With 15 months to go, it would be a good idea to assess the Republican Presidential field thus far- the declared, the hoped-for, the good, the bad, and the ugly.
MITT ROMNEY: The nominal front runner to hear the lamestream media talk. He just seems to be the fall back guy because a savior has not really come along. Should he win the nomination, core Republicans would probably vote for Romney and he might be close in certain states. Yet to win the election, the Republican Party has to do better than just be close in certain states. Although the early math indicates that Obama will fare worse than he did in 2008, he will still win. And he will defeat Romney. Why? Because Obama's self-admitted legislative achievement in his first term was Obamacare which DOES look suspiciously a lot like Romneycare in Massachusetts when he was Governor. That is, Romney loses a key debating point here. If he criticizes Obamacare, he basically criticizes himself. While Romney may very well win the argument in other areas, he cannot, with a straight face, attack Obama on health care reform. And although I have been taken to task on this one in the past, Romney's Mormon faith will play against him, especially among the strong conservatives in America. They won't vote for Obama; they just won't vote. The fact is that many conservatives DO view Mormonism as a cult. I know some liberal Catholics and Protestants and Jews who view it as a cult.
RICK PERRY: Rick Perry is an interesting addition and a strong, viable candidate. He has been elected Governor of Texas three times now and his political prowess is known having fended off Kay Bailey Hutchison in the primary and probably the strongest Democrat to run against him most recently in 2010. Most importantly, Rcik Perry was Tea Party chic before there was a Tea Party so he does not have to cowtow to that segment. His credentials are pretty well set there. That is, among conservative primary voters, he does not have to reinvent himself a la Romney to curry favor. On the moderate side, he could use the fact that Texas is the fastest growing state and his job creation in the state to his advantage. Already, the lamestream media is attacking Texas with reports that they rank 37th in educational attainment and so on. I would also expect them to show Perry talking about secession in an attempt to portray him as a modern day Jefferson Davis. Perry is perhaps the best pure politician in the Republican field and could give Obama the most trouble, especially in key states. How he plays outside traditionally red states will have to be seen. A good strategy would be "Ignorance is bliss" when they attack his performance as Governor and he stays on the offensive against Obama. And a lot has been made about the "Oh no, not another Texan" talk. That is just that- talk.
MICHELLE BACHMANN: If people are going to demand the publication of Obama's birth certificate, then I think we should see Michelle Bachmann's Owner's Manual. She seriously reminds me of a Stepford wife and I think there is a screwed down plate in her back that gives one access to the electronics. I think she is based on the Nancy Pelosi prototype- the conservative version- from La Jolla Robotics in California. Seriously- check out the eyes between the two. It is kind of scary and we already have a scary President.
NEWT GINGRICH: Still hanging in despite the early miscues and loss of most of his staff. Newt reminds me of my late uncle who would visit my father and get drunk in the kitchen while I rode my bike for endless hours outside. He may be intelligent and all that, but his time has long passed. There is too much baggage there for Democrats to ignore. I view him as the John Edwards of the Republican Party when it comes to morality.
HERMAN CAIN: The guy impressed in the first debate. A lot of what he says is taken out of context in an attempt to portray him as an Uncle Tom. The lamestream media cannot wrap their noggins around the fact that women and blacks and Hispanics can hold conservative views. It would be an interesting match up: liberal black man versus conservative black man. Then let the chips fall where they may. But, it ain't happening, so lets move on.
JOHN HUNTSMAN: He would probably win some moderate votes and definitely pull the liberal Republican vote, such as any exists. But, in the end, it would not make a difference. I can visualize him being Secretary of State, but not President. He is too liberal on the social issues to make it through the Republican primaries and caucuses. Look at the stink that was raised among conservatives when talk of a "truce" on the social issues was once suiggested. In the case of Huntsman, its not a truce but a surrender.
RON PAUL: He is probably the most consistently principled candidate in the hunt and his views are well-known. Unfortunately, they grate too much on conservative Republicans on certain issues, especially in the defense and foreign policy realms. Paul plays a greater role in shaping the issues and crystallizing the debate. However, along with Ralph Nader, he is co-chair of the Failed Presidential Aspirant Club.
RICK SANTORUM: He is a one trick pony. He cannot win a general election especially since he couldn't win a statewide effort at reelection to the Senate and lost by 17 points. I don't even think he can shape the debate as Ron Paul could do.
THADDEUS McCOTTER: I confess to liking this guy. Every time I have seen him in interviews or in Congress, he just seems like a down to earth, no nonsense type of Congressman. He is that quirky insider outsider. However, that quirkiness sometimes makes him look like anything but a Republican and as a pro-union, anti-free trade person. But, the guy is from Michigan for crying out loud. However, like Bachmann, he is a Representative and they simply don't win Presidencies!
GARY JOHNSON: Don't know too much about him and thats his problem. Neither do too many other people. I expect him to be the next casualty to drop out of the race.
SARAH PALIN: I think a debate between Palin and Obama would be well-watched since she epitomizes the phrase, "Open mouth/insert foot." To me, Palin jumped the shark with the Letterman apology. Incidentally, I watched that show recently; what a sad decline. Anyway, instead of accepting the apology for the insult directed at her daughter during a Letterman joke, we got a dissertation in the First Amendment and our military in Iraq. So we were fighting in Iraq to give Letterman the right to make an off-color joke? What about a simple "I accept your apology." Simple fact is Palin is a rabble rouser to motivate the base and she does it quite well. She can do that best by not running for President. Seriously- with her at the top of the ticket, the Republicans could lose the House and Senate while inflicting intellectual damage on the party for years to come.
CHRIS CHRISTIE: Despite his insistence he is not running and despite the lobbying efforts to get him to run, as my Governor, I do not think he will. There is no reason to risk his political career so early in that career. If he beefs up his resume by completing what he started in New Jersey (and there IS work to be done), then he looks better in 2016. Essentially, his policies are akin to those of Daniels and Pawlenty as Governors, only they were nicer. And that would be intriguing: seeing Christie debate Obama mano y mano. i could just see Christie leaving his podium and poking his fingers in Obama's chest to make a point as the Secret Service agents attempt to tackle Christie. Classic!
RUDOLPH GIULIANI: Although he has name recognition, he is like anti-Santorum and would not win for the same reasons. He is a one trick pony. And being the mayor of New York and a mob buster does not make you qualified for the White House.
DONALD TRUMP: Speaking of New York, Trump was back in the news recently musing on the Perry candidacy. Unfortunately, when he withdrew from the race, he left the option open that he may step back in at some point. For the reasons he could not win when he was in the race, those reasons have not changed, Donald. You cannot change your past. If Trump were to somehow emerge at some point, then I would vote for Obama or move to New Zealand. His supposed vaunted business acumen can be summed up in three words: Chapter 11 Bankruptcy.
KATE GOSSELIN: If Trump, the host of a bad reality show re-enters the race, I would like to be the first to start a "Draft Kate" initiative. At least with her hairstyle, she is more presentable than Trump and that "dead squirrel on the head" look he sports. And all those kids in the White House would make for the best photo ops since John John played under the desk in the Oval Office. Plus, she is from Pennsylvania and we need that state in 2012. And did I mention also that she has less divorces on her resume than Donald Trump? With the thankful cancellation of her reality show, she is looking for employment now. Hey, if Trump could receive serious consideration, then Kate Gosselin should get her due.