Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

The Friday Line: Ten Republicans To Watch

The great thing about elections is that as soon as the last one ends, the next one begins.

Friday Line

Everywhere the Fix goes these days -- and by everywhere we mean the office, Starbucks and the gym to play basketball -- people want to know: Who's next?

Who are the faces that will emerge to rebuild the Republican party following its decimation at the ballot box in 2006 and 2008? (The ugly totals: 54 seats lost in House, 13 seats -- at least -- in the Senate and a little thing called the White House.)

So, to slake the thirst of Fixistas across the country (heck, around the world) we are going to start ranking the 10 Republicans to keep an eye on over the coming months and years.

To be clear, this is not -- and should not be taken as -- a list of potential contenders to take on Barack Obama in 2012. Some of the people on this list will certainly be in the Republican field in four years time but others almost certainly won't.

The most notable omission is that of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. While we expect the former vice presidential nominee will be on this Line in the coming months, she doesn't make it this time around because it is not yet clear how she will find a way to remain in the national dialogue from her far-away outpost in the Last Frontier. Palin is also VERY lightly regarded by many of the opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP, making it tougher for her to command a leading role.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is also not on the Line -- not because we don't think he is considering a 2012 bid (he is) but because as of today it's not clear what his niche is within the party. His fresh-faced appeal and shtick (and don't get us wrong, we love shtick) may not wear so well a second time around.

The common thread for membership on this list, which was compiled based on a series of conversations with Republican operatives and the Fix's own analysis, is that each of these individuals will have a role to play in the conversation about where the party heads between now and 2010.

Agree or disagree with our picks? Feel free to offer suggestions of your own in the comments section below.

To the Line!

10. Steve Poizner: Poizner, the Insurance Commissioner of California, has an early head-start on being the Republican nominee for governor in 2010. And, if Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D) decides not to run, Poizner's ability to self-fund a campaign coupled with his relatively short time in elected office and his outsider message could make him viable in the general election. As California goes, so goes the country.

9. Haley Barbour: There are those who mention Barbour's name for the 2012 GOP nomination. We are decidedly skeptical about that -- will the country be ready for a man who had a hand in inventing modern-day lobbying in Washington? -- but Barbour is clearly someone to watch. Remember that before he became governor of Mississippi in 2003, Barbour was one of the leading political operatives in the country and has tentacles (and acolytes) all over the country. That makes him a force to be reckoned with.

8. Jon Huntsman Jr.: As The Fix was waiting to meet with Huntsman on Thursday, CNN's Wolf Blitzer was touting him as a rising star in Republican politics. Nice convergence. Huntsman won re-election earlier this month with 78 percent (granted it was in ruby red Utah) and has the looks and re&eaccute;sum&eaccute; -- fluent in Chinese, progressive on the environment -- that could make him appealing for a party looking desperately for a different profile. Huntsman is a Mormon, however, and, as Mitt Romney demonstrated earlier this year, that could be a major problem if he decides to run for president.

Eric Cantor
Cantor's rapid rise make him one to watch in the GOP. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

7. Eric Cantor: The Virginia Republican's unfettered rise through the ranks of House leadership continued earlier this week when he was elected Minority Whip -- the second ranking position within the GOP. Cantor was among those vetted in John McCain's vice presidential search and his personal background -- a Jewish Republican -- will be intriguing for many within the party looking for something new. Cantor's problem: Is the House too small a perch from which to become a national figure?

6. Mark Sanford: South Carolina's Sanford is the newly elected chair of the Republican Governors Association, a useful job through which to raise one's national profile. Since McCain's loss earlier this month, Sanford has been a leading voice for the party to return to the principles of former President Ronald Reagan; "Some on the left will say our electoral losses are a repudiation of our principles of lower taxes, smaller government and individual liberty," wrote Sanford in an op-ed piece for "But Tuesday was not in fact a rejection of those principles -- it was a rejection of Republicans' failure to live up to those principles." Sanford's reform credentials are impeccable but he has, throughout his career, rubbed the party establishment wrong, which could hurt him as he seeks a broader role.

5. Bob McDonnell: McDonnell, Virginia's attorney general, will be the Republican standard-bearer in the Commonwealth's gubernatorial race in 2009. Off-year statewide elections are always looked to by the two parties as litmus tests for how each side is doing, and the fact that this campaign will take place in the purple state of Virginia makes McDonnell all the more important. If he wins, it will be seen as a sign that the Republican party is alive and well and living in Virginia. If he loses, he'll join the Jerry Kilgore Hall of Fame.

4. Mitch Daniels: Even as Obama was pulling off a stunning win in the Hoosier State at the presidential level, Daniels was cruising to reelection by 18 points. At the end of the campaign, Daniels pledged in a television ad that he would never run for another office but even if he stays true to his word, his experience in 2008 makes him a valuable commodity for Republicans. While Daniels's ties to George W. Bush won't help him -- he served as the director of the Office of Management and Budget from 2001 to 2003 -- his electoral success in a critical Midwest battleground means Daniels has a seat at the table.

3. Mitt Romney: Discount the former Massachusetts governor and presidential candidate at your own peril. Romney has three big things going for him: he is, by almost anyone's account, an expert on the American economy; he is incredibly ambitious and will work harder than almost anyone to make sure his voice is heard; and he has immense personal wealth and a willingness to spend it. Do his flip-flops on social issues (and his Mormonism) still make social conservatives queasy? You bet. But Romney is in the mix and will aim to stay there.

John Thune
John Thune could be the face and voice of the GOP opposition. (AP Photo/Doug Dreyer)

2. John Thune: The South Dakota Senator is incredibly well positioned to emerge as the telegenic voice of the Obama opposition. Thune is part of a group of young and aggressive Republican senators who will look to take the fight to Obama and Senate Democrats over the next two years. It doesn't hurt Thune that he is already a revered figure among conservatives after ousting former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle in 2004. Thune's problem is that conventional wisdom within the party already seems to be settling on the idea that the GOP governors need to lead Republicans out of the wilderness in which they currently find themselves.

1. Bobby Jindal: There is NO hotter commodity in the Republican party these days than Jindal. Jindal is the rare candidate who both reformers and establishment types find appealing, and as a 37-year-old Indian American he is -- literally and figuratively -- the sort of new face the party is pining for. While Jindal is hot right now, it's important to remember that he is the governor of a state with a complex political scene -- meaning there will be myriad opportunities for Jindal to falter over the next few months and years.

By Chris Cillizza  |  November 21, 2008; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  The Line  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Should Barack Obama Go To Georgia?
Next: Richardson to Commerce?


Is this the best the republicans have? I don't think the democrats have anything to worry about even if they didn't have a leader as strong as Obama appears to be. Maybe the republicans will spend the next 40 years wandering around aimlessly after listening to a talking bush. To even have beauty pageant Sarah in the mix is embarrasing.

Posted by: greenbob1 | November 26, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

While Gov Palin will need to hit the books if she wishes to run for the top slot, you CANNOT possibly dismiss her.

Posted by: ReaganiteRepublican | November 22, 2008 6:27 AM

What I can't possibly dismiss now is the image of Gov Palin hitting the books. Thank you, I needed that.

Posted by: light_bearer | November 23, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

The author lost me as soon as I read that “Palin is also VERY lightly regarded by many of the opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP”. Hmmm, I guess that means that Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck are not among the opinion leaders?
Posted by: kevintheelder | November 22, 2008 10:52 AM

I agree with Kevin. Palin, Limbaugh and Beck are respectively the heart, soul and brain of the Republican Party.

Posted by: light_bearer | November 23, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse





The reality is that economy is the number one issue - AND what do we have here? An affirmative action guy with NO ECONOMIC OR BUSINESS EXPERIENCE EXCEPT FOR BUYING COCAINE.

So what does he do?

He takes ONE BOOK by Doris Kearns Goodwin and that is guiding this whole process. A little silly, however apparently true.

Obama offered little in terms of an economic program during the campaign - mainly because the campaign believed that the poll numbers were going his way and Obama did not have to offer up specifics.










Posted by: 37thandOStreetRules | November 23, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

I followed this election closely for 2 years. Read countless articles & editorials, read candidates' books, listened to their speeches, attended rallies, and watched every debate.

By far, I was most impressed with Gov. Huckabee. There's a lot to like about his remarkable record and his consistently conservative positions on issues.

I read a couple of his books, and unlike the other candidates, Huckabee actually comes up with fresh & thoughtful new ideas for solving problems.

Example: Last spring he suggested that instead of a stimulus check, that we invest in infrastructure improvements. It would create jobs, create a demand for materials (like American steel), and everyone would benefit from the improvements.

At the time, he was derided for this unique idea. But guess what Congress and pres-elect Obama are now proposing?

If we will be running against Obama next time, it's worth noting that Huckabee earned 48% of the African-American vote in Arkansas and still has a 68% general approval rating there. In the GOP primaries, he carried Arkansas by a huge margin, while Mitt Romney almost lost his own state of Massachusetts (despite outspending Huckabee 10 to 1).

Posted by: PayingAttention1 | November 23, 2008 2:12 AM | Report abuse

As a Virginian, I can assure you that Eric Cantor is greatly overrated. He's a George Bush Republican and is rather inept. He's little more than a legend in his own mind. McDonnell is another story. Good on his feet, reserved, and smart, he's a contender. That being said, I believe Jindal is the one to really watch.

Posted by: davybuck | November 22, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

The "opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP" in Alaska's old-guard held Palin in "very light regard" as well, when she made her run for Governor.

As I understand it, they didn't fare too well vs. Sarah Barracuda.

Republicans are individualists, and when dissatisfied with party elites as they are currently, they'll be making up their own minds who they want for president in 2012-
While Palin will need to hit the books if she wishes to run for the top slot, you CANNOT possibly dismiss her. She can learn what she needs to, but she is a natural... and has the charisma and connection to the grass roots that can't be taught.

To state in the new media age that it uncertain "how she will find a way to remain in the national dialogue from her far-away outpost" makes no sense to me... NO-body is far-flung anymore, and not only are Americans interested in her continued narrative, Sarah Palin has shown NO sign of fading away- as her recent PR tour attests.

With most of the country in a "throw-the-bums-out" mood, demanding accountability on Wall St and in MoTown, I cannot imagine the "opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP" (that supposedly dislike Palin) as holding a very strong hand... because they don't after the 06-08 electoral debacles. Most I know want a bottom-up revolution in the GOP to restore Reaganite principles... and Sarah clearly has the potential to be The Gipper in heels.

Add to that the likelyhood there will be a major backlash in this country when Obama pushes his agena too far or simply screws-up, Palin would be perfectly positioned as leader of such a movement. Basically, she supports everthing that BHO will attempt to destroy- and a lot of people will see that- that's how she'll remain in the limelight.

Palin/Jindal 2012!

Posted by: ReaganiteRepublican | November 22, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Michael Steel is a joke. He was running as as the great hope of the Republican party (an African-American Conservative) and to do it he ran as a double minority in richer neighborhoods and released bumper stickers in poorer neighborhoods saying, "Michael Steel Democrat!!" He liberally used the names of black democratic politicians who didn't endorse him, and released vapid advertisements claiming no particular policy positions except that he liked puppies.

Posted by: persimonix1 | November 22, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Let's see, we have a liberal newspaper telling us who the Republician contenders should be the next time around. Lucy,I don't think so.

Posted by: Cyn-VaBch | November 22, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

To those of you (at least one) who mentioned Charie Crist of Florida:
"Suntan Charlie" may have a 68% approval rating in Florida but not among the Republican faithful. Many conservative Republicans in the state are very disappointed in him...partly because he never actually does the job he is elected to do...he is always campaigning for the next one.

Posted by: Nancy1949 | November 22, 2008 2:40 PM | Report abuse

What about Michael Steele and Marsha Blackburn? Steele is an African American conservative from (I think) Maryland who might well become head of the RNC. Blackburn from Tennessee is a terrifc lady, conservative to the core. And, don't forget Ohio's former Sec of State Ken Blackwell...not to mention Kay Bailey Hutchinson of Texas.

The Republican bench is deeper than you think!

Posted by: Nancy1949 | November 22, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

As a potential new member of the GOP, a disgruntled Hillary backer, I would no sooner vote for Mitt Romney than I would for Ralph Nader, and my friends strong Massachusetts Republicans think he is a self-absorped, flip flopping has been. I find it interesting that Michael Steele is nowhere to be found, and the fact that Palin and Huckabee are not on the list while partisan do littles like Barbour and John Thune are makes me think I need to rethink this supporting Republican thing.

Posted by: Norman3D | November 22, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

msreginacomcastnet ???



what's with the anger Kelly? you are as dumb as they come and screamimng louder does not change that fact!

Posted by: ustinurbals | November 22, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Let's try to remember the election results here. Obama's roughly 7 percent PV majority was unevenly spread and the Electoral "landslide" was attained with slim wins in several states.

This in the face of 8 years of anti-Republican propagandizing in the media, the "unwinnable" war, the late-inning economic earthquake, the most expensive PR campaign in recorded history and a chance to "make history" at the ballot box.

Contrast this with the election results for the last two "pure" Presidential candidates, Barry Goldwater and George McGovern.

Keep wonking away to an electorate that can't name their own legislator, don't know which Party is in the Congressional majority and don't know what "NATO" stands for and you will be grousing in the wilderness for the rest of your lives.

I told McCain's New York campaign co-ordinator back in February (I'm a NYC native, hence the moniker) that "Nobody wants Ronald Reagan's warrior, they want Ronald Reagan." They didn't listen.

Barack Obama behaved like Ronald Reagan-- calm, kind, inspirational and forward-looking. He won. McCain behaved like a crotchety old man, whining about how he knew better. He lost.

Obama didn't run as the most-left man in the Senate and he will veer to the right, measured against Pelosi and Reid, because he knows that the rest of the world is electing center-right governments.

Jingoism aside, look at what's happened in Germany, France, Canada, Australia, New Zealand...

It is the ultimate failing to make the perfect the enemy of the good.

Ron Paul is the right's George McGovern.

Really, get over him and think about winning.

Posted by: neversleep | November 22, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

The themes I see emerging are that the Republicans are split amongst social Moderates and Social Conservatives. The Conservative Republicans are taking a bit too much from lower middle class culture in America, and this offends the more erudite Moderates. So who will win out in the end and why does that matter?

The Social Conservatives don't want to lose and as they don't like Moderate Republicans so they will keep a stranglehold on the party. The reason why the media however is siding with the losing half of the big tent party (the Moderates) has less to do with the Moderates political muscle and more to do with their political position as the only Republicans able to win general elections.

While the Social Conservatives might win the primary battle, this doesn't matter because they would destroy their coalition. At which point they would once more understand the inherent problems of representing an angry minority view in a democracy. For some reason they haven't figured this out yet.

