Tag Archives: Sarah Palin

A Democrat’s take on the 2012 GOP Presidential Field


Last week, the FOX network continued its push to replace President Obama with its first official piece of business, the first FOX Republican Presidential candidate debate.  While many of the top contenders decided not to attend, five middle and lower tier candidates showed up and excited national Republican political junkies.

Despite the low candidate turnout, and the absence of the most controversial candidates, this particular debate was a bit controversial.  Not just controversial in that 4 of the 5 candidates in attendance said they would support torture as a President… (pause for shake of head)… but it was controversial in that the Associated Press and Reuters chose not to attend because of restrictions placed by the FOX Network on other news gathering organizations.  I guess it just proves that Sirius/XM was correct in their recent reclassification moving FOX “News” from the News station category to the Political station category.

Anyway, it was the first event of the 2012 presidential race.  We will have a better picture of what to expect as we approach the summer and fall. There should be candidates beating down the door to take on President Obama the way Republicans talk about how bad a President he is. I think the reality is that potential candidates realize it would have been really hard to beat Barack Obama even before the recent political events.

Here is my uneducated take on the field of Obama’s potential challengers.

The Serious Presidential Challengers:
Mitt Romney
Former Governor of Massachusetts, dogged within the party for RomneyCare and past “liberal” stances. Most recent polls have him closely behind poll leader Mike Huckabee, second, just like he was to John McCain.  Romney lost to Ted Kennedy in a Senate race not long ago.  In that race Senator Kennedy joked that Romeny flipped and flopped so much that if the election lasted long enough, Mitt would vote for Kennedy instead of himself. Ted Kennedy also joked saying “I am pro choice, Mitt is multiple choice.” I think that flip-flop aspect of his history will keep him in second, regardless of who wins the nomination.  But, if he gets the nomination, he might have a better chance of winning than a lot of these candidates.

Jeb Bush
I included Jeb Bush in the serious challenger list, but not Mike Huckabee, go figure.  Huckabee is obviously a serious contender, I’m just unsure he will run.  I think Jeb will run.  He is obviously hurt by Bush 43 as well as Bush 41, by 43’s policies and result, and 41 along with 43 by the monarchal aspect of a third Bush as a President.  Those are the only reasons he wouldn’t run, but if he jumps in, especially at the last minute into a crowd of dull, lifeless contenders, he immediately becomes a star.  I don’t think he can win the presidency because of 41 and 43, but he could easily get the nomination. 

The Dark Horses:
Paul Ryan
Like Bush, he isn’t necessarily an expected candidate, but neither was Barack Obama.  He is a Midwesterner liked by Tea Party and Republicans, and he has already established a fiscal campaign against Obama. He is technically a dark horse because he isn’t a candidate yet. If he jumped in, I think he would move to the serious challenger level and be labeled by some the second coming of Ronald Reagan (which would be completely inaccurate, don’t get me started.)

Tim Pawlenty
He seemed to be the winner in the recent FOX Network debate according to other’s accounts.  He could win by default because he is non-controversial nationally, yes, he did raise his hand in support of torture.  Of course, how he left the State of Minnesota could really hurt him in a national debate.  But if Mike Huckabee stays out of the race, and he wins Iowa.  He could run away with the nomination a la Bill Clinton. 

Mitch Daniels
Ditto on Tim Pawlenty, but he actually did the things Pawlenty didn’t, like solving a state budget deficit. He also is seen as a little more independent that would appeal to moderates with his decision to avoid controversial social wedge issues, which is a negative to hard core Republicans.  Maybe a good national pick, but might have a hard time getting the Republican nomination.

Michelle Bachmann
I know she got a zero in a recent Iowa poll, but ths is a very shrewd and hard working politician. I consider her a dark horse, not because I think she can win, but because she can get some serious attention and raise a lot of money.  The problem is she has a really good thing going where she is right now, so I question whether she would want to leave the House, especially if her district borders remain unchanged as they appear to be in the first redistricting attempt. On the other hand, if she does enter the race and doesn’t win the nomination, she is poised to fully concentrate on taking on Sen. Al Franken in 2014.  That makes me think she might not mind getting in.

