Ross Douthat at the NYTimes has written a spirited rebuttal of the notion that the Republican Primary Process has helped to scuttle the Party’s Presidential prospects. He insists that … well lets let Ross speak for himself:
Let’s stipulate that this has not been the most edifying of primary seasons. The policy debates have often been vacuous, the rhetoric shrill, the attack ads pervasive and wearying. Almost four years after the Bush presidency, the Republican Party is obviously still rife with dysfunction, and struggling to define itself for a new era and a changing country.
But against this backdrop, the party’s voters have behaved remarkably responsibly. Confronted with a flip-flopping, gaffe-prone front-runner whom almost nobody — conservative or liberal — finds very appealing, they have methodically sifted through the alternatives, considering and then discarding each in turn.
From early 2011 onward, the media have overinterpreted this sifting process, treating every polling surge for a not-Romney candidate almost as seriously as an actual primary result. They might nominate Herman Cain! They might nominate Michele Bachmann! Why — they might nominate Donald Trump!
Not so much. Instead, despite an understandable desire to vote for a candidate other than Mitt Romney, Republicans have been slowly but surely delivering him the nomination — consistently, if reluctantly, choosing the safe option over the bomb-throwers and ideologues.
This is Ross’s responsible Republicans. Ross says they should have given more consideration to Jon Huntsman and Tim Pawlenty but…… The one issue that Ross fastidiously avoids is the swing to the extreme in rhetoric similar to what is happening among the 25-30% far right in Israel. The problem is that the Republicans are genuflecting to jobs and the economy and then unleashing do nothing votes and polcies on these very same issues always bowing dare I say to the 1%. And the sheer false, snake-oil vitriol released against President Obama from even so called centrists reflects the reality that the only message that all GOP can agree on is to get rid of Obama.
Finally lets use as a test of the objectivity of the GOP if they continue the rigorous set of debates[no George Bush “I will only debate 2-3 times”] and the proportional delegate awarding system. Or maybe the GOP ‘s Eminence Gris will have a few choice fiat words on those democratic notions.