Second String Republicans
By: Bob Parks
One thing this elongated campaign season, thus far, has revealed is that almost all of the candidates are a bunch of second stringers. What separates them from the first string is maturity. Mature candidates donâ€™t fall into the same old traps and donâ€™t make the same mistakes made before.
We are seeing a lot of this right now.
The prospect of facing an honesty/likability challenged Hillary, or an inexperienced Obama should have our perspective Republican candidates salivating. However they are mired in the tried-and-true minutia, responding to a media that has already chosen sides, and some of us have real doubts that any of them are truly ready for The Show.
Mike Huckabee latest salvo against President Bush shows his lack of maturity. First of all, a freebie to Mike: President Bush isnâ€™t on the ballot. Let it go.Bashing Bush may make for premium media attention, as most bash him privately when theyâ€™re not doing so either on print or on television. But the very issues Mike Huckabee is criticizing are the exact positions heâ€™ll be taking when going up against a potential Pelosi-led congress. Just because Mikeâ€™s last name isnâ€™t Bush, doesnâ€™t mean sheâ€™ll ease up on the brother.
Also, Huckabeeâ€™s comment on religion and Mitt Romneyâ€™s â€œwell receivedâ€ speech on the subject is also playing into the liberal bear trap. Why? Besides the â€œnegative attacksâ€ hurled at Obama by Clinton operatives, how many questions have Democrat candidates had to answer in debates on religion? Google â€œdemocrats religionâ€ and you wonâ€™t find any kind of faith-based answer by a Democrat. They have none, thus itâ€™s a media manufactured issue. In fact, next time you get a chance to look at some debate highlights, compare the questions asked to one party vice the other.
Democrats are asked questions on domestic issues they â€œchampionâ€, while Republicans are made to answer for issues the media deem irritating; unpopular questions about the â€œfalteringâ€ economy, religion, abortion, and the war. Questions designed to put our candidates on the defensive.
Mitt Romney gave his religion speech in front of a handpicked audience. It was supposedly a speech he didnâ€™t want to deliver. His religion was made an issue primarily by the secular progressives who seem more intimidated by Mormons than radical Muslims. By making that speech, he acknowledged his religion as one that needed addressing.
Does anyone care about Hillaryâ€™s religious views? No, because it isnâ€™t important. Republicans, like clockwork, get caught up in the family values recitation that sets us up as hypocrites because of Mark Foleys and Larry Craigs. No Democrat candidate has been asked to seriously address the Congressional Page scandal under their watch, because Democrats donâ€™t run on values.
They canâ€™t. Most of the time, they have none, thus they get the media pass.
Maybe we can, but Iâ€™d just wish one Republican would show guts and ask a debate moderator or campaign beat reporter if that same question was asked of a Democrat. If â€œyesâ€, answer it. If â€œnoâ€, let them ask a Democrat first.
But Mike Huckabee has fallen face first in the mediaâ€™s attempt to maintain our dwindling interest, thus it was a dumb move on his part. It shows a lack of vision and discipline.
You Republicans are running FOR President of the United States. You are not running against a particular Democrat or liberal policy. You are not running for or against the war. In fact, you are not running for any topic driven by a media that is our enemy.
And you are NOT RUNNING AGAINST PRESIDENT BUSH!
That should be obvious.
As it is not to Mike Huckabee, his electability should be questioned.
Iâ€™m waiting for a presidential candidate to emerge. Iâ€™m waiting for someone who acts like he really wants to be president, and isnâ€™t just doing this to get out of the house. Iâ€™m waiting for someone whoâ€™s not a Howard Dean media-creation train wreck waiting to crash. Iâ€™m waiting for someone whoâ€™s not sucking up to the media because he thinks they like him. Iâ€™m waiting for someone whoâ€™s not running on policies that have weakened the ability of future candidates to compete. Iâ€™m waiting for candidates whoâ€™ve actually read some of the Constitution.
Iâ€™m still waiting.
Bob Parks is a member/writer for the National Advisory Council of Project 21, Senior Writer for the New Media Journal, VP of Marketing and Media Relations/Staff Writer for the New Media Alliance, VP of the Massachusetts Republican Assembly, and commentator for the Intel Radio Network.
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