how to vote, but you tell them where the candidates are on the issues that matter to their employer,” Casey said.

That’s “Romney Republicanism,” which was sufficiently “alive and well” in 2012, three years after the rise of the tea party, to propel Romney to the nomination and is sufficiently alive and well today to make amnesty for low-skilled illegal workers a live issue in the GOP House despite the base’s intense opposition. Ask yourself: If Romney Republicanism was dead, why would Jeb Bush be seriously considering running next year, Bush baggage and all? Why would Chris Christie, damaged by scandal and deeply suspect among grassroots righties, still be thinking of it? Why would Rubio, who got elected as a quasi-tea-partier, have backed amnesty and then begun to reposition himself as an establishment candidate? The answer: Because the donor class traditionally is the kingmaker of the nomination process, and there’s arguably less reason to doubt that they’ll play that role again in 2016, now that tea-party fervor has receded a bit, than there was to doubt it in 2012. That was my point in the McConnell thread last night: When these guys gear up and prepare thoroughly, they’re exceedingly hard to beat even with an unusually talented candidate like Ted Cruz. (Why do you think Cruz himself decided against going all in for Matt Bevin in Kentucky?) Romney Republicanism will be dead if/when the GOP manages to nominate and elect an ideological conservative to the presidency. Otherwise it’ll be the same old song from the donor class — ideologues can’t win, they’re an economic risk, ergo we need a steady pro-amnesty hand like Jeb Bush’s on the wheel.

Exit question: If “Romney Republicanism” is all or mostly about Mitt, why doesn’t he run again? That’s an easy way to test this hypothesis.


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lynncgb on May 22, 2014 at 9:55 AM

It really does come down to being that individual’s choice.

We’re too that point where the difference between the so-called greater and lesser evils is so slight that it appears to fit the definition of insanity to continuously and repeatedly vote for either when what this nation badly needs is the kind of leadership that falls clearly and unambiguously to the side of good, not to the side of relative evils.

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 10:00 AM

More power to Democrats, the lesser evil.

I sure hope you understand then why I am rooting for Grimes to “punch McConnell in the nose” and “crush” him.

TheRightMan on May 22, 2014 at 9:59 AM

Exactly!!

I’m not sure Grimes winning is actually the lesser evil, but the argument is sound on principle.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:05 AM

I can respect that argument. It’s just hard to sell that Romney would have been just as bad as four more years of Obama. But it makes more sense to argue that than to argue for letting the greater evil have the power.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:00 AM

I’m not selling that Rombo would have been a greater evil than Dog Eater, hell, I pulled the lever for Rom and did so freely.

The question is whether I’m obligated to choose based on the idea that both candidates are unworthy but one is less worthy than the other. Where does my culpability begin and end, what if I stayed home in 2012 but Romney got elected anyway?

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:06 AM

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:00 AM

Ha ha ha ha…

And that is why, my dear Bishop, many just stay home. Too much permutations and combinations leading to a severe headache that can only be drowned with severe drinking.

:)

TheRightMan on May 22, 2014 at 10:11 AM

Where does my culpability begin and end, what if I stayed home in 2012 but Romney got elected anyway?

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:06 AM

You would be morally culpable for your bad choice, but I guess it’s a really good thing we aren’t all punished every time we err.

My vote has never ‘mattered,’ but it has mattered every time.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:13 AM

The thing is that I don’t at all oppose the view that some (many) people in the Republican party are a problem. We need to fix the party keeping in mind that different people have different views on what that means, while at the same time trying to win general elections. This to me suggests a reasonable strategy: primary the hell out of people in safe Republican districts and be happy with anyone with an R after this name in Northeast and so on.

My main problem with TCs is that it’s not like I can look at the delegation from Red States and see an example of conservative principle. Where is the conservative agenda on healthcare CHAMPIONED BY RED STATE REPRESENTATIVES? No links to whattehestablishmentdoesntwantyoutoknow.com please.

You say you have a clear conservative agenda on immigration, healthcare, taxes, spending? Can it please win in Alabama first before you start claiming that you have Boston in the bag? Because all I can hear from down there is how a guy who reads the Bible only 5 times a day should go back to Afghanistan or whatever.

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 10:14 AM

1. If a conservative wins the primary, the GOP Establishment will vote for the Democrat because they consider Democrats the lesser evil.

