A few quick thoughts in response to some (predictable) complaints about my column.
I wrote, “Ron Paul, the libertarian Harold Stassen, is in for another go, presumably on the mistaken assumption that America has turned into Tea Party Nation. (If only!).” I should have been clear that I think he thinks he’s the candidate of the tea parties and he thinks that the electorate — both in the primary and the general — has moved toward him. I don’t think the former is true, and I don’t think the latter is true enough to do him much good.
Now, yes, my impressions are anecdotal. I didn’t run a scientific poll of tea partiers I’ve met around the country. Nor have I applied a regression analysis to my e-mail. And, yes, I am sure I will hear from many Ron Paul fans and self-described tea partiers who will insist that because they and their friends are Ron Paul supporters that I am wrong (I have ample experience with Paulista e-mail deluges, can’t you tell?).
As for Herman Cain, I’m also catching a lot of grief for not discussing him. For the record, what I’ve seen of Cain I like. I certainly respect the guy, though I was less impressed with what I saw of his debate performance than Frank Luntz’s focus group was. And I am far from convinced he’s the right candidate at the right time.