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The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

What We Need in a GOP Candidate



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The Washington Examiner’s Phil Klein lays out his argument that the GOP field is an “incredibly weak” one, an assessment I share, although I’m not sure the field is “incredibly weak.” I think it’s just that every candidate has some considerable strength but some considerable, glaring flaw.

We need Mitt Romney’s business expertise and raw analytical intelligence, without Romneycare and his history of reversing positions.

We need Rick Perry’s record of job creation and intense appetite to stimulate domestic energy production, without his demonizing of his opponents on illegal immigration and tendency to put his foot in his mouth.

We need Herman Cain’s inspiring life story and irresistible good humor, without his dismissal of policy details.

We need Newt Gingrich’s encyclopedic knowledge of policy and political philosophy and sharp debate skills, without his considerable personal baggage.

We need Jon Huntsman’s sterling résumé and variety of experience, without his corny jokes and determination to position himself as the most leftward candidate of the party of the Right.

We need Michele Bachmann’s willingness to live her values and pugnaciousness in defense of those values, without the occasional leap into kook territory over retardation-causing vaccines.

We need Ron Paul’s steadfast adherence to principle and willingness to get into policy detail, without the positions that prompt a significant number of Republicans to recoil.

We need Rick Santorum’s focus on the problems of American families and passionate combativeness, without his Google problem and dreadful final race of his Senate career.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is time to accelerate our efforts to genetically engineer the perfect Republican candidate.


Tags: 2012


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