Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Romney Wins Arizona and Michigan - Santorum's Pandering Fails

While part of me would love to see Rick Santorum get the GOP presidential nomination so that he could then go down to a humiliating defeat in November - taking the Christofascists arm of the GOP down with him - it is perhaps better to see than Santorum cannot win even in the increasingly insane Republican Party. While Romney's win in Michigan was only a 3 point spread (Arizona saw a 20 point spread), it none the less was a slap down for Santorum who may have been aided by Democrats who voted for him in the hope of extending the GOP presidential nominee candidate circular firing squad for a while longer. As Kathleen Parker notes in a column, Santorum's efforts to pander to the most extreme elements of the Kool-Aid drinking GOP base failed. Here are some highlights from the Washington Post:

Mitt Romney won both of Tuesday’s Republican presidential primaries, routing Rick Santorum in Arizona and narrowly securing Michigan, his birth state.

The victories will provide an important boost for Romney, a former Massachusetts governor who has sought to cast himself as the GOP’s inevitable nominee. He has now won primary contests in six states: New Hampshire, Florida, Nevada, Maine, Michigan and Arizona.

Romney’s victories on Tuesday are unlikely to solve the larger problems that have held back his campaign. Even after months of work and millions of dollars spent, he has not won over a vast swath of Republicans.

That was clear from Michigan exit polls, which showed that Santorum had beaten Romney decisively among important Republican blocs. The former senator from Pennsylvania held a 15-point lead among voters who identify themselves as “very conservative,” a 40-point edge among those who say they want their candidate to be “a true conservative” and a 41-point advantage among those who want a candidate with “strong moral character.”

Romney, by contrast, bested Santorum among voters who care strongly about beating Obama in November, and among those who say the economy is their chief concern.

Among his fellow Catholics, Santorum lost to Romney by 43 percent to 37 percent, according to exit polls.

Here are some excerpts from Kathleen Parker's (Parker is among the few sane conservatives left) column on Santorum:

While Mitt Romney is merely guilty of saying things that make him seem disconnected from the lives of most Americans, Rick Santorum makes ideological statements that make him appear to be disconnected from the present tense.

Google could create a new translation mechanism just for the former Pennsylvania senator, not for language but for meaning. . . . . Said audience did applaud, but this is because they don’t like Obama and would have cheered no matter what Santorum said about him. Also, Republican audiences these days love to hate snobs, elites and liberals. The GOP playbook recommends sprinkling these words throughout speeches to ensure applause, foot-stomping and other demonstrations of approval.

Santorum elected to pander to the idea that ignorance beats an education that might lead one to become an elite. His words, in addition to being false, were, dare we say, rather snobbish. How else to characterize speaking to people as though they aren’t capable of recognizing truth — or that their children aren’t smart enough to go to college and, grasping the flaws of liberalism, stay true to the conservative values with which they were raised?

Of course, then there is Santorum's desire to merge religion with governmental action - something that ought to scare all but the craziest elements of the GOP base.

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