Friday, January 13, 2012

Dear Candidates: Grow Up!

An Open Letter to All 2012 Republican Presidential Candidates:

Yesterday, your party officials met in New Orleans, Louisiana, and admitted to the national media that the campaigns you're running are embarrassing and way off-message.

But then, the American people already knew that.  And we're already embarrassed and disgusted.

You're picking on the richest one of you because he made his money doing the same thing the rest of you used to bank your investment portfolios on:  the employment-killing venture capitalist industry.  Why bother attacking him now?  And he's shooting back at you with quips about firing even more people.  Meanwhile, the negative ads - a tactic which the American public has already said we don't like - keep churning away.  But not even against the opposing party:  against opposing candidates within your own party!

Where's the logic in that?

Let's face it, guys:  none of you are stellar candidates.  None of you.  None of you match the caliber of candidates Republicans have been assuming we'd be able to choose from this year.

None of you comprehensively typify the traditional Republican qualities of reasonable (not just limited) government, frugal taxation, beneficent capitalism, and social conservatism.

None of you have provided us a coherent strategy or platform that you intend to follow should you win the presidency.  Indeed, none of you are telling us much about what makes you such a good candidate.

None of you have stellar foreign affairs experience.

None of you have an impressive military background, and only two of you even have military service.

None of you reliably champion legitimate conservative social values.

Yet all of you like to bicker and squabble.  Those might be acceptable qualities for Congress, at least if the behavior of our Legislative Branch's current members means anything, but not for the presidency.

All of you think the public - and the Democrats - will forget your bickering and squabbling amongst yourselves by the time Election Day rolls around.

And all of you assume you'd be a better president than Barak Obama.

If that's the case, then prove it to the American people.  Tell us what sets you apart.  Tell us what parts of your background make you the ideal competition for our current president.  Tell us your vision for your presidency, and what you plan for your agenda.  Give us numbers and promises and even platitudes, not to denigrate your opponents in this primary race, but to prove to us that you're the person we should nominate.

Good grief, guys.  You're acting like a bunch of spoiled teenagers.  You're kicking up dust and sand like a petulant coach screaming at a referee.  You're pointing so many fingers at each other nobody would guess you have only ten of them.

Grow up, gentlemen.  If we can still call you that.  This election year was supposed to be handed to the Republican Party on a silver platter.  Obama's once-radicalized youth vote has evaporated.  His tenure in the Oval Office has been plagued by anemic job growth, runaway bureaucracy, political paralysis, unsatisfactory military efforts, tepid foreign relations, and plenty of people in his own party starting to freak out over their chances of holding the White House this November.

Well, hey - you've been too busy bickering and squabbling to notice, but Democrats aren't freaking out about losing the White House anymore.  Obama is raking in the campaign cash - a whopping $42 million just last quarter.  Op-ed columnists are starting to crow about all of the collateral damage being inflicted upon the Republican Party by its very candidates.

If you guys think what you're doing is good electioneering, then maybe you're not good politicians after all.  After what we've witnessed just in Iowa, New Hampshire, and now in South Carolina, how are you supposed to kiss and make up after the nomination, dust yourselves off, straighten your ties, and say, "Aww, we're all good now!  We're all behind that guy who just yesterday we claimed to be unsuitable."

If you think the electorate is that stupid, maybe you don't deserve our vote.  If you think President Obama is that impotent a campaigner, then maybe you're not competent enough to run against him.

Suck it up, boys, and grow up:  you're on the verge of throwing away this presidential race, and none of you have even been made the party's official candidate!

We didn't really like much about any of you before this election started, and you haven't won many friends since then.  You need to prove to us that you're worth voting for, not just that somebody else is worth voting against.

Is winning the nomination more important to you than winning the election?

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