Posted by: persimonix1 | November 22, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

You dems and reps crack me up.
Your differences are minute in terms of social and economic issues and often times you have the same exact view i.e. national security (occupying, destroying, raping an pillaging of other defenseless countries) world dominance, American superiority ...blah blah. When will you get your collective heads out of your asses and see your country the way the rest of the world sees it. A phony democracy with all branches of the government bought and paid for by the same group of cons that have ruled the world since the mid 1800's.
And every four year we have this shenanigan of election, it is more like the NFL, MLB, NBA, regular season(primaries), play offs and then the championship (elections) people take side and cheer for their team and trash the other side. No one is really looking at issues or looking after their interest. Piss poor hicks from BFE back a multimillionaire that touts more tax relieves for billionaires, “liberals” backs the other candidate that tells them he will be more aggressive in destroying the rest of defenseless country that the previous hack annihilated. And funny think is that the owners of the professional teams win no matter who wins or loses the championship just like the super rich win no matter who gets elected.

Get real and take off the blinders and help restore the rights of all humans or else one day you will find yourself fighting your neighbors to keep the few scraps of foods you have stored in your cellars.

Posted by: ustinurbals | November 22, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad you mentioned SC Governor Mark Sanford (who I thought would have been a MUCH better choice for VP with John McCain than Sarah Palin this year) from South Carolina, but let's not forget someone else from the Palmetto state with strong conservative principles and unafraid to share them on a national scale: Sen. Jim Demint.

Sen. Demint was one of the few brave Republicans who accurately identified why the GOP suffered such great losses in 2008--by John McCain and others betraying conservative principles in their quest for the White House and Congress. He said the Republican party "brand" includes talking about such core fundamentals as freedom, religious-based values and limited government. None of this happened during the 2008 campaign.

This was a GREAT quote from Sen. Demint following the defeat on Election Day:

"One of our principles is that power corrupts, and you need to disperse it," DeMint said. "And if our own party allows ourselves to be destroyed by this idea, and are not willing to stand up, then we have to change everyone at the top."

Let the REAL change begin! Watch out for Sen. Jim Demint (R-SC).

Posted by: livinlowcarbman | November 22, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Oh my oh my the msn just does not get it..Where's Sarah on the list... not sure how she is going to get the attention ... just mention her name and she has ALLLL the attention. Go to and watch it grow by leaps and bound daily.. no ...make that hourly. And for the other 10 you listed what a jokester you are Chris(Jindal and Romney yes... THUNE #2 omg.. what a joke, WPOST already gunning for the dems and the race has not even started well for Sarah it is we are getting prepared already! We can't take your columm seriously if you keep this up CHris..... GO Sarah..2012 Watch it grow!

Posted by: thecurious1 | November 22, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

G. W. Bush is the reason our party of Reagan has been destroyed. He refused to fight back when the demoncrats and the media treated him and the Republicans like dirt.Sit there with a stupid smile on his face and tore down everything that was built up in the 90's.He set us backat least 2 decades and possibly longer.So give blame where it's due right at the feet of G. W. Bush

Posted by: webhead1964 | November 22, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

I can't wait to get Huckabee and his buddy Chuck Norris back at campaign events together. They are fun to watch and what they say is dead-on. Huckabee/Norris in 2012 gets my vote.

Posted by: reaganw | November 22, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Jackolantryn356 wrote: A lot of old "Noblis Oblige" Republicans are still in control I see.
At least morons who try to be erudite and use words with which they're unfamiliar give everyone a good laugh. It's "noblesse oblige."

Posted by: checkered1 | November 22, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

A lot of old "Noblis Oblige" Republicans are still in control I see. They must be nearing 112 or so now. I'm getting all set to leave this stinking loser party and leave the political process altogether.
Ok! so I'm a liar. Possible candidate 1 and 2 are good ideas Not putting Palin in that mix as President is foolish and a waste of political talent or would you dead headed pieces of retirement breath rather see Ms. Clinton extend the Clinton legacy of destruction of the United States for another 16 years????? H.... Maybe Cheesy Chelsy will follow her mom. Huh! You Boys had better get it together. Give Palin an education, associate with her, and then let her do her thing.(not what you think is in your pervaience)
Boys? What's it gonna be? I want to know who I support and who my extended family is gonna support? I'd love to stay in the GOP where I've been almost 45 years. I swear I'll move it. I'm mad and I'm angry. And I'm angry at you.

Posted by: jackolantyrn356 | November 22, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

I’m amazed at the nonsense that people post. The author lost me as soon as I read that “Palin is also VERY lightly regarded by many of the opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP”. Hmmm, I guess that means that Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck are not among the opinion leaders?

Posted by: kevintheelder | November 22, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Golly didnt old john M make the cut? the only notable part of the column being "palin is lightly regarded," you think,,her turkey video being the latest of her brilliant political strategy,of course her portion of the wingnut-hunting channel types will love it. Perhaps a cabinet post for levi if the wdding ever happens.

Posted by: gonville1 | November 22, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse

You Rhinos in the republican party have a comuppence about to descend on you , although you are to arrogant to even see it. Just know that you have been told. So go ahead and keep on telling us how to lose elections and we will blow right on by you. Ooh it may well be past 2012 , but while you are arrogantly laughing , the conservatives are building and will be back!!!! bet on it.

Posted by: blackhawk56 | November 22, 2008 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Minnesota Governor Pawlenty didn't even make the list. Massachusetts Governor Romney has never been fully vetted by the public. Obviously, there is a reason why McCain declined to pick either person to be his VP. Why?

Posted by: johnkrogstad | November 22, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

The Republicans lost the election because they made the mistake of pandering to and listening to liberals, like the writers at the Washington Post. You pulled it off once, but it won't work again.

The trashing Palin routine won't work again, because everyone will understand in four years who she really is and who the Democrats really are.

According to Zogby, most Obama voters thought that Republicans controlled the Congress.

Posted by: pkhenry | November 22, 2008 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Minnesota Governor Pawlenty didn't even make the list. Massachusetts Governor Romney has never been fully vetted by the public. Obviously, there is a reason why McCain declined to pick either person to be his VP. Why?

Posted by: johnkrogstad | November 22, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse

The GOP spent 8 years NOT cultivating the Latino vote, and now we find ourselves here. The Dems have ALWAYS done an excellent job of adding new wings to their tent to accommodate immigrants. Mind you, I didn't say expand their tent, but rather, create a place for those groups to hook onto their bandwagon. We have an outgoing president who could have done MUCH more reaching out to what is essentially a solid social conservative block (critical in the Prop 8 war), but nada. Unless we are satisfied playing back-benchers for the next X number of years, we need to find a candidate that can woo those folks into at least a neutral position. The country may be suffering Bush fatigue right now, but come the 2010 elections, they may well be suffering 'broken promise' fatigue, and we'll need a leader who can reorganize and motivate the party base, reach out to Latinos and take on the Obama Drama Team at every level of media. That person is Jeb Bush.

~ JM

Posted by: JoeMcD | November 22, 2008 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Minnesota Governor Pawlenty didn't even make the list. Massachusetts Governor Romney has never been fully vetted by the public. Obviously, there is a reason why McCain declined to pick either person to be his VP. Why?

Posted by: johnkrogstad | November 22, 2008 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Your list of the 10 to watch is interesting with the inclusion of our very own Mark Sanford. You fail to include the likes of Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who is one of the up and coming leaders of the Republican Party. You dismiss Sarah Palin after the elitist media completely trashes her, yet gives BHO a pass on just about everything.

The opinion of "The Fix" is just that - AN OPINION. You are the same folks that trumpeted Barack Obama's "Hope and Change" and all we are getting is Clinton retreads.

Journalists used to be fair and objective, now for the most part, they are just idiots with pens.

Posted by: KevininSCAR | November 22, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty didn't even make the list. Massachusetts Governor Romney has never been fully vetted by the public. I can hardly wait.

Posted by: johnkrogstad | November 22, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Poster wrote "the NeoCon Rovepublicans will never see the oval office again." I sure hope they never show up in the oval office again. The party needs to ditch the "neo" and revert back to true conservative principles.

In 4 years Obama will be well on his way to finishing off the work of destroying what is left of this country. A true conservative will be able to oust him and his cronies from office easily.

Posted by: ralynnjr | November 22, 2008 9:26 AM | Report abuse

The Fix mentions Eric Cantor of Virginia. Between Mr Cantor, Rep. Eric Pence of Indiana, and Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, you have a future president and a future speaker of the house.

Posted by: JBaustian | November 22, 2008 8:22 AM | Report abuse

I live in South Florida and we have a young man who just ran and lost a close race, for a congressional seat to an incumbent. His name is Lt. Col. Allen West and he lost to Ron Klien, but if you listen to him speak, he has a clear vision for the conservative movement. His vision is centered around self responsibility and 3 keys to governing; anticipate, analyze and execute. By this he explaines in plain talk and common sence, how to foresee and act on events that could become much worse if not dealt with immediately and forcefully.He has a video on youtube called Vision and if you take a few minutes and watch it among some other speaches and his debates, I'm sure you'll agree that great things can be in this man's future, which would translate to great things for our country.

Posted by: plang527 | November 22, 2008 7:59 AM | Report abuse

The "opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP" in Alaska's old-guard held Palin in "VERY light regard" as well, when she made her run for Governor.

As I understand it, they didn't fare too well vs. Sarah Barracuda-

Republicans are individualists, and when dissatisfied with party elites as they are currently, they'll be making up their own minds who they want for president in 2012- GOP "leadership", take note.

Posted by: ReaganiteRepublican | November 22, 2008 7:24 AM | Report abuse

These are the 10 Republicans to watch? As a republican let me clear about something, McCain lost because he is not a true conservative and the Republican party has moved it's platform away from small government and following the Constitution.

Watch the debates, read the policies of all the Republican candidates, the only Republican running in this race was Ron Paul. He would have won the election for the GOP as he was not only the most educated person in this race on both sides and he follows the constitution.

Lucky for us the Campaign for Liberty has picked up a lot of steam and are raising good amounts of money (remember how much money those Ron Paul supporters can raise?) in order to run other liberty loving Republicans.

These are only the 10 Repubs to watch if we want to watch the GOP continue to lose.

Posted by: acosenza2 | November 22, 2008 7:02 AM | Report abuse

While Gov Palin will need to hit the books if she wishes to run for the top slot, you CANNOT possibly dismiss her. She can learn what she needs to, but has the natural charisma and real connection to the grass roots that can't be taught... and is invaluable.

To state in the new media age that "not yet clear how she will find a way to remain in the national dialogue from her far-away outpost" makes no sense to me... nobody is far-flung anymore, and not only is much of the country already quite interested in her continued narrative, Sarah Palin has shown NO sign of fading away- as her recent PR tour attests.

With most of the country in a "throw-the-bums-out" mood, demanding accountability on Wall St and in MoTown, I cannot imagine the "opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP" you say disregard Palin as holding a very strong hand... because the don't after the 06/08 electoral debacles. Most I know want a bottom-up revolution in the GOP to restore Reaganite principles... and Palin has the potential to be The Gipper in heels.

Add to that the likelyhood there will be a major moral backlash in this country when Obama pushes his redistributionist and secularist agena too far, Palin would be perfectly positioned as leader of such a movement. Basically, she supports everthing that BHO will attempt to destroy- and a lot of people will see that... that's how she'll remain in the limelight.

Palin/Jindal 2012!!!

Posted by: ReaganiteRepublican | November 22, 2008 6:27 AM | Report abuse

First of all the opinions of the GOP establishment do not speak for me and they are moot at this point. I was a Ron Paul supporter but left my house to vote for Govenor Sarah Palin only. She is the only true fiscal conservative. Out here in "conservative web land" Govenor Palin is the only candidate that has MANY sites devoted to a grassroots effort to see her in the race in 2012. This only shows that all of you bias media hack Palin haters are so deluded by your hatred for this woman that you care clueless about what real actual conservative voters are thinking. We actually know Govenor Palin's real record as we are not the misinformed voters that went to the polls for Obama only on misinformation served my the MSM. We actually know the truth about Palin and not the tabloid style smear campaign the MSM and people like you assaulted against Palin and against our intelligence. The GOP elites can kiss my a$$ they are dead to me. I can't wait for Sarah Palin to be the next President of the United States so that she can throw half of the Senate/Congress in jail for all of their corruption and actually get government on back of the side of the people. Yes, serving the people; what a concept!
10. Palin
9. Palin
8. Palin
7. Palin
6. Palin
5. Palin
4. Palin
3. Palin
2. Palin
1. Palin

Posted by: TalkingOcean | November 22, 2008 5:36 AM | Report abuse

Re-Run the Republican debates. The only person who accurately portrayed both the state of the party and the state of this country was Ron Paul. Sorry about that to the Big-Government Statists in both the Demopublican and republicratic wings of the MONEY party, but the tape doesn't lie. Although many of the talking heads who 'interpret' the tapes do!

Let's see.... The economy is going to tank because of the ridiculously loose monetary policy of the Federal reserve and their master shareholders , the Big International Banks. The Republican Party will lose big because by trying to appeal to everyone, they abandoned their core principles, alienated thiet base and attracted no-one. The unnecessary wars, financed by mortgaging our grandchildren's future to China and the Oil-Rich countries will economically, politically and morally bankrupt us. You can call Ron Paul every name in the book, and disrespect his supporters all you want, but he was the ONLY candidate from EITHER party who accurately predicted these occurences (as well as proposing sound, rational solutions!).

I heartily wish good luck to Barack Obama, but I'm afraid he's going to find that even a diety (which many of his supporters seem to attribute his status to) cannot overcome the bloated and heavily politicized Federal Government and Congress, to whom this current mess can be largely attributed to.

Whatever Wing of the MONEY party is in power, the same blood-stained, oily hands remain holding the reigns of power, and their lobbyist minions manipulate the legislature into whatever form their money-pumping machine wants. It's going to take a term of Obama's inability to REALLY change Washington (as well as a worldwide depression- guess who also saw THAT coming?) in order to open the eyes of the American public that REAL change isn't just changing the party label on the same machine that runs things-it means tearing down the machine itself and implemnenting real change!


Posted by: xtrabiggg | November 22, 2008 3:56 AM | Report abuse

Well, has anyone given Steven P. Ray of Iowa an consideration?

Ray is a shining star of GOP politics in Iowa and is a potential GOP governor or U.S. House or Senate candidate in Iowa.

A solid conservative of common sense-thinking, Ray is a well-defined consensus-builder among conservative and liberals on both sides.

Ray is strict on several conservative core issues: abortion, taxes and military strength. He is a strong proponent of the government keeping their hands out of the lives of its citizens.

Steven P. Ray has been long rumored to hit the Presidential campaign trail for 2024, but a falter of Obama could leap him forward earlier to 2012 or 2016 as a GOP Party savior.

Posted by: bigfoothunter | November 22, 2008 2:32 AM | Report abuse

Besides, if Michael Steel becomes chairman of the GOP, then these anti-establishment right-wing Republicans suddenly become darlings of the (new) establishment.

Posted by: Kurtiss | November 22, 2008 1:01 AM | Report abuse

It's time we realize that much of the reason that W's poll numbers are so low is that so many Republicans think he is spending too much money on social programs--it is NOT because 79% of Americans think he is too conservative!

P.S. Everybody make sure you read gaspar's comment at November 21 11:52 PM - he said what I said in my first post, but he said it better.

