I’ve been told repeatedly that we must elect Mitt Romney, come what may, because the country won’t survive Obama for another four years. Whether this assertion is true, those who hold this point of view invariably follow up with a claim that I now find utterly laughable. I am told: “Besides, if Romney wins, we’ll be able to hold his feet to the fire, and get him to do our bidding…” I wonder if the people who express this view realize how thoroughly nonsensical that position really is. There is only one way to hold a President’s feet to the fire, and it is by being able to exert electoral control, but as of the Rules Committee report of Tuesday at the RNC, that option is now all but effectively gone. I would like those who claim that we conservatives will be able to exert some influence over a President Romney to explain to me with precision how that is to be accomplished, apart from vague platitudes: How can we expect to “hold his feet to the fire?” By what mechanism?
First of all, what fire? Romney hasn’t pledged much except to repeal and replace Obama-care. Replace? Yes, “replace.” For those of you who practice self-deception, you might not have heard him say that, but now I ask you: “Replace with what, precisely?” Here we are delivered more vague platitudes about market-based solutions, but not once does Romney offer what those solutions will be. More platitudes. More vague generalities. It’s a load of hogwash. Welcome to Romney-care 2.0. Welcome to Romney 3.0.
Let us assume, however, that there is some magical laundry list of things Mitt Romney had promised with some specificity. Even if he has, could some brave soul please explain to me the method by which he is to be made to perform as promised? What will you do if he refuses? Will you “primary” him in 2016? Fat chance. The power grab begun in the RNC’s rules committee consisted of making that nearly impossible. What will you do? Deny him campaign funds? The advent of SuperPACs has made this an irrelevant point. Karl Rove will merely scare up a few hundred million dollars and spend it on his behalf. Why should he care? Now, if Karl Rove were to get mad at him, that would be a different thing. What are the chances that he won’t do the bidding of his masters?
Right. Now you’re catching on.
Once you understand that there is no method by which you will be able to even lean on Mitt Romney, except in the court of public opinion, you must also realize that this notion of “holding his feet to the fire” is as vaporous as spilled acetone. There is nothing you can do to affect Mitt Romney if he is elected. Nothing. The influence any party and its voters exerts over a President is already slim once they obtain that high office, but in the case of Romney, given the rigging carried out on at the Republican Convention, but frankly throughout this primary season, there is virtually nothing short of an actual coup d’etats that would pry him from his positions, whatever they may be.
Amnesty? Abortion? Romney-care? What are you going to do about it once you elect him, having effectively given him the power to re-write the rules of the convention at will? You’re going to whimper and cry, and you will be stuck with eight years of his liberal tendencies, and as almost half the span of yet another generation will have elapsed believing that this had been conservatism, your country will be lost. Even now, Governor Romney is out on the campaign trail explaining that he will not repeal all of Obama-care, but will instead opt to keep some of it. This is what we are told is conservative? This man, it is said, can be held to perform the promises he’s made? It hasn’t been two weeks since the convention, and he’s already ditching promises.
One can’t help but observe that the GOP establishment is bound and determined to give us candidates who are not conservative, but who will claim the label long enough to win in primaries before becoming full-bore mush. For a man who had described himself as “severely conservative,” whatever that means, the rush to retreat from his promise to repeal all of Obama-care is breath-taking. For those of us who hadn’t believed him, the only thing breath-taking about it has been the predictability of the matter, and the gullibility of all those who have assured us it wouldn’t go that way. Put another way, the Mittster has shaken up the Etch-a-Sketch, and he’s drawing a new picture. Post-convention Mitt will now advocate a modified Obama-care rather than a full repeal.
Will anybody who claims to be a conservative please explain to me in unvarnished terms how it is that we will “hold his feet to the fire” on this issue? This is the enduring problem with Mitt Romney, and it puts the lie to the claim by some who argue that despite his clear attachment to liberal positions on a variety of issues, we conservatives will somehow be able to exert some sort of governing force over him. It simply isn’t so, and the delusions attached to such claims are astonishing only in the implicit motives of the claimants. Why pretend? Why not simply deal with the truth? If conservatives expect anything but Obama Lite from a Romney administration, they’ve been led astray. It’s time we begin to contend with the reality at hand: The GOP establishment moderates who are running the party have led it to ruin, and it’s going to be up to we conservatives to rescue the country, not only from the rabid left, but also from their collaborators in the Republican party’s liberal wing.