2. If the GOP Establishment wins the primary, conservatives will vote for Democrats as the lesser evil.

We have been having lots of (1) but this season, conservatives are also shifting to (2).

More power to Democrats, the lesser evil.

I sure hope you understand then why I am rooting for Grimes to “punch McConnell in the nose” and “crush” him.

TheRightMan on May 22, 2014 at 9:59 AM

Note that this means, by the logic of the Romney-bots, that the Establishment prefers bankrupting public spending and the Democrats social and political goals over that of the Tea Party’s.

A refreshingly frank admission, to be sure.

ebrown2 on May 22, 2014 at 10:17 AM

You would be morally culpable for your bad choice, but I guess it’s a really good thing we aren’t all punished every time we err.

My vote has never ‘mattered,’ but it has mattered every time.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:13 AM

But why is it considered a bad choice to pick neither? I’m being told that I’m some sort of ignorant dolt for not choosing the lesser of two bad things when I decide to choose neither.

All that’s happening is people putting their own priorities into the process and for that we’re being excoriated.

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:17 AM

It really does come down to being that individual’s choice.

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 10:00 AM

Absolutely. I’m not going to judge another voter’s choice. If a party and/or candidate has to try to guilt voters into compromising their values more and more…. and then some more again…there just might be something seriously wrong.

lynncgb on May 22, 2014 at 10:20 AM

Late to the thread. Classic Allahpundit clickbait – lol.

Missy on May 22, 2014 at 10:21 AM

I’m not going to judge another voter’s choice.

You cannot possibly mean this. It is a ridiculous statement.

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 10:24 AM

Late to the thread. Classic Allahpundit clickbait – lol.

Missy on May 22, 2014 at 10:21 AM

This is Chaos Theory math, you wouldn’t understand.

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:26 AM

But why is it considered a bad choice to pick neither? I’m being told that I’m some sort of ignorant dolt for not choosing the lesser of two bad things when I decide to choose neither.

All that’s happening is people putting their own priorities into the process and for that we’re being excoriated.

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:17 AM

It is a bad choice when you characterize your act as refusing to vote for the lesser evil.

If you don’t see a difference between the two evils, then the argument is moot.

BTW, one of the frustrating things about this debate about lesser and greater evils is that it was all hashed out 230 years ago. Our system of government is based on the assumption we are always having to choose between the lesser of two evils. It is a profoundly conservative concept (also classical liberal ….. and also Christian, because what could be more Christian than the recognition we are all sinners).

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:29 AM

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 10:14 AM

Conservatives are not a monolithic group in the way that moderates could be defined as being. Conservatives fall more into factions.

Reagan understood this best, and was willing to try to provide leadership that united the factions. The more moderate leadership that exists in the Republican party today isn’t interested in providing that kind of leadership.

You aren’t likely to see a Conservative platform under which Conservatives present successful policy until such as time as another leader who can unite the factions come onto the scene.

Perhaps the saddest part about this is that there is a huge amount of energy amongst Conservatives that could be harnessed as a positive influence in politics.

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 10:34 AM

You cannot possibly mean this. It is a ridiculous statement.

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 10:24 AM

Yes, I suppose you would think it ridiculous since you’ve been here condemning TruCons -not even sure what that label means- and choices that don’t agree with your own.

Now I might try to change a Rep./conservative mind that I don’t agree with…I do that all the time. But in the end I’ll accept that they have to vote their conscience and not mine.

Dem. votes are another matter.

lynncgb on May 22, 2014 at 10:38 AM

You aren’t likely to see a Conservative platform under which Conservatives present successful policy until such as time as another leader who can unite the factions come onto the scene.

Perhaps the saddest part about this is that there is a huge amount of energy amongst Conservatives that could be harnessed as a positive influence in politics.

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 10:34 AM

As business has become globalized it has become less tied to the Republican Party. Now it engages in pitting the conservative factions against each other in order to enhance the power of the business lobby within the GOP.

