“Mr. Romney did not lose the 2012 election because he was too conservative for general-election voters.”
Lynn Vavreck, wrote in her New York Times article. “Mr. Romney won the protracted G.O.P. nomination in 2012 not by convincing voters he had moved to the right, but by convincing party leaders and other elites that he was the most viable candidate in the race. Mr. Bush can do the same.”
In the article she said her research showed that President Obama was further left than how most people identified themselves and people identified more ideologically moderate like Mitt Romney. So in the general election, why did the more polarizing politician win? Yes, President Obama was an incumbent so he had an advantage, but what about in 2008 with ultra-moderate John McCain? We see historically that moderates do not do well. John McCain’s poll numbers started to increase once he chose more conservative Sarah Palin to be his running mate. Many more factors go into winning an election than ideology, as we have seen with Palin and Romney’s botched campaigns.
Romney did not lose because he was too conservative, but he lost because he was too moderate. Lynn Vavreck also brought up the primary. She said Mitt Romney won the primary because he convinced the party leaders he was the best candidate to beat the President. Some polls helped prove this.
Romney won the primary in 2012 because he was the moderate. Conservatives like Governor Rick Perry and Rick Santorum and even libertarian Ron Paul all split the nation’s conservative vote. Even Newt Gingrich took conservative votes away from the others. So, Mitt Romney was the only candidate not like the others. He did not scare away some voters because he too “Christian” like Santorum, or too “crazy” like Ron Paul. And Rick Perry happened to forget a few things during a debate and Newt Gingrich has more baggage than JFK Airport. All these factors go into an election. Mitt Romney was the only moderate and the conservatives split the vote.
The difference between 2012 and 2016 is that there is no incumbent President. The GOP primary may look something like this:
Jeb Bush is running, who is a moderate. Chris Christie is rumored to run, who is also very moderate. Former New York Governor George Pataki is running, who is not the most conservative. Lindsay Graham was even rumored to run, who is moderate John McCain’s gal-pal.
Then the more conservatives like Rick Perry, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz and even Governor Scott Walker may run. There are more moderates and more conservatives running in this next election against no incumbent. The Democrats shot themselves in the foot these past few years, making it a little easier for Republicans to win; given the Republicans don’t shoot themselves in their own foot!
There is a good chance that conservatives come out and vote for a more conservative candidate, especially since there are more moderate candidates in this election than last. Americans, powered by the Tea Party Movement, are starting to see true, passionate conservatives instead of the RINO types who are basically Democrats, like we see in our leadership.
Whoever the GOP elect in the primary has a very good chance of being President, regardless of ideology. So we must be careful to choose wisely.
We need a conservative, enough playing around already!