Would you buy a used car from this man?
I haven't written a lot about Mitch Daniels in the past, mainly because the guy is pretty hard to take serious as a candidate. He has a case of "foot-in-mouth-disease" so severe he makes Joe Biden look like an eloquent speaker in comparison. You never hear a speech or announcement from this guy without shaking your head in disbelief, wondering how he was ever elected to any office. And that's before you look at his record.
Sadly, the left wing media, and Republican establishment, two groups that are getting harder and harder to tell apart, are pushing Daniels hard as the "serious" candidate. Daniels, who was President George W. Bush's White House Budget Director, is laughingly perceived as a fiscal conservative. We'll have much more on that to come.
Like most establishment Republicans, Daniels holds the base of the party, Conservatives, in great contempt. He's called for a "truce" on social issues, stating he wants to concentrate on the money end of things. The problem with that sort of thinking is it's the social issues, as promoted by democrats, that cost so much money! Rarely are so-called "fiscally conservative but socially liberal" elected officials Conservative at all. Fiscally or other wise.
Credit where credit's due though: Daniels did sign into law a bill that cuts all state funding to the Planned Parenthood abortion mills, a serious fiscal AND social victory. Indiana is the first state to do this. However, one can't help but feel this is more about a possible 2012 run, than anything else. The Republican Party is still very much the party of life, and anyone even perceived as pro-abortion is a non-starter.
Maybe I'm just too cynical, but after seeing Daniels get rolled by the democrat fleebaggers, who like those in Wisconsin, left the state and hid, rather than do their jobs, and watching Mitch kill a bill that would have made Indiana a "right to work" state, thus ending the union stranglehold, and making Indiana more competitive. That legislation was a no-brainer, and yet ....
So forgive me if I'm a tad less than impressed.
Which brings me to the point of this post.
I was reading yet another article by a left winger "helpfully" pointing out just how awesome Mitch Daniels would be as the Republican nominee, when this tid-bit reminded me of what Daniels said at CPAC:
Daniels is regarded (and regards himself) as a candidate of considerable gravity, willing to focus on making tough choices about the nation’s financial future even if that conversation is politically unpopular. (At a February speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, he said that "purity in martyrdom is for suicide bombers.")
You can read the entire puff piece here.
This sort of thinking is typical of the unprincipled squishes that make up the GOP establishment. The "progressives," liberals, if you will. These wishy-washy, finger-in-the-wind politicians hate to be held to any standard, or follow any set of core principles, so they attempt to paint Conservatives as ridged ideologues who want some sort of "purity test" to be administered.
Of course, this is nonsense. All Conservatives want is someone with a working knowledge of the Constitution, and First Principles. [and stick to them] That's a pretty minimal requirement. Oh, and they want someone who is honest, and says what they mean, and means what they say. That is where these establishment hacks get into trouble.
At first I was curious as to why Daniels chose to reference "suicide bombers" when describing Conservatives. That's plenty extreme, even for an establishment Republican. Then I was reminded of a recent article by Pamela Geller that may explain why that reference rolled so smoothly off Daniels' tongue. Pamela's article is a must read.
The left wing media's love for Daniels, and other establishment Republican squishes, reminds me of the lead up to the 2008 campaign. That was not a strong year for GOP candidates anyway. Nothing but second and third tier wannabes. With that said. John McCain, bless his heart, was the left's "favorite" Republican. He was the darling of the late night talk show circuit. "If only the Republicans were smart enough to nominate John McCain" the left proclaimed "he's the ONE Republican we could support!"
That lasted right up to the point GOP voters actually nominated the Senator. Then the long knives came out!
For some reason Republican voters are always fooled by the idea that a Republican must be loved by the media in order to be a viable candidate, never mind the last successful Republican presidential candidates, George W Bush and the great Ronald Reagan, weren't just hated by the media, they were despised.
It's too early for the left to have chosen the Republican they want to "shower with love" thus setting them up for an easy defeat, but it seems Mitch Daniels is pretty high up on their wish list.
This little nugget is from an article in the New Yorker:
On Tuesday, at the Gilded Age Upper East Side mansion that houses the nascent Bloomberg View, Daniels lunched with a baker’s dozen of journo-pundits ranging politics-wise from rightish (Peggy Noonan, Ramesh Ponnuru) and leftish (Michael Kinsley, Josh Marshall) to neitherish (Mark Halperin), and outlet-wise from mass market (George Stephanopoulos) to niche market (me). Afterward, the informal consensus of the leftish contingent was summed up in this exchange:
"If we have to have a Republican…"
"…this one seems like he’d be better than the others."
Dainiels is "better than the others" .... as in easy for Obama to beat.
My question to readers is why would any Republican support a guy like Daniels who disrespects the entire base of the party by comparing them to suicide bombers?
Now I know Congressman Jack Murtha got re-elected by calling his constituents a bunch of racists, but they were all democrats. Republicans are supposed to be intelligent, aren't we?
Rush Limbaugh comments on Daniels, and the Republican "elite" below: