Saturday, December 05, 2015

Race for the White House 2016 Volume 49

This past Wednesday, American suffered it's deadliest terrorist attack since September 11, 2001. Yet, the Democrat controlled White House, it's party's Presidential candidates, and most of their Members of Congress seemed to go to great lengths to deny the reality of the situation of what occurred in San Bernadino, California, which left 14 innocent Americans dead.

Hours after the attack, in which the suspects made an escape, a man and a woman were killed by police during a car chase that was basically captured on live television and by evening, it was clear that the perpetrators had Jihad on their mind and likely plans for far more violence, beyond the targeting of a Christmas party at the workplace of the male Muslim-American terrorist. In the days since, we have learned more evidence that points to the man and his foreign born wife or fiancee, who recently came to America on a visa, holding radical beliefs and pledging loyalty to ISIS.

Even as the FBI formally declared the investigation one of terrorism, Barack Obama and his allies, continue to stress that the violence may have been motivated by a workplace dispute or "mixed motives." The left-wing denounced calls for prayers and moments of silence and instead angrily called for more gun control. How that would have effected all the pipe bombs the killers had obtained remains to be seen.

The reaction of the left is ludicrous and dangerous on many levels, but it is the reality of the political divide we face and what should be, by far, the preeminent decision point of the Presidential election. Who is best motivated and equipped to defend American interests abroad, and especially Americans at home, of radical Islamic terrorist attacks? One side believes that climate change is more of a threat than terrorism and that the National Rife Association is a bigger impediment to public safety than ISIS. The left continues to deny that the post 9/11 policies and attitude practiced by the Administration of George W. Bush were necessary and went a great deal towards keeping the American people safe at home, and that the myopic policies of Barack Obama have only emboldened our enemies and endangered our neighborhoods. Of course, some on the right are also not without blame. Data collection and surveillance of potential terrorists are necessary, and the military type equipment needed in San Bernadino this past week was too, regardless of the misguided fears of the libertarian wing of the GOP.

As always happens, these attacks, (provided that similar incidents do not occur in the short term) will recede into the background, as people prepare to celebrate the Holidays, but the campaign issues will persist. As important as the economy is and however divided we are as a nation on social issues, national security and homeland defense have to be considered the main issues of our time. At least, that is what many Republicans believe. Democrats still want to push for increased gun-control, even though public opinion does not seem to be with them on that matter. Nonetheless, the left-wing base of the party, and its' donors want it, which is why Hillary Clinton is embracing calls for gun-control in a way that the party has not done in decades. As mentioned many times, the days of the Bill Clinton DLC "third way" movement are long gone. The current Clinton is gambling on a move to the left in the primaries, which has seen to have helped her over the past couple of months against Bernie Sanders, to be enough.

Democrats genuinely believe that the eventual Republican nominee will be seen as risky enough and extreme enough to beat regardless of how far their own party has moved to the left. If the GOP nominee winds up being a Donald Trump or a Ted Cruz, they may be right, and that is a very scary thing.

However, there is still much to unfold in the Republican process. In many ways, the "regular season" of the primary campaign will not get underway until after New Years', and with the first voting occurring in February, it is increasingly likely that a long drawn-out process, featuring tremendous contention will occur through the end of winter, into the spring, and possibly even beyond.

The person I believe would be the best prepared Commander in Chief, and for all areas of the duties of the Presidency remains Governor Jeb Bush, but despite heavy advertising on his behalf, his poll numbers continue to stagnate. As unfair as it might be, the mood of the current GOP electorate is firmly against the concept of a "dynasty", and Hillary Clinton's prevalence on the other side may play a role in that, and there is nothing that Jeb Bush can say anymore to even allow his voice to be heard by those folks. I still think that truly uncommitted voters are not paying close attention yet, and will indeed have the opportunity, to give new consideration to all sorts of candidates, including Bush, once the voting officially gets underway. Another candidate who is hoping for that possibility, is New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who was the somewhat surprise recipient of the New Hampshire Union-Leader newspaper endorsement this past week. Throughout Granite State primary history, the historically conservative and acerbic Union Leader has gone all out to support the candidate they endorse and that involves being very negative against that man's opponents.

I will maintain that Marco Rubio is very much in play for the GOP nomination, and might ultimately emerge as the establishment choice, acceptable enough to a large amount of conservatives, as an alternative to the electorally scary possibility of a Trump or Cruz. There will have to be an eventual attitudinal shift though in the GOP electorate, going against what polls have shown all year, in regards to "outsiders" in order for that to become a reality though.

The stakes of this election are so high, as we have seen this week, and as conservative as I have always considered myself, the rush for many in both parties towards polar extremes on the left and right is concerning. From Clinton and Sanders on the left to Trump and Cruz on the right, supporters believe that pleasing an angry base is key to a nomination and that the other side will be so weak by comparison, that victory will be within reach.


At 1:00 PM, Blogger Steve Boudreaux said...

United States Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) is rising in the polls & his recent nationwide TV Ad should hit every American on the dangers we face!


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