Suppose Mitt out McCain’ed McCain?

Okay. Choosing Palin was bold. Her Convention acceptance speech, to tens of thousands of Republicans who had never even heard of her, was a knockout. I watched it live and was stunned. She was hot. The faithful fell in love, the media as one dropped to their knees and thanked their respective deities. There was rejoicing in the land.

For a while. And then the cringe began inside the McCain campaign, and it spread. It spread.

Fast forward to 2012 convention time. Now, depending on where you sit in the Republican party (fringe? insurgent? terrified establishment-type?), Palin is poison or the savior.

Last week, reporting was that Palin would be granted B-list status at the convention and the campaign was dearly hoping she wouldn’t come at all. There was even talk – frivolous probably – that she’d have a shadow convention just to ‘stick it to them’ and feed the beast.

But that was before Ted Cruz, who is going to be the next Senator from Texas. Cruz is a new kind of Tea Party Republican: informed, capable, well-educated, attractive, terrific speaker – a credible candidate, a serious person.

So even though Romney’s people would despair at the idea of being forced to give Palin a prime speaking slot, it’s not as easy a decision as it was last week.

The conventional wisdom has been that Romney chooses Portman, Paultenty or possibly Ryan. (I’ve called it Portman.)  Ryan could excite the base, but that would put the Ryan budget front and center and give Obama a really juicy bit to run against.

So what to do? The Palin decision must be made and a veep must be chosen. Might there be a way to have one over-shadow the other?

What if they brought in a shinier toy? What about out-McCain’ing McCain? Is there be a stealth candidate, a better-than-Palin, who could electrify the race?

Wouldn’t that be fun?

10 responses to “Suppose Mitt out McCain’ed McCain?

  1. Plain ole white Bread Rob Portman….
    That’s my guess…..

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  2. I see it as a toss-up between Ryan and T-Paw … Portman as an outside, but next best chance. Why not pick Palin and go into it as a co-presidency? That will both excite the base and seal the outcome as a loser.

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  3. Oh Moe, you brought back that horrible night 4 years ago. I stayed up to watch Palin’s speech; I wanted to know my enemy. My husband went to bed. As I crawled in next to him after listening to her, John asked how it was. I responded “If they win, McCain had better have a food taster.” I still shudder to think we might have had Sarah Palin a heartbeat away.

    This time, I’m going with Pawlenty. I would say McDonnell but then the ticket would look, as I believe it was Frank Rich said, like two white guys on top of a wedding cake.

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    • I think we had the same reaction – they thought they were getting a grateful follower but instead found they had a bit of a grifter with her eyes on the prize – she craved celebrity.

      I hadn’t’ theard that RIch quote – what a hoot!

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  4. I’m sticking with Condi Rice — esp after Mitt’s European Vacation-style foreign policy triumph. An experienced two-fer who shores up his weakness…and more than thoroughly vetted. What’s not to love?

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    • She’s been prett firm about not wanting it . . . but who knows. There is a downside with her though – the Bush connection. Today’s Repubs really really don’t like Bush.

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  5. nothing to add — just forgot to click follow up

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