The Fallacy of the Brokered Convention
More and more the posts on RedState and in the public domain are calling for or speculating about a brokered convention due to dissatisfaction with the current crop of GOP candidates. The basic premise seems to be that if the current candidates can be held to positions under fifty percent and thereby avoiding the outright selection of a nominee, that one of the magical wunderkind of the GOP who chose not to run or who could now be called upon to run, could sweep in and save the Republican Party from sure defeat at the hands of Candidate X (read Romney for some and Gingrich for others). Names such as Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, Paul Ryan, and Mitch Daniels are tossed about as potential party saviors.
We Republicans have fallen victim to the liberal mantra that Obama is invincible, and that our candidates are weak and most have no chance of winning against him. Both camps are firm in their belief that only their candidate is able to have a broad enough appeal to the general electorate to beat Obama. Each camp quibbles over Gingrich’s personal issues and old record or Romney’s wealth and poor record as a conservative. They each aver that the great Obama juggernaut will sweep over the opposing camp’s candidate if that person is chosen as the nominee and that we will then be doomed to four more years of Obama’s policies and government which will sign the death warrant of the country and sentence it to oblivion as a third world nation.
The truth of this matter is far from these positions. Obama is a failed president on many levels and he has managed, in the short span of three years, to put us on the verge of economic and social disaster, and now threatens to usurp the powers of the Congress in order to continue his headlong flight into the welfare state “utopia”. He has already done so with his recess appointment gambit and assures us in the State of the Union Address that he is ready to do even more. His economic policies and regulations are driving more small businesses and individuals into failure and job loss as he knowingly tries to use his own destruction of the economy to create a Democratic voting base of the newly indigent who will keep the Democrats in power, just as pandering to minorities has kept them in power for so long until now. The Democrats fear the re-awakened conservative grassroots movement and have seen that they can no longer count on the blue collar working vote of any make-up, to maintain their control. What better example than the one recently exposed by Obama’s staffers that indicated his path to victory does not include the blue collar working class.
What we must do is recognize that he is imminently weak and almost assuredly fatally injured with his lack of performance. We must avoid dreaming about the candidate/s who might have been and focus on the candidates we have now. The process this election cycle is longer and more arduous than what we have been accustomed to in recent history and panic is setting in among those who should know better. The primary system is serving its function; to vette the proposed candidates and let the voters select the best candidate to face Obama in the general election. It is working as it should and we must allow it to play out and at its conclusion, we must support the nominee, whoever it may be, wholeheartedly. A brokered convention will do nothing except alienate the voters in the states who have played by the rules and made their choices known. To start the general election campaign with an untested, little-vetted candidate, is foolishness in the extreme. A brokered convention is the surest way to insure a victory for Obama in an election cycle when almost any credible Republican candidate currently in the field could beat the incumbent (discounting Ron Paul, who is neither conservative nor Republican). Each of the potential candidates proposed to take the convention through the brokering process have issues which make them no better than anyone currently in the field. Jeb Bush becomes the moderate “Bush Dynasty candidate”; Governor Christie inherits the mantle of Romney from his social stances and support of him; Governor Daniels did not have the fire in the belly to enter the fray initially and will be seen as an opportunist if he factors in the mix; and Paul Ryan who has not the experience nor the following to be a viable candidate in the general election.
It is through the brokered convention that we lose our chance to, at best, take the White House out of Democrat hands and, at least, select a candidate with some conservative leaning to further the cause that so many of us care about in both fiscal and social conservatism. FDR was the last successfully elected President from a brokered convention; after that, the Republicans lost with Dewey against Truman in a brokered convention in 1948 and the Democrats lost with Adlai Stevenson in 1952 against Eisenhower. No, a brokered convention is not the way to success in 2012 and if the Republican Party pursues that route, it will certainly make the fears of all the combined current candidate camps a needless and horrible reality.