CBS Poll: Majority of Republicans Want More Choices

In an interesting survey conducted by CBS News, 58% of Republicans want more choices for the GOP nomination.  While this isn’t exactly a stunning revelation to readers of this site, it does confirm what we’ve thought all along:  The GOP’s current crop of candidates is sub-par, and most Republicans would prefer to see somebody else altogether.  While the poll doesn’t identify any particular candidates, what it does suggest strongly is that Republicans are thoroughly dissatisfied with the current selections available.  We’ve known this for some time, but what it hints at is a serious problem for the GOP if the party should nominate another losing candidate in 2012.  The party is in deep trouble with its conservative base already, and one more Presidential defeat with a soft moderate is likely to cause a revolt.  According to the CBS poll, only 37% are satisfied with the current field of choices.

If a party cannot motivate its base of support to greater enthusiasm, it will inevitably lose any general election.  This has been the problem with this field all along:  They really don’t inspire the base, and they’re not apt to do so in any substantial fashion.  Much of that owes to the fact that none of them are seen as thorough conservatives, and none are really very dynamic speakers.  It’s clear that the GOP remains in serious trouble, and as others have pointed out, the so-called “inevitable nominee” is likely to lead the Republicans to defeat in November.  I can’t imagine how with this current crop of candidates, Republicans expect to win the White House in 2012, and it appears they don’t really expect it either.  There is a growing sense of exasperation with what is seen as ineffective leadership in the GOP, and that’s going to impose a mighty penalty in November.

As we’ve seen consistently over the last year, most Republicans seem to be looking for somebody else.  Many have settled on candidates who are clearly not a first or even a second choice, and that makes for a good deal of volatility.  As Granite-State voters go to the polls today, it’s clear Mitt Romney has a big lead in that state, but New Hampshire has never really been very representative of the Republican party in any case, so it’s not clear that this will offer us anything concrete about the direction of the nomination fight.  Most analysts expect Romney to capture 40% or more of the New Hampshire vote, although there has been a concerted tamping-down of expectations over the last few days in media.  If Romney were to capture less than 40% in New Hampshire, it would likely be a strong signal that he’s still not capturing the base of the party.  Capturing more than 40% would begin to indicate he might be on his way to locking up the nomination, but nobody is certain at this point.

The fact that we have passed into the election year of 2012 without a clear front-runner who is enthusiastically supported in the party isn’t a surprise, but the fact is that any number of people could still jump into this race and make a dramatic difference.  Whether any will is another matter, as for the moment, none seem to be so-inclined.  It is perhaps for this reason that so many Americans are looking pessimistically at the future, with Americans fearing an Obama re-election by 2-1.  That merely tells you something about how uninspiring the current crop of candidates are, and the fact that Gallup is also reporting that conservatives have begun to accept Romney as the probable nominee should tell you just how bad it has gotten. Not many are excited about it, to be sure.

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6 Responses to CBS Poll: Majority of Republicans Want More Choices

  1. bigmamas52 says:

    Mark, I'm curious and would like your thoughts on this. I'm in complete agreement with you and at this point will vote for anyone but Romney. We have no Senators or House running in Alaska this time so there is no down ticket to vote for. I would actually feel awful sitting out an election, I've never done it in my life, I consider it a sacred duty. My husband is a vet of Vietnam and 20 yrs service. He and by extension our family gave in ways no one will ever know to give us the right to be free so I take voting very seriously. So that's where I'm coming from… here's my thoughts I'd like your view on.

    I spoke with my sister last week and forwarded your piece on "Losing the Base". Politically we are both pretty conservative, me all my life, she is a converted Democrat about 15 yrs ago. For the most part we agree, and we are both fearful as to what's happening in the country, we honestly believe we are headed for a revolution or civil war again, of some sort. However, she said to me that though she would have to hold her nose for Romney, IF he is the inevitable nominee she will vote for him just to get Obama out of there. She made some good points that have caused me to wonder if I'm being too stubborn in saying no. As she said, in using a war analogy, you don't win a war with one battle, nor with one person. This IS a war we are in, both for the country and for conservatism as it was meant to be practiced. Not necessarily for the GOP, unless the establishment would like to come along for the ride. If we allow Obama to stay we will never get rid of Obamacare, and for her and I, who are both disabled and on Medicare, plus I am also on Tricare, we are already seeing MAJOR changes in those programs as a direct result of Obamacare, that will have long term if not life-threatening results. Most Americans have not yet felt the pinch yet, we have. If we elect Romney, by no measure a conservative, but work on electing conservative Senators and House and take control of those 2 bodies, Romney will be pulled to consevatism whether he likes it or not. He will have to govern conservatively or the GOP will lose in the House elections 2 yrs later, as the public is short on patience and after the last year, want to see some real work done to get the country back on it's feet. So, my question is, would we not be better to elect Romney, even if it goes against what we want now, to ultimately work and get more conservative people in Congress and state houses, so in 2020 we can pull from one of them and really get back to our conservative principles?

    I really respect your opinion and would like your thoughts….thanks, Karen

    • MarkAmerica says:

      Karen, I can forgive anybody who feels that we must support Romney if he's the nominee, thinking he's better than Obama, but I personally cannot support him. The problem with a squish like Romney is that he will wind up hurting us in the House and Senate because he'll undermine us there too. Of course, if you consider the fact that we already have Boehner there, it may not be too much worse. I also believe Romney will in no substantial way repeal Obamacare. He might sign a repeal of the mandate, maybe, but he won't get rid of the entitlement that will saddle us with more spending and debt for all times.

      I can understand the thinking that "well, at least he isn't Obama," but I'm not sure that's enough. For me, it's never been about Obama in any personal way, but about his policies, and I note that in MA, Romney instituted policies not at all dis-similar from Obama.

      I haven't given up yet, and neither should you, but I don't know how we get from here to there with a Romney. Really don't.

      Thanks for reading!


  2. RebinTexas says:

    Thanks Mark

    It's good to know I'm not standing by myself out here….well, I know you and some others are right there with me – but I wasn't sure how many that was. We can only pray this year becomes much more intersting rather than depressing…….no doubt who I'd love working for, voting for- Sarah Palin.


  3. Gwen says:

    It begs the question, why didn't anyone else want to run? Is it because the party would not back anyone besides Mitt, because it's his turn? Is it Because no one thinks they can beat Obama and his machine and risk being labeled a racist or ending their political career forever? Is it Because they have a young family, even though there may be no America left for their children after another four years of Obama? Could it be that running for president as a republican means defending yourself from your own "people" let alone the mainstream media, something no democrat EVER has to do?

  4. Stand Taker says:

    All I want to know at this point is:

    Can Sarah still get in?

    I'm fed up with this Romney business. This is like the homely girl winning Miss Deb because her daddy's the best connected, not because anyone likes her.

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