GOP Presidential Field for 2012

John Thune and Mitch Daniels are GOP fresh faces

Thune, a former congressman and a soft-spoken charmer with Gary Cooper’s good looks, just completed his first term in the Senate.  Thune won instant popularity among Republicans when he established himself as a giant-killer, knocking off sitting Senate Democratic leader Tom Daschle in 2004. He grew up in Murdo, S.D., population 612, the son of a World War II aviator and war hero.  He has strong appeal to evangelicals as a graduate of a California Bible college. He likes to focus on small companies and local business; he is clearly conservative but pragmatic. And stylistically, he is congenial, earnest and gracious. He can talk farming and football as easily as he can taxes and the deficit.  As a sitting senator, he’ll have to defend some difficult votes–like supporting the TARP fund.

Indiana Gov. Mitch “The Blade” Daniels, one of the rare sitting politicians in this country who has actually shown the fortitude to cut budgets. He trimmed $250 million from the Indiana budget, saved $190 million by renegotiating government contracts and cut the state’s rate of spending growth in half.  Daniels served as chief of staff to Senator Richard Lugar, was a senior advisor to President Ronald Reagan, was President George W. Bush’s budget director and has been elected twice governor, receiving more votes than anyone who has ever run for office in Indiana. He won 72 of 92 counties (Obama won 15), got 24 percent of the Democrat vote, 20 percent of African Americans, and won every age demographic.  He inherited a state hundreds of millions in debt and since taking office has balanced every budget. And he’s done it while enacting the largest tax cut in state history, ethics and telecom reform, and a fully-funded tax- and debt-free transportation plan.

Will the Republican candidate be one of the well knowns or someone new and fresh?  These two fresh faces look to be contenders.   Joe Scarborough, Haley Barbour, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, General David Petraeus, and Governor Chris Christie are other names I’ve heard may be in contention.  The field looks well populated!  Which ones will satisfy the narrow tests of Tea Partiers, Evangelicals and still appeal to Moderates?


Filed under Elections, Republicans

19 responses to “GOP Presidential Field for 2012

  1. badbiker

    It’s impossible to appeal to moderates and to the Tea Party.

    In the Bagger’s estimation, “moderation” is a naughty word.

    • I do find it nearly impossible to talk with many of them. Vacuum like, they seem to have their hoses on blow, and are unable to take anything in. The word ‘vacuum’ also describes their brains.

  2. I can’t actually understand the Tea Partiers and find them to hold very diverse opinions and agendas. The only thing I’ve found they all share is anger. What I’m pretty sure of tho is that once a candidate is named, no matter who they were for or against before getting the field narrowed, they will be FOR that candidate. Now, if the candidate loses, like John McCain did, then you won’t be able to find a single person who voted for that loser.

    The Moderates and Independents aren’t as likely to march in lock step and I think most of them are looking for a candidate who has way more on the ball than being against abortion and gay marriage. I’m of the opinion those social issues aren’t first on the list for more than a tiny minority of people.

  3. I find Mitch Daniels to be an interesting man. I want to find out more about him. What I’ve heard so far describes someone I think Americans could be happy to have in national office!

    • indypendent

      I thought the same thing until I got to the part where he was George W. Bush’s budget director.

      That did it for me!

  4. Do you think the campaigning for the Republican bid for POTUS has already begun? If not, when can we expect it and how long will it take till we’re sick of the whole thing?

  5. WSClark

    If Daniel’s was Bush II’s budget director, how did his administration manage to more than double the National Debt in eight years?

    Maybe Daniels isn’t quite “the Blade” as advertised.

  6. WSClark

    I suggest, that in my humble and modest opinion, that Barack Obama would wipe the floor with any of the above mentioned challengers.

    That, and $12.50 will buy you a cup of coffee at Starbucks.

