What is a serious Republican Presidential candidate to do when faced with the prospect of competing in the daily news cycle against the likes of Sarah Palin and Donald Trump? These two individuals have the ability to suck all of the available air out of a room simply by opening their mouths leaving everyone unfortunate enough to be sharing that room with them gasping for breath. They hold the same sway over the media’s gnat-like attention as O.J. Simpson, Michael Jackson, the balloon boy or any single engine plane having difficulty dropping it’s landing gear within camera shot of a local affiliates “action chopper.”
Ooh, look, shiny!
Unfortunately for Republicans, this means that any chance of moving a serious 2012 candidate into the mainstream discussion is highly unlikely. This was proven yesterday when, on the heels of a birther media blitz that most certainly has Orly Taitz oscillating between mumbling to herself and fits of rage, Donald Trump moved into a tie for first place in the latest CNN/Opinion Research Survey Corporation poll of likely Republican Presidential candidates. As a result, for yet another night the cable news talkers spent good portions of their programs covering this train-wreck of a candidacy.
If you are a serious Republican you might see this as a sign of the Apocalypse (not in the extreme biblical sense but more like in the old Sports Illustrated back-page feature sense) but I offer you this hope. What does one do when faced with the prospect of being shut out of the conversation? There are a few answers but in the case of recent POTUS politics there are basically two options. You take the low road, joining the birther choir along side Trump and Palin only screaming louder or acting even crazier. This was the position every Republican POTUS candidate took during hte 2008 campaign on issues like evolution, climate change and general fear of Muslims.
Or you could take the high road setting yourself apart from the pack and claiming the mantle of the sole sane person in the room. Yesterday Mitt Romney took the high road by proclaiming loud and clear in an interview with Larry Kudlow that he believes this birther stuff is nonsense.
“I think the citizenship test has been passed. I believe the president was born in the United States. There are real reasons to get this guy out of office,” Romney told CNBC’s Larry Kudlow the day after he formally announced that he’s exploring a run for the White House. “The man needs to be taken out of office but his citizenship isn’t the reason why.”
This my friends is a move in the right direction and the first positive sign that it is indeed possible to run for the Republican nomination and not act like a crazy person. Of course, you probably haven’t heard much about this because Donald Trump barfed up some moronic one liner about how great he is and how he hates Muslims. I guess the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.
UPDATE: Others linking the Romney story…