If the fracturing in the GOP leads to Democrat victory, that is no longer a problem for business, and certainly not for big, international business. It can actually be preferable, as the Democrats regularly engage in behaviors that weaken the US and strengthen our trading partners competitors, often to the benefit of businesses that are nominally American but whose interests sharply conflict with the interests of most American citizens.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:39 AM

It is a bad choice when you characterize your act as refusing to vote for the lesser evil.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:29 AM

As I opined to another person here, now all we need to do is find a common definition of “evil” we can all agree on.

There’s that whole freedom thingie popping up again, seeing evil where others don’t.

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:41 AM

You misunderstand why moderate Republicans refuse to vote for the conservative nominee and vote for the Democrat instead. They are choosing the person they think is the lesser evil, as they should. They aren’t being a flaming idiot and failing to vote for the guy they think will do less damage.

This is not a loyalty thing. It is not about identity groups. It is about which one is going to rough your daughter up just a bit and which one is going to rape her.

Stop being boneheads. There are arguments for voting for a third party candidate who cannot win, and there are arguments for failing to vote for the guy whose positions on issues are closer to yours, but when the argument goes to the lesser and greater evils, you lose outright, and you sound like moral cretins.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 9:51 AM

Just wanted to note this: Moderate Republicans vote for the lesser evil, and in a matchup between a conservative and a Democrat, the moderate Republicans believe that the Democrat is the lesser evil.

Well. As if we didn’t already have enough confirmation that conservatives and GOP don’t really belong in the same tent together.

Unless fadetogray is just trolling.

Aitch748 on May 22, 2014 at 10:42 AM

…and also Christian, because what could be more Christian than the recognition we are all sinners).

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:29 AM

That argument is a bit out on the far end of logic, isn’t it? For a Christian, the choice would be between what is of good and what is of evil. First choice would be striving to what is of good!!!

There’s only so far in the direction of things that are of evil that a Christian should even remotely be willing to consider.

So the suggestion that settling for the lesser of evils rather than striving for what is of good would be more of an affront to Christians rather than sop to their conscience.

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 10:42 AM

You say you have a clear conservative agenda on immigration, healthcare, taxes, spending? Can it please win in Alabama first before you start claiming that you have Boston in the bag?

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 10:14 AM

PBH, there is a clear conservative agenda on immigration, healthcare, taxes, and spending.

The problem is the GOP is now split between crony capitalists (or Romney Republicans) and small Govt. conservatives.

The former currently hold the leadership slots and aim to crush all dissenting voices from the latter.

Let’s take immigration, for example. You think Boehner, Cantor, and the rest do NOT know that we do NOT want amnesty? We just want our laws enforced! But, oh no! The Chamber of Commerce wants it! They have the money and so, you betcha, they will have it!

The problem we are having with primaries is… the GOP Establishment candidates refuse to run on their true record and agenda. They have co-opted a conservative message and then utilize the Chamber of Commerce money to blanket the airwaves and paint their opponents as being liberals.

Imagine McConnell, the king of pork, accusing Bevin of supporting TARP and Obamacare.

TheRightMan on May 22, 2014 at 10:43 AM

Romney Republican = Rockefeller Republican = Fabian socialist

St. Nikao on May 22, 2014 at 10:50 AM

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 10:34 AM

But my point is that this lack of leadership is equally the conservatives’ fault. Explain to me how things should work in your world? The Establishment should somehow become ashamed of doing the establishmenty things, change their ways and start uniting people? This isn’t how it works. The uniter should appear by himself. Fine, Romney isn’t one. Do the conservatives have one? Could he please unite 3 states for starters?

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 10:52 AM

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 10:52 AM

Oh,no, the Establishment has every freedom in the world to pursue their moderate course. If they are unwilling to evaluate from an objective context how much could be accomplished and achieved by uniting Conservatives and harnessing the driving passion and energy that Conservatives possess, that is entirely their choice.

I know a lot of Conservatives, mostly Social Conservatives, who have withdrawn from national politics entirely during the past few years. They’ve lost all confidence in the leadership of the Republican party, so they have simply shifted their time, energy and efforts to focusing on local/state matters.

I’m guessing that we could see more Conservatives do this until such time as we reach the point of once again having the leadership that will unite us rather than divide us.

I’m not sure what you would have me to so. Conservatives aren’t as inclined to follow the path of blind loyalty and blind allegiance as members of the Democrat party are, you know.

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 11:01 AM

So the suggestion that settling for the lesser of evils rather than striving for what is of good would be more of an affront to Christians rather than sop to their conscience.