  7. It’s a for sure that none of the old stand by wannabes from before could beat President Obama. Their only hope is some fresh face that can be sold with shenanigans (which we know they excel at!). And I don’t see that as possible if the economy continues to improve. Look at how much better off we are after only 16 months of President Obama’s policies! Another 2-1/2 years and we’ll see all areas, including unemployment numbers, greatly improved.

    • WSClark

      You are correct that it would take a new GOP face, rather than any of the old ones, to bear Obama in 2012.

      That having been said, however, times should be much, much better in 2012 than they were in 2008 and Americans have shown a great reluctance to vote out an incumbent president when times were good.

      Quite frankly, to beat Obama in 2012, the Republicans are going to have to pray that the recession and the wars are still continuing at that point, and maybe throw in a few terrorist attacks for good measure.

      For some Republicans, I am sure that they include those things in their nightly prayers.

      • indypendent

        I’m sure those nightly prayers will be helped by the ‘right hand of God – Pat Robertson’.


    • nihilism

      1. total rejection of established laws and institutions.

      2. anarchy, terrorism, or other revolutionary activity.

      3. total and absolute destructiveness, esp. toward the world at large and including oneself: the power-mad nihilism that marked Hitler’s last years.

      4. Philosophy.
      a. an extreme form of skepticism: the denial of all real existence or the possibility of an objective basis for truth.
      b. nothingness or nonexistence.

      5. (sometimes initial capital letter) the principles of a Russian revolutionary group, active in the latter half of the 19th century, holding that existing social and political institutions must be destroyed in order to clear the way for a new state of society and employing extreme measures, including terrorism and assassination.

      • prairie pond

        Well, we’ve certainly seen that from the teabagging crowd, and the religious right.

        Isnt it funny that most of the political assassinations and mass shootings are done by religious right, conservative wingnuts?

        The anti-woman, anti-choicers have certainly committed their share of assassinations by killing doctors who help women who need and want abortions.

        And yet, they call themselves Americans and want to be uber patriots. Since when did committing an assassination to get your ideology set in law become the new “american way”?

    • prairie pond

      Sorry to disagree, Fnord, but we are not seeing change in “all areas”. DADT and DOMA are not even on obama’s radar screen for “change” before the next election.

      Nothing good is changing for me and mine, despite his campaign rhetoric.

      • WSClark

        I, for one, share your disappointment over the non-action on DOMA and DADT, Pond, for obviously different reasons.

        I have a lot of respect for DODS Gates, but I don’t understand his reluctance in wanting to “review” prior to repealing DADT. I don’t understand Obama’s willingness to honor Gates’ request.

        I certainly don’t understand McCain’s flip-flop on the issue, but that’s another story.

        Obama came into office with a lot on his plate, but that to me is not an acceptable excuse for a lack on leadership on Gay Rights issues.

        (As an aside, the WEBlog cons would flip if the saw that I actually criticized Obama!)

      • I know I’m a Pollyanna, and I’m disappointed too — I’m sure not to the degree you are, but believe me I don’t understand why anyone would / could think a sexual persuasion makes a person less entitled to the exact same rights as every other person.

        Indulge me a minute. Is it at all possible that President Obama knows there will be several who will make absolute fools of themselves with this issue in the upcoming midterms? Ya know the ones who will display their homophobia and bigotry with pride. Sometimes (often it seems) those who scream the loudest have the most to hide! Could this be a plan?

        OK — now, you’ve indulged me that minute and can let go and let me have it! I can take everything I deserve and always learn when I’m set straight on my silliness.

  8. indypendent

    Maybe Obama is just waiting for more Evangelicals to get caught with their own rentboy supposedly carrying their luggage while in Europe?

    And then I read where Ted Haggard has started a new church.

    Just give it some more time and with more Republicans getting caught with their pants down (literally), will give Obama even more ammunition.

    And the fact that the younger generation does not seem to have the same hang-up about gay issues that the older Tea Party Republicans seems to have.

    • indypendent

      At some point, those old Tea Partiers have got to die off.

      And since the Tea Party Set is not attracting younger voters, minorities or moderates – what is their future going to look like?

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