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The sad state of the Republican party: Only Mitt Romney and Ron Paul qualify for the Virginia primary

December 26, 2011

  Late last week the deadline for turning in the required signatures to qualify for the Virginia primary came and went and it turns out that only two candidates–Mitt Romney and Ron Paul–managed to gather the proper signatures. They will be the only two candidates on the ballot.

  All of these candidates knew what the rules were and yet only two of them managed to have staffers do the legwork necessary for them to appear on what is considered one of the most important battleground states? This is unforgivable and an embarrassment, not only to those who failed to qualify, but to the party as a whole.

  As the Republicans look to unseat Barack Obama I find it utterly inconceivable that not all–or most–of the Republican candidates have manged to get themselves on the ballot in such a critical state and I think this is very telling of the organizational skills of most of the Republican candidates. I can understand how lesser funded and second tier candidates such as Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, and Jon Huntsman didn’t have the resources on the ground necessary to ensure they would be on the ballot in Virginia, but how is is possible that people like Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry were unable to qualify for the Virginia primary?

  Can it be so that only Mitt Romney and Ron Paul have the organizational skills required to ensure they are on the ballots of all the states? If so this is a sad state of affairs for the Republican party in the general election. Barack Obama will be well funded, well prepared, and well organized and we need a candidate who is equal to the challenge if we are to have any chance at defeating Barack Obama and winning the White House. If these candidates are not organized to the point where they can compete in every state how can we be assured that they will have the organization necessary to be Barack Obama in the general election?

  Barack Obama is unpopular and is ripe for the picking, yet the Republican candidates are unorganized and in disarray at a time when Obama should be beatable and I am afraid that my worst fear is being realized–the Republicans simply do not have their act together and they are turning an election which should turn out to be a referendum on the Obama regime and a “shellacking” at the polls into what will ultimately be Barack Obama’s reelection.

  But it is worse than that because if Obama turns out the votes while the Republicans remain divided and unorganized it could result in the Democrats holding onto the Senate while regaining the House. I hope that I am overreacting to this news but I have to fear that somewhere in Hawaii Barack Obama is laughing at the sad state of the Republican party.

  Beyond this, I feel that this tells us that Mitt Romney’s nomination is a foregone conclusion; Mitt Romney seems to have the backing of the Republican establishment and because of this the party was not willing to help the other candidates in Virginia, preferring instead to thin the field, he is well organized, and the media has been telling us that this is a two person race between Romney and Gingrich even though Gingrich has no organization. Our choice has already been made for us and these primaries are just a formality. We did not learn from the history of 2008, and we did not learn from our gains in 2010, and now we are doomed to repeat past mistakes.

  Simply put; the Republicans do not deserve to win in 2012, and they will not. Happy New Year!

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28 Comments leave one →
  1. LD Jackson permalink
    December 26, 2011 9:19 pm

    It’s not something I can understand, Steve. I am beginning to think the entire primary process needs to be revamped. I think you will be interested in what Steven Birn has to say.

    http://stevenbirnspeaks.wordpress.com/2011/12/26/gop-needs-to-reconsider-primary-process/

    Like

    • December 26, 2011 10:03 pm

      Thanks for the link Larry, he made some of the points I was also trying to make. I agree with what he said about parties being able to cross lines to vote in the other party’s primary and that is also the case here in New Hampshire. But at the same time I do think it is up to the states to set their own rules. I do not agree with people being able to cross party lines in an attempt to change the vote, but it should be up to the states to change their rules.
      Part of the reason McCain won in New Hampshire and went on to win the nomination is because people were allowed to cross party lines and vote in the Republican primary, this is something that needs to change in the future, but there doesn’t seem to be a great outcry for it, at least here in New Hampshire.

      Like

  2. stinkprogress permalink
    December 26, 2011 11:16 pm

    I read that the Virginia rules for validating signatures was only changed a month ago. In any previous election year these other candidatea would be on the ballot.
    There is speculationv that this was an establishment/ Carl Rove manuever. Pretty much confirming your point that they are picking our candidate for us.
    Sad state indeed.

    Like

    • December 27, 2011 6:49 am

      It appears that Romney is going to be the nominee and there really isn’t much we can do about it.

      Like

      • December 27, 2011 3:02 pm

        I pointed that out a couple of months ago and was taken to task by many ‘thought to be’ Conservatives…

        Romney to be GOP nominee – Elections no longer required

        “Oh, but Fred, it won’t happen that way… ”

        Really??

