O.K., ready to get back into politics again for a minute? Good.
I have been hearing a lot of speculation about who the Republicans will want to run in the 2012 election. It may seem a little early for such talk but remember, they got beat pretty bad in the last election. Speculating about winning in the next election is kind of therapeutic (especially when they are so unhappy with the current administration). It is not unlike a kid looking forward to Christmas and telling his parents want he wants, in June.
Some of the names that get thrown around frequently include Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, and Mitt Romney. There has even been some talk about Scott Brown making a quick rise to the presidency, not unlike Obama's success in the last election. Personally, I don't get too exited about any of these and here is why.
Sarah Palin is too polarizing. Everyone either loves or hates her. Regardless of how good a President she may, or may not be, or have the potential to become, I just do not believe she has the ability to get the required majority to get elected.
Mike Huckabee is a good and qualified candidate. His problem is 2-fold. First, he is just too nice. People don't take him seriously enough. They don't look at him as "Presidential". Secondly, he is a former minister and still has a strong moral and religious tone to his rhetoric. This fact works against him because it makes the progressives and non-Protestant's nervous. Here, again, I just do not think he could gain the support of the majority of the public needed to win a national election.
Mitt Romney is presidential in appearance and he has the management and political experience needed. His problem is also 2 fold. First, he is just not believeable. Most of the people I have talked to always have the same comment, they just don't trust him. He looks and sounds too much like a 'used car salesman'. Good for local races, but but on the national stage. The second problem is again, religion. He is Mormon and there are a great many people who give lip service to being non-prejudicial but will let that influence them in the privacy of a polling booth. --Sorry, Mitt, just my personal opinion.
Then there is Scott Brown and several other shining new stars on the political stage. They look and sound good but this time the problem is 3-fold. First is the lack of experience. It takes a while to learn the in's and out's of "Washington Politics". We say we want someone from outside the established political establishment in Washington, but we lie. We vote, time and time again, for the experienced candidate. On top of that, there are a lot of people who feel a little 'burned' by the current batch in Washington which is headed by an inexperienced candidate. The second reason is the simple fact that there are just too many 'rising stars' and they have to compete for support and, more imortantly, for money. Having that many in the race it makes it hard for any one of them to get the financing needed to compete in all 50 states. -->The 3rd problem is the really vicious and nasty way people get treated once they become a candidate. It does not matter which party they are in, their opponents are going to put them under a microscope and say every dirty and nasty thing they can think of about them, their families and their friends. Not many political want-a-bees survive that for very long.
O.K., who do I think has a chance to become the next Republican candidate (and therefor possibly the next President of the United States)? Well, how about Jeb Bush? I know, he has been keeping a low profile lately. Probably because of the unpopularity of the last President Bush. But Jeb has the experience. He was a very popular Governor in Florida and he has a strong political and business background. He also has the backing of a strong political machine already in place and experienced at winning 3 previous presidential elections! I think he would stand an excellent chance if he wanted it. I have a feeling he does. I suspect he will wait until latge 2011 to announce his candidacy.
Do not get me wrong. This is not an endorsement of Jeb for President. At least not yet. He hs not announced he wants it and has not taken any positions of issues so I have no idea if I will support him or not. If he does get in the race, I will be anxious to hear his opinions on things like the economy, jobs, terrorism, immegration and the environment. Until then I will just wait and watch. For now, I am just saying: don't be surprised at all to see him wind up as a strong candidate in 2012.