David Frum has written a cogent, thought-provoking essay on why he’ll vote for Mitt Romney in the upcoming election. He’s essentially hoping to elect Massachusetts Mitt, not the Tea Party toady we’ve heard from over the past year.
Yet here, in Frum’s own words, is the reason I and many like me could never share his support for Romney, no matter how thoughtful, intelligent and consensus-building was his past governance:
“Would Mitt Romney be an improvement over President Obama? I’d like to believe the David Brooks theory of the Romney presidency: that Romney will pivot away from Tea Party Republicanism as soon as he is elected. I don’t see much evidence in support of that theory, alas. George Romney, I’m told, liked to say, ‘As you campaign, so shall you govern.’ Mitt Romney’s campaign has been one long appeasement of the most selfish and stupid elements of the Republican coalition, and the instinct for appeasement will not terminate with the counting of the votes next Tuesday.”
I’d like to find a national candidate like David Frum, or one not afraid to run with his politics. His conservatism suits some of my sensibilities, though not all. Sadly, there is no such candidate today. Mitt Romney could be that candidate, but he’s apparently waiting for someone to give him permission. And the only voices he hears from his party were paid for by the Koch brothers.
The GOP will have to suffer repeated, near-catastrophic defeats every couple of years for the next cycle or two before their supporters throw off the “selfish and stupid elements” in their party. Just as the Democrats finally wised up to Americans’ distaste for never-ending welfare and abridgment of gun owner’s rights, the GOP needs a better political plan that obstruction, obfuscation and FUD.
And if this is just a choice between the lesser of two evils (it’s not), I’ll take the one neither selfish nor stupid.