That's the title of Dana Milbank's column in the Herald this morning. Milbank IS a Democrat but the column encoraged reading to see if the premise was an exercise in sarcasm or something more. It seems to be something more . Here are some excerpts:
"...In political campaigns, you always hope the opposing party nominates the most extreme of its possible candidates, thereby surrendering the middle of the electorate. And , in this sense, Rick Perry's candidacy is a Texas-sized gift to President Obama.
The Texas governor is an oppo researcher's dream, an impossible blend of secession and treason and Ponzi schemes and monstrous lies. His duel for the nomination with Mitt Romney promises to be the sort of donnybrook the Republican Party hasn't seen in many years, keeping the opposition party feuding over forced vaccinations and immigration rather than attacking Obama for his stewardship of the economy.
But what if the usual rules don't apply in 2012? Already, upward of seven in 10 Americans say the country is on the wrong track. What if things don't improve....or get worse....by November 2012? In that case, voters might well be willing to pull the lever for any alternative....even a Texan who boasted about shooting a coyote while jogging and suggested that Social Security is unconstitutional. In such a scenario, the only thing standing in the way of a President Perry is Mitt Romney.
So far, Democrats and like-minded interest groups have been willing to take the gamble that Obama can beat Perry more easily than Romney....and that they therefore need fear Perry less than Romney.
Rather than go after Perry for his statements about the Ponzi scheme known as Social Security, the Democratic National Committee has been trying to make the case that Perry and Romney are indistinguishable on the topic. The DNC arranged a news conference call last week to pronounce Romney " just as dangerous " as Perry.
Whether or not that's true, there's good reason why Democrats would try to make Romney look just as out there as Perry. A poll released Thursday by Bloomberg News found Obama with a comfortable lead over Perry, 49-40. But his edge over Romney was 48-43. That followed a Public Policy Polling survey finding Obama with an 11 - point lead over Perry but only a four- point lead over Romney. The key difference: Among independents, Obama trailed Romney by two percentage points but led Perry by 10......
So, given these growing fears that Obama will lose in 2012 to any Republican with a pulse, maybe its time for Democrats to stop hoping that Perry will be the next Barry Goldwater.
There may not be a whole lot of difference in their stated policies, but their temperaments couldn't be further apart. If Obama is doomed, who would Democrats rather have in possession of the nuclear suitcase; the technocratic Romney, or the coyote -shooting Perry ?"
I found this article an interesting and candid reflection of what reasonable Democrats ( Reagan Democrats ) might be thinking as the election process unfolds. I also keep reminding myself that over 30 % of ALL GOP delegates are chosen in states with OPEN primaries allowing these concerned Democrats to cross over in the Republican primaries. Indeed, the following states Do have OPEN PRIMARIES : Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana,Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, S Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin, Arizona and Massachusetts. The question Milbank propounds is not whether there will be a large cross over vote in these state primaries. There will be with no Democratic primary contest. The real question is whether Dems will vote for Perry as the easiest choice for Obama to defeat in a general election or a vote for Romney as the most competent candidate to be President after November 2012
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