The Not So Likely:
Newt Gingrich
He announced he is in today.  He is a fundraising powerhouse and he WAS a political powerhouse. I think the “was” aspect is weighing on his ego.  He can make a run, and if he loses, but does well, he gets the extra attention to sell books and continues to get calls from the FOX network to be an analyst.  If he happens to win, even better for Newt.

Herman Cain
Herman Cain was the fan favorite at the FOX Network debate, and to his credit, he was the only candidate who said he would not support torture.  He doesn’t have much of a chance.

Sarah Palin
Fierce loyalty among fans, but doesn’t seem to the have the skills or desire to seriously compete for the GOP nomination, let alone the Presidency. Plus, a bad loss would seriously diminish her ability to be taken seriously on the FOX network…

Ron Paul
Might have a better chance to win the presidency than some of these guys, but he can’t win the GOP nomination.  Plus, there is his son…

The Jokes:
Donald Trump
He was a registered Democrat, vied to run as the Reform Party candidate for president, toyed with running for New York Governor, and now is threatening to toss his hair in the ring this year for President. It is all a publicity stunt to increase his wealth. After all, is the country really going to elect a man who started life with $400 million that his father left him and has been bankrupt 3 times since, divorced twice, had an affair, and thinks he has the right to judge other’s moral and financial decisions?  Recent polls have put him in his place, close to last.

Rick Santorum
Just Google Rick Santorum quotes. No change. Nothing more to say.

Sarah Palin
Could be included here too.

The could haves, but have better things to do:
Mike Huckabee
He has a good gig going. If he gets in he is a “challenger” but I’ve read that he isn’t necessarily interested.  He leads in the current polls, and he might be the only current potential candidate (not including Bush or Ryan) at the top of the list who could unite the Republican base and challenge Obama. 

Haley Barbour
Already out. He is old and wants to spend the rest of his life enjoying it.  The funny thing is that I read he might be Mike Huckabee’s running mate if he runs.  His exit from the race adds to my feeling that Huckabee is out too.

Overall, at this point in the race it seems like a pretty weak pack. If I were betting, and Huckabee stays out, I would put my money on Pawlenty.  But if Bush or Ryan get in, Pawlenty is toast.  They are probably all toast if Huckabee gets in.

Eisenhower and Reagan Quotes Are Still Pertinent Today

I posted the following two posts on Facebook recently:

“President Eisenhower supported trade unions, Social Security, and progressive taxation. Ike said that opponents of trade unions were “fools.” He called opponents of Social Security “stupid.” And he said that the way to balance the budget was to “tax the rich.””


“Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost.” ~Ronald Reagan”

I received a comment that basically implied that a past quote does not make it pertinent in today’s context. I think there is a lot of relevancy in those quotes today.  I think you would have a hard time finding a quote from FDR, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter or Clinton that so contradicts the current Democratic agenda of national healthcare, the rights of worker, the importance of a strong public education system, the need to eliminate poverty or a fair taxation system.  Those are all major tenets today of Democratic policy, as they have been for decades.  And while the Democratic Party has moved to the right during that time, the Republican Party has moved rapidly and unsustainably far to the right recently.  The quotes from the above Republican standard bearers reflect that that move to the right. 

The Party is becoming so dogmatic that icons of the party would probably be excluded today.  Recent attitudes have seen moderate Republican after moderate Republican drummed out of the party.  Arlen Specter, Lincoln Chafee, Lisa Murkowski, the Override Six… Jim Ramstad, a good Congressman, probably would have had GOP opposition in the last couple elections if he had stayed, and Arne Carlson is a pariah. 

