Mike Pence, a Republican Congressman from Indiana is about to make one of two decisions: whether to run for the Governorship of his beloved state or whether to run for a chance at being the next President of these United States. To call him conservative is like calling a rock hard.
He is on the "right" side of all the Republican core issues and values and would incite the basic conservative need to be clean cut, uncompromising (not always a good thing), and on the issues of social, economic, and national security he is the poster child for Conservative and Tea Party politics.
The guy doesn't necessarily scare me as a candidate, and I believe President Obama needs a clear cut conservative to contrast his ideology to have a chance at victory in 2012, and Pence would fit that criterion perfectly. A Pence candidacy also tells us more than Republicans would admit to, that they are not united in their love of those who are most likely to run and that is perhaps very telling indeed.
Names like Newt Gringrich and Mitt Romney, no strangers to the national political stage and very conservative in their own right seemingly aren't conservative enough for the radical Right of the Party. An organization was formed called "America's President Committee" specifically to draft Pence and Pence alone. Former Reagan administration official Ralph Benko and former Republican Congressman Jim Ryun are spearheading the Draft Pence effort.
My impression here is that Republicans have so overreacted to President Obama that they have allowed a few critical issues to define the President, as we know. Republicans believe that Health Care Reform and the repeal of the important Don't Ask Don't Tell have damned the President to political hell for his leadership on these historical and necessary changes, but I don't believe the American people are as naïve as the Conservative radical right of the Republican Party believes with all their heart.
I say let them go as far Right as they want to, and the further to the Right they go the better for President Obama. President Obama in rebounding nicely in all the polls that matter that gauge how the American people feel about their leader. His favorability rating is once again STEADILY on the rise and as the 112th Congress begins this week to get back to the business of running the country it will be interesting to see how the public responds to the reality that Republicans have decided to start with issues that take away and not add to the solutions we so desperately need and need now.
It's a confusing strategy and I understand how they arrived here, but from November 2, 2012 to January 17, 2011 the momentum Republicans believe they have has been tempered by simple time and an ADD mentality of modern day activists. Honestly, no one is as mad today as they were on November 2, 2010 and although the core issues that saw Democrats lose too many seats still exist, the wave of anger and the mandate for change is not nearly as charged. It's just a simple truth.
Mike Pence may just decide to take his marbles and go home and run for the Governorship of his fine state as the path to victory there is much easier than the path to the Presidency of the United States of America. But, political egos are fascinating things and if he begins to believe the hype he will be too tempted not to take the bait, so let him. I would welcome his candidacy and his ascension to the top of the Republican ticket in 2012.
President Obama will reengage the Democratic base and he still is more popular with independent voters because of the extremity of the radical Right, that you can make book on. So let the games begin. This is one Liberal Democrat that is just aching for a good fight.