The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

Democrat, Republican debate Republican Primary candidates

Republican

The four remaining candidates in the GOP nomination race were no Republican’s first choice for presidential candidates. The best candidates all sat out this year: Sarah Palin, Bobby Jindal, Mitch Daniels, Chris Christie, Jeb Bush, John Thune and Paul Ryan all would have made great candidates.

Instead we got two congressional gadflies, a disgraced former Speaker, a pizza salesman with no electoral experience, an opportunist, one term governor who was too embarrassed to bother running for reelection, a Senator who lost his last election in a huge landslide and a man who worked for Obama and was otherwise a carbon copy of the formerly mentioned governor. We also got the promising candidates of Thaddeus McCotter, Rick Perry and Tim Pawlenty, but the first never had the name recognition needed to get into the debates, the second apparently thought the race would be a cakewalk and didn’t prepare himself at all and the third didn’t have enough fight in him and dropped out way too early.

So now, we’re left with the disgraced Speaker, one of the two congressional gadflies, the losing Senator and the opportunist one term governor. I did a calculation, and if the opportunist wins every single delegate from now on, he can’t clinch the nomination before May 8.

Of course, this won’t happen, even if he wins every single contest between now and May 8th, he won’t win 100 percent of the delegates. So it is quite likely that this contest will continue into the summer and possibly right up to the convention, but it could realistically be over as early as late May, with the Texas primary.

Some people think that a long primary is going to hurt us in the fall, and that a brokered convention would yield a broken candidate. A brokered convention couldn’t possibly yield a more broken candidate than any of the candidates we have now.

A long primary isn’t worth lamenting over either. It certainly didn’t hurt Obama in 08, who didn’t clinch the nomination until early June. What it did do was strengthen him, get him geared up for the fight in the fall and make all of his dirty laundry old news by the time Palin and McCain wanted to bring it up in the fall. Our candidates certainly can’t get weaker, can they?

I’ve said this several times before but I think it bears repeating: when I look at these four candidates, I think to myself, there is no way that any of these guys could possibly beat Obama. And then I look at the President, and think, “There is no way that he can win reelection.”

Republicans need not worry too much. Obama’s major legislative achievement is still wildly unpopular and will be put to the test next week in the Supreme Court, which he has been demonizing for years. Obama has few friends on the bench.

Unemployment may be going down, but it is largely due to people leaving the labor force, not finding jobs. A recent CBS news report showed that Obama has added more Federal Debt in his 3 years than Bush did in 8 years, and another CBS poll showed he recently hit his lowest approval rating yet, at 41 percent.

He has great difficulty being ahead in swing state polls, a recent one showing him down four points in four different crucial swings states, to Rick Santorum, who many said is too far right to win (which is bogus, but that’s for another article).

The GOP has a lot of reason to be disgruntled and annoyed by the candidates left in the race, but any of them would be an improvement over Obama, and any one of them would at least give Obama a very strong fight in November.

Tucker is a sophomore majoring in political science.

Democrat

The elephant in the newsroom has been the Republican Primaries. The circus will not pack up until August when the Republican National Convention is held.

I was not excited in the least at the start of the Republican Primaries. In my opinion, there is not a Republican candidate that would make a good presidential candidate. But the primaries have been interesting nonetheless.

There have been numerous quotes from candidates that catch your attention. Each of the remaining candidates has said something throughout the primaries that targets a certain group. Mitt Romney said, “I’m not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there.” Rick Santorum said, “I don’t want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money; I want to give them the opportunity to go out and earn the money.” Newt Gingrich said, “Really poor children, in really poor neighborhoods, have no habits of working and have nobody around them who works.” Ron Paul claims he would have voted against the Civil Rights Act.

It astonishes me that a person running for the highest elected position in a country as diverse as the United States would make such outrageous comments. There have been numerous other infamous quotes as well. I believe a president should take all Americans into consideration, not stereotype them, and also be sensitive to their needs. I have seen a total lack of compassion in the Republican Primaries, which disturbs me greatly.

Another interesting dynamic of the Republican Primaries is observing how the Citizens United ruling is playing out. The power of Super PACS has been evident. Candidates tumble in polls after being attacked by a spending push from a Super PAC. It is not possible to fully analyze the impact of Super PACS on the Republican Primaries until they are over, but perhaps the worst outcome from Citizens United is the diminished voice of the average voter. Candidates are able to continue running while ignoring the average citizen due to the corporate influence in campaign finance. Allowing unlimited campaign contributions corrupts the government. The candidates are simply answering to whoever is paying for their campaign. Citizens United allows for corporations to run the United States if they choose, allowing the wealthiest entities to influence elections as they see fit. This is why candidates don’t have to worry about wild quotes, because they are not running for the people, but for the lobby.

What surprises me most is the lack of unity in the Republican Party. Mitt Romney has been the frontrunner. He does not excite the base, and many are looking for the anti-Romney. This schism in the party has ruined the chance of producing a winning presidential candidate. While many anti-Romney candidates exist, they do not appeal to the independent voters needed to win the election. Romney is the most electable candidate, yet despite that fact there is still strong opposition to him.

Romney is going to end up spending money that could have been used in November to deal with this protracted fight. The extra fighting will prove costly come November.

I predict Willard Mitt Romney will be the Republican nominee. It may not be a pretty win, but he will be the one to run against the incumbent Barack Obama. I believe that Barack Obama will win the presidential election. Romney has trouble exciting people who say “Anyone but Obama,” and even more of a challenge appealing to independents. Since he is the best the Republican Party can offer, I don’t see a different administration in the future. This primary has intrigued me most because
it seems like the Republicans are giving this election away.

Michael is a freshman majoring in human rights and political science with minors in Arabic and religious studies. 

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