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> Republican Presidential Primaries, Who are the best candidates?
VarsityBoy
post May 12 2011, 05:25 PM
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QUOTE (Research Monkey @ May 12 2011, 06:18 PM) *
QUOTE (VarsityBoy @ May 12 2011, 10:17 AM) *
BeeTeeDub I'm surprised no one's talking about Christie.


Sep 8th: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/08/c...d_n_708765.html

Yesterday: http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-roo...g-for-president

ah.


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AK_WDB
post May 12 2011, 05:47 PM
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QUOTE (Research Monkey @ May 12 2011, 09:14 AM) *
QUOTE (AK_WDB @ May 12 2011, 08:14 AM) *
Research Monkey, although you say you'd be willing to vote for a Republican, the content of your post suggests you'd pretty much only vote for a Republican who's exactly like a Democrat (except perhaps on some economic issues). A Republican candidate "doesn't need to go that far" to get your vote? Let's go through your statements.

My statement is almost a blatant lie, it mostly just means that I'd like to see an economic conservative/social libertarian candidate that doesn't need to be anointed by the religious right.

Which brings me to my quibble with your last statement: that this primary is all about burnishing social-conservative credentials. I think the religious right is going to have far less influence on this election than in previous years. What are the salient issues of the day? The economy, the national debt, entitlements, and to a lesser extent, foreign policy. Of course that could change before 2012, but compare this to 2004, when all the analysts said Bush won on "God, gays, and guns". The balance between fiscal and social conservatism has shifted dramatically toward fiscal, largely thanks to the economic crash and the fact that people have finally woken up to the deficit problem. This is one thing I actually like about the Tea Party; they've helped shift the focus.

That said, I certainly wouldn't mind a better dialogue on social issues. People aren't giving much thought to them; all I hear is "it's bad so it should be illegal" or "it's good so it should be legal". Abortion, drug legalization, gay marriage, etc. deserve much more nuanced analysis.

Also, you have such a candidate: Gary Johnson.
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blondie13
post May 12 2011, 06:16 PM
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QUOTE (VarsityBoy @ May 12 2011, 12:17 PM) *
BeeTeeDub I'm surprised no one's talking about Christie. Also iirc Huckabee Barbour is not going to run (lol irrelevance). Newt however just announced.


Christie was pretty intent on not running for quite some time. There's been buzz he would run for about a year or more now but he kept insisting he had no interest.


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blondie13
post May 12 2011, 06:22 PM
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QUOTE (AK_WDB @ May 12 2011, 12:47 PM) *

That said, I certainly wouldn't mind a better dialogue on social issues. People aren't giving much thought to them; all I hear is "it's bad so it should be illegal" or "it's good so it should be legal". Abortion, drug legalization, gay marriage, etc. deserve much more nuanced analysis.


That's what bugs me sooo much about debating social issues, especially in the county where I live. No one has good reasoning as to where they stand, yet they are passionate about their beliefs. I don't understand how someone can be passionate about something yet be unable to defend their position. wallbash.gif Sometimes, even if I agree with these people, I play devil's advocate and debate with them just to show them how ridiculous they're being.


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Research Monkey
post May 12 2011, 07:07 PM
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Going to post more substantively later in response to your points, Will, but

QUOTE (AK_WDB @ May 12 2011, 10:47 AM) *
Also, you have such a candidate: Gary Johnson.


QUOTE (Research Monkey @ May 11 2011, 12:36 PM) *
I'm mildly interested in Gary Johnson's candidacy, but I doubt that will become anything.


Indeed, he meets the requisite criteria, and I do hope he proves that he can debate, but I'm not so optimistic that the days of the religious right dominating the scene are over. I think even more dangerously, the religious right is gatekeeping the mainstream candidate flow out of the Republican Party, and that gives us clowns like Huckabee and Santorum dressed up as legitimate contenders.


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Research Monkey
post May 12 2011, 07:36 PM
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I would say "gotta love Dan Savage," but that would be massively inappropriate given the thread's content.


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AK_WDB
post May 12 2011, 08:04 PM
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QUOTE (Research Monkey @ May 12 2011, 11:07 AM) *
Indeed, he meets the requisite criteria, and I do hope he proves that he can debate, but I'm not so optimistic that the days of the religious right dominating the scene are over. I think even more dangerously, the religious right is gatekeeping the mainstream candidate flow out of the Republican Party, and that gives us clowns like Huckabee and Santorum dressed up as legitimate contenders.

I'm not saying the religious right has no influence, and I think you're probably correct that they will prevent Johnson from being a serious contender. But:
(1) The religious right is not just some shadowy group of elites who have hijacked the Republican Party. The reason religion and social issues are important to the party is because they're important to a large segment of actual voters, and while you (and to a lesser extent I) may believe those voters are wrong and/or uninformed, the party can't be expected to just ignore them.
(2) Gary Johnson is most definitely not "mainstream"; he is an extreme libertarian. I'm not sure what you mean by "mainstream candidates", but conservative views on religion and social issues are actually very common, and I would argue that someone like Huckabee or Santorum is actually much closer not only to the average Republican, but to the average American in general, than Johnson is.