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 10:42 AM

If they were choosing policies, then your point would be valid, but they are making a choice between different sets of feet of clay. They are choosing between two sinners. Your argument would have Christians never voting at all.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 11:10 AM

I don’t want anyone to do anything out of loyalty. You should follow your conscience.

What you are saying is not so far from what I was saying earlier. Social Conservatives are basically Democrats on most issues of concern to me: immigration, budget, healthcare. They are constantly disgusted by the thought of boys kissing. If this is the case then sure it is perfectly fine that you spend all your time fighting The War on Christmas.

I was just saying that IF you’re an actual conservative who wants smaller government, more market-based healthcare, etc, then you have no question that Romney (as horrible as he is) is much better than Obama.

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 11:10 AM

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:29 AM

Save your ink, I think you are arguing with an OFA plant. Bishop has never found a GOP’er to vote for; non are ever good enough.

Tater Salad on May 22, 2014 at 11:10 AM

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 10:29 AM

Save your ink, I think you are arguing with an OFA plant. Bishop has never found a GOP’er to vote for; non are ever good enough.

Tater Salad on May 22, 2014 at 11:10 AM

I’m not selling that Rombo would have been a greater evil than Dog Eater, hell, I pulled the lever for Rom and did so freely.

The question is whether I’m obligated to choose based on the idea that both candidates are unworthy but one is less worthy than the other. Where does my culpability begin and end, what if I stayed home in 2012 but Romney got elected anyway?

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:06 AM

Yep, the Romney-bots don’t ever read the thread.

ebrown2 on May 22, 2014 at 11:15 AM

Your argument would have Christians never voting at all.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Yes, it would.

It’s a matter of conscience. Some people could choose, as a matter of conscience, to distance themselves away from national politics, because the separation between the two evils has become so small that it is barely discernible. They find that they can not reconcile it with their conscience to support either of the two evils, so they support neither.

Instead, they focus their time, energy and effort on state/local issues/politics…and can be very much so in the right in doing so.

They have not abandoned their responsibility to society in any manner by doing this. They has simply shifted their focus to where it could do the most of good.

If that is an issue of conscience for that individual, can you say to them they should do otherwise?

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 11:16 AM

Save your ink, I think you are arguing with an OFA plant. Bishop has never found a GOP’er to vote for; non are ever good enough.

Tater Salad on May 22, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Bishop as OFA plant….ok you got me. I had a good run though, fooled everyone for years and years, still, my votes for McCain and Romney will need some explaining.

That’s the funny thing around here: Fail to support the GOP candidate makes one either a TrueCon or a demorat mole. My question is how do you make the distinction?

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 11:18 AM

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Many thanks for providing a prime example of why SoCons are separating themselves from politics.

You are mistaken in your premise about Social Conservatives. We’re very much so capable of being able to evaluate fiscal issues. We simply see those issues through a lens of social issues.

But by all means, if you think denigrating SoCons will be a uniting factor, have at it/

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 11:21 AM

Yep, the Romney-bots don’t ever read the thread.

ebrown2 on May 22, 2014 at 11:15 AM

You, sir, are a demorat operative in the pay of Soros, don’t bother trying to deny it.

Know how I can tell? Because you failed to agree with whatever GOP plan is thrust before your face.

Traitor.

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 11:21 AM

Yep, the Romney-bots don’t ever read the thread.

ebrown2 on May 22, 2014 at 11:15 AM

Making my point. I had a choice between Romney or Obama, choosing Romney didn’t make me less of a conservative……not voting would have.

Tater Salad on May 22, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Bishop as OFA plant….ok you got me. I had a good run though, fooled everyone for years and years, still, my votes for McCain and Romney will need some explaining.

That’s the funny thing around here: Fail to support the GOP candidate makes one either a TrueCon or a demorat mole. My question is how do you make the distinction?

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 11:18 AM

Bishop you miss the whole point, and sarcasm associated with it. Deciding not to vote and promoting that position is exactly the position an OFA plant would make.

Tater Salad on May 22, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Yep, the Romney-bots don’t ever read the thread.

ebrown2 on May 22, 2014 at 11:15 AM

You, sir, are a demorat operative in the pay of Soros, don’t bother trying to deny it.

