A reminder on long primaries.
In 2008, the Democratic party had one of the longest, one of the most expensive, and one of the most bitter primaries in American political history. It was a drawn-out, unpleasant affair where Hillary Clinton, the expected front-runner, was eventually beaten – despite the fact that she won almost all of the top Democratic-leaning states, arguably won the popular vote, and nobody actually won enough pledged delegates to win outright. Insurgent candidate Barack Obama then, of course, proceeded to win the general election handily, pretty much none the worse for wear for the grind.
Please note that I am not directly comparing any of the Republican candidates* for President to Barack Obama; such a thing would be incredibly cruel to President Obama, who has under-performed in office in precisely the way that one would expect of a liberal academic with no executive experience whatsoever and a legislative ‘record’ that consisted of faithfully voting where, when, and how he was told. What I am doing is noting that I for one am not terrified of having a long, drawn-out, and expensive Republican primary. Admittedly, I may end up being in the minority in this one – it wouldn’t be the first time, and it wouldn’t be the last – and, honestly, the decision isn’t mine to make. If the candidates don’t decide to fight it out, there’s not much I can do in response.
But if they do decide to fight it out, then I have a heartfelt suggestion for anybody inclined to pout: suck it up and walk it off. Nobody’s entitled to a nomination. And certainly nobody’s entitled to use ‘shut up, he explained’ as a debate tactic. Particularly since trying that trick doesn’t in fact work, anyway; it merely annoys the folks who are the target of it…
Moe Lane (crosspost)
*Note that I do not consider Ron Paul a Republican. Then again, neither does he, really.