Santorum, I agree, is a crank. But my views of Huckabee have actually become much more favorable this election. He's certainly more conservative than I am on social issues, but at least he articulates real ideas about them, which (as I was saying before) is important. And Huckabee's main issue with the "party base" seems to be that he once raised taxes, which is not a problem with me - I'm kind of in favor of that whole fiscal responsibility thing.
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Widget!
post May 12 2011, 08:17 PM
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QUOTE (AK_WDB @ May 12 2011, 01:04 PM) *
(2) Gary Johnson is most definitely not "mainstream"; he is an extreme libertarian. I'm not sure what you mean by "mainstream candidates", but conservative views on religion and social issues are actually very common, and I would argue that someone like Huckabee or Santorum is actually much closer not only to the average Republican, but to the average American in general, than Johnson is.


This is because the average American sucks.

/troll


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QUOTE (overly_critical_man @ Sep 19 2011, 11:04 AM) *
QUOTE (Research Monkey @ Sep 19 2011, 08:59 AM) *
Also, why are there serious posts in here when we could be talking about ass and bacon?


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Research Monkey
post May 12 2011, 10:10 PM
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QUOTE (AK_WDB @ May 12 2011, 01:04 PM) *
QUOTE (Research Monkey @ May 12 2011, 11:07 AM) *
Indeed, he meets the requisite criteria, and I do hope he proves that he can debate, but I'm not so optimistic that the days of the religious right dominating the scene are over. I think even more dangerously, the religious right is gatekeeping the mainstream candidate flow out of the Republican Party, and that gives us clowns like Huckabee and Santorum dressed up as legitimate contenders.

I'm not saying the religious right has no influence, and I think you're probably correct that they will prevent Johnson from being a serious contender. But:
(1) The religious right is not just some shadowy group of elites who have hijacked the Republican Party. The reason religion and social issues are important to the party is because they're important to a large segment of actual voters, and while you (and to a lesser extent I) may believe those voters are wrong and/or uninformed, the party can't be expected to just ignore them.


The religious right is not a shadowy group of elites (like those ones that control the media, the Fed, the Democratic Party, and ESPN's broadcasting choices), it's a group of vocal and determined voters who place a common philosophical whimsy above all else when voting. As such, they act a lot like a group of elites in the lack of deliberation and diversity in opinion inherent in them.

When I think "the religious right" I don't see a group of secret Pope-hatted (now a word) old guys underground ritually sacrificing a virgin to divine policy positions. I don't think of self-serving and corrupt career politicians, and I don't think of easy to hate icons of evil like Jerry Falwell. I think of ordinary, good people who just happen to be completely smurfing nuts. Like my aunt and uncle. Two of the kindest people I'll ever meet, and really incredible people, except...I wouldn't trust them to run the country. There are a lot of proof here that I feel justifies that, but I'll avoid getting too personal on a public webforum. What I'm saying is, I know how the religious right thinks and they vote as a group of nice, generous, passionate people tragically misguided in numbers.

QUOTE (AK_WDB @ May 12 2011, 01:04 PM) *
(2) Gary Johnson is most definitely not "mainstream"; he is an extreme libertarian. I'm not sure what you mean by "mainstream candidates", but conservative views on religion and social issues are actually very common, and I would argue that someone like Huckabee or Santorum is actually much closer not only to the average Republican, but to the average American in general, than Johnson is.


Sure, but I think we can all agree that the median voter theorem is a political liability more than it is a success of democracy.

This post has been edited by Research Monkey: May 13 2011, 05:35 PM


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Stanley Tree
post May 13 2011, 05:18 PM
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I agree whole-heartedly with your sentiments about the Religious Right. In the Deep South, the Religious Right is king; it's not the majority of Republicans or citizens in any state, but as you said they control pretty much all national and state-wide elected officials. The influence of the upper-crust Republicans is felt the hardest here; they have this lack of informed decision because whatever the top level of RR people believe is good is what the rest of the RR believes.

The RR will ultimately be a huge factor in who runs for the Presidency, but the more influence they have the less likely the Republicans will win.


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michelangelo
post May 16 2011, 05:35 AM
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I would have voted for Huntsman, up until he seemed to forget whether or not he was Mormon. At least Romney didn't run from his religion.

http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,...2071003,00.html


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Widget!
post May 16 2011, 05:46 AM
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QUOTE (michelangelo @ May 15 2011, 10:35 PM) *
I would have voted for Huntsman, up until he seemed to forget whether or not he was Mormon. At least Romney didn't run from his religion.

http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,...2071003,00.html


Being reticent about his degree of faith in the LDS church means he has forgotten whether or not he's a Mormon?