I think there will be a return to moderation at some point.  I think Republicans who are more willing to follow Reagan’s ideals rather than using his name as some sort of conservative badge to prove their worthiness, will begin taking back the party. There are Independents today who are true Republicans, but have left the party officially because of Tom Delay, Karl Rove, Dick Cheney, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachmann, John Boehner and even celebrities like Glenn Beck.  These people are not mainstream Republicans like Reagan was who appealed to so many independents.  They are not the future of the Party.  They are temporary attention seeking zealots in the mode of Joe McCarthy. 

They place Reagan on a pedestal, but only seem to remember the things that pertain to today’s agenda.  They ignore the deficit growth, tax increases, his hatred of nuclear weapons and his desire to avoid conflict.  One of the stupidest things I heard around the recent election was a series of interviews with Republican candidates who were asked living or dead who they would like to have dinner with.  A few conservatives said a family member or Jesus, but the majority said Ronald Reagan.  It seemed very contrived to me.  These no compromise, no middle ground Republicans don’t belong in Reagan’s company.  Reagan said if 80% of what he wanted passed, it was a success.  80% is a loss in the mind of so many Republicans in power, Walker, the Fitzgerald brothers, Boehner, Pawlenty…  The only correlation between Reagan and some of these extremists is the little “(R)” after their name.  It certainly isn’t intelligence or an understanding of political success.

One of these things is not like the other: Hillary Clinton, Sarah Palin, Margaret Thatcher, Aung Sun Suu Kyi

One of these things is not like the others,
One of these things just doesn’t belong,
Can you tell which thing is not like the others
By the time I finish my song?

Gallup Poll released its list of the 10 most admired women.  First on the list is Hillary Clinton with 17%, next is Sarah Palin 12% and third is Oprah Winfrey with 11%.

1. Hillary Clinton
2. Sarah Palin
3. Oprah Winfrey
4. Michelle Obama
5. Condoleezzza Rice
6. Queen Elizabeth
7. Angelina Jolie
8. Margaret Thatcher
9. (Tie) Aung Sun Suu Kyi
(Tie) Laura Bush
(Tie )Barbara Bush

I get Oprah, and I was surprised to find out she has never topped the list, but the fact that Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin are so close floors me.  Hillary Clinton is a strong woman and hard worker, who raised an exceptional daughter.  She doesn’t complain or blame.  She is a leader in the truest sense of the word.

Sarah Palin is a glorified weather girl who was thrust into the national limelight, was unprepared and ultimately I believe caused John McCain to lose the Presidency.  She couldn’t finish her term as governor which was clouded by ethics issues.

As far as I am concerned it is sad that Sarah Palin is even mentioned in the same breath as Hillary Clinton, Margaret Thatcher, Aung San Suu Kyi and Condoleezza Rice, let alone is more highly regarded than most of them.

I guess in an era where the next presidential election might be brought to you by Exxon or Chevron, maybe my opinion doesn’t matter anyway.

Did you guess which thing was not like the others?
Did you guess which thing just doesn’t belong?
If you guessed this one is not like the others,
Then you’re absolutely…right!

Jottings and Questions II

Some random thoughts…

John Kline is apparently troubled by estimates that 30,000 big bank jobs might be lost in the transition from bank-based student loan program to a government direct-lending program.  It is troubling that jobs could be lost in this economy, however, we still need to work on making the future better.  There is no reason that banks should be making risk-free profits on the shoulders of college students who are going to school to contribute to a better society.   Ironically, he is so concerned about health-care reform that he doesn’t have time to give the big bank job losses his full attention.  I guess we know now that the insurance industry gives much larger donations than the banking industry.

Speaking of John Kline, did you hear what he said about publicly funded medical coverage?  “It is cheaper, and designed to save money”, and he admitted “a government run program has very clear advantages.”  But you know how it is.  If it is government it is bad.  And that is why he decided to be part of the government, because he wants to ensure everything is done poorly.