Posted by: Kurtiss | November 22, 2008 12:58 AM | Report abuse

Good names & good analysis, but twice I saw the counterargument be that they rub the GOP establishment the wrong way. GOOD! You know who rubs the GOP establishment the RIGHT way? People like Bob Dole and John McCain.

We have GOT to stop nominating "it's my turn" candidates, and we need to realize that if the choice is between a liberal Republican and a liberal Democrat, the Democrat wins and America loses.

Posted by: Kurtiss | November 22, 2008 12:52 AM | Report abuse

Linda Lingle, the Governor of Hawaii should be on this list.

Posted by: TeacherGerald | November 22, 2008 12:39 AM | Report abuse

in response to your saying that Gov. Barbour is a better governor than JIndal because of recovery after hurricanes- Barbour was elected in 2003 Jindal did not start his term until the beginning of this year, we were stuck with kathleen blanco until then
in fact if you look at gustav and ike jindl did an amazing job

Posted by: mike33385 | November 22, 2008 12:23 AM | Report abuse

If only Ron Paul was 20 years younger . . .

Where have you gone, Barry Goldwater? Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you . . .

Posted by: constantine88 | November 21, 2008 11:55 PM | Report abuse

I'm very happy to hear confirmation that, Palin is "VERY lightly regarded by many of the opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP". There is no conventional scale that currently exists to adequately measure the utter contempt and loathing with which I regard the "opinion leaders and establisment types within the GOP". So as to be inclusive, I will heartily extend my contempt and loathing to the opinion leaders and establishment types of the Democratic Party, as well. For the record, I'm looking for REAL change, I can REALLY believe in.

Posted by: gaspar | November 21, 2008 11:52 PM | Report abuse

I think Charlie Crist, the very popular Governor of the swing state Florida deserves a mention, as well as up-and-coming Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.

Posted by: AnthonyJBrady | November 21, 2008 11:46 PM | Report abuse

More sound and fury. Let's see who bubbles to the top - we won't have to look too hard to see them. Meanwhile the 22% of voters who form the liberal base of the Democratic party can keep whistling past the graveyard as we wait for the "transformational" change away from the "mess" their heros helped to craft. As always, I'll look for the best candidate to represent my values and principles in the next election, regardless of party.

Posted by: gaspar | November 21, 2008 11:43 PM | Report abuse

The Republicans allowed President Bush to become toxic by parroting democrat talking points.
President Bush has done an amazing job in the face of unprecidented hostility from the "news" media.
The Republican party will remain also-rans as long as they have no loyalty to their own. The nitwits! Whoever may be in the top 10 is not worth beans if the media likes them.

Posted by: USN_CPO | November 21, 2008 11:41 PM | Report abuse

Why do people love Gov. Jindal so much?

Compare Mississippi to Louisiana in terms of recovery post-Hurricane Katrina, improved public school test scores, public health care for senior citizens, etc... Mississippi's Governor is head and shoulders above Gov. Jindal.

If people are going to try to give me a reason not to vote for Barack Obama, please make it better then an Internet smear about his father's religion (I'm a big fan of Kevin Ellison, only practising Muslim serving in the US House of Representative) or some baseless claim about his birthplace (blame his dead mother, not him for for where he was born). It's just such nonsense and of course there are legitimate reasons not to vote for anybody, but nonsense Internet smears about a candidate's birthplace are not one.

Posted by: Corey_NY | November 21, 2008 11:34 PM | Report abuse

Tonyone, Palin??? You did not get her message this week? You turkey repugnants either kiss up or its your neck in the tube. I hope she runs for president,we can count her votes on two hands nationwide. The more I think about, move to Alaska so you can be in the promised land of perfection and kneel unto your Snow God.

Posted by: onewaystreet | November 21, 2008 11:31 PM | Report abuse

Hey, wcs1, your are the typical conservative, you are the only people that can have the freedom of speech. It's OK for your bean head FOX blowhards to "tell" us what the future holds with democrats, but oh no, you have the right to seclude your party and decide who can talk about it. Face it, you Rush, Fox, and the religious right can't get over it, you lost!

Posted by: onewaystreet | November 21, 2008 11:21 PM | Report abuse

If Bobby Jindal runs in 2012 I will vote Republican. American and British educated, Jindal is head and shoulders above Obama. Now that Senator Clinton has decided to take the State Dept. post and the money after State, I conclude she will not run in 2012. Obama is not presidential material. He is a cult figure, as demonstrated in the Dem. South Carolina debate run by ABC. Bill Clinton knew how to govrern as a centrist. Jindal may have a great chance and is much smarter, more well informed and more articulate thn the rest including Obama who harbours the Marxist philosophy of his racist father who despised the East Indians for their industry, intelligence and accomplishments in British East Africa.

Posted by: KEVIN25 | November 21, 2008 11:18 PM | Report abuse

I love it when liberals such as Chris think they understand consevatives and try to tell us how we should think. I don't think this list will exist in 4 years because the WAPO will be out of buisness by then.

Posted by: wcs1 | November 21, 2008 11:03 PM | Report abuse

poster wrote: "George Bush killed the party for this round but we will overcome the pain of this loss and bounce back in the next round." GW didn't really kill the party because he was just the man out front - Cheney and other GOP puppetmasters are the ones who messed things up - until the country sees something different, the NeoCon Rovepublicans will never see the oval office again.

Posted by: chris76543 | November 21, 2008 10:59 PM | Report abuse

This blogger from the Washington Post fails to recognize a very real warp in his presumptions: not all conservatives are happy with the Republican national leadership.

I don't know who decides upon whom the mantle of Republican leadership will be bestowed. I don't know how that so-called
"leadership" determines whom they will support with national committee dollars. I DO know that dinosaur does not speak for me.

I am a constitutional conservative, and no longer find room for myself in today's Republican Party.

Therefore, I, and many other like-minded Americans, are free to support whom we please.

I think Dr. RON PAUL is the only true constutional conservative in Washington.

I think Gov. SARAH PALIN is a true representative of conservative ideas, ideals and actions. She has a track record of real accomplishments in AK, although she has served her fellow Alaskans for a relatively short time.

It remains to be seen what Gov. BOBBY JINDAL can accomplish from within the historically messy Louisiana political reality. I wish him the best. I am keeping my eye on him, as he does, at this time, seem to embody my principles.

I have heard many conservatives endorse DUNCAN HUNTER. I learned little to nothing about him during the primaries. I plan to do my own due diligence the next time around and find out more about him, as I can not expect the media to do the job they should.

I am SICK TO DEATH of Newt Gingrich. His day is past. He is relevant only to himself, Fox news, and other relics of the past ... a la John McCain, Jesse Jackson, et al.

I think perhaps Gov. MIKE HUCKABEE has found his niche. He seems to be effective doing what he is now doing; I did not think he would make a good president, and am still of that mind.

I have never heard of some of the likely Republican candidates the blogger listed.
Probably my fault, or perhaps it is just that I am not an insider to the goings-on in the Washington beltway. Or perhaps the listing developed by the blogger is a make-work project, designed to give the appearance that the Washington Post is somehow still relevant to the world of politics.

Just let me reiterate ... do not confuse the current Republican Party with the conservative-minded voter. They are not on the same page on many issues.

Posted by: KatyfromdeepsouthTexas | November 21, 2008 10:55 PM | Report abuse

I sure hope Sarah Palin is on the Republican ticket (either for president or vice-president) because I'm pretty sure the Obama team will help this country and hope they have an 8 year chance to clean up the mess that's been created in this country.

Posted by: chris76543 | November 21, 2008 10:53 PM | Report abuse

That Eric Cantor was introduced to the American public waving around a stack of papers and acting all wronged because Nancy Pelosi's speech got his underwear in such a twist that the GOP voted against something that Eric Cantor himself said was of national important, well... doesn't vote well for him is all.

Posted by: Corey_NY | November 21, 2008 10:40 PM | Report abuse

Hey, what about Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin. He has the looks, youth, position, and is a true conservative. He has positioned himself for something more in the future.
National Review has also mentioned him as a possible candidate for Pres. in the future.
I would love a Paltin/Ryan ticket in 2012.

Posted by: Jackson1679 | November 21, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

I hope Sarah Palin choses to stay out of the spotlight. I don't think she is either presidential or vice presidential material and pundits who are floating her for 2012 need to send me some of whatever they are smoking so I can make it through the end of civilization which seems to be happening right now!
The Republican party does indeed need to remake/rebrand itself. We need some young, forward thinking energy in the party. And we DO need a woman (please don't tell me there is no one OTHER than Palin)in the upper echelon of the party. The same old people banging the same old drum is tired and I won't vote republican anymore if this is all the party continues to offer. We need someone like a Bobby Jindal or John Thune to step in, as Obama did, and wow us with some energy and passion. My fingers are crossed!

Posted by: VTYOGINI | November 21, 2008 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Your lack of including Sarah Palin on the list or even Huckabee shows a lack of understanding the conservative base of the party.

I think we could have won with Romney but wasn't going to vote for McCain at all until Palin came on the ticket.

George Bush killed the party for this round but we will overcome the pain of this loss and bounce back in the next round.

Posted by: ralynnjr | November 21, 2008 9:50 PM | Report abuse

Let me add one other name to your list for consideration: U.S. Rep. Jeb Hensarling of Dallas. He was one of the leaders of the opposition to the financial bailout. He is very well-spoken and is good on TV.

Posted by: Tested | November 21, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

she doesn't make it this time around "because it is not yet clear how she will find a way to remain in the national dialogue from her far-away outpost in the Last Frontier"

Come on, Mr. Expert. All she has to do is pardon a turkey- and there are today 500 stories on Google, including WashPOst and editorial in NY Times and national tv coverage. Uh, think she's in the national dialogue? LOL

Thanks for the forum.

Posted by: VPL8751 | November 21, 2008 9:35 PM | Report abuse

While this is an impressive list, I am pretty sure the base is looking for Sarah Palin.

Palin 2012!

Posted by: klyphton | November 21, 2008 9:20 PM | Report abuse

I like how you totally ignore Paul and barely mention Huckabee, the two most conservative candidates with a chance in 2012. More RINO war-mongering crazies in 2012? Good god I hope you are wrong.

Posted by: fristin | November 21, 2008 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Call this the President George Soros administration....however, Obama seems like a nice guy...although his ideas are dangerous, and I wish he hadn't done a re-run of the Clinton era.....Sarah Palin showed deference and respect for McCain. She has more class in her little finger than Biden....she will shine in the matter what they try to do to her.

Posted by: wyobabe1 | November 21, 2008 9:06 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Palin would make a great governor or senator, but frankly she can't speak. I hate to hear her speak. She can't explain conservatism to the masses.
If any of you truly understood Mormonism, you would know why it is considered an evil cult by many.
Ron Paul is great, but the masses would never elect him as President. At this time they see him as too extreme.
Mike Huckabee is our only clear choice. He is our next "Great Communicator". Which is why he was offered a job at Fox News. He can explain the virtues of conservatism to the masses better than any of the jokesters we have in the GOP today. He is brilliant, inspiring and a breath of fresh air.

Posted by: ericso_1968 | November 21, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Why do Republicans always choose who we think the Demoncrats will like? We thought they would like McCain, because he was liberal. He got crushed. Now we are pushing Jindal, because he is a minority. Martin Luther King would be horrified to think we were picking someone based on the color of their skin.
Huckabee is the only clear choice. He is a strong conservative, who can communicate conservative principles better than anyone else in the party. Like Reagan, Huckabee is a "Great Communicator" and brilliant to boot. Talk radio and the News Media fear him, because he is an outsider with fresh ideas!

Posted by: ericso_1968 | November 21, 2008 8:43 PM | Report abuse

I find it telling that you said, "...Sarah Palin. While we expect the former vice presidential nominee will be on this Line in the coming months, she doesn't make it this time around because it is not yet clear how she will find a way to remain in the national dialogue from her far-away outpost in the Last Frontier. Palin is also VERY lightly regarded by many of the opinion leaders and establishment types within the GOP".
Alaska is at least as relevant as the Black Hole of DC, where we pour our hard-earned money down.
When is the last time a Republican carried any state north of DC, in your area? Maybe it's because you "opinion makers" think that the Republican Party is still the Party of Rockefeller...or their Grandpa Senator Nelson Aldrich.
Today it is a Party of Conservatives. And 25% of my conservative friends sat on their hands this election because of that smug attitude from self-important party wheel horses who can't even carry their home districts.
The Republican Party needs to decide who this party represents; conservatives who CAN carry their districts...or bureaucrats who affirm one anothers' status as Party Insiders and arbiters of Party Interests....

Posted by: blackhawk3220 | November 21, 2008 8:39 PM | Report abuse

The one speaks is generally considered an indicator of their intelligence and education. Starting a sentence with a verb can be cute once in a while, but Palin does it regularly. I wonder about her brain power or lack of. Romney's religion was attacked primarily by Mormon-hating Baptist minister Mike Huckabee. It seems he took his connection to the Mormon hating Evangelical's and encouraged them to "go get the Mormon" as though he was sicking his pit bull on his neighbor. We can only hope that in these current times that kind of evil is dieing off with bigots who are doing likewise. It would be a shame to loose a mind like Romney’s to a discordant bunch of yahoos.

Posted by: JLFuller | November 21, 2008 8:33 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin is my choice to unseat il duce hussien in the next election. it seems that the drive by media has their noses so far up duce's butt, that if the messiah stopped suddenly they would need a bull dozier to pull them out.

Posted by: kfvammons | November 21, 2008 8:08 PM | Report abuse

Come on... at a time that Republicans are fed up with their leadership, rinos are going to win the day because they are well positioned.

Lets be honest, Romney and Jindal are the only players on this list. Romney has been earning points since dropping out of the race. Mike Huckabee is drawing record crowds on his book tour, getting ratings on his tv show, but he is dismissed. Mike Pence is the most popular guy in the party, but not in the list.

Posted by: iowafalcon | November 21, 2008 7:48 PM | Report abuse

To Haymond, who wrote:

"Ron Paul's people need to LET IT GO. You have no clue what to do about the economy."

Yeah man, I'm with you. Your guys are doing a GREAT job! Anyone wanting anything different than the great success we have been having with these guys is, like, a total retard!!!

Posted by: figyelo | November 21, 2008 7:45 PM | Report abuse

The vast majority of Republicans are born-again evangelicals and people from the Deep South. That is what constitutes the Republican Part. Throw in racists and a few trust-fund babies, and this is the modern day Republican Party. Everyone else votes Democrat.

Obama will win in a landslide in 2012. Bank on it.

Posted by: SteveinArlingtonVA | November 21, 2008 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Mitt is the only President in the list. There must be an affirmation of delinquency of responsibility for anyone to be a candidate for President who has non-expired term unless they resign the post they were elected to fulfill.

Posted by: springco1 | November 21, 2008 7:30 PM | Report abuse

Just my opinion, but the GOP is most hampered by the thing it loves best: neocon supply-side economic policies.

They don't work, gang.

Wealth doesn't trickle very far down. It puddles around the ankles of a class of superrich. Mitt Romney is one.

Markets don't reliably self-regulate. Sometimes it looks as if they do, but that just means you should double-check those tarted-up financial statements.

If there ever was an 'invisible hand', it was lopped off by Wall Street ninjas wielding financial instruments.

