And the winner is…


I’ve waited throughout this pre-primary season: weighing the candidates, watching performances and plans, and examining reactions.  I am now ready to announce what the blogo-sphere has no doubt been breathlessly waiting for – my choice for GOP nominee.

To start, let me note that I have given to three campaigns this season.  First, I gave to Michele Bachmann before she officially announced to encourage her to get in.  She is my Congresswoman (at least for now, stupid redistricting), and is a conservative firebrand.  From the start I did not see her gaining the nomination, but knew that her voice on the national stage would be a strong one.  I suspected that she wasn’t ready to compete at this level, and I think the record has shown that to be true.  I still love Michele, but I do not support her in the primaries.

Second, I gave to Herman Cain.  He was the first candidate I remember “liking” on FaceBook.  What I knew of him at the time sounded good, and having political outsiders in the race seemed a good idea from the start.  I had a wait and see attitude, and actually gave to his campaign AFTER I dismissed him as my candidate of choice.  I believe his 999 plan is awesome – I don’t like the specifics and see glaring holes, but it is so much better than the non-plans the GOP has been putting forward for a long time.  While we can all agree that 999 won’t happen, it is a much better starting point than others’.  I gave to him after the sexual harassment news came out and as it became clear that he was being savaged for political reasons.  Although I don’t want him to be our nominee, I like him and see good things in his future and did not want a precedent of character assassination choosing our nominee.  Like Michele, he isn’t ready to compete at this level, with a message that isn’t focused enough to get the job done.  Given his age, he may not get the chance to compete at this level, but I don’t think he is done.  I’d like to see him as an advocate like Sarah Palin, or taking another run at Senator or House member, even a cabinet post would be a good use of his talents and knowledge base.

Tim Pawlenty was my first pretty solid choice for the nomination.  Though I had reservations about him because of his leftward slide as MN-GOV, he did well and was a likeable, relatively conservative guy.  I think his leaving the race when he did was ill-advised but principled.  By doing that, he has preserved his reputation for future runs.  (Endorsing Mitt Romney afterwards didn’t do him any favors in my eyes though).

Jon Huntsman, Rick Santorum, Thad McCotter, and various others.  None of them are serious candidates.  Not that I blame them for putting their hat in the ring in a crazy year where the rules are in flux, but they just aren’t real contenders.

Newt Gingrich is a good man, and the first national politician I met in person back in the early 90’s when he was Speaker of the House and he visited Liberty University where I was a student.  His lack of some key political skills hurt him and the movement then, and he hasn’t learned much.  Worse, he appears to think that it was his conservative ideology and not his condescending attitude that caused him to fail then.  So he has muddled his message and kept the attitude – not a winning combination.  Even worse, he was the only national figure dumb enough to hold on to the bitter end supporting Scozzafava.  Great performance from the smartest man in the room (at least from his perspective)? – FAIL.  His debate performances have been good, but I don’t feel conservatives can trust him not to get back on the couch.

Of all the candidates, the only one I could not vote for in the general, and the one I thoroughly detest, is Ron Paul.  As a full-spectrum conservative with special consideration for National Defense, I cannot stand this man’s “blame America” rhetoric and his unwillingness to defend America on the global stage.  That plus his whiny voice, his borderline conspiracy theory approach, his eagerness to identify problems(the Fed, earmarks) but un-seriousness with regard to solving them(Gold standard really?, sure gets plenty of earmarks for hating them so), and especially his followers make him an unsuitable candidate for any elected office in the United States, let alone POTUS.

I supported Mitt Romney in 2008, but only as the last remaining alternative to John McCain at the time of the Minnesota Caucuses.  I do not trust him, and believe he is not a conservative.  Were he to get elected President, it would be a crapshoot as to whether or not he would govern to the right or not.  As a candidate he is terribly lacking.  I am pretty sure his nomination would be the best thing President Obama could hope for.  It would depress the GOP base while gaining no converts from the middle and left.