        Like

      • December 27, 2011 10:08 pm

        Looks like you were ahead of the curve on this one Fred. Romney has been chosen for us and now were are expected to fall in line and it looks like we will.

        Like

  3. The Georgia Yankee permalink
    December 26, 2011 11:22 pm

    I knew things were bad when I learned that instead of campaigning in Iowa, Newt was campaigning in his (new) home state of Virginia. He taught us something about primary campaigning during the summer, when most of his staff quit because they claimed he “wasn’t serious.” Turns out he knew exactly what he was doing and now sits atop the pack. Unfortunately, those who favor him in Virginia have no way to make their feelings known, because the candidate neglected to do the necessary admin work to get on the ballot.

    Steve, you’re right, this is unforgivable in a candidate and in a party. My understanding is that the GOP in Virginia instituted the 10k signature requirement to make it more difficult for outsiders to get on the ballot. When will wise-ass politicians realize that whatever they do to make it tougher tor others to take their jobs will somehow backfire on them?

    And it’s laughable that Mr. Gingrich is now blaming the primary system. He stands by and cheers when the cons exploit the system, but when it backfires on them, looks as if he’s the first to cry “foul.” Tough noogies. If those 49 votes are critical this summer at the Convention, GOPers have only themselves to blame for outsmarting themselves.

    I hope everyone had a grand Christmas, and may God bless us all!

    TGY

    Like

    • December 27, 2011 6:52 am

      Newt sounds kind of like Mitt–Mitt’s new home state is New Hampshire. He is portraying himself as a New Hampshire guy because he has a house here.
      I also find it laughable that Gingrich is blaming the system for his own failings, he knew what the rules were and he didn’t do what was needed and yet he is trying to make hinself the victim.
      I had a great Christmas and I hope you did as well.

      Like

  4. The Georgia Yankee permalink
    December 26, 2011 11:27 pm

    By the way, I think it’s hilarious that John McCain is said to have won the New Hampshire primary on the strength of Dems crossing over to vote for him during a political season when Limbaugh and others were chortling with glee over the prospect of GOPers crossing party lines to interfere with the Dems’ selection. Again, they clearly outsmarted themselves.

    Time to get back to thinking up good policies for out country and convincing the electorate of their soundness, and forgetting about the shenanigans.

    Take good care and may God bless us all!

    TGY

    Like

    • lou222 permalink
      December 30, 2011 8:58 am

      TGY, yes had a really great Christmas, hope you had one as well! We are in short supply of “good policies”, I am with you on hoping we can start doing something about that.

      Like

      • December 30, 2011 9:47 pm

        I am glad to hear that you had a great Christmas, I did as well.

        Like

  5. December 27, 2011 8:54 am

    It’s too bad they just can’t be like Democrats and forge any signatures they need. I’m sure everybody would have qualified then!

    Like

    • The Georgia Yankee permalink
      December 27, 2011 2:47 pm

      Well, Harrison, both the Speaker and the Governor turned in well over the requisite 10,000 signatures, so perhaps they followed your advice, hoping that some of their forgeries would slip through. . .

      Attempts at humor notwithstanding, such references to unsubstantiated misdeeds don’t do anyone any good. Look at the tremendous waste of time and energy over voter identification to combat a problem that absolutely does not exist, but which may very well prevent citizens from voting this time out who’ve voted for decades.

      And what happened in Virginia is a simple case of the GOP shooting itself in the foot and confirming the suspicion of many that it’s more interested in insulating elected officials from challenge than it is in good government and citizen participation.

      Not really much to joke about, IMO.

      Take good care and may God bless us all!

      TGY

      Like

      • December 29, 2011 4:35 pm

        Sorry for the late reply… the have been MANY cases of fraud… here’s one I can remember:

        http://ballotpedia.org/wiki/index.php/Vote_fraud_in_Texas

        Like

      • The Georgia Yankee permalink
        December 29, 2011 6:11 pm

        Harrison, you’re 100% correct – this type of voter fraud – ballot stuffing – has been with us, unfortunately, since our nation’s founding. Probably before, most likely.

        Likewise, fraud in absentee balloting is far easier to commit than in-person voter fraud, at the polls, on election day.

        So what do our wise legislators do to combat election fraud? Do they tighten security, making ballot-stuffing impossible? Do they tighten the rules for absentee balloting, where fraud is very easy to perpetrate?

