The great blog Mark America had a clip from Mr. L’s Tavern (a must subscribe btw) on the idea of a Sarah Palin brokered convention. There is a lot of very interesting analysis about WHY Palin might not have run and she says she doesn’t have the infrastructure to jump in now even if she wanted. The interesting bit though is Mr. L’s discussion of a brokered convention and the comment by a Ron Paul supporter suggesting Ron Paul is the guy with the infrastructure to battle Romney. You can watch the clip and read the comments here. (Special thanks to Mr. L for feedback prior to running this post. For the record he is in disagreement with some of my analysis, although we both agree that he’s right on most things. :) )
Mr. L makes the point that many of us simply won’t accept an establishment type birthed out of a smoke filled room in Tampa. (And of course Mr. L does it in his wonderfully irreverent and funny way.) The site of the GOP convention may be the home of Ringling Brothers but they had better keep their little RINO clowns locked in their dressing rooms or the new elephant will be doing some rogue rampage if you know what I mean.
But I needed to comment on this perception that Ron Paul, Rick Santorum, and even Sarah Palin fans have that their candidate will automatically create unification of the GOP if their candidate would be offered to the rest. In the case of those running, it is clear that is NOT what is happening. There are demographic realities in the GOP that need to be understood. The reprinting of my comment on Mark America post:
Yes Ron Paul has a great ground game, but he and his policies simply can not attract enough GOP voters to be nominated. His "10%" ceiling is more insurmountable than Romney's "25%" ceiling. Social conservatives love Israel too much to take a chance on leaving them undefended. That group is almost 60% of the GOP now. (Which by the way is very close to the remaining allegiance left after Paul and Romney proponents).
And over estimating the support for Palin is a similar problem for Mr. L and some Palinistas. I am NOT inferring their supporters are at all alike in principle, policy or precise thinking on matters political. I AM suggesting there is a small segment that allows passion to override predictions based on objective data. There is no statistical proof that I've seen that Sarah has a guarantee of any more than 17% to 22% of the GOP. I suspect her entry would immediately drop Rick Santorum back to his 6% to 8% but even among Tea Partiers - Palin didn't get above 40% prior to her October 4th announcement even in including first and second choices.
Granted. less known (and more romanticized) Perry surged from 8% to 35% before he went oops, but Palin fans have got to understand that a significant portion of those who supported Perry and Cain have as negative of an opinion of her as they do Gingrich - or any other candidate.
Don't get me wrong, had she jumped in in October, I feel she likely would have taken Gingrich AND Santorum out of the race and would be in a virtual tie with Romney at this point - but let's not go too far out on this "unifying the party" idea. If there is ANYONE more hated by the GOP Establishment than Gingrich, It would be the former Governor of Alaska.
This was Reagan's brilliance in 1980. That of having a working coalition of traditional GOP, Libertarians, social conservatives and fiscal conservatives. None of these groups have a single leader that is acceptable to the majority of the rest. In that weird way, Gingrich is more likely forge a cooperative entity only because he knows how to, and still has some pretty powerful friends to offer goodies to the rest. If Romney has 45% of the delegates come convention time, Paul can put him over the top and might, if Romney throws him a bone (like Fed Chairman? We could only wish.)
Anything more than 35% to 40% of the delegates - and Mitt wouldn't need to (nor would he) give up the Presidency he would have felt he earned with the most delegate count. Once you get under 25% Romney can be bought. However, Dick Morris claims that the new GOP structure of the primaries makes it virtually impossible for a brokered convention because there are too many "winner take all" states. He is certain there will be a clear majority delegate count for someone well before the GOP Convention.
So it seems that if Mitt isn't stopped before Super Tuesday, when cumulatively 35% of all delegates will have been apportioned, no one could really keep him from the nomination only because of his money and infrastructure.
Frankly, at this point, the longer Santorum stays in, the more likely a Romney nomination regardless of what Sarah does. Many have told me they think she doesn't want to undercut him and is waiting for him to make that decision. She has said she “wants the process to continue.”
I don’t. Romney is a cancer and as Mr. L CORRECTLY asserted – the end of the GOP if he gets elected, if only because we aren’t playing that game anymore. True – we won’t let Obama win, but we damn sure won’t let Romney do much OTHER than our conservative ideas and prepare to knock him off with whatever it takes in 2016. But all of that could be rectified by checking Romney now.
The doctors won’t do any other surgery until chemo is over having killed the cancer. Why? Because diverting the energy of the body on any other effort will allow the cancer to still grow. It’s like accepting the USSR as a temporary ally to defeat Hitler. It boggles me that anyone who considers themselves a patriot is still on the sidelines. Palin correctly called Perry a patriot for pulling out of South to ensure a win for the conservative cause. Why isn’t she doing the same? Why isn’t Santorum? This is no time to play around and let Romney get ANY more traction money or leverage. At some point, even the cancer overwhelms the treatment.
There is no hand to play for conservatives once Romney gets over 40% of the delegates. Walk out – you give him the nomination. Withhold support and Paul can (or will come close to) being the power broker. Despite all the talk about Ron Paul’s principle – he has shown zero love to do what is best for the party. And by putting in his district earmarks only to vote against them, shows he isn’t above pure politics, Paul principles be damned.
This is all on Santorum and his supporters in my book. Cain and Perry clearly have cast their lot with Newt. And unlike Newt, he hasn’t shown any capability to inspire a significant following. After loosing in Florida, any attempt to stay in his selfish ambition. I’m not saying he doesn’t have a RIGHT to do it – but as he did with endorsing Arlen Specter, he’s proven in my mind the whole “virtuous Santorum” image is more than smudged. He should cut a deal with Gingrich now while it can still be helpful to them both for Defense Secretary or whatever, and ensure he won’t be thought of as a spoil sport.
In my opinion Palin's path to power will be in endorsing Gingrich to help him overcome the hurdle to battle Romney and accept a VP or a cabinet position like Department of Energy.
Her second best path would be to lead the patriots in the coming 2nd Revolutionary War following the Marxist takeover by Obama and SEIU where, upon victory like Washington, she would be instilled as the first President of the Re-United States of America.
I hear she’s pretty good with a gun.