Try being conservatives. Avoid the Bushes, the Cheneys, the Romneys. That's the ticket back home.

Posted by: Samson151 | November 21, 2008 7:14 PM | Report abuse

How long will you DonkEphants continue to argue! We are AMERICANS! Quit playing the game, they are surely playing us and have been for a very long time! Democrats & Republicans.;.. Different names, same games! Graduate from the School of DonkEphant Fools! It is time we ALL go over to the Constitution Party and take our Country back!

Posted by: clecroix | November 21, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Chris, your support for Barack Obama was transparent. So you might properly be viewed as lacking conservative gravitas.

Posted by: sagereader | November 21, 2008 6:16 PM | Report abuse

I have the answers for Americaits going to be a tough road but we can do it. first eliminate the irs. have a 20% tax on goods, 2nd send all illegals back to where they came from. 3rd charge all imports a 15% tarrif, 3rd withdraw all our forces out of the world and put them on the border. 4th make hedge funds illegal, 5th immediatly execute all prisnors that are in for murder and gang related, immediatly execute all gang members and take our cities back. legalize pot. the income would be billions, and dealers would go out of bizz, thats just a start what do yas think >?

Posted by: jayman45 | November 21, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

I've known Steve Poizner for over 30 years since our days together as students at the University of Texas. Steve is a young, energetic, brilliant man who believes in using market based principles to administer government programs. Hopefully he'll be able to get himself elected Governor of CA. I doubt he'd run for President in 2012 with only 2 years in office as governor unless Obama is in trouble. But if Steve gets re-elected in 2014, you can bet your bottom dollar he'll run as long as he and his wife are healthy. I think he'd make one hell of a president.

Posted by: oregon_longhorn | November 21, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Yes righties, Carter was a bad president. I'm not sure he was worse than Bush though.

a. Carter hired a cabinet of friends as Bush did instead of experts; BHO is hiring the best and the brightest. While this is not guarantee of success, the best modern Presidents surrounded themselves with big brains (Reagan, Clinton).

b. A BIG part of the economic problems that hit Carter were leftovers from the Nixon age. Nixon never met a price control he didn't like; while I give him big props for making nice with China, even conservative economist often blast Nixon. Carter didn't fix anything, don't get me wrong, but there was a big economic hangover from Nixon.

c. Both Carter and GWB made the U.S. look weak, but in different ways. Carter wouldn't take any actions, and Bush took too many, showing that our military is great but not all-powerful.

Summary - I think history will view GW Bush as a combo of Hoover, Carter, and Nixon. Some say Nixon was as smart as any Pres, but he would always take political success over what he knew was right.

GW Bush knows macroeconomics if he knows anything at all (certainly much better than foreign policy). He was my hero for one day, when he refused to cap gas prices after Katrina (though he bumbled the rest of that episode obviously). Gas cap=shortage. I think Katrina summed up his presidency in a single (huge) event. That is when he really fell in popularity, when the middle fell out and away from him.

But like Nixon, GWB seemed to chose political expediency over good decisions.

"Permanent tax cuts?" A sham - you need to cut them when the economy shrinks and raise them when it booms to recover the coffers.

Fiscal conservative? Hardly. A Medicare bill with no generic drugs is an enormous expendeture in which tax payers lose and drug companies win. Pork for the older voters, cause we need to get re-elected in 2004.

The Laffer curve is a cool theory, but continual tax cuts and big expenditures just leads too over sized deficits. Deficit spending is not the enemy, but now that the economy is dropping out the deficit will be way too big of a GDP percentage.

Although the Fed is independent of partisanship (supposedly), I believe that GWB should have put pressure on it to raise rates when the housing market peaked. It would have shown confidence in the economy, helped the dollar rise, and lessened the explosion we're seeing now.

Carter and GWB are like fraternal twins. BHO has a chance to be Reagan, and unlike most people, 1980 is the election that I see as the closest parallel to 2008.

Posted by: Jimibristol | November 21, 2008 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Ahem, someone forgot Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina.

Posted by: Computer_Forensics_Expert_Computer_Expert_Witness | November 21, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Jeb Bush FTW! rofl

Posted by: jayman45 | November 21, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Jindal will eat Obama's lunch in 2012. Doesn't anyone hazard to guess what inflation will be like 4 years from now - after the Dems get done spending us into oblivion?

I wouldn't count out Rep Paul Ryan from Wisconsin. When it comes to the economy, he's more knowledgable than anyone who ran this past year with the possible exception of Ron Paul.

Posted by: systrac3 | November 21, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Louisiana HERE..Jindal is not going to run against a sitting President after only one term as Governor,and he may not be re-elected to-boot,there are at least two Moderate Conservative Dummycats who can easily beat him here,if they run.

As long as the media is behind him,and he doesn't fall off the Wat*rmelon cart..BARRY IS SURE TO BE RE-ELECTED PERIOD!!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

What about Mike Spence?
I suggest everyone do research and pick their best candidates and support them NOW.

For me, honestly, I want conservative.
I like Mike Spence because he can speak, debate, and I agree with his standings.

But lets support who we want NOW and make sure they run a campaign ten times better than McCain.

Posted by: do5309 | November 21, 2008 5:22 PM | Report abuse

This list is pretty good, though I'd expect Michael Steele, Rob Portman, Richard Burr, and perhaps someone like Heather Wilson to also be in the mix in 2012.

Posted by: JohnnyFontaine | November 21, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Why do you care ? You got the person you supported for president elected. Too bad you'll soon find out he wasn't the person you thought he was. The voting left is already talking all over the spectrum that this guy is a phony, he's leaning right, he can't be trusted. Had you bothered to do some investigations of the Pres elect and reported it the question marks wouldn't have shown so soon. Next time around the Obama voters won't believe a word they read in your paper, if the paper is even their.
The Washington post would better serve itself if they would find some journalist with ethics and not agendas. The GoP will have someone ready to pick up the mess that's coming.

Posted by: pane1 | November 21, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who says that Jindal isn't very bright is either exceedingly ignorant, exceedingly dump, or exceedingly blind. In truth, Jindal is both brilliant and innovative. Jindal attended Brown University, graduating with honors in biology and public policy. Although he had thought of a career in medicine or law and was accepted by Harvard Medical School and Yale Law School, he chose to pursue a political career. He received a master's degree in political science from New College, Oxford, as a Rhodes Scholar.

That sounds pretty bright to me, certainly smarter than the half wits who spend their time disparaging him on this and other websites.

Posted by: JohnnyFontaine | November 21, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Mike Huckabee is damaged goods,and he was damaged by Hush Limbaugh and Sean Damnity of all people,and Huckabee & Thompson were the only thing close to Conservatism in the race,so Hush & Damnity clearly should be a non-issue in the next election..I DON'T NEED NO GURUS TELLING ME HOW TO BE CONSERVATIVE,BECAUSE CONSERVATIVE IS A STATE OF MIND MAN,SORTA LIKE TRANSVESTITES,YA EITHER HAVE IT OR YOU DON'T!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

I know you gave reasons for not including Huckabee, but they don't hold water. Don't underestimate him - or his followers.

Posted by: leefstrong | November 21, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Where is Mike Huckabee on this list? He finished second to McCain in the primaries (above Romney), now has a television show and a radio contract that will bring him to millions of voters, created HuckPac that helped candidates across the U.S. run for office, and now has a book out.

Posted by: leefstrong | November 21, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

forget Jindal he is going no where! he wont get 5%. Palin has seen the light and will be back brighter,stronger, and more up to speed . in short she is going to do her homework and be a formitable force.her folksy style is very popular. and she is going to stay in the picture just watch.Romney was too untill he stabbed the auto workers in the back. it will be remembered. Paul Ryan is also very good keep an eye on him . in my opinion the man with the best vision for America is Duncan Hunter. but in my humble Opinion it is going to be Palin , Romney and Ryan

Posted by: jayman45 | November 21, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget,Bush ran against Mr. Heat,and then the Swift Liar..defeating them both,and as bad as Bush was(While going left on us)..THANK GOD HE BEAT THOSE OTHER TWO MISERY GIMPS!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Even I'm so far to the left I've almost swung all the way back around to the right and therefore don't really have the best judgement on this issue, I would be advocating against Jindal if I was a Republican. He really isn't that bright. Maybe they should put him on the ticket for 2012. Hell, they put an idiot up twice in the not so distant past and and it worked in their favor twice.

Posted by: HannahBanana | November 21, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

I suppose it's theoretically possible to publish something less useful than advice to Republicans from someone who works for the Washington Post. The only Republicans the Post likes are those certain to lose. That's why they loved John McCain, until this year.

Posted by: EdfromRoanoke | November 21, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Sarah the Conservative was the the only reason it was as close as it was,I wasn't voting before she came,but the stench at the top of the ticket was just to high for some of us to jump,and 20% voted for the other guy just so they could say they backed a winner.

But Barry does have a Mandate,for the simple fact he has no opposition,you gotta remember after Florida 2000 and then Jim Jeffords came out of the closet,Bush was still putting his cabinet together in September 2001..LOOK FOR EVERYTHING YOU FEARED...AND THEN SOME FROM BARRY!!!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

What about Michael Steele? I expected to see him near the top of the list...although I expected Gov. Jindal to be number 1.

Posted by: rjc1865 | November 21, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

and the war was comin' and the earth was shaken' and there was no more room. in the gardens of Alah

Posted by: jayman45 | November 21, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Hey walkerstempe0813!

Jindal is white?

How many non-whites did the Dems run?

Who gives a d--n about that anyways?

Democrats do. This isn't about Democrats.

Posted by: pbirman | November 21, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

The way to the White House is to run a black, gay, latino women with the slogan
“Ask What Your Country Can Do for You Not What You Can Do for Your Country”.

Posted by: leapin | November 21, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Look, Obama wins by a mere 4 points when the GOP has an approval rating of 35%...this is no mandate believe me.

Posted by: whitesox | November 21, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse


If you're a Conservative,the GOP is truly dead..YOU JUST VOTED FOR THE MOST LIBERAL GUY IN THE SENATE,Yes! McCain was a joke,but for me that would have only been a skipped vote..Come on? you're a Conservative?...YOU JUST VOTED FOR THE MOST!!!! LIBERAL!!! GUY!!! IN!!! WASHINGTON!!!..YOU'RE NOT A CONSERVATIVE...STFU!!!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Clinton so-called "succeeded" depending on how you look at it because democraps love schmoozing BS artist. What did he do? Not what did the Republican Congress do, what did he do? He didn't do anything except use a young girl half his age to get a BJ in the Oval office bathroom, lie and get impeached. He was a disgusting embarrassment in the end and the reason he had a surplus was because of the republican's control and because he didn't do anything. If I didn't do anything or pay my bills, I'd have money too. All the while the country was subject to his cheating and lying, Osama and the gang of 19 were training in our country, using our planes in planning to blow up our buildings. Another steaming turd President Bush had to clean up. He was a friggin disgrace and you have the nerve to talk about Bush.

Posted by: daisymae1 | November 21, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Keep in mind, Osama's number 2 man didn't refer to Obama as "our fellow Muslim." Maybe they still hate us after all.

Posted by: whitesox | November 21, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I like Sarah,but things need to be really bad to un-seat a sitting President,and since I'm not hoping for bad,and the media has already said they wont go goofy morbid on Barry like they did on Bush..I don't see him losing,maybe some mid-term Conservative pick-ups is the best they can do.

This is "Welcome Back Carter" though,and if some chimp haven country waves a sword at us and Barry comes up limp...HE'S HISTORY!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

"Your a leftest in denial admit it dummy,I'm a Conservative "

Thanks for reaffirming my beliefs on the core of the Republican party.

Perhaps the non-drooling factions of the conservative party will do better next time (I actually like Newt Gingrich).

Posted by: mikem1 | November 21, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

My fear is that Obama will mess things up so bad that martial law will be imposed and NO presidential election will be held in 2012...I agree with a previous poster that we should be looking at a 7 year peace treaty involving Israel with Sec. of State Hillary orchestrating it...Biblical endtimes we are in. after all.

Posted by: whitesox | November 21, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Wait till Obama, The Gelding, has to sit across the table from Putin, the KGB wolf.

Can someone please get Obama a very large shipment of Depends?

Won't take long before the naive one realizes that running a campaign that hoists vapid slogans behind it is a far cry from being the President of the United States.

Jan 20 is going to be the start of a very scary time in America.

Why did America let Katie Couric, Matt Damon and Oprah Winfrey talk us in to this ludicrous choice?

Posted by: mayorcurley | November 21, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Obama, with the Clintons along for the ride, will do such irreparable damage to this country that minorities, yes minorities, will turn against him, just wait and see...this history-making thing will wear off in a hurry when people are more broke than they are today, Obama won on pecketbook issues and will lose on them when things get even worse

Posted by: whitesox | November 21, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

To all who are bashing Sarah Palin: What is your FEAR of her? The things that you're saying about her only shows me you drank the cool aid that the NOBAMA MEDIA fed you. 90% of it was lies, generated by fear, and a deliberate attempt to get the Messiah elected. What do you KNOW about her that the OBAMA SUCKFEST MEDIA didn't tell you? Zilch! She doesn't have the experience of a street scammer like NOBAMA, nor the training from criminals, radicals, and terrorist friends in Chicago, the murder captial of the world but she does have DECENCY, and is smart enough to have made it ON HER OWN in a man's world. She was running with a DOLTZ and still managed to get 57 million votes.

Posted by: daisymae1 | November 21, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Same old story.
Very white.

Posted by: walkerstempe0813 | November 21, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

the govt under clinton succeeded because of Newt Gingrich and the republican house balanced the budget. Bush was the worst president in history though and squandered the advance with Iraq and a failure to stop the unfair trade practices, illegal immigration and so on and so on. now the republicans must perge and get back to basics.conservatisim did not lose it won. as Obama ran as a conservative. cut taxes etc. the republicans now are turning their backs on the millions of people who work for the auto industry? wheres it gonna stop? whan all manufacturing in America is gone? all it would take is for the govt to make the laws fair to our industry and it could come back. but they wont,why? because they are linning their pockets from the lobbiests! the only way is for another revaloution to happen. and I dont see that coming any time soon.we are notpro America Americans, that is considered racist. which is very flawed. all we can do is suck on it, like they want us to do.Obama is going to change nothing,and is proving it by appointing all insiders. when the itme comes that we are all on welfare who is going to pay for it? where is the bottom? hows that free trade working out so far? viva revaloution!

Posted by: jayman45 | November 21, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse


Your a leftest in denial admit it dummy,I'm a Conservative who had to take a long shower after voting for McCain,only because I promised myself i wouldn't vote for him way back in January..

But to you stupid Moderate liars,if McCain wasn't good enough for you..(Mr. Reach Across) then you fuggers might as well just go register as Dummycats and stop fooling people...just wait,4 years of Total Liberal control will have you singing another song,but for me..stay where you are ya little weak limp wristed turds..WE WONT NEED YOU!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I thought I was on the Times website. :-) You're right, I'm out of here.

This is a publication for the sophomoric.

