Fool’s Errand

I never did get around to being a Kossack.  It just never happened, and on occasion, I’m sort of reminded as to why.

The latest shenanigans coming from the Daily KOS crowd appears to be a big push for Democrats and Independents to vote for Mitt Romney in tomorrow’s Michigan primary.  This at a time when the surging John McCain has eked out a slim lead in the state.

And, should a huge Democratic/Independent movement actually come off, it would indeed hand the state over to Romney who already has a ten point lead among Republicans; McCain’s current standing in the polls is thanks due to the very same cross the aisle support the Kossacks apparently seem bent on robbing from him.

Even Matt Yglesias thinks this is a good idea to which I say, huh?

It’s not that I’m thick, mind you.  I get the idea behind trying to alter the other party’s nominee, but as juicy as it sounds, I still think it’s a bad idea… and Romney?  Really?

On one hand, the push seems to come from those who want Romney as the nominee based on the idea that should the Democratic nominee lose, we want someone who won’t be quite that bad taking over for the current catastrophe we call a president.  The opposing point of logic would thusly have to be that you try and nominate Romney because he will go down like a teenager with a glass jaw in a prize fight.

The problem with both of these bits of logic is that I doubt either is exactly true.  Is Mitt the lesser of Republican evils?  The fact is, we simply don’t know.  He’s engaged in so much triangulation from the moment he decided to run for president that it’s hard to imagine exactly where he actually stands.  One thing I know for certain, though, is that I’m still inflicted with the heebie-jeebies as a result of his stump speech that none-too-subtly implied that those without religion aren’t necessarily entitled to freedom.

But neither should anyone thing this is a guy who would crumble in the general election either.  I’ve said it before, Mitt Romney is not an ungifted politician.  Crack all the jokes you want about his hair and his underwear, this is a man who wrangled support from the leadership of the Religious Right, and conservative strongholds (Like, perhaps, the National Review), despite both his out of favor religion and left leaning positions of the past.

Meanwhile, that very same socially liberal past is exactly what he can and will use in the general election to make himself more marketable to the middle and even some lefties who may be disenfranchised by the Democratic nominee.

But looking at the bigger picture, I’m loathe to imagine the repurcussions of a record number of Independents and especially Democrats voting for any Republican in any state.  Keep in mind that public opinion is constantly held in a vicious cycle wherein current public opinion is caught by the media, who reports, and fans the flame and sets off a chain reaction of back and forth.  Opinion sparks headlines, which only flares opinion up even more.

Currently, the GOP is still rather unexcited by its choice of candidates for the presidential nomination, but if the major headline coming out of Michigan is “Record number of Democrats come out to support ____”, the spin machine is going to kick into full gear, and the meme is going to be that Democrats are so disenchanted with their own candidates that they are now picking which Republican they want to vote for.

If you absolutely must pick a candidate, pick one that really will fall, like Mike Huckabee.  Even Hillary can’t screw that one up (Well… yeah, she can.  The trick for her to take on Huckabee is for her to keep her mouth shut and let him hang himself with his own rope.  Unfortunatey, I can see her not only lending him her own rope and tying the noose for him, at which point she’ll be perilously close to falling into it herself).

But in really, if you’re not a Republican but you still feel as though you need to make a contribution to their race, vote your head, vote your heart, but don’t go and vote what some Kossack tells you to do.

It’s crap like that that tends to get us in a mess in the first place.

3 Responses to “Fool’s Errand”

  1. Re-Al says:

    Please itemize Romney’s “triangulation” with specific instances and references. If (since) you can’t do that, please refrain from trumpeting the same old democrat party lines and try thinking for yourself.

  2. Dynamic says:

    Re-Al: If you’d genuinely like some examples of Romney’s triangulation in the past, they’re not hard to find.

    First, let’s define triangulation, which Wikipedia does thus: “… the act of a candidate presenting his or her ideology as being “above” and “between” the left and right sides of the political spectrum. It involves adopting for oneself some of the ideas of one’s political opponent.”

    Romney has been consistently supportive of gay rights, even running to the left of Ted Kennedy (Ted Kennedy!) on this issue in the 1994 Senate race (source: The Washington Blade). However, he no longer supports gay rights and indeed opposes gay marriage entire.

    In the same Senate race, Romney stated unequivocally that abortion should be “safe and legal” in this country (source: The Boston Globe). He now claims his views have “evolved” and that he is “consistently pro-life.”

    In 2006, Romney said: “Those who’ve been arrested or convicted of crimes shouldn’t be here. Those that are here paying taxes and not taking government benefits should begin a process toward application for citizenship, as they would from their home country.” A year later, he not only opposed legislation that would do precisely that, he excoriated John McCain for proposing it – and stated that it was “is a form of amnesty.” (Source: Boston Globe)

    On the other hand, maybe you’re right. Maybe that’s not triangulation; maybe it’s just lying.

    One last thing, Re-Al – I found all those references in under five minutes by topping “Romney Flip Flop” into google, and they were just the tip of the iceberg. If you can’t do your own research, please refrain from trumpeting the same old Republican party lines and try thinking for yourself.

  3. Re-Al says:

    Here’s where you go wrong: I didn’t ask you to Google “Romney Flip Flop,” I can certainly do that myself, and have; however, the “iceberg” you refer to proves, with a little real research, to be standard political spin by such as yourself who have pounced on what you see to be the only option you have to discredit Romney. In short, brand him a “flip-flopper” and just keep pounding that drum and people might just buy it without looking into it.

    So, here’s the reality…

    Romney was never in favor of “gay rights.” He has always been and still is supportive of the notion that people should not be discriminated against for their race, religion, sexual orientation, etc. Citizens are entitled to the same rights regardless of such categorization. The catch is that marriage is not a “right.” Since you’re Googling, see if you can find a single case of Romney being in favor or gay marriage at any time. There aren’t any. “Gay rights” (if there is such a thing) does not presuppose support of gay marriage. Summary: no change in Romney’s position.

    Abortion is the closest thing to a “flip flop” that you guys have and you keep pounding on it, but the problem is there is no flop. His views have evolved, as is his right, but his mind changed exactly one time. A “flip flopper” is someone who changes back and forth with every political wind (a la Hillary Clinton and John McCain). Romney may have “flipped” on this issue, but he did it exactly one time and has been consistent on it since. Further, on the abortion issue, his record in Mass. has always been more pro-life than pro-choice. His statement that abortion should be “safe and legal” was based on the fact that the law had already been passed and should be upheld as it is. That opinion has since evolved. Summary: no flip-flop (“triangulation”)

    Finally, you’re spinning Romney’s immigration positions. As per his own statement of 2006, he believes that criminal illegals should be removed from the country and that non-criminal illegals (an oxy-moron that I’ll let slide for the sake of argument) should be made to complete the same immigration steps as that of any other immigrant passing through our immigration system legally. McCain’s proposed plan would immediately make all illegal immigrants legal (amnesty) while they are supposedly following their “path to citizenship,” but his plan was full of holes that Romney and most of the country opposed vehemently. Romney’s on par with American at large on this one: most people are perfectly happy to allow immigrants into the country, but few want to reward those who already broke the law in getting here with special privileges and status while they proceed to become citizens ahead of those who have been waiting legally to get in. Summary: again, no change in Romney’s position.

    See, what I was asking for was real evidence of triangulation, not just the same old party b.s. you guys have been trying to ascribe to Romney since he got into the race. I know every one of the “examples” you will refer to in trying to make your case, and they’re all bogus.

    Care to try any others?

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