Romney looks Presidential, Paul looks like his devoted attack dog, at New Hampshire debate

To his credit, Williard “Mitt” Romney looked “presidential” at last night’s New Hampshire debate, staying on his themes of jobs and the economy, and national defense, taking a shot at John Huntsman for his “appeasement” attitude to trade with China, and turning back inane attempts by ABC News questioners George Stephanopolis and Diane Sawyer to force him to answer ridiculous social-issue questions, such as whether or not he favored a constitutional amendment to allow states to ban birth control.  In fact, many of the questions the ABC panel threw at the candidates were intended to divide them among themselves rather than give them a chance to articulate their own visions for America, and both Romney and Gingrich did good jobs “not taking the bait” and shifting focus back to the sad state of affairs our county finds itself in at the hands of Barack Obama, and the things that need to be done to improve our economy and national defense.  In fact, Gingrich did the best job of turning the tables when, almost in exasperation, he told Sawyer that she and the national media were asking the wrong questions and queried her about why the media itself is not asking, in the social issue realm, for example, about the Obama Administration’s prejudice against the Catholic Church and its relief services unrelated to abortion, because of the Church’s own stand on abortion, and whether that is a proper policy of Obama.

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ABC’s turning the debate into a show for almost 15 minutes on the legality of contraception (which no Republican candidate has challenged at all) was a sad statement of the lengths the national news media will go to help Barack Obama by taking the focus off the really more pressing issues for America, the ones Barack Obama has so obviously failed on, and the ones that could propel Obama’s Republican opponent into the White House.

However, the national news media and Mitt Romney, the most liberal of the major Republican candidates for president, had an ally on stage for those who want Barack Obama to win the presidency, and that was Ron Paul.  Paul was more than aggressive in tearing down an honorable man, Rick Santorum, during the debate; lashing away at Santorum as a “big spender” (not quite) and not standing down from his claim that Santorum was a “corrupt” politician and lobbyist after he left government service.  There is absolutely no substance to a claim that Santorum was “corrupt,” but Paul, whose strategy is to throw mud at every good conservative alternative to Romney (and not attack the more liberal Romney himself) serves only to bring the chances of a real conservative alternative down.  Ron Paul has become Mitt Romney’s attack dog, his jester, his clown, and at last night’s debate all Romney had to do was smile, hands in his pockets, as he stood between Paul and Santorum and Paul rattled off venom after venom against Santorum, forcing Santorum to respond to Paul’s quack claims and thus allow the “heat” of the debate to be taken off the more liberal vote-leader Romney, where it belonged.  Paul embarrassed himself to thoughtful Republicans even more by not backing off calling Newt Gingrich a “chickhawk” regarding military service.  A candid look at the development of the Republican presidential campaign shows Paul relentlessly attacking Texas Governor Rick Perry, assisting in his demise, then relentlessly attacking Newt Gingrich, assisting in his undoing in Iowa, and now his punching bag is Rick Santorum.  When will Paul start attacking the liberal candidate, Mitt Romney?  Does Paul have some secret deal with Romney to pave the way to his nomination?  (Think about that, Paul supporters!) With Santorum’s votes depressed in New Hampshire, the only candidate really helped is Mitt Romney, because Paul has absolutely no chance of winning the nomination and then winning the Presidency on top of it.  (If you doubt me on the latter point, just think of how our whole nation would react in favor or disfavor of Paul, the day after he finished a two-hour debate with Barack Obama on national security issues.  Paul’s vapid platitudes about being friendly with terrorists and Iran, and how the killing of Osama bin Laden was illegal, would crash the entire Republican ticket across the nation.)

The fact is that conservatives have three candidates for president now: Gingrich, Santorum, and Perry; and Ron Paul is against all three of them, viciously.  That is a fact, and it is a fact that only helps two people: Mitt Romney’s campaign to win the Republican nomination, and Barack Obama’s campaign to be re-elected.

What Gingrich, Perry and Santorum need to do is settle on one of them as the consensus conservative candidate for President, let that person take Romney on directly, and the other two should commit themselves to serving the ultimate defeat of Barack Obama by riding Ron Paul out of the Republican party for good and back into the Libertarian Party where he belongs, and where he received less that 1/2 of 1% of the vote in 46 states as their Presidential candidate in 1988, where he pledged himself to abolish the CIA and the FBI, along with the Center for Disease Control, and other unconventional ideas calculated to get himself less than 1% of the vote.  That’s my opinion, what’s yours?

Courtesy nmfbihop, Flickr


  1. Jeff Addiego says

    The media is a joke…they never ask the questions of any substance. They do not want to ask any questions about the economy because that would mean looking at Obamas failed record…..This administration much like the last one doesn’t have a clue. We need the media at ask real questions,most Americans want to hear about the economy and jobs, not social issues.

  2. What do I think? I think you should apply for work at MSNBC, Mother Jones or the Huffington Post, Jim. You’ve got their ad hominem and other entertaining schticks down pat. Anyone with a sense of GOP political reality recognizes the entrenched, big-spending, big-government, unconstitutional RINO ideology that continues to pass itself off as GOP principles. And of course the routing of such entrenched hypocritical nonsense is never easy and its always easier to attack the messenger than his message, especially a message that is so principled and common sense as Paul’s. I don’t agree with everything Paul says, but he makes more sense than the other status quo candidates. Rather a principled attack dog than an unprincipled RINO, and until the GOP gets this, it will continue to fracture and eventually spiral into irrelevance the way it has in California. Jim, your RINO slip is showing…again.

  3. Romney came across as the waffling RINO that he is. Paul came across as a crazy senile old man ! Huntsman has no chance so who cares what he says. Newt shined as usual and both Perry and Santorum did fine !

  4. I liked Santorum and Perry in that order. Ron Paul should go back to delivering babies. Newt wasn’t as aggressive as usual, I missed that. But if Romney is the nominee, he’ll get my vote. Anybody but Obozo….

  5. Ron Paul seems to be not much more than an attack dog. He should spend more time attacking Obama…that’s where the real problems llie.

  6. You forgot to mention Rick Perry attacking Ron Paul’s hypocrisy when it comes to earmarks time and time again. Perry pointed out that Paul accepted tons of earmarks for his district and then voted against the bill containing the earmarks knowing that the bill would pass and the the pork would come Paul’s way anyway.

    • James V. Lacy says

      Yes, that was a good comment because it brought out the truth Paul is just as much a politician as those he criticizes. Fighting for earmark bills behind closed doors out of public sight and then voting against the same bills on the floor in public, when he already knows they will pass, and thereby trying to fool his supporters into thinking he is “against every spending bill,” is pure hypocrisy.

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