        No, they tighten the rules for in-person voting, where, to the best of my recollection, there may have been a single case reported nationwide in the past few years . . . two, if you count Ann Coulter. In doing so, they make it more difficult to vote for the poor and the elderly, many of whom don’t carry driver’s licenses and now must make another special trip to the government office to plunk down money to acquire the photo ID – and I;m not alone in thinking that many legislators are counting on many of these people simply to stop voting (Democratic).

        Discussing the 34 states that have recently drafted and attempted to pass tightened voter ID laws, which have been roundly condemned as a solution without a problem, Amy Goodman, in a column that ran yesterday (http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/if_you_cant_beat_them_enjoin_them_from_voting_20111227/), reported “Many of these bills were modeled on legislation drafted by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)—a conservative advocacy group whose founder explained: ‘Our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down.’”

        Take good care and may God bless us all!

        TGY

        Like

  6. December 27, 2011 10:07 am

    Romney’s in the bag for the nomination but Obama’s re-election is probably already bought and paid for. One might think that given the disarray of these candidates that the NRC is not in the game to win….WM

    Like

    • December 27, 2011 10:09 pm

      Yeah, I am afraid that Obama has already been reelected and there is nothing that we can do about it.

      Like

      • lou222 permalink
        December 30, 2011 9:01 am

        Not a good state of mind for you to be in, Steve. Shake it off!!! We have kids and grandkids counting on us to fight this with the best of our abilities.

        Like

      • December 30, 2011 9:50 pm

        Thanks Lou, I do think that Obama is probably going to be reelected but I will still fight until it is over to ensure this doesn’t happen because our children’s future is at stake. My oldest is going to be voting for president for the first time this year and I have enjoyed watching all of the debates with him. He loves US history and seems to understand the concept of our country’ founding and will be voting against Obama in November!

        Like

  7. Georgia Peach permalink
    December 27, 2011 11:34 am

    As long as people are thinking what is best for their political party, and plotting and planning to that end, we deserve what we get. What ever happened to the good old days when people were worrying about what is best for America. I will vote for anyone other than Obama because he is destroying this country out of arrogance, and repaying the contributors that bought him.

    Encouraging alternative energy is a worthy cause, but not how this administration is pushing it at all costs. Helping the poor is also good, but not enabling dependance on the government for political reasons.

    What is happening in the primaries is what it is. If they can’t plan ahead, then maybe they should blame themselves and not everyone else.

    Like

    • December 27, 2011 10:11 pm

      I agree with everything you said, people are more worried about party and less worried about the country. There is no other reason for Mitt and Newt being the frontrunners other than people think they will help the party win, but if they are also big government politicians what difference will their election make?

      Like

  8. December 27, 2011 12:10 pm

    Georgia Peach: Very well said. People have become so self indolent that most times they cannot see the big picture though it is right in front of them. The “me, me, I” generation has seemingly come in to full flower….WM

    Like

  9. December 27, 2011 12:11 pm

    Citizen Tom has useful info on this from Ken Cucinelli’s e-newsletter. I’m wondering will this do more to make VA irrelevant, and not actually prevent other GOP candidates from getting the nomination in the long run?

    http://citizentom.com/2011/12/26/cuccinelli-on-republican-party-presidential-politics

    best
    Lin

    Like

    • The Georgia Yankee permalink
      December 27, 2011 3:02 pm

      If they’re smart (a big “if” when it comes to professional politicians who swear they’re better than the rest of us), they’ll follow his advice and ease up on the signature requirements. The party could also do its bit by helping candidates get those signatures.

      Like

      • December 27, 2011 10:16 pm

        I don’t think the party was interested in getting the other candidates on the ballot or they would have. The party saw this as a way to help Mitt win the nomination and so they forsook the other candidates to help ensure his nomination.

        Like

    • December 27, 2011 10:13 pm

      An interesting piece. Maybe it will render Virginia irrelevent, I don’t know. But I do know that there is no excuse for these candidates getting on the ballot when they knew what the rules were.

      Like

  10. December 28, 2011 12:11 pm

    Found some more useful information, this time from Disrupt the Narrative, posting a statement by the RPV chair:

    http://disruptthenarrative.wordpress.com/2011/12/27/virginia-rpv-chair-responds-to-virginia-republicans/

    Like

  11. December 29, 2011 6:46 pm

    These prospective election ballots — measured Aug. 17-18, well over a year before the Nov. 6, 2012, election — indicate that the race for president at this point is generally competitive, with voters fairly evenly divided in their preference for giving Obama a second term or electing a Republican candidate. Even though the four Republican candidates tested have varying degrees of name recognition, they all fare roughly the same.

    Like

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