If pressed, I could tell you which candidate I prefer to emerge from the current crop of Republicans looking to oppose President Barack Obama in 2012. But regardless if it's Perry, Romney, Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul (HAHAHAHA!!! Yeah, right. - ed.), Herman Cain or Jon Huntsman who secures the nomination, my greater focus is ensuring Obama's defeat. After all, what is the goal for any candidate who takes on the President in next year's general election? Duh, winning!!
Given the social networking vibe amongst the right, I'm finding diverse opinions on who should oppose Obama. Some would argue that the likes of Bachmann and Paul would be the most ideologically pure, and thus we should be as true as possible to the Republican party principles. However, many others strenuously object to such candidates, feeling that they lack any mainstream appeal. That's where it would appear moderates like Romney, Perry or Huntsman would have an advantage due owning the executive experience which others lack.
My pal Katie Kieffer wrote an intriguing piece last week, challenging the narratives that certain lower tier candidates are "unelectable."
Even well-meaning conservatives fall prey to regurgitating the mainstream media’s mantra. For instance, a successful entrepreneur told me that he “likes Paul” but thinks he’s unelectable because he’s too “quirky.” I recently met a businessman who said, “You know, I agree with everything Bachmann says, but she’s not electable. There’s no way she can win.” Another conservative told me, “I agree with everything Bachmann says, but there’s something about her. I don’t know what it is, she just seems un-presidential.”
In this country, citizens have the right to vote for whomever they like based on whatever reasoning or logic they desire (That's not always a good thing but hey, welcome to a representative republic with democratic processes). We need to look no further than the 2008 election of Obama. I heard very little (if any) substantive reasons why people cast a vote for him. The prevailing sentiments for voting for a glorified community organizer was due to his being articulate or that he gave inspirational messages of "hope" or how it was high time our supposedly progressive country elected a minority to its highest office.
Like I alluded to earlier, the #1 goal for the political right in 2012 is ousting the incumbent President. That isn't going to happen without some independent voters throwing their support behind the GOP nominee, especially since Obama garnered the majority of votes from said demographic in '08.
So does one really believe that independents would vote for Bachmann or Paul over Obama? Early polling data would indicate that it's not likely. Regardless, I sincerely believe that any of the current crop of GOP candidates (yes, even Huntsman) would make a better President than the White House's current occupant.
With that, I have but one message for the GOP candidates: Just give me something I can use.