Sunday, April 24, 2011

A Parade of Losers: Charles Krauthammer's handicapping of 2012

I like Charles Krauthammer. On almost any given issue, his voice is one of the first I seek out. However, when it comes to picking candidates, I find that poor Dr. K suffers badly from Establishmentus Elitetitus. The poor Doctor seems to have a major affection for establishment weaklings.

Just look at his early handicapping of the 2012 GOP field. Krauthammer picks the dullest losers as "major candidates".
The major candidates
Mitt Romney: Serious guy. Pre-vetted (2008). Tons of private- and public-sector executive experience. If not for one thing, he'd be the prohibitive front-runner. Unfortunately, the one thing is a big thing: Massachusetts' Romneycare. For an election in which the main issue is excessive government (see Axiom One), that's a huge liability. Every sentient Republican has been trying to figure out how to explain it away. I've heard no reports of any success. Romney is Secretariat at Belmont, but ridden by Minnesota Fats. He goes out at 5-1.
Newt Gingrich: Smart guy. A fountain of ideas. No, a Vesuvius of ideas. Some brilliance, lots of lava. Architect of a historic Republican victory in 1994. Rocky speakership. Unfortunate personal baggage. 12-1.

Haley Barbour: Successful governor. Experienced Washington hand. Abundant charm. Baggage: Years of lobbying, unforced errors on civil rights, early isolationist deviations. Rarely without a comeback, however. 7-1.

Tim Pawlenty: Formerly, unassuming, unprepossessing, solid two-term Minnesota governor. Currently, mouse that roars. Up-tempo style, middle-of-the-road conservative content. Apparently baggageless. Could be the last man standing. 5-1.

Mitch Daniels: Highly successful governor. Budget guru. Delightful dullness satisfies all axioms (see above). Foreign policy unknown, assuming he has one. Alienated some conservatives with his call for a truce on social issues. If he runs, 6-1.

Dr. K even writes off Michele Bachmann as a long shot, says Palin isn't running and makes no mention of Herman Cain. He places Chris Christie in the less likely category, even when Christie will probably be on every establishment candidate's VP short list. Just about the only thing Dr. K gets right is calling out Donald Trump.

If I were Dr. K, I would have called Gingrich, Barbour and Pawlenty long shots. Gringrich has hopelessly beclowned himself before the action started. Barbour is constantly involved in one racial flap after another and Pawlenty could not get noticed even if he set himself on fire in the middle of Mall of America on Christmas Eve.

I would have also added Jon Huntsman to the major player category. Huntsman is the perfect Romney clone minus the RomneyCare baggage and given the trouble Romney is having with that issue, Huntman looks better and better by the minute. I would have also placed Bachmann and Palin in the major candidates category. For both of them, the enthusiasm of their supporters is off the chain and that translates into real traction.

Dr. K is right to label Marco Rubio, Nikki Haley and Paul Ryan as 2016 material, but why didn't he mention Rand Paul and Allen West? Both of them are on fire and will be major player come 2016 and beyond.

I cannot wait for the primaries to finally get underway so that these old guard establishment types will finally see that the old play book doesn't work anymore.

Via: Memeorandum
Via: The New York Daily News


Hack said...

I agree totally, though I would still prefer Paul Ryan as the nominee next year.

FIREBIRD said...

I agree with Chuck on Romney - besides thinking he's too slick by half, Romney would completely neutralize Obamacare as an issue - and THAT is oneo f the TWO MAIN issues in 2012, along with the economy - and the conservatives cannot concede anything to the left in 2012, certainly not the socialized medicine issue

Justine said...

"Pawlenty could not get noticed even if he set himself on fire in the middle of Mall of America on Christmas Eve."

Thanks for the chuckle over my morning coffee! Happy Easter to you!

The Born Again American said...

I too usually agree Dr. K, however I must agree with you on this... He refuses to see that the same ole, same ole GOP candidate will probably not defeat BO, and frankly, that scares the crap out of me...


Stogie said...

I came to distrust Krauthammer some time ago. He is too establishment for me. We do not need another "business as usual" candidate, but someone with the will and the intent to undo the damage the Democrats have done.

I will not vote for any of the people that Krauthammer has described.

Left Coast Rebel said...

Good Lord, Dr. K. is so wrong on this list, it just shows that when push comes to shove many of the "conservative" pundits really are anything but. This list is destined for certain failure and I speak for myself -- I won't vote for any of these fools.

Anonymous said...

Krauthammer gets policy right about 95% of the time, but he's been very wrong on politics since the whole Tea Party movement sprung up.

And the reason he's been so wrong on politics is what you alluded to in the last sentence, the "ole playbook ain't gonna work no more". -- SCOTT

Anonymous said...

I disagree with Dr. K. on that line-up as well. I keep hoping Allen West will decide to jump in and start an exploratory committee.
I may have posted this link before.

SB Smith

Les Carpenter said...

Great post. None of the aforementioned clowns would I consider.

Totally disenchanted with the potential republican field.

My early favorites - Johnson, Paul the elder, and Cain.

We'll see...

Anonymous said...

wow!! I just happened to stumble on your blog. I then read your critique of Charles Krauthammer. That's a pretty accurate assessment and I especially enjoyed the last line. "the old play book doesn't work anymore".
You are well and truly RIGHT ON THE MONEY with that statement and several others!
I have now bookmarked your blog and will check in to see what other goodies you come up with!

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