Mitt Romney: The next Bob Dole

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney

Associated Press photos

Above: Repugnican Mitt Romney pontificates at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, D.C., last month. Below: Failed 1996 Repugnican presidential candidate Bob Dole appears at a rally for Repugnican Tea Party nutjob Sarah Palin in Raleigh, N.C., in November 2008.

Bob Dole - Sarah Palin Campaigns In Raleigh Three Days Before Election

Getty Images

Repugnican Mitt Romney will be the 2012 Repugnican Tea Party presidential candidate. And he will lose to Barack Obama in November 2012.

Romney consistently appears in the top three favorites of Repugnican Tea Party members for the 2012 Repugnican Tea Party presidential nomination in recent nationwide polls. He usually ranks under Mike Huckabee but above Sarah Palin.

A Feb. 24-Feb. 28 NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, for instance, put Huckabee at 25 percent, Romney at 21 percent, has-been Newt Gingrich at 13 percent, and Palin at a measly 12 percent.

A Feb. 19-Feb. 20 Gallup poll put Huckabee at 18 percent, Romney at 16 percent, Palin also at 16 percent, and Gingrich at 9 percent.

Finally, a Feb. 12-Feb. 15 Newsweek/Daily Beast poll put Romney at 19 percent, Huckabee at 18 percent, and Palin at 10 percent.

It’s a safe bet, I think, to write off Palin and Gingrich (and anyone else) and to narrow it down to Romney and Huckabee.

Huckabee is doing only slightly better than is Romney in most polls, and the closer that we get to November 2012, the more the crotchety Huckabee will remind Repugnican Tea Party voters of 2008 presidential loser John McCainosaurus, I believe. Their angry, bitter, old white guy lost in November 2008 to the much younger (gasp!) black guy by 7 percent of the popular vote, and they don’t want a repeat of that, I’m sure.*

Huckabee’s latest trips are asserting falsely that Barack Obama grew up in his father’s homeland of Kenya (Obama actually grew up in Hawaii and in Indonesia [mostly in Hawaii] — doesn’t Huckabee pay attention to the birthers?) and that recent best-actress winner Natalie Portman is awful for being an unwed pregnant woman, quite reminiscent of Repugnican retard (that’s redundant…) Dan Quayle’s remark way back in 1992 that the fictitious television character of Murphy Brown, who on the TV show had had a child out of wedlock, was a horrible example for others.

Huckabee, a former Southern Baptist minister, is living in the distant past. The majority of Americans no longer give a shit whether a woman chooses to have a baby inside or outside of marriage. The majority of Americans correctly believe it to be the woman’s business and no one fucking else’s. (And they know that Barack Obama was not raised in Kenya.)

Romney, on the other hand, is expected to avoid social/culture-war issues in his quest for the White House and to emphasize the nation’s economic woes. After all, for him to emphasize social/culture-war issues would only emphasize the fact that he is a Mormon, which is troublesome not only for anti-theocratic progressives like me (I’m a gay progressive, so there’s no way in hell that I’d ever vote for an active Mormon), but for Huckabee’s base of non-Mormon “Christo”fascists, the majority of whom believe that Mormonism isn’t Christian.

Already Romney has coined his “Obama Misery Index,” which is predicated on convincing the majority of the American voters that we went right from Bill Clinton to Barack Obama — that the eight, long, nightmarish years of rule by the unelected BushCheneyCorp regime never fucking happened. (George W. Bush inherited a federal budget surplus from Bill Clinton but ended his two unelected terms with a record federal budget deficit.)

Romney also is parroting Repugnican icon Ronald Reagan’s “trickle-down” economics (even more tax breaks for the corporations will result in more jobs for Americans, Romney is lying), which never worked and which never will.

While Romney is launching a campaign of blatant fucking lies that the national economy was just fine until Barack Obama came along and that Romney has the solutions for our nation’s economic ills, Romney at least is focusing on what the majority of the 2012 voters care about: their pocketbooks (and not, say, Natalie Portman’s Murphy-Brown-like pregnancy).

And let’s face it: Romney is a lot more telegenic than is the wall-eyed Huckabee, too. In presidential (hell, in almost all) politics today, how you look matters. It should not, but it does.

Further, Romney inexplicably became governor of the blue state of Massachusetts (for one four-year term from 2003 to 2007), so he presumedly has more experience appealing to “swing voters” than does Huckabee, who was governor of the red state of Arkansas for more than two four-year terms (as the state’s lieutenant governor he had assumed a portion of the previous governor’s term in 1996 and then was elected as the state’s governor in 1998 and re-elected in 2002).  

Huckabee, unlike Romney, never has had to play to an audience of voters who actually have two brain cells to rub together, and what plays well in Arkansas (cue the banjo) doesn’t play well nationwide, which Huckabee is going to discover.

There are other factors in Romney’s presidential loss in 2012 as well, such as the fact that it’s unlikely for an incumbent president running for re-election to lose his bid. Jimmy Carter’s loss in his re-election bid to Ronald Reagan in 1980, and George H.W. Bush’s loss in his 1992 re-election bid to Bill Clinton were some exceptions, not the rule. Even George W. Bush eked out a second term in 2004, with 50.7 percent of the popular vote. (Had Hurricane Katrina happened before the 2004 election, instead of the following year, I have no doubt that Gee Dubya would have been only a one-term president.)

Losing a presidential election much more often than not is the end of a politician’s presidential aspirations. Richard Nixon lost in 1960 to John F. Kennedy but then won the White House in 1968, but in my lifetime (I was born in 1968), this was the rare exception, not the rule. Since 1964, presidential election losers Barry Goldwater, Hubert Humphrey, George McGovern, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Walter Mondale, Michael Dukakis, George H.W. Bush, Bob Dole, Al Gore, John Kerry and John McCainosaurus did not, have not or (probably) never will run for president again.

So you would think that members of the Repugnican (Tea) Party would prefer to sit 2012 out, given the uphill battle, but Romney and Huckabee have been out of elected office for a while now, and they probably don’t want to risk becoming more obscure over the course of another four more years, only to possibly be replaced in popularity in 2016 by an upstart (say, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie or Ohio Gov. John Kasich or Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels or maybe even Lousiana Gov. Bobby Jindal** — and Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour is termed out in 2012). 

And, I suppose, the lure of the White House is just too appealing to too many egomaniacs, even if it’s a quixotic quest — even if, as in Mitt Romney’s case, rather than being the next Ronald Reagan (a title already claimed by Repugnican Tea Party Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker), he’s much more likely to end up like the stiff and yawn-inducing Bob Dole did in 1996, losing to Bill Clinton by 8.5 percent of the popular vote.***

*While Romney is a deceptively youthful-looking 63 years old (and turns 64 in less than a week) and Huckabee actually is younger than Romney, at 55 years old, to me and to most other people, I surmise, Romney appears to be the younger of the two.

**While the Egypt-like battle in his state is ongoing, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s political future is, I believe, toast.

***Although, to be fair and balanced, I think it’s possible that Romney will lose to Obama in 2012 by a smaller margin than McCainosaurus did in 2008.

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