Thanks for keeping me from wasting any more time. Our children have been indoctrinated by the left-wing academics (as aptly displayed by "klondike", an obvious green and wet behind the ears student).

Ok, out of here. Someday some of you children will have to buy homes and raise families -- then you will see the light. I can't blame you for your immaturity; wisdome comes with age and experience.

Posted by: mayorcurley | November 21, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Personally, I want to thank you for omitting Sarah Palin, as I am consciously biased in my perspective in NOT wanting to hear from her ever again.

But from an objective position, she needed Senator Stevens to win reelection (and then be voted out by the Senate) in order to insert herself into the national political arena (i.e., appoint herself as Senator or run for the special senatorial election that would follow). Now, she is stuck in Alaska and the media will slowly wean itself of being amused by her as she is not relevant to the national agenda way up there.

Posted by: jeremyheiken | November 21, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

"A lot can happen in the next four years and if this economy does not show much improvement, Obama administration will likely be compared to the Carter years....not good."

BO's already watching "This Old House" reruns so that he can work side-by-side with Jimmy in 4 years.

Posted by: leapin | November 21, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

This is the Obama Nation

"The American future is an innumerable multitude of men, all equal and alike, incessantly endeavoring to procure the petty and paltry pleasures with which they glut their lives. Government becomes the parent, as “it provides for their security, foresees and supplies their necessities, facilitates their pleasures, manages their principal concerns, directs their industry, regulates the descent of property, and subdivides their inheritances: what remains, but to spare them all the care of thinking and all the trouble of living? Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.” - 'Alexis de Tocqueville, 'Democracy in America,' Vol. 2, Part 4, Chap. 6 (1840).

I hope this country can be awoken before we have traveled too far down this path.

This is why I am a conservative.

Posted by: mrodriguez2 | November 21, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Hateful Posts....Res Ipsa Loquitor

Why would ANYONE discuss the future of the Republican party on a WASHINGTON POST blog? This is the rag that recently admitted it spins the news to get liberals elected. Forget the's for the far left. The moronic, hateful posts on this page speak for themselves.

Posted by: cmail54 | November 21, 2008 11:55 AM

Posted by: Thatsnuts | November 21, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who dismisses Palin shows themselves to not be in touch with the people. She is a very intelligent and accomplished woman and people that don't realize her accomplishments and intelligenct can not critically think behind mainstream media brainwashing.

And I find the comment that young people are "intelligent voters". Look who they just voted for? The most inexperienced person we have ever elected to the highest office in the U.S.

This election was determined by mass media manipulation and group-think. The whole thing is utter folly. Time will prove this out.

Please shut your televisions off and read up on free-market economics (perhaps something by Thomas Sowell) and how every country who has attempted big government has crushed its citizens terribly.

But, hey, they that do not know history are doomed to repeat it.

Posted by: mayorcurley | November 21, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

How about J C Watts?
How about Newt Gingrich?
When are we gonna learn that "Rockefeller Republicans" are NOT the answer?

Posted by: joemamma2 | November 21, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

What are Repubs 'conserving'? Wouldn't it be wise to come into the 21st Century in order for them to make sense or be relevant?

Posted by: catskill1 | November 21, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Don't tell the truth about Obama because they delete your message.

To all who say the Republicans are dead, is that what you said when the dems were demolished by Newt and Reagan, or have you forgotten that? How long were they out of power? What goes up must come down, ie: the empty suit muslim.

Posted by: daisymae1 | November 21, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Cantor has limited appeal. The fact that THIS GOP caucus has embraced him is evidence enough that he's too crazy for the mainstream.

There's only so much that political consultants can do to package a candidate like Cantor.

Bob McDonnell is another one with limited wattage.

He has good on-camera looks, but the Pat Robertson connections, and poor record of "achievements" limit his national appeal. He could probably make a serious play for the second Congressional District seat in 2010 if the run for Governor doesn't work out.

It'll be interesting to see how the 2009 Governor's race plays out in Virginia; however, I don't see McDonnell holding much appeal for political moderates.

The GOP's long-term hopes are probably going to come outside the Beltway and the Virginia GOP.

Posted by: JPRS | November 21, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

joh375 ????

History Lesson for an Idiot...

Jimmy Peanut had for years of total Liberal control and he got a boot in his a** in 1980 because of it..Billy C. only had two years of toal Liberal control because in 1994 Liberals (Even party leaders) HAD THEIR A** THROWN OUT ON THE STREET....But even though I think something going to give in 2-4 again..I DON'T SEE MODERATE REPUBLATURDS LEADING THE WAY..ONLY MAKING THINGS WORSE!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

For all those saying that McCain lost because he was too moderate, I think you're seriously wrong. His problem was that he ran hard right trying to get his base fired up. That's what alienated moderate independents like me.

But, feel free to believe whatever you'd like to believe. Go ahead and think we're a conservative country. Go ahead and think you just need a more conservative leader (uh, Gilmore ring a bell?) Just remember that preaching to the choir ain't going to get you any converts.

Posted by: mikem1 | November 21, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

"it clearly has been and always will be they (The Rep Party) are for the rich and famous"

Thats why I won't vote for the Republican party. They are for Kennedy, Kerry, and Edwards, Pelosi, and Feinstein.

Posted by: leapin | November 21, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

If you want to delude yourself that one party or another is irrelevant or dead, go ahead but check our history. Both parties have been announced dead on many occasions. Moreover, it is extremely important to our survival that we have 2 parties that can engage in constructive debate and can come up with solutions for our challenges.

There are very good, well intentioned, smart people in both parties. The sooner that people on both extreme ends of the political spectrum wise up and acknowledge this the sooner we can get to fixing the economic problems that are staring us in the face.

Neither party has a monopoly on the right answers. If more people would listen with an open mind maybe we can get out of the mess we find ourselves in now. But if we simply dig our heels in and say "I/we're right, you're wrong" we'll get nowhere.

Posted by: jwhit34 | November 21, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

I hate say it.. When will we ever learn!! When the country is in economic shambles .. the democrats will do all in their power to right the ship as Clinton did after Reagan, and Bush part 1. Once the economy is in good shape , the Republicans will be back in office. Why? When americans are making money and in good financial shape they like the tax cuts and breaks. To spend more money and get the bigger house and fancier car and take the excotic trips.

We don't understand when times are good, the current taxes should stay in place and not be cut and Big Government spending should be corraled even more. so when a time of need arises ...such as now. We have the resources to get out of it.

Posted by: joh375 | November 21, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

congressmen Paul Ryan FTW!

Posted by: jayman45 | November 21, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

An earlier commentator offered his belief that President-elect Obama is not a smart as Sarah Palin, because 'a friend' said Obama didn't seem so smart in his prep school days. Well color me convinced! Being a member of Harvard Law Review is purely based upon academics, and being qualified to teach at the University of Chicago's Law School, one of the best in the country, requires a high level of academic achievement. Sara Palin, in contrast, had difficulty completing college in that challenging study of broadcast journalism (how to read a teleprompter, is a narcissistic windbag unable to speak a sentence that approaches standard English. The McCain aid who leaked that she was a 'whacko' spoke the truth most of us could see.

Posted by: cadman | November 21, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

msreginacomcastnet ???


Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who thinks one-party rule is a good thing is the real moron.

Anyone who wants to erase the checks and balances that two parties give us is the real moron.

Posted by: Janny1 | November 21, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

BO's policies will be prolonging "The Greater Depression" by years. Not even bringing in the great Michael Moore as economic advisor can save him.

Posted by: leapin | November 21, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

After Bush 41 lost in 1992, you would not have had to explain why Quayle is not a front runner. It is silly that Palin is so populat w/ at least 25% of the country now and is not a front runner. Just watch. After she develops a congressman's 4 paragraph answer to the top 200 issues, she will be back as a star. Her crowds will out draw your other alleged front runner stiffs by 5 to 1 in Iowa and New Hampshire.

Posted by: hickey2 | November 21, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

drindl ...???

The middle/Independents just rejected the most Moderate Monkey pumping Republican they could find in Washington...AND WHY?..THEY STAND FOR NOTHING! EXCEPT REACHING THEIR HANDS ACROSS THE TABLE AND GETTING THE BALLS TWISTED IN RETURN.

This Nation is Conservative,show this nation a real Conservative and they will never lose..NEVER!

I openly admit that if the GOP wants to run the bruised Balls Republicans up our a**...THEY WILL ALL LOSE..EVERYTIME!,AS LONG AS THEY KEEP DOING IT..HOPE IVE BEEN CLEAR!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Don't think any of these 10 folks will reach across the table to democrates to fix the country. Again, the tone with these people are, get the democrates out of office, and republicans don't have a clue or plan on how to treat the middle class taxpayer - it clearly has been and always will be they are for the rich and famous. They have tunnel vision. Right-wing religion is out and needs to stay out of politics forever! I don't go into anyones church and tell them how to run their life and I don't want these bible thumpers telling me how to run my life. In fact, all the atheist I know are loving, caring and genuine towards humanity, and most of the religious zelots I know are hateful and meanspirited toward humanity.

Posted by: msreginacomcastnet | November 21, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

The rightwingers comments on this board illustrate perfectly what's wrong with the republican party... the base are utter morons. To please these people you have to run Elmer Fudd, whom the middle and independents won't support.

Therefore, they are over-- a done deal. I doubt if they win another election/majority in my lifetime.

Posted by: drindl | November 21, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

There are NO Republicans to watch.


Their Socialist party is dead and dying.

None of the leaders or "up and coming" Comrades will survive the forty-year trek to the wilderness for their sins of LYING, STEALING, and TORTURE.

Those who return will forget the names of those left behind on the Trail of Tears.

Posted by: WillSeattle | November 21, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

C.C. says "...each of these individuals will have a role to play in the conversation about where the party heads between now and 2010."

Chris seems pretty well dialed-in to the political scene, so I can't say his list is wrong.

However, if Chris is correct, then I predict the Republicans will remain in the "wilderness" for some time to come.

Representative Ron Paul is the only Republican polititian who speaks to what the Republicans need to do to win back the respect of their own party and the nation as a whole. (I believet that many Republicans know what needs to be done but are afraid to say it. Not Ron Paul).

During the Republican debates, Ron Paul repeatededly warned Republicans that they would be soundly beaten in Nov '08 if they did not return to traditional conservative principles (less government, lower taxes, greater respect for the constitution, no wars of aggression, etc).

Ron Paul has been warning for years of a great economic downturn that in his eyes was "inevitable", unless changes were made.

On these two points (and many others) Ron Paul has been proven correct.

If Republicans ever want to head "out of the wilderness", then the 10 people Chris mentions in this list (plus a lot of other Republicans) need to stop by Ron Paul's office and seek his advice.

Posted by: MDLaxer | November 21, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Anyone which the Washington Post or other "Big Media" establishment endorses as a voice for conservative values and ideas is probably not our candidate.

Someone "liked" by the Media is not someone I want to associate with.

Posted by: gon2fish | November 21, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

You can't be serious if you leave off Sarah Palin. Try naming another VP who could outdraw the head of the ticket. Sarah clicks with the real people the party needs to win back the White House. Maybe you have the VP in 2012 on your list, but Palin has is lock for number 1. As for the elitist's in the party, I'd figure they said the sames things about Ronald Reagan. He worked out ok. Hopefully, we no more Bushes.

Posted by: mbc7 | November 21, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

First Off!,you Fugger's in the media chose McCain it wasn't Conservatives...THATS A MOTHER FUGGING FACT! Second,since you've already started the process of doing it again(And the Moderates Leftest in the GOP let you) please pick an a** hole who will lose 50 fuggen States,so me and my NEW CONSERVATIVE PARTY CAN GET ON WITH TAKING BACK THIS COUNTY FROM YOU SH'T HEADS!

Picture the Titanic with stupid Moderate Republicans on board,and an Ice Berg we'll call it Barry O.,WELL I'M NOT ON BOARD THAT SHIP DIPPYS..I'M AT HOME WATCHING THE NEWS WITH A BUCKET FULL OF POPCORN LAUGHING MY A** OFF!

Posted by: Kelly26 | November 21, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

I love the "Palin isnt smart enough" crowd. Yes she went from TV reporter to Mayor to Governor in less then 10 years by being a total ditzy moron, right! I love the post election South Park episode for 2 particular lines. Stans dad telling his boss(an Obama supporter) "he didnt mean you" and Sarah Palin walking off the stage after her folksy press conference and mumbling about the press in her elite British-like voice "bloody fools". Believe me she knows exactly whats shes doing and why shes doing it. She will eviscerate anyone thats stands in her way and she will do it with her brain not her looks!

Posted by: barharbor79 | November 21, 2008 2:57 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry, I'm so sick of Ron Paul supporters purporting to be economists with the "removal of the federal reserve" BS. Man did you drink the koolaid.

Ron Paul's people need to LET IT GO. You have no clue what to do about the economy. Stop pretending you do. Enough of the gold standard stuff and live with the fact that Ron Paul is a fluke GOP-er who introduces spending bills then votes against them.

Posted by: Haymond | November 21, 2008 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Unfortunately Romney's Mormonism played an important role in his losing presidential bid and would play a role for him and/or Jon Huntsman, Jr. in 2012.

There is a really good book that just came out that discusses in detail the anti-Mormonism and anti-religion used against Romney. The book is by an author named Craig Foster and is titled, "A Different God? Mitt Romney, the Religious Right and the Mormon Question."

Posted by: GrizzlyBear1 | November 21, 2008 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Hello.....Shouldn't PAUL RYAN be on this list?

Posted by: Idolized | November 21, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse


Romney certainly showed how skilled he is with his "let the Big Three" go into Chapter 11 bankruptcy attitude. Such an attitude reaks of neocon brutality. Congress, on the other hand, is doing the right thing by demanding that the Big Three CEOs do their homework! If they don't, fire them, and get someone who will. Otherwise we nationalze the auto industry.

Posted by: nwsjnky1 | November 21, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

You (deliberately?) forgot Ron Paul.

He was right about the war, and what it would do to the GOP.

He was right about the coming economic tsunami, and what would happen as a result of too easy credit, brought about by a too-corrupt Federal Reserve.

He was right about our bloated foreign policy and our spendthrift domestic policy, and what such policies would do to our budget and current account deficits.

He may not have enough star power to get elected POTUS, but any GOPer who has that ambition would be a fool to ignore this man's sage advice.

Ron Paul 2012!!

Posted by: johngalt23_1999 | November 21, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Jidhal has skeletons in his closet.

And NO, not the same type of skeletons that Mitch McConnell

Governor Crist and "Lindsay" Graham has.

When Jindhal was studying, here in Providence at Brown

University he performed several exorcisms, which were covered

by the local media. (See Google)

During once such exorcism, the future governor of LA

told the media that "exorcisms can cure cancer"

The wacky governor of LA is even crazier than Sarah.