Know how I can tell? Because you failed to agree with whatever GOP plan is thrust before your face.

Traitor.

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 11:21 AM

MUHAHAHAHAHA! (strokes Snidley Whiplash moustache, ties the Statue of Liberty to a train track…)

ebrown2 on May 22, 2014 at 11:28 AM

Bishop you miss the whole point, and sarcasm associated with it. Deciding not to vote and promoting that position is exactly the position an OFA plant would make.

Tater Salad on May 22, 2014 at 11:26 AM

I never said my ONLY other option was not voting, I’ve often advocated writing in such luminaries as Lizard Man or my favorite dog, Ace Labrador.

Still, it’s a bit disturbing to me that I find myself aligning with OFA in declaring that not voting is a viable option; who knew that those idiots believed in freedom?

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 11:33 AM

PBH’s fallacy explained here:

http://glitternight.com/2013/05/04/bad-movie-short-the-meanest-man-in-the-world-1954/

ebrown2 on May 22, 2014 at 11:38 AM

b3 finally fledged today. She didn’t have a choice either. Very windy day for a first flight. We are all holding our breathe in hopes she is okay. 40% of them die.

Bmore on May 22, 2014 at 12:16 PM

Ooops, sorry, thought I was placing these at QOTD. OT

Bmore on May 22, 2014 at 12:28 PM

Reagan went down in flames against an incumbent president of his own party, so I don’t put much stock in losing.

Nobody in the current field can hold a candle to Mitt.

I would support Cruz or Rubio, but I think we can do better.

Perspicacious on May 22, 2014 at 12:59 PM

Reagan went down in flames against an incumbent president of his own party, so I don’t put much stock in losing.

Perspicacious on May 22, 2014 at 12:59 PM

Romney isn’t Reagan.

A Time for Choosing
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qXBswFfh6AY

When you can post something similar from Romney you may have a point.

Until then Romney is just another loser in a long list of losers we can barely remember who contributed nothing (unless you want to count Romneycare) and had nothing of substance to say.

sharrukin on May 22, 2014 at 1:14 PM

Wait for the September Slump.
.
Establishment crybabies demand their candidates in the primary, then give up and stay home in the general.
.
Mew

acat on May 22, 2014 at 1:25 PM

Romney isn’t Reagan.

sharrukin on May 22, 2014 at 1:14 PM

True. With the 2012 electorate, Reagan would have been stomped even worse than Romney was.

Many here have still not grasped the reality of what has happened. The great and glorious Diversity, God of the Modern Era, has crushed America’s principles and values under its giant hooves and is tearing America apart.

Diversity hates tolerance. He hates the Constitution. He responds only to demagoguery and fresh, blood dripping flesh. All bow down and submit to Diversity, the One True God!

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 1:32 PM

With the 2012 electorate, Reagan would have been stomped even worse than Romney was.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 1:32 PM

Complete BS.

Reagan would have won hands down. Hell, even Romney could have won if he had bothered to try, hadn’t snubbed conservative allies, and hadn’t relied on his idiot “Death Star” ORCA.

Romney has the charisma and demeanor of a store mannequin.

He was one of the worst presidential campaigners we have ever seen.

Reagan was in every way the opposite of that.

Romney basically agreed with Obama on just about everything in the debates following the first one.

Nobody wants to vote for a Me-tooer.

sharrukin on May 22, 2014 at 1:43 PM

sharrukin on May 22, 2014 at 1:43 PM

Nothing you said is relevant to the point. Romney won all of the Reagan votes, and then some. The people with the mentality of those who voted for Obama in 2012 would not have voted for Reagan in 1980, not even with 50 Americans held hostage by Iran for over a year.

Reagan won because Carter was a severe embarrassment to America. America didn’t even deserve Reagan back then, it just got incredibly lucky, and this America isn’t fit to kiss the bottoms of that America’s shoes.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 1:51 PM

Romney won all of the Reagan votes, and then some. The people with the mentality of those who voted for Obama in 2012 would not have voted for Reagan in 1980, not even with 50 Americans held hostage by Iran for over a year.

fadetogray on May 22, 2014 at 1:51 PM

That is total nonsense.

There were many conservatives here on Hotair and and other conservative websites who refused to vote for Romney because he was a liberal.

Millions of conservatives stayed home rather than vote Romney.

sharrukin on May 22, 2014 at 1:56 PM

It is absurd to consider the results of a few primaries in Kentucky, Idaho, and Oregon or a district in Pennsylvania as an indication of the strength of the Establishment or Tea Party.

The Oregon race, in a blue state, actually demonstrates the wisdom of Oregon primary voters. If the issues of the day are Obamacare and the “War on Women”, who better to nominate than a female doctor who has good reason to oppose Obamacare, for what it has done to her patients?

Let’s face it: Republican primary voters tend to choose the candidate who has the best chance of beating the Democrat in November.

If a Republican incumbent is up for re-election, primary voters tend to choose the “safe” incumbent instead of taking a risk on an unknown who might lose to a Democrat. They have seen the problems in Indiana when Richard Lugar, who could have easily won re-election, lost his primary to Mourdock, who then lost the election to a Democrat in reddish-purple Indiana.

If a Democrat incumbent is up for re-election, Republican primary voters tend to choose a “middle-of-the-road” candidate who can appeal to Independent voters in a state or district where Democrats are competitive.

It is only when an incumbent retires that there is a true test of the strength of the Establishment vs. the Tea Party, when Republican primary voters have no “safe” option but choose who THEY want to represent their party. This was the case in Nebraska this year, where Tea-Party-backed Ben Sasse won the primary, as in Texas in 2012 (after the retirement of Kay Bailey Hutchison), Ted Cruz won the primary and eventually the Senate seat.

The Tea Party is not dead just because some Establishment Republicans have won primaries, especially incumbents. Voters will naturally tend to back a proven winner, and there are some states where Establishment Republicans do better than Tea Party Republicans, such as Oregon.

Most Republican voters are not stupid, and candidates need to appeal to their brains. What IS stupid is conservatives refusing to vote Republican in November if the Republican isn’t conservative enough. This only helps elect Democrats, and any RINO in office is better than a Democrat.

Steve Z on May 22, 2014 at 2:24 PM

Most Republican voters are not stupid, and candidates need to appeal to their brains. What IS stupid is conservatives refusing to vote Republican in November if the Republican isn’t conservative enough. This only helps elect Democrats, and any RINO in office is better than a Democrat.

Steve Z on May 22, 2014 at 2:24 PM

But you don’t understand. They have Teh Fr33dom to do stupid things and they’ll be damned if they let anyone stand in the way.

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 4:00 PM

Remember when Romney suggested we give health care vouchers to veterans rather than creating a socialist health care system for them and Paul Krugman shot down that idea back in 2011 in a NYT editorial? Neither does Krugman today, probably.

Every week something seems to happen that vindicates Romney’s vision. I would vote for him again.

crosspatch on May 22, 2014 at 4:10 PM

This is a basic free market principle. Let the market run things, and if you think that you have people who are uniquely disadvantaged, then simply give them money. I would give them unrestricted funds in the amount that we can determine together. Vouchers are the next best thing. This doesn’t screw up markets, and it helps the vulnerable.

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 4:55 PM

Every week something seems to happen that vindicates Romney’s vision. I would vote for him again.

crosspatch on May 22, 2014 at 4:10 PM

I would stay home again.

Jayrae on May 22, 2014 at 5:30 PM

acat on May 22, 2014 at 1:25 PM

Hey, acat!!! How’s Moe?

lineholder on May 22, 2014 at 5:41 PM

That’s according to, er, Team Romney. I’ll grant them that it’s alive, but if we’re defining “well” as losing to an incumbent by more than 100 electoral votes when unemployment is close to eight percent, we’re in deeper trouble than I thought.

That about sums it up. Yes, the Rockefeller Republicans have always been around. And they’ve always been just about that successful.

They don’t win elections unless they give conservatives a good reason to vote for them.

There Goes the Neighborhood on May 22, 2014 at 5:50 PM

What you are saying is not so far from what I was saying earlier. Social Conservatives are basically Democrats on most issues of concern to me: immigration, budget, healthcare.

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 11:10 AM

What a colossally stupid statement. Social conservatives are the most consistently conservative of all voters. It’s those who claim to be ‘fiscal conservatives’ that would rather vote for a Democrat than a thoroughly conservative candidate.

