Send in the clowns

I probably made a mistake yesterday in singling out Mitt Romney for criticism as a GOP presidential candidate. He has become a caricature of a certain kind of candidate, but we seem to be going through the Send in the Clowns phase of the contest for the nomination.

1. Rick Perry: Jennifer Rubin has been roasting Perry for his assorted flops and failings. She declared yesterday “A day down the drain for Rick Perry.” Perry took a detour down the birther rabbit hole. Something’s happening here…

2. Herman Cain: Prolife or prochoice? Jeffrey Anderson considers the evidence. To Mr. Cain, it’s a trick question. If Mr. Cain is our nominee, every unscripted encounter with a reporter threatens to be a thrill a minute experience. But shouldn’t he have a handle on the question of abortion at this point?

3. Michele Bachmann: Michele’s New Hampshire staff has departed en masse. In my opinion, it’s time for her to come home and nail down her congressional seat if she is still interested in it.

4. Jon Huntsman: His constituency as a presidential candidate is somewhere other than in the Republican Party.

5. Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich: Like Grant in Galena, they are biding their time. Each is waiting to become the not-Romney candidate of choice. It might happen!

6. Ron Paul: I can only repeat myself. Can we trade him to the Democrats for a player to be named later? He would make a great consultant to Dennis Kucinich on foreign policy.

It is always dangerous to fall in love with a politician, but the current crop has made it too damn easy to avoid this pitfall. Bobby Jindal, anyone?

UPDATE: John Podhoretz is thinking along the same lines. He cites additional evidence of unseriousness among the GOP field.

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