Posted by: bobnsri | November 21, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

I think Ga. Governor Sonny Perdue has to be included. I didn't know Daniels said he wouldn't run for any other office in his campaign. Was that ever or did he just mean he wouldn't run for anything until he finished his term as governor in 2012. Many folks thought Daniels would leave the governor's seat and run against Bayh for the senate seat in 2010, perhaps that was telling Indiana that he won't do that simply. If that's the case, perhaps President in 2012 is fair game for Daniels. Daniels has already pursued a very conservative agenda in Indiana privitazing toll roads, acknowledging daylight savings time and other real solutions that actually really affect the people of Indiana. He's socially conservative as well. Mark Sanford has taken on democrats & republicans alike in his quest to cut spending and balance budgets. I love his supply side style, his socially conservative values and his folksy personality. I agree that Jindal, Poizner & McDonnell have large roles in the party. Also, one name overlooked is Texas senator John Cornyn. Cornyn is a very conservative senator and just won a 2nd term in Texas. He is a great fundraiser and will likely be the new cheif fundraiser for US Senate Republicans. If that is so, Cornyn will be a big part of raising money for Republicans for retention of seats & winning new ones in 2010, and if he does well in running the fundraising in 2012. I suspect Cornyn will really push Republicans to actually stand for conservative principles and rise futhur in the Senate rankings as well. I agree that Cantor is also a rising star. 2009 should be very interesting in Virginia. R's need a win by McDonnell for the governor's seat & Bolling to win re-election. Corzine is a wealthy and established candidate and is likely to keep his seat in my view. Republican's will have to have a top tier if they want to knock him off. Will they get it? History says no, but only time will tell.

Posted by: reason5 | November 21, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Oh please. This is so irrelevant.

First the GOP must somehow survive 2010, in which they will

lose at least 3-Senate seats, and, in a best case scenario

only lose a handful of House Seats.

Then after losing three straight elections, the GOP faces huge

problems in 2012.

Mr. Obama will add Arizona to his electoral numbers in 2012.

It will be the "Morning and America" election, all over again.

Huge landslide for Mr. Obama.

Please, the GOP is dead, dead and gone.

Posted by: bobnsri | November 21, 2008 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Another member of the Washington liberal elites press corps telling the GOP what is wrong with them - thanks for the "advice" Chris, but we'll be going with Palin in 2012, the candidate you and all the other liberals fear the most.

Posted by: Tonyome | November 21, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Rep. Elect Aaron Schock-IL(R) who is at the ripe age of 27, making him currently the youngest member of the house.

I don't agree with him probably on any issues, but there's no doubt that he is considered a rising star.

Posted by: Haymond | November 21, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Does it really matter who is in the running for 2012? The Republican party has fundamental flaws that are unlikely to be fixed by 2012. Running as the standard bearer for a party that cannot win something bigger than a statewide race, primarily in the South and parts of the Mountain West, is pointless.

Watch the 2010 Wisconsin gubernatorial race. I know someone who received a survey call about her level of support for Paul Ryan in a 2010 race against Doyle. It seems that he is thinking about it. That would setup Ryan for 2016, assuming the GOP is fixed by then.

Posted by: caribis | November 21, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

"There are millions of everyday Conservatives who are pulling together a grass roots effort to keep Sarah in the limelight and to encourage her to run in 2012. Also these everyday Conservatives will be organized to help Conservatives win seats in the 2010 elections. We can thank Sarah for that."

Yes, by all means keep Sarah in the limelight. We'll contribute a few million to help you do that.


the Democrats

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | November 21, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

No to Jindal. Too many GOPers will look at him and see a guy running a 7-11. Did you MISS the thrust of the anti-Obama campaign?

No to Poizner. He'll lose. Too much anti-GOP sentiment among Hispanics. White voters that the GOP needs are slowly, steadily fleeing California.

You have to have Gingrich on the list. And Barbour has to be near the top. He's smart, personable, and proved to be competent in the wake of Katrina.

Palin will be the candidate of the troglydytes. But there aren't enough Bible-thumpers in the party for her to win (home schoolers:real schoolers::Palin voters:anti-Palin voters). People are stupid, they're not THAT stupid. Trig might have a shot when he comes of age, though.

Posted by: gbooksdc | November 21, 2008 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Look, we let the media pick the GOP candidate this year, and look what happened. With all due respect, we'll be ignoring the media in 2012.

Posted by: OhioCon | November 21, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Huckabee took out Romney by reminding Evangelicals of what they'd been taught for years in Sunday school, that Mormon Christianity is different from Evangelical Christianity, and therefore Mormons shouldn't be trusted, much less voted for. He was subtle and clever as he did it, but millions knew exactly what he was doing. If the Republican party is going to regain prominence, Evangelicals should spend a little less energy eliminating those who essentially have the same values. If another Romney, or anyone of a non-Evangelical background appears again as a contender in the primaries, let him or her rise or fall on the issues that matter. Neither Obama or McCain sounded like they had a clue about the economy as it tanked. Romney, or someone else with his talent level, might have come in handy.

Posted by: WeNeedSkills | November 21, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Wow, are the righties out there angry. Why? You guys have been the more powerful party for a quarter of a century, and your principles have been out front.

No party has 'dibs' on cutting taxes.
Similary, no party has 'dibs' on fiscal spending or monetary policy.

Fiscal responsibility - cut taxes and raise spending when the economy needs stimulation, raise taxes a little and cut back on spending when it's booming.

Monetary responsibility - Why did Greenspan (R) keep cutting interest rates when the housing market was booming? Isn't that when you raise them to keep the train from crashing? We need to cut them now, but we can't really cut them any more.

Clinton years = surplus
Bush years = deficit
Look it up

Until the R's own up to Bush's mistakes and realize that being angry at D's is not a central tenent of governance, thigs will be tough for you. Believe it.

Bin Laden's goal was to drag us into the Muslum world and ruin our economy.

Bin Laden 7, America 0. On the watch of the GOP. True story.

Posted by: Jimibristol | November 21, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Romney and maybe Jindal are the men to watch.

People, why didn't we vote in Romney (an expert on the Economy) when we had the chance? We really probably deserve the hard times that are coming due to such stubborn ignorance. We voted in a novice (Obama) and expect expert results, it just won't happen! Cause and effect. This will be kind of like touching a hot stove for a child. Too bad we're all grown adults, too lazy and complacent to learn about the candidates and weigh the consequences of our possible choices.

Posted by: scotash | November 21, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

It's funny how Sarah gets knocked for not being smart enough. I think at the end of four years Americans will realize that Obama is really no smarter than she. After all, nobody at his prep school will even vouch that he was academically in the top half of his class (My college roommate who was in his class at Punahou doesn't remember him even vaguely). By the way, it's pure Sarah that she can't fake caring about a few dumb turkeys being killed; she's a moose hunter after all. I bet she doesn't lose sleep over death row inmates or jihadists killed in Pakistan, either.

Posted by: greg3 | November 21, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

The traditional Republicans are now Independents or Democrats. Bobby Jindal? I don't think so - look at

I agree with 'terencebrennan' that Bloomberg and Powell are what used to be seen as embodying Republican values and principles. Now they're closer to Democrats. The problem with what's left of the Republicans is they want a rightwing theocracy, run by Limbaugh/Palin/O'Reilly/Hannity/Coulter. They push hate, fear, screaming and bullying - their idea of a political platform. They no longer believe in education, hard work and self-control. None of them are behaving like Christians, even though that's what they're claiming to be. They're spoiled, greedy, under-educated brats.

Who needs people like that running the country? They've been given more than enough chances to straighten out, and they've ignored every single one, driving this country deeper and deeper into the hole it's now in. Do you really think voters are going to say "Com back, all is forgiven"?! They'll be lucky if they aren't tarred, feathered and run out on a rail. Which is what they deserve.

Posted by: TomJx | November 21, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Please don't forget many Repulicans are tired and growing impatient with the old line wise ones of the party that have been blowing it over and over and over again.

Posted by: dherold3 | November 21, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Here we go again. Total elite mentality. Here's another liberal who wants to pick our leaders for us, just like they picked John McCain for us. Sorry, but some of us conservatives actualy have a brain, can read a ballot, and make our own choices. the problem with the Repulican Party is it is too much like the liberal democratic Party(or do you call yourselves progressives now, I'm never quite sure). If we never win another election, so be it. But I'm not really worried. King Obama will start flip flopping on his campaign promises soon enough and there will be plenty of us conservatives out there to pickup the pieces again. Have fun.

Posted by: redog | November 21, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

PatrickNYC1: Does your boss know you are wasting time on the job surfing the web? Aren't things bad enough without you losing your job?

Posted by: greg3 | November 21, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

The reason Sarah Palin is lightly regarded by the opinion leaders and all within the established GOP, is that she is not a beltway politician and part of their political community. Sarah is a Conservative who still brings fear to those who voted for Obama. Look to the feedback on all of the blogs related to our "2012 Draft Sarah Comittee".

There are millions of everyday Conservatives who are pulling together a grass roots effort to keep Sarah in the limelight and to encourage her to run in 2012. Also these everyday Conservatives will be organized to help Conservatives win seats in the 2010 elections. We can thank Sarah for that.

Please visit

David L. Kelly
2012 Draft Sarah Committee

Posted by: 2012DraftSarahCommittee | November 21, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

You GUYS still don't get it. My top ten list:

10. Palin
9. Palin
8. Palin
7. Palin
6. Palin
5. Palin
4. Palin
3. Palin
2. Palin
1. Palin

Some people TALK, others DO. I'll take a DO-er over a talker any day. (And by the way, the last vestige of DISCRIMINATION in this country is not against race or sexual orientation---it is against middle-aged WOMEN.) Look for a lot more blogging from us in 2012 because we're FED UP.

Posted by: archimother | November 21, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Chris - pardon my French, but the Republican "Establishment" since Reagan left office have completely screwed the Republican Party by drifting away from our Conservative roots. The new leadership will not emanate from nor will they be beholding to the "Establishment". The new leadership will come from the ranks of doers such as Governors, not chair warmers from Congressional ranks. The appeal of Governor Palin amongst the voters is a perfect example of the populace's desire for an accomplished, common sensed, non-establishment conservative.

Posted by: HamiltonL1 | November 21, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: PatrickNYC1 | November 21, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

I find it funny that this obvious liberal staff writer is discounting Palin already. what he don't get is the fact that people like her because she is not part of the washington insiders club. they are truely wooried that she is even in the picture. although she is not my pick. Romney was, but if he is such an expert on the economy why did he not advise Mccain better ? and why is he calling for the auto companies to go bankrupt and screw a million retiries out of their pensions? if it was his pension on the line and he lost all his savings from the stock market I guarenty he would see it differantly. the guy they did not mention is the best of all Paul D Ryan he is going to be a star

Posted by: jayman45 | November 21, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

For Prop 8 in CA, the difference between proponents and opponents was approximately the same as the difference that BO beat McCain. In the former case it is called by the libs a “narrow” margin. In the latter case it is called by libs a “mandate” or a “landslide”. It’s obvious that the death of the GOP is greatly exaggerated.

Posted by: leapin | November 21, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

The Blue State/Red State dichotomy will soon become an obsolete way to look at US politics. The Democratic Party is unstable; it's trying to appease too many conflicting interests. I believe new parties will emerge at the expense of both Reds and Blues. Three or four party politics will emerge with rapidly shifting coalitions; this is far superior to legislators constantly having to eat a sh*t sandwich to get their own pet issues addressed later on down the road. There are just too many issues important to the electorate, like immigration restriction, population reduction, human capital improvement, infrastructure development, and re-industrialization, that neither of the existing dominant parties honestly addresses.

Posted by: greg3 | November 21, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Chris how can anyone count out Sarah after her great job yesterday when she gave a 'pardon' to a turkey, while the guy over her right is seen killing them in the large funnel thing. Too funny.

Posted by: PatrickNYC1 | November 21, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Wow, this Line sure shook some nuts out the trees - from both sides!

Congratulations, Chris, on not including either Palin or Huckabee. If either of those two end up party leaders, they'll truly spend the proverbial 40 years wandering in the desert.

You can now add helping the auto industry to Romney's list of flip-flops. This means he can only be a serious contender if the Republican can somehow manage an electoral college victory without PA, OH, IN MI, IL, WI, and MO. Good luck with that - Those states, together with the west coast and northeast total 277 electoral votes.

Posted by: wmw4 | November 21, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

PrestoPundit, What makes you think that the Post or Chris for that matter will still be here after 2 years?

Posted by: capnjack | November 21, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Guys, don't you get it? The GOP is DEAD!

One look at the numbers from 1992 through 2008 demonstrates that the GOP has increased in votes only in 4 of the poorest states in the mid-South, meaning that the GOP is less than a REGIONAL political party, NOT a "national" one.

There is a lag time between those GOP members who remain elected (like 6-year termed senators) and the REALITY of continued diminished numbers.

One look at the Presidential Election map demonstrates BLUE from coast to coast.

The GOP is DEAD! Good riddance to its $10 Trillion National DEBT-causing; its attack against the environment; its attack against working people; its lies about WMD's to spend Trillions on bogus wars while killing 5,000 of our best young people in the military; while squandering this nation's future! And, the Washington Post's writer is talking about the GOP's future? Who IS he kidding?

Posted by: gglenc

-- I recall the words of Mark Twain ...

Posted by: enaughton27 | November 21, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Who is this lisping sissy lib to pick our candidates for us? If Sarah Palin is not an option, why did they spend a 24/7 campaign to destroy her on the lib media? Did any of the so-called chosen contenders get on tenth of that attention? I'd rather have her than Huckabee, Sandford, Barbour, Cantor or Jindal. The Washington Post and Chris Cillizza has been in on the OBAMA SUCKFEST so I wish he'd keep his attention on the dumocrap party. Our party will be fine and to the "centrist" I'd like to say, we just tried that with McCain and half of the Republicans stayed on. If we wanted a democrat light, we'd vote for a democrap. After 4/8 years of gays, abortions, criminals and terrorists sympathizers, taxes, affirmative actions, the fairness doctrine, liberal judges, xxx-ing Christmas, the pledge of alliigance and boys scouts, this country will be sick of them. We are not San Francisco.

Posted by: daisymae1 | November 21, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

In my opinion, Jindal will be a player during the next few years, but if he wants a realistic shot at the Presidency, he should wait until 2016. Unless Obama ends up making some huge mistakes that seriously tarnish his image, I don't imagine that he'll lose in 2012. But if Jindal can keep doing well, keeping himself in the mix, and growing in knowledge and political stature, I could see him making a lot of noise in 2016.

As for 2012, I think that the GOP will send someone to bat who can energize the base and help them win back seats in the House and Senate. I think Huckabee would be ideal for this position. Republicans could charge him with not only campaigning for himself, but speaking on the behalf of other Conservatives running for office. I still believe Obama win win re-election, but a presence like Huckabee on the campaign trail might help get the GOP some congressional power back.

Posted by: cothguy | November 21, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

In other words, 10 conservatives for Chris and the Post to smear and destory in the next 2 years ..

Posted by: PrestoPundit | November 21, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Guys, don't you get it? The GOP is DEAD!

One look at the numbers from 1992 through 2008 demonstrates that the GOP has increased in votes only in 4 of the poorest states in the mid-South, meaning that the GOP is less than a REGIONAL political party, NOT a "national" one.

There is a lag time between those GOP members who remain elected (like 6-year termed senators) and the REALITY of continued diminished numbers.

One look at the Presidential Election map demonstrates BLUE from coast to coast.