If you want a winning coalition for fiscal responsibility, you’ll never get there trying to ally with Democrats rather than social conservatives.

We’re always hearing talk about how fiscal conservatives care so much about smaller government, and social conservatives should ‘call a truce’ on their social issues in order to get fiscal responsibility. But those who are only fiscally conservative have shown a willingness to sacrifice their supposed small-government, fiscally conservative values and vote for big-spending Democrats rather than compromise their position on social issues.

You don’t get a coalition by telling your allies, “vote for what I want, but don’t expect me to care about what you want.”

There Goes the Neighborhood on May 22, 2014 at 6:04 PM

A big myth is that Reagan was some staunch ideologue. He compromised all the time. He was buddies with Tip O’Neill. He orchestrated one of the grand amnesty deals of the century. Boehner talks about it and gets slammed. Reagan did it and is worshiped. Reagan did zip, zilch, nada to reduce to siz and scope of government.

I understand the psychological need for heroes, but the Reagan worship from guys like Rush and Levin gets a little much.

swamp_yankee on May 21, 2014 at 8:36 PM

This idiocy again.

There Goes the Neighborhood on May 22, 2014 at 6:19 PM

If you want a winning coalition for fiscal responsibility, you’ll never get there trying to ally with Democrats rather than social conservatives.

Well said. Which is why you don’t want to do what some Teh True Conservatives did when they stayed at home and effectively voted for Obama. You want to vote for a Republican who is more socially conservative than Reagan.

PBH on May 22, 2014 at 7:59 PM

Mitt Milhous Chamberlain.

J.B. Say on May 22, 2014 at 9:48 PM

Mitt Romney, marxist-progressive just like liblikeaslavethendie

Murphy9 on May 22, 2014 at 10:40 PM

You deserve everything coming to you reprobate.

Every fking thing.

Murphy9 on May 22, 2014 at 8:36 AM

What’s coming to me that you aren’t working to bring on? You are cr@pping in your own nest as well as mine, idiot. Your union bosses will be happy about the work you have done here to socialize the Republic by getting the rubes to stay at home in the face of an existential threat to the country.

V7_Sport on May 22, 2014 at 11:01 PM

Every week something seems to happen that vindicates Romney’s vision. I would vote for him again.

crosspatch on May 22, 2014 at 4:10 PM

I would stay home again.

Jayrae on May 22, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Thanks for Obama, thanks for helping to wreck what’s left.
I’m coming to the conclusion that it’s probably better to not to remind people like you that if you are staying home for “Conservative principles” you are cutting your own throat by empowering the people who have an agenda that you supposedly hate. It’s probably best just to stand back and let you idiots, and that’s what you are, make yourselves irrelevant. Even though NOTHING will push the country left faster than divorcing conservatives form the GOP, anyone who would stay at home in the face of an Obama presidency because everything wasn’t made perfect for you deserves to be ignored by the party and anyone else who is committed to doing what is best for the country.

V7_Sport on May 22, 2014 at 11:12 PM

The question is whether I’m obligated to choose based on the idea that both candidates are unworthy but one is less worthy than the other. Where does my culpability begin and end….

Bishop on May 22, 2014 at 10:06 AM

Your culpability doesn’t end. If you see the lessor of 2 evils candidate doing something wrong you work to bring them back on track. Everything doesn’t end with voting, you can work to influence your candidate when they are in office. That’s why you want to elect people who will probably listen to you, rather than writing you off as a bitter gun clinger racist.

V7_Sport on May 22, 2014 at 11:20 PM

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Murphy9 on May 22, 2014 at 11:32 PM

Murphy9 on May 22, 2014 at 11:32 PM
That your boss, Richard Trumka? Too thin. When he drives your job away to China, will that be an example of “letting it burn”?

V7_Sport on May 23, 2014 at 12:08 AM

Apparently there is no floor to your tardom.

Murphy9 on May 23, 2014 at 6:21 PM

Apparently there is no floor to your tardom.

Murphy9 on May 23, 2014 at 6:21 PM

tardom? Are you 12? Really, I’m conversing with a child, right? Do they let children become union shills now?
Speaking of floors, your closed shop isn’t going to sweep itself.

V7_Sport on May 23, 2014 at 9:08 PM

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