Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Presidential Revolving Doors

I've been following the Republican candidate shuffle for weeks now, so much that I dream about the debates. Regardless of which side of the fence you're on politically, you have to admit this has been comedy of the absurd. When the horses lined up at the gate, we had too many to name. I don't remember who all threw hats in the ring, but it was like a land-grab stampede. Hands waving in the air, all proclaiming "I'm the only one who can turn Obama into a one-term president."

Then we started seeing the bottom of the pack drop out. Names of people who weren't in the race floated around, but most didn't take the bait. We had Michelle Bachman leading for a couple of weeks. Ron Paul garnered some support, then faded, only to resurface recently. All the while, we had Mitt Romney smugly suggesting that the others were silly because he was the anointed one.

Rick Perry challenged Mitt. In spite of outrageous positions on many issues, Perry surged ahead, thereby proving the talking heads right. The public was desperately seeking Not-Mitt. Perry's mouth and lapses of intelligence all but doomed his hopes.

Herman Cain came on strong, crushed Perry and left Mitt looking a bit worried. Cain imploded on his lack of knowledge of international affairs, as well as a reported sexual affair. Bye, Herman. Mitt sat back, smugly thinking he'd get the Cain supporters.

And then came the Newtster. Gingrich to the rescue. Leading in the polls by lurking on the sidelines. The rush to embrace a man of complex flip-flops demonstrates one more time how desperate the early voting public is for Not-Mitt. Well, the Newtster is certainly not Mitt.

My opening comment was that one of the Republican candidates would turn Obama into a one-term president. I'm not sure that's the case. There is one certain way, however, that Obama could be a one-term president.

Following on a theory advanced in a Wall Street Journal editorial a few weeks ago, Obama could "do a Johnson" and announce he's not going to run. Hillary could announce that "for the good of the party and for the good of the country" she would. At 69% approval from both sides of the voting public, Hillary, not Mitt, not Not-Mitt, would be the Republicans worst nightmare. Just the thought would be enough for all the Republican candidates to send their clothes out to be dry-cleaned.

And then I woke up.