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QUOTE (overly_critical_man @ Sep 19 2011, 11:04 AM) *
QUOTE (Research Monkey @ Sep 19 2011, 08:59 AM) *
Also, why are there serious posts in here when we could be talking about ass and bacon?


I often lie awake in bed at night, wondering this to myself.
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Research Monkey
post May 16 2011, 06:30 AM
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QUOTE (michelangelo @ May 15 2011, 10:35 PM) *
I would have voted for Huntsman, up until he seemed to forget whether or not he was Mormon. At least Romney didn't run from his religion.

http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,...2071003,00.html


Faith is not a binary attribute. Indeed, it seems like half the GOP primary process consists of parading around one's faith as deeper than everyone else like a bunch of drunken fratbros comparing respective anatomical endowments. I'm sure every time he goes near a temple for the next year will be documented on camera, so I think you will be able to judge for yourself whether or not he's "Mormon enough."


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AK_WDB
post May 16 2011, 03:05 PM
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In the wake of Huckabee's announcement that he isn't running, Intrade lists the most likely nominees as Romney (26%), Pawlenty (18%), Huntsman (12%), and Daniels (11%). Meanwhile, the Tea Party squad of Palin, Trump, Gingrich, and Bachmann all rate in the 4-5% range. The leading four candidates are all perceived by the media as both more "establishment" and more moderate than the Tea Partiers, and in this case, perception pretty much is reality, even if the differences are mainly superficial.

Given the dominance of the Tea Party and "anti-establishment" sentiment in the recent political climate, I find it hard to believe these four candidates will remain the front-runners. Not only do they lack strong Tea Party support, but they are all viewed as either amorphous (Romney and Pawlenty) or soft-spoken and low-key (Huntsman and Daniels). There is a big opening for someone with a clear, forceful message and a loud voice - a description which both Gingrich and Bachmann fit well. Palin and Trump are mostly celebrities, inferior to the other two in both intellectual substance and speaking ability, but either one could make a comeback if they get the right publicity. But I'd put my money on Gingrich and/or Bachmann rising considerably in the polls and the Intrade ratings. Gingrich in particular is a very interesting candidate about whom I have much to say, but perhaps I'll wait a bit.

I am very skeptical of Jon Huntsman's chances of getting the nomination, although I personally find him an attractive candidate. Maybe I'm missing something - after all, he was a very popular governor of Utah - but I don't see how very many Republicans are going to get super-excited about a guy who served in the Obama administration and shies away from expressing conservative positions. Where is his base? He can't even count on Mormon voters, since Romney is in the race too and much better known. His base will be moderates who are tired of vitriolic partisan rhetoric, but they are (1) not a high percentage of the primary electorate, (2) unlikely to get all that fired up, and (3) have several other choices, especially Daniels. The only way I could see him winning is if he somehow manages to drive all the other "moderate" candidates out of the field and split the Tea Party vote, but I don't see how he'll do that.
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Autumn Comet
post May 16 2011, 09:29 PM
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Trump won't run for president
Well, we can count on the primary to be slightly less insane. The comments below the article are pretty hilarious.



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Crow
post May 18 2011, 03:24 AM
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Mr. Gingrich appears to be taking it in the pants so far. I don't see this ending well for him.



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AK_WDB
post May 18 2011, 03:45 AM
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Mr. Gingrich needs to quit dicking around. Going to criticize Paul Ryan's Medicare plan? Then tell us how you'd do it better (hint: the Mitt Romney model is not a good place to start).

I do expect Gingrich to come up with a good health care plan though, and provided he does, I won't begrudge him that gaffe too much.
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Crow
post May 20 2011, 10:42 PM
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^ Still not looking good.

Given that I'm a history major, I think it would be pretty cool to see a former history professor go at this. I'm actually digging him more than I thought I would, but he's going to get eaten alive if he maintains his current trajectory.


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AK_WDB
post May 20 2011, 11:42 PM
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QUOTE (Crow @ May 20 2011, 02:42 PM) *
^ Still not looking good.

Given that I'm a history major, I think it would be pretty cool to see a former history professor go at this. I'm actually digging him more than I thought I would, but he's going to get eaten alive if he maintains his current trajectory.

Gingrich is an academic and a man of ideas, no question about it, and he's probably thought up more serious and novel policy ideas than all the other candidates combined. That's what I like about him. But his strident anti-Obama rhetoric is a bit much to handle, and I have to admit that his three marriages bother me too; I'm a little bit more of a "values voter" than I used to be.

For the record, though, I agree with him that immigration reform needs to happen, although I might not have phrased it the way he did.
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Research Monkey
post May 21 2011, 01:51 AM
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QUOTE (AK_WDB @ May 20 2011, 04:42 PM) *
]
and he's probably thought up more serious and novel policy ideas than all the other candidates combined. That's what I like about him.


This much I understand.

QUOTE (AK_WDB @ May 20 2011, 04:42 PM) *
]
Gingrich is an academic and a man of ideas, no question about it,


On this one, you give the man far, far too much credit.


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