The GOP is DEAD! Good riddance to its $10 Trillion National DEBT-causing; its attack against the environment; its attack against working people; its lies about WMD's to spend Trillions on bogus wars while killing 5,000 of our best young people in the military; while squandering this nation's future! And, the Washington Post's writer is talking about the GOP's future? Who IS he kidding?

Posted by: gglenc | November 21, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

I couldn't figure out, as a sensible well educated Republican, who would still be carrying water for the far right after we got our chops busted. But here they are just a few weeks after our crushing humiliation and the looney's who grabbed the steering wheel in 2000 are bloviating about how smart Sarah is and how noble Newt is. Non-sense. Bloomberg or Powell should have been our standard bearer. We do not need single issue nut cakes in power.


Posted by: terrencebrennan | November 21, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Ditto on Paul Ryan. A future speaker--maybe.

Posted by: RobbyS | November 21, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

McCarthy was right. In fact the Venona releases showed 350 names. Far more than his 75 names. Now we have elected a terrorist sympathizer over an American War Hero. Shame on America.

Posted by: dencal26 | November 21, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

One thing we do have in common with people after November, 1932: We haven't a clue how the President -elect will govern. FDR campaigned as a conservative Democrat.

Posted by: RobbyS | November 21, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

There is nothing wrong with the Republican Brand. The Dems won with a candidate who adopted TAX CUTS as his primary issue.In fact the only Dems who have won Presidential Elections in 28 Years both offered TAX CUTS as a lead. They can't really win as Liberals.

Posted by: dencal26 | November 21, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

The real Sleeper for beyond 2012 is Chris Christie the US Attorney in New Jersey who has locked up more corrupt NJ DEMS than ever.

Posted by: dencal26 | November 21, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

What about Rep. Paul Ryan? He is definitely one of the House leaders and a recent focus in the WSJ highlighted his fiscal policies that should be considered and facilitated. As a fellow Wisconsinite, I have ALWAYS found Paul Ryan to be very clear in letting the voter know the positives and negatives of Congressional issues and his standing on these issues. Inherent in his descriptions are his ethics and values that hold him in good standing as a present and future leader in the Republican Party.

Posted by: bethmack | November 21, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Four years ago the Democrat list would probably have been:
Hillary Clinton
John Edwards
Tom Daschle
Ed Rendell
Bill Richardson
Mike Bloomberg
Colin Powell

Ya think anyone knew about Barack Obama? That's how clueless some lists can be.

Posted by: gwalter1 | November 21, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse


Eric Canter is just an embarrassment. And he is not solely an embarrassment to his party either, but to our whole system government.

So he decided he would solicit money from just about everyone (no matter how shady) and he is consistently open to traded his votes around in the house, so it is not a surprise that he would rise quickly in position under the current party leadership. But could he pass a high school equivalency exam, well that would be a no.

We are looking for leaders of a political party, not leaders of the Special Olympics

Posted by: Snow | November 21, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse


Eric Canter is just an embarrassment. And he is not solely an embarrassment to his party either, but to our whole system government.

So he decided he would solicit money from just about everyone (no matter how shady) and he is consistently open to traded his votes around in the house, so it is not a surprise that he would rise quickly the party leadership “positions”. But could he pass a high school equivalency exam, well that would be a no.

We are looking for leaders of a political party, not leaders of the Special Olympics.

Posted by: Snow | November 21, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

"I don't recall democrats complaining about the Bush economy until two years ago..."

Does that mean you were an avid admirer of Bill Clinton for his spectacular stewardship of the economy?

Posted by: ebabin | November 21, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Dear Mr. Fix:

You forgot to mention Kevin McCarthy (R-CA22), a male Sarah Palin if there ever was one. Perfect recital of GOoPer talking points but nary an original thought.

Posted by: michael_ds | November 21, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Shrink 2 and NYC Fugitive... The Republicans are NOT the party with a KKK member sitting in the Senate (Byrd),
The Republicans DON'T have a titular head who referred to NYC as "Hymieton"
(J. Jackson) and the Republicans are the party that made possible the Civil Rights act of '64... because Southern Democrats
(such as Al Gore's Dad) did not support it.
Your party has a shameful record you're hoping we'll forget. No such luck.
Bush's Supreme Court and Cabinet appointments shame prior administrations.

Screw your hateful, but mainly inaccurate,

Posted by: GiftoftheMaji | November 21, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Newt, along with Tom Delay, Dick Armey, and the rantings and propagandizing of Rush Limbaugh are what made me leave the Republican party. It takes more than being angry with "liberals" to govern effectively, as George Dumbya Hoover has shown us! Give me an Eisenhower conservative, not all these Joe McCarthy retreads, or you can forget about my vote on any level...

Posted by: squirebass | November 21, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse

John Thune, Haley Barbour, and Mark Sanford are the only semi-serious people on your list, the other choices are a complete joke.

The rest of your list is pretty much a who’s who for the biggest losers on the political scene. These lightweight clones could not lead their way out of wet paper bag.

Posted by: Snow | November 21, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

My early prediction is Gingrich in 2012. Lots of baggage, but bright, articulate with conservative credentials. Jindal for VP.

As a Republican, my hope was that Stevens would hang on, then resign, and Sarah Palin would win the seat in the special election required, I understand, by law in Alaska.. She needs to come to Washington, be low key, and build credibility for knowledge, experience and hard work in some policy areas. She’ll only be 52 in 2016, and 56 in 2020. In the meantime, she can build support by campaigning for other Republicans around the country. She needs to think long term.

Posted by: tartanmarine | November 21, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

"right now we are sliding into a Great Depression, brought on by Republican "

What a ridiculous statement. I don't recall democrats complaining about the Bush economy until two years ago, when democrats gained control of congress.

Posted by: Sigmonde | November 21, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Governor Crist of Florida is a possible. Huckabee, Jindal, Romney, Sanford are possibles. I prefer Romney and Sen John Thune. Obama has already crashed initiating a third drama Clinton term while he plays basketball and takes it easy. Mombassa, Kenya's pride and joy has been kidnapped by the Clintonista pirates who are demanding a big ransom to pay their campaign debts.

Posted by: mascmen7 | November 21, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Pepper88. Some of us DO care what happens to the Republicans. While Democrats are busy congratulating themselves on how well they know those of us non-Democrats they completely fail to realize that they just might not know us as well as they think they do. Not all of us, in fact most of the people I know, are more centrists than anything else. We do not appreciate the rabid, right wing of the party any more than we appreciate the give-away-the-farm, knee jerk liberal left. Just so you know, there are many of us outside the Starbuck circuit who try to stay up to date on the issues and who are looking for practical solutions from level headed and rational leaders. My personal opinion is that the tilt will go too far left and then begin to tilt back. If we can keep it in the neutral zone we'll have a much better shot at addressing and solving the many problems we face. And for starters, we could all try to be a little less insulting to those who do not share our views.

Posted by: Lilycat1 | November 21, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse


how many different color pills do you take to see the world in that prism of hate, envy and despair?

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 21, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

"JEP7, don't forget Senator Craig."
Add Duke Cunningham and we have an even dozen.

Posted by: JEP7 | November 21, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Has "The Fix" forgotten Newt Gingrich?

Posted by: tskm | November 21, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

1. The conservative movement does not need rebranding. Republicans just need to stand up and tell people what we believe. The problem with the Bush Admin. is he has not communicated his ideas well enough. He has been in hiding when we have needed a leader. That is why his rating is so low. He lost his moxy now our party is preceived to have lost its way.

2. We need to start talking about our ideas about health care, the economy and most importantly education. The hypocracy of the Obama's will be evident when they tell the poor inner city families who do not have the same chances in life, "We are sending our kids to private schools where they will have a better chance at success."

3. The Republicans need to stay above the garbage the left wing of this county is trying to make us believe is reality. Obama is not going to win re-election. The next candidate for president from the GOP will be able to criticize Obama without being labled a racist. McCain, bless his soul, did not want to appear as a racist so he did not criticize his character or policies as hard as he should have. He was telling us to stand and fight with him but he was not fighting.

4. Obama is already starting to implode. He has angered the far left and will continue to do so until 2010. It is within his best interest and the best interest of the dems to be centrist until the 2010 election so that the republicans do not win the house and senate back in a landslide. If the GOP wins both back he will be forced to be in the center for the final two years of his term as well. If the GOP does not win the house and senate back only God can help us.

It is sad to me that Obama won the Presidency based up the color of his skin and not the content of his character. Dr. King, I am sorry your vision became distorted.

Posted by: leftcoastconservative | November 21, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Once again a media organization so full of hot air to tell us what to think. You and the Washington Post/Joke are pathetic.

Posted by: muneshadowe | November 21, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

CC - It won't matter who leads. It will be exact opposite of what happened this election. It was anti-Bush fever,

Next time around, the Libs in congress will have impressed the nation with thier ineptitude and communist approaches. the economy will have gotten worse after their meddling. Obama will have all his empty promises unfullfilled, as is the Lib tradition. all the sinister friends and cockroaches will have reemerged from the shadows and Mickey mouse could get elected as long as he doesn't haver a D next to his name. the Libs talk a good game but the facts always intrude and spoil the show.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 21, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

This article is another example of the establishment media ignoring Ron Paul. If there was anything learned from the Republican debates it is Ron Paul was the only one who understood economics. When he spoke of the dangers of the Fed "printing money out of thin air" Giulliani, Romney, and McCain all gave their best "look at the crazy guy" faces. We now see that Ron was right.

Ron Paul 2012 Hope for America

Posted by: truerepublican | November 21, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand why the Republican party continues to ignore one of its greatest assets - Christine Todd Whitman

Posted by: hmfanon1 | November 21, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

The first two people you mention---as notable for not being on the list--identifies the exact problem I have with the Republican party.

Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee are exactly the kind of people I respect. And yet they are not even considered in the list.

Posted by: dwbrown77 | November 21, 2008 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Cantor is an empty suit. I have yet to see anything he has been responsible for, whether for his district, his state, or the country. The most recent list of his "accomplishments" showed that he had proposed no legislation, had opposed most bills up for debate, and on important issues said they needed to be "studied."

Jindal may well self-destruct as a candidate for higher office once more of his views such as support for teaching so-called intelligent design in public schools and active anti-environmental laws become known.

Posted by: lpryluck1 | November 21, 2008 12:04 PM | Report abuse

I could not agree more with the comments regarding Newt. He is the smartest, and best positioned Republican to lead us from obscurity to prominence. If you remember what happened to Newt in the nineties is that he didn't follow his p's and q's on the personal homefront scene and was driven from the House.
The press went after him like they went after Bork and Palin. He is best known by his enemies... the mainstream media and ALL the liberals because he is the biggest threat their dominance and the dominance of the liberals in the places of power within Washington. The power of ideas... Not just empty and cleverly designed rhetoric...
What a surprise... the Post didn't list him in the top ten...

Posted by: ocfrick | November 21, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

' Is it time that conservatives do the same by singling out a liberal to make into the evil symbol?'

that's all your party ever does, moron.

'The Democrats know Palin is a threat and they've had their friends, in the media, try to take her out.'

another genius. hey, this is your problem, republicans. you are not very bright. you listen to lunatics. you are deluded. you wouldn't know reality if it wiped out your entire retirement account. which it is going to do.

right now we are sliding into a Great Depression, brought on by Republican deregulation, ideology, incompetence and malfeasance. tens of thousands will lose your jobs, their homes, their savings.

how fast do you think they are going to forget this, my friends? i'm sure the delusional will find a way to blame democrats. they always do. but as was proved by this election, they are now a minority and republicans will be wandering in the wilderness for a long time now... this is a historic meltdown, the worst is yet to come and it won't be over anytime soon.

Posted by: drindl | November 21, 2008 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Why would ANYONE discuss the future of the Republican party on a WASHINGTON POST blog? This is the rag that recently admitted it spins the news to get liberals elected. Forget the's for the far left. The moronic, hateful posts on this page speak for themselves.

Posted by: cmail54 | November 21, 2008 11:55 AM | Report abuse

There is only one person who can lead the country out of this mess, with the real intellect and the grasp of every thing it will take to bring the libs to there knees.
And there is no surprise here it is NEWT,and Nemt likes Palin so what more is there for a winning team.

Posted by: pomoceva | November 21, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

JEP7, don't forget Senator Craig.

Exhibit A for the old Republican base is Candyzky.

There is no new Republican base and it is going to be along time in the making; like I said: predict 16 years until the two party system is competitive at the national level

Posted by: shrink2 | November 21, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

You forgot Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.

Romney will never be elected- American's think he belongs to a crazy church and they don't elect people who spent 20 years in a crazy church.

Oh wait....

Posted by: rightPOV | November 21, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

candysky -- i am sure we are all hoping that when the Rapture comes, they will take you first.

A great many of the R '10' I would watch mainly to keep them from stealing my wallet.

Here's a nice interview with Palin, featuring her sidekick, Joe the Turkey Snuffer.


Posted by: drindl | November 21, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

A lot can happen in the next four years and if this economy does not show much improvement, Obama administration will likely be compared to the Carter years....not good.

Right now my money in on Jindal....he is Obama's match in every, diversity, popularity within his party, and probably a better track record in his short career.

Posted by: ca67klein | November 21, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

It's amazing how the Democrats and liberals feel they have this all figured out. The fact that Newt isn't on the list is amazing. He's still the smartest guy in the room and he has a plan, the question is does he want it?

The Democrats know Palin is a threat and they've had their friends, in the media, try to take her out. Had McCain had better people running his campaign, the MSM would have had a lot harder time with her than they did.

The solution, for Republicans, is simple, go back to conservative values and don't try to outdemocrat the Democrats, it can't be done. The Democrats are going to do enough damage, in the next 2 years, where a conservative agenda will be much easier to sell. Let's face it, we really haven't had one for 8 years.

Posted by: bflat879 | November 21, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

It is very interesting to read the comments most of which continue the left leaning deriding and ridiculing of individuals that are conservative. They found out years ago that they could make Newt into THE symbol for the GOP and then made him everything bad in our political system. The result was that anything good was then overlaid by the picture/characture of Newt, hence it was bad. Now President Bush is the new Newt and Governor Palin is right there with Bush as dumb, not serious, silly, out of touch, etc, etc,. I can read in the comments that this same strategy is already started on the ones that might represent good conservative choices. Is it time that conservatives do the same by singling out a liberal to make into the evil symbol? It might be but then you have the MSM that won't go along with this ploy if it is against a liberal. This is all the more reason to reinstate the "fairness" doctrine. A means of furthering the liberal use of symbolizing a conservative as bad and not allowing the same on the liberal side.

Posted by: pardonme | November 21, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

How quickly the names have changed, here's the list your would have been posing if not for The Blogs and the internet...
Ten Republicans to remember;
George Allen
Bill Frist
Rick Santorum
Mark Foley
Denny Hastert
Trent Lott
Pete Domineci
Ted Stevens
Bob Ney
John Doolittle

How many of those on your new list, Chris, will eventually join this one?

Posted by: JEP7 | November 21, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

I was surprised you left 'ole Newt off this list because it is apparent he plans to have a say about the GOP in 2012. But he isn't a new face either so I guess you could plug him in with Palin and Huck too.

Posted by: claffiteau | November 21, 2008 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Finally, somebody noticed what I've been thinking ever since the "Sarah Palin in 2012" bandwagon started puttering forward. Alaska is...way up there! She can't be an effective governor and do the Republican circuit training necessary to keep her name in the hat at the same time. Her best chance to stay viable ended when Ted Steven's defeat prevented her from naming herself to his seat. It's simple geography; if she can't find a gig that keeps her in Washington, her standing and reputation in 2012 will be exactly what it is now.

Posted by: bidalah | November 21, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

If the GOP has to wait for the likes of John Boehner to fade away, they will not recover from the current debacle for a long d**n time.
Newt and Armey left the party if good shape but in bad hands.
Hastert and Boehner et al have disgraced conservativism and ruined the party.

Posted by: Fleur1 | November 21, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

The Republicans don't have a "perception" problem. They have a "reality" problem. There are many reasons why the Republican Party is now decidedly the minority party in the U.S. One of the big reasons is that there are millions and millions of moderate independent voters who are VERY uncomfortable with the idea of being affiliated with a virtually all-white party. And it's not just about the lack of color in their party. The Republicans are openly hostile toward people of color (primarily Latinos and African-Americans). Bobby Jindal doesn't solve that problem any more than Condi Rice or Colin Powell could before him. It's about POLICIES, not tokens.

Posted by: fugitivenyc | November 21, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

I say bring on Boss Hog, Fog Horn, Leg horn Confederate flag lapel pin wearing Gov. Barbour in 2012. Obama would win 40 states.

BTW Could you imagine a German elected official wearing a Nazi pin?

Posted by: MerrillFrank | November 21, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse


Mike Huckabee not on a list? He's a rational fiscal conservative with libertarian social values and not a racist bone in his body -- yet he still can deliver the hard-right GOP base. What's not to like?

Even his TV show is appealing to centrists and tolerable, even enjoyable, to some progressives. And he plays the electric bass, remember? He gets the McCartney-Will Lee vote hands-on.

I think you overplay Bobby Jindal. Too many racial purists in the GOP base for him to rise too far. Same goes for Cantor. He's singing in the wrong church. And he's a social Luddite.

Pawlenty, Huntsman, yes. Romney, not so much, for the reasons you stated.

And yes, Sarah Palin is yesterday's joke. It was her political career that was in that turkey neck chopper yesterday.


Posted by: scrivener50 | November 21, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Republicans failed their base and this country. Now we have Obama "Change that Stinks." Obama is going to be the man of perdition. It has been written that a leader will broker a peace deal for Israel, which will last 3 1/2 years, then all H E L L (o) will break out. I'm trying to warn you folks who have been fooled. There will be a deep recession/depression and the man-made messiah (little m) will assume the mantle of finding prosperity for all, but for a short time only. Then after the 3 1/2 years, persecution and destruction to all christians and jews. This is what Obama will do. Many of us will not face this, but those of you will, you probably voted for Obama.

Posted by: candyzky | November 21, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

This is an easy one. The next GOP nominee for President will be oldest sitting U.S. Senator, because "IT'S MY TURN"

Too bad Ted Stevens lost, so the next Republican nominee will be.....drumroll please......

Richard Lugar from Indiana. He will be 80 years old on election day November 2012.

Orin Hatch from Utah is a close second. He has the same seniority as Lugar, but will ONLY be 78 on election day 2012.

Posted by: Digital_Voter | November 21, 2008 11:14 AM | Report abuse

McDonnell? When someone becomes a joke (Quayle, Palin..), they lose political credibility. McDonnell, following one of his typical homophobic rants, was asked by a reporter if he had ever personally engaged in sodomy. "Yes", "No" or "none of your business" would have been acceptable answers. McDonnell, however, replied "I don't recall".

Really? Think about that...

He'll be Kilgored a year from now.

Posted by: mts2 | November 21, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

If you throw in Palin, it's kind of like Snow White and the 10 dwarfs.

Posted by: wpost4112 | November 21, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

(1) The Republican base celebrates its ignorance and bigotry (the appeal of Sarah Palin).

(2) With the internet eclipsing Faux News, lying to people is no longer sustainable. Everything is transparent.

(3) It will be a long, long time before people forget the pain of the Bush/Cheney wars and the associated economic disaster.

Because of this the Republicans will need to establish themselves as a party that would not be recognized today before they achieve success on the national stage. By then, the "fresh faces" on this list will be party hacks.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 21, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

The Republicans will splinter off into two parties, the religous sect and and the fiscal sect. Right now they are a two-headed beast fighting itself. Republicans keep saying they have to go back to the conservative principles but why would Americans believe what they say when they preached fiscal responsiblity, smaller government, individual rights and a modest foreign policy and gave America just the opposite? Americans are paying today for their mismanagement, there is no reason to think people that lost most of their savings will believe the snake-oil salesmen riding an elephant that sold them the last big ticket war and the stockmarket crash that took this country into financial ruins. The Republican Party as it stands to day is a rural, white man party and that is a recipe for continued failure.

Posted by: info4 | November 21, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Barbour has knowledge, but not likeability
I can not imagine Barbour debating Obama.
It would be like watching a cartoon of
Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd, Barbour being,
Fudd, and /or Leghorn P. Leghorn the blow hard rooster. Think about it? Lets take a few weeks and enjoy the civility.

Posted by: hcald | November 21, 2008 10:55 AM | Report abuse

This list is wonderful news for Democrats. The Republicans seem to be in a period you might call the Twilight of the Odds. The long night is descending and all the Republicans can offer are the empty slogans of the past.

Posted by: lowercaselarry | November 21, 2008 10:43 AM | Report abuse

RickJ writes
"my point is that it will be difficult for anyone on that list to keep the existing base happy (ie, focusing on the social and religious issues) while trying to expand to a more moderate position.... I don't see this as an easy taks without some serious infighting"

I agree. Their easiest path back into power is if the Dems screw up and go on a tax and spend binge, as lorddunsmore predicts (below). Even then, if Dem taxing & spending is improving peoples' lives, there won't be an opening for GOP resurgence. If the GOP wants to be proactive about growing at the fed level, they will have to minimize the influence of the social cons in the party. US demographic changes are exacerbating the problem the GOP faces; they need to expand the growth of the party & start appealing to 1) youth, 2) non-whites and most importantly, 3) moderates. If they don't do that, time & life expectancy will keep whittling away at the party ranks.

Posted by: bsimon1 | November 21, 2008 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Both Rick Perry and John Hoeven have enough electability horsepower to displace some of those on the list, maybe Romney, Barbour or Sanford. Luis Fortuño is young, appealing and maybe ought to think about moving here from Puerto Rico if he wants to move up. The Obama phenom has created the expectation that the party will find a fresh face, so if it's yesterday's GOP candidate, don't expect much.

Posted by: glsouth | November 21, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse


Thanks. I understand that. I guess my point is that it will be difficult for anyone on that list to keep the existing base happy (ie, focusing on the social and religious issues) while trying to expand to a more moderate position.... I don't see this as an easy taks without some serious infighting

Posted by: RickJ | November 21, 2008 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Where's Charlie Crist?! You mention Jon Huntsman and Bobby Jindal and yet not the fresh-faced, moderate leaning governor of Florida?! Actually Chris, I trust your views alot, so really i am very itnerested to know why he isnt on the list...because U agree very much that Palin and Huckabee shouldnt be on it yet...but why not Charlie?

Posted by: jspeed85 | November 21, 2008 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Smaller government, lower taxes and the Bill of Rights plays well at the local level, where the GOP finds its core strength. The Dems may be on top now, but with the old GOP guard giving way to younger, local talent, standby after the Dems get done taxing and spending again.

Posted by: lorddunsmore | November 21, 2008 9:58 AM | Report abuse

RickJ writes
"The larger issue? The 'elephant' in the room is the fact that the Republican brand is damaged and tired and too tied to social and religious issues that the public is weary/wary of. Until Republicans can successfully rebrand themselves and actually embody their slogans ('big tent' anyone?), the rebuilding will be difficult."

Rick, the analysis is in going through the list proposed by The Fix and see who can rebrand the GOP effectively. The Governors have more opportunity, based on the nature of their jobs, vs a guy like Thune who's limited to either fighting or compromising with Dems in congress.

Posted by: bsimon1 | November 21, 2008 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Come on, please, someone mention Michael Steele... so I can have a good laugh to start off the weekend.

Posted by: | November 21, 2008 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I think Pawlenty and Jindal will be in the inner circle...Palin is going to be more of a joke in 4 years than she is now.

The country learned a lesson over the last 8 years...

one that Jesus learned...

false profits.

the right wing conservative agenda is false profits... right and wrong has to do with trying to be happy and trying not to hurt other people...

that is supreme to any religion worth it's salt...too bad the right wing has turned that into self empowerment for themselves.

Posted by: klondike2 | November 21, 2008 9:47 AM | Report abuse

kjff writes
"you gotta add Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty to the list .No, this is not home town boosterism... he's youthful and telegenic, has a good message (time to appeal to the Sam's Club Republicans), is a tireless worker and worked hard for McCain this past year."

I would put Pawlenty on the list, but he lacks the 'it' factor that leads to the presidency, or vice presidency. Gov Pawlenty's nice guy persona might get him into a cabinet position if the GOP can retake the white house, but I don't see him winning the nomination. He just doesn't have the kind of charisma that inspires people to gather behind him and say "I'll go wherever he leads."

Posted by: bsimon1 | November 21, 2008 9:41 AM | Report abuse

I would add Jeb Bush to the list. I know the Bush name is like Mudd right now, BUT four years is a long time. Jeb Bush was extremely popular in Florida, and I think he will have an impact on 2012.

Posted by: jpark4 | November 21, 2008 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Ever since Gordon Smith's son killed himself, Gordon Smith became a Democrat in all but name. And still he could not beat the idiot candidate Jeff Merkley, a guy with nothing to offer Oregon apart from his party affiliation.

No the Republicans are in far more trouble than they are even now willing to admit. Sorry to say, but the voters who still support Republicans see Sarah Palin as the brains of the operation.

My Line: Republicans lost in the woods for 16 years.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 21, 2008 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Good list CC. I would move Barbour way up the list for several reasons though:

a. He is very well-connected on the national level.

b. Governors are probably the best way out of the wilderness for the GOP, I agree.

c. He is conservative and pragmatic, a combo which is rare in today's GOP yet so necessary to showing Amiericans that they have some sort of vision for the future. McCain lacked this vision, and it hurt him badly.

d. Maybe most importantly, he is a genuinely likeable fellow who moderates could embrace. Remember the "who would you rather have a beer with" litmus test? Well, old Haley passes that one with flying colors!

Posted by: Jimibristol | November 21, 2008 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Two comments -

Romney an expert on the economy? Come on. Who says? Where's the evidence? Being more knowledgeable than George Bush and John McCain doesn't make you an expert. And what about his latest flip-flop on Detroit. First he panders to the auto industry in the primaries and now he says let Detroit go belly up.

Second, you gotta add Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty to the list .No, this is not home town boosterism. I've never voted for him and won't (wrong party) but he's youthful and telegenic, has a good message (time to appeal to the Sam's Club Republicans), is a tireless worker and worked hard for McCain this past year.

Posted by: kjff | November 21, 2008 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Romney is a joke. He served one term as governor of Massachusetts, 2002-2006. He wasn't a very successful governor, and his chosen successor lost the 2006 election in a landslide. He ran a decent but uninspiring campaign this year, mostly fueled by his own money, and lost by a large margin.

There's no reason to think Romney will be more successful in 2012 than he was in 2008. He'll be 4 years further from his single term in elective office, without any significant accomplishments in the meantime. And he'll be competing against new candidates with more impressive and more recent accomplishments. Romney had one chance to be the nominee, and he lost it. Game over.

Posted by: Blarg | November 21, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Hey Fix,
Nobody cares who's next for the Republicans. Everyone I talk to at Starbucks, the Office and the gym hopes they stay out of power for at least 16 years. In the past 28 years of the Republican/Conservative rule, the United States has gone from the leading industrial country in the world with well regulated markets to a country tetering on bankruptcy. On their watch the United States went from a nation of savers to a nation of debtors. The one bright spot was the Clinton Administration which checked the ruinous policies of the Republicans and Conservatives. Once the autocrat George Bush was installed with his rubber stamp Congress, things quickly went to H*** in a handbasket. The autocrat has vetoed every good thing to come out of the Congress in the last two years and then lied to and manipulated that same Congress to get them to bail out Secreatry Paulson's friends on Wall Street. All we hear about is how it would have been "much worse" really? The Dow is on track to have lost 50% of its value probably by next week--meanwhile, the Wall Streeters who the Republicans protected are riding their golden parachutes to every spa they can find. Prosperity is a good thing when it comes the right way--but ill gotten gains (including "winning" elections with smear and fear) have a way of ending badly.

That is probably why the Republican brand is in the trash as Gallup notes:

"PRINCETON, NJ -- The Republican Party's image has gone from bad to worse over the past month, as only 34% of Americans in a Nov. 13-16 Gallup Poll say they have a favorable view of the party, down from 40% in mid-October. The 61% now holding an unfavorable view of the GOP is the highest Gallup has recorded for that party since the measure was established in 1992."

My question is what Starbucks do you go to and where is your gym that so many of the 34% hang out there so often?

Posted by: Pepper88 | November 21, 2008 9:00 AM | Report abuse

Let us be very clear that many of them that you list are the ones that were and still are preaching their dogma of right and wrong ...and scaring people about stupid social issues while our country was driving full speed over a cliff...

this is exactly the distracting and socially serving issues that Gingrich and Foxnews lead us down and took our eye off the road.

young America is getting smarter than that...

and reinvesting in the REAL "right and wrong" not the values that are pushed for a gorup of people's self empowerment over others.

Posted by: klondike2 | November 21, 2008 8:39 AM | Report abuse

If they want to survive...or even lead a party successfully

they have to become a lot more like Ron Paul and a lot less like Palin, Huckabee and Cantor.

Talk about a bunch of people the right wing nut jobs like...but that rub the rest of America WAY the wrong way...

there is a new generation coming up whose values are based much more on right and wrong... not just some weird dogma.

Posted by: klondike2 | November 21, 2008 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Mark Sanford is NOT a moderate reformer by any stretch of the imagination. I live in SC, am a life-long Republican, and voted against him in the last gubernatorial election here. He does have some good ideas about restructuring state government here, but he's penny wise and pound foolish in many ways. Granted, many of the problems here stem from the fact that the legislature controls this state, but Sanford has been singularly inept in trying to deal with it.

Posted by: chuffman1 | November 21, 2008 8:24 AM | Report abuse

I would certainly add Gingrich to the list as he'll offer his opinion whether it's wanted or not.

The larger issue? The 'elephant' in the room is the fact that the Republican brand is damaged and tired and too tied to social and religious issues that the public is weary/wary of. Until Republicans can successfully rebrand themselves and actually embody their slogans ('big tent' anyone?), the rebuilding will be difficult.

Posted by: RickJ | November 21, 2008 7:06 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company