Why are so many people concerned about the health insurance industry?  Where I work, if the tax to provide medical coverage to all Americans was the same percent as FICA, 7.65%, it would save my organization over $300,000.  That is $300,000 more dollars to spend.  In the case of a for profit business of similar size, that is $300,000 in profit, or investment.  Politicians, and republicans especially, who claim they are for small business should be behind this 100%.  I don’t get the disconnect.  Just because it is government run it is bad?  I think they are crazy.

Talk about crazy, I read a blog yesterday from a person currently in the military (I am not going to name the blog because I am a firm believer that even bad publicity is good publicity, but if you are really curious and want to know, email me.)   He supposedly supports the military, but actually asked why we abide by the laws of civilized warfare when dealing with Muslims.  He called the Geneva Conventions and the Laws of Land Warfare niceties of war and wonders why we follow them with those “savages.”  This is the same person who states that in an energy policy debate Sarah Palin could “take on” President Obama (whom he calls The Chosen One) and Nancy Pelosi (whom he calls P-Lousy, you gotta love the respect he has for government officials) “and tear them up without having to even glance at any notes.”  Yes, he really said that… I’m not even sure what my point is.  I think I just get so annoyed by bombastic nuts that think they speak for the majority, and feel it is their duty to yell it out and confront people, when really they speak for a tiny extremist group.  I heard there were some less than civil comments to a couple DFL candidates at a recent parade.  It is that type of person who needs to shut up.  They claim to be better Americans, in fact this blogger says the “left in America continues to belittle American exceptionalism,” and yet they can’t respect America enough to realize a great thing about America is that candidates with differing views are free to express those views, and we can vote for them.

The nuts really love Sarah Palin.  Here is a bumper sticker idea for Sarah Palin I heard about on the radio:
Traditional Values – You Betcha! 
(Less Traditional Dedication)

I hope she runs for president.

While it is a step below president, I am glad there is a candidate in 36A who is willing to take on Mary Liz Holberg.  Colin Lee will be taking on Mary Liz.  It is going to be a real up-hill battle.  In 2008 she trounced both challengers pretty badly.  So far, Colin is the only challenger to step forward.  In 2008, Colin ran as a Green Party Candidate.  He got just under 2000 votes in 2008.  At a recent SD36 meeting, he made a little gaffe when he laughed and made an innocent comment about how he raised more cash than the DFL candidate in 2008.  It might have struck the wrong nerve with some.  On the other hand, I look at it that he has shown he can raise money.  Something that needs to be done, and is really challenging in our area.

Be watching soon, I think in the next week, for a new MNDem.com gubernatorial poll.  I have narrowed down my list, and before I write about it, I want to tie it to a poll that I think the rest of you can help me with.

Van Susteren or Van Halen?

I’ve been pretty busy with school recently, I’m going to stick with that being the reason I haven’t blogged very much. It has nothing to do with being tired of this election cycle. Ignore the fact that I spend my time in the car scanning through my XM looking for Van Halen, Journey or whatever 80s rock I can find, my current music obsession, rather than listening to NPR or America Left.

And ignore the fact that I am sitting here watching the LSU-Florida football game, two teams I don’t care at all about, but I don’t have cable so I can’t watch the Wild. And I really don’t know anything about number 70, Ciron Black, the left tackle for LSU, but he has pulled to the left leading sweeps, and he has just flattened a couple Gators. He is even fast enough to stay in front of a receiver on a swing pass, blocking both a linebacker and a defensive back. I think the Vikings could use him leading Adrian Peterson. Anyway, I’m going to spend the second half watching him.

I was watching the senatorial debate on CSPAN.com, and kept watching Sarah Palin for a while, but my interest level is really waning. My wife told me channel 4 had a commercial on that was birds chirping and grass waving or something like that, that said the ad was a break from political ads from WCCO. I’m really looking forward to more Tidy Cat and Glade Air Freshener commercials soon.