There is a reason that the United Automobile Workers and its troops are urging its Michigan members to vote Tuesday in the crossover Michigan primary, and to cast their vote not for Barack Obama, but for Rick Santorum. They understand, as evidently many conservatives and Republicans do not comprehend, that Santorum as the Republican nominee would be nothing but a wonderful gift for the Democratic Party.I think a similar statement can be made about voting for Ron Paul, albeit for different reasons.
In an election year in which by all measurable standards Barack Obama should be toast, and when his major policy “achievement” of ObamaCare is detested by the public in all the polls, he is ahead in the same polls when pitted against any of the current crop of Republican candidates and gaining strength with every passing day. And even with rising gas prices — which of course will fall by November — and high unemployment, it is more than likely that the current occupant of the White House will indeed have a second term in office. If Rick Santorum is the nominee, it is a certainty that Obama will win.
The debate with a Santorum candidacy would focus on his social views, and be about contraception, Catholic views of birth control, state enforced vaginal penetration of women’s bodies before abortion, and generally about Santorum himself. Forgotten will be the economy, jobs, unemployment, and foreign policy. The Democrats will simply make sure of this. Democrats will charge, falsely of course, that Republicans are campaigning against birth control, and to bolster their charge, they will pull out of the hat Santorum’s own complicated and difficult-to-understand views that he has expressed in the past. As Parker says, just look at the math. Sixty-seven percent of women are Democrats or independents, and more of them vote than men.
By nominating Santorum, it would make the election about cultural issues and cultural war, precisely what the Obama administration wants.
How many women, not to say men, will want to vote for Santorum in a general election when he promises, as he did, that “one of the things I will talk about that no president has talked about. … It’s not okay. It’s a license to do things in the sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be”? Doesn’t he know that most people, including many Catholics, use contraception? Hearing such words, doesn’t he raise the specter of growing state intervention on personal issues of morality, in which most voters do not want Big Brother looking into their bedrooms? Do they really want their president talking about this at all?
The truth is, if Romney does not come out of Michigan with a big win, the race will go on, and both Santorum and Gingrich will continue to blast Romney in as tough and nasty a fashion as they can, and Romney will in turn do the same to them, especially to Santorum. With months to go until all the delegates are elected, the harm will be done, and even if somehow the party comes together to stand behind Romney, it will be difficult by then to escape the damage that has been done. Democratic commercials will be filled with video of what Santorum and Gingrich had to say about Romney, and the only one who will have gained an advantage will be the present incumbent.
Should Romney not win, the election will not even be close. In any case, as it looks to me from our present vantage point, our nation is faced with another four years of President Obama. And yes, I hope I am wrong.
Social conservatives like Rick Santorum either do not understand or do not care that their agenda has been examined and rejected by the electorate. They are nevertheless willing to risk four more years of Obama to get that unpopular agenda rammed through.