So, if you are keeping track, that leaves one serious choice.  Rick Perry is my choice for the next President of the United States.  He is the third candidate I have donated to, and this time it is specifically because I want him to win.  Foremost, I trust him as a potential Commander-in-Chief.  His plans, both the economic plan and the government reform plan, are bold and inspiring.  As conservatives we know that we should paint in bold colors, not pale pastels.  His plans may not be feasible as written in the long run and it may be tough to get them through a self-interested Congress, but as a starting point, they blow everything else out of the water.  Rick Perry gets my strong, unequivocal, and unmitigated support.  I know some of you have different choices, and I know he has had some missteps on the campaign trail, but I think the choice is clear.  He meets or exceeds my requirements for the office:

x Likely strong CinC
x Bold plans
x Conservative message
x Proven conservative executive governing experience
x Charismatic
x Believes in American Exceptionalism and willing to state it

So, here it is – Rick Perry 2012!!

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Scott MacHardy
Retired Army. Disabled Veteran. Constitutional Conservative. Ordained Minister.
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Retired Army. Disabled Veteran. Constitutional Conservative. Ordained Minister.

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Lady Penguin
November 18, 2011 3:28 am

I like the way you reasoned out your choices, or culled the lot of them, Hooah. You’ve drawn some good conclusions. Ron Paul makes no sense and his almost anti-Americanism would lead us into some grave policy errors. While I see Michele, Santorum as both strong conservatives, somehow I never saw them being able to project the right strength. Romney is a concern for the reasons you’ve noted, especially depressing the conservative base. I’m not fond of seeing establishment Republicans getting the nod. Cain and Perry are my two hopes, yet, as you’ve noted being “ready” is a Cain issue.… Read more »

November 18, 2011 6:14 am

I have been a Cain supporter, I probably still am for a minute, but he will have to answer to me about the unions having an IMAGINED right to collective bargain against We The People because I am hot about that and when I dump you, you are forever dumped, no ifs, no and’s no buts, period! Newt gives me a painful heartburn due to his GW his work w/Hillary on healthcare in the mid 2000’s, he was the very first person w/the Heritage back in the 90s to talk of a individual mandate….grrrr! that all being said, I believe… Read more »

November 18, 2011 9:57 am

That is about the same as my conclusions.

redneck hippie
November 18, 2011 10:08 am

If I agreed any more with you, we would be the same person. But then I would have to explain having gone through childbirth twice 🙂 From what I know of your background, Hooah, I was 100% sure who you would choose. I went from Daniels to Palin-slash-Perry-whichever-one-got -in, then to Perry when he declared. Many of your same reasonings convinced me, although my process of elimination was different. I could have heartily supported many others who did not run, i.e., Pence, DeMint, etc etc etc. The winnowing of adversity is making my choice more sure every day. If I… Read more »

November 18, 2011 10:38 am

I’m with you HM, have been leaning so for months now, same general reasoning & process. The Hermanator is winging it a bit, especially on the collective bargaining front, which a a big deal to me. I simply do not trust either Romney or Gingrich, but for different reasons; one’s an obvious flip-flopper, and the other, well, if you can’t stick to the agreement with your spouse, what WILL you stick to? As little as I like having to do the process of elimination thing, in a way it’s nice to have so many candidates who dwarf the other party’s… Read more »

November 18, 2011 11:08 am

I have been a huge Perry fan since well before he ever even contemplated running. And I found his speech at the Governor’s Conference to be just icing on the cake. His complete faith in American and Americans is palpable. I fear that if he is our nominee (and I truly pray on a daily basis that he will be) the worst assassinations will come, in fact, from our side. The rinos hate/fear him as much as the dems, if not more. Think McLame and Lindsey were excited by the announcement that their pay would be cut and they would… Read more »

Queen Hotchibobo
November 18, 2011 1:01 pm

Yeah! This is how I know I’m on the right path: Hooah Mac and I agree.

November 18, 2011 3:29 pm

Rick Perry would make a fine president.

November 19, 2011 12:36 am

Very well laid-out analysis, Hooah. In a vacuum, I would agree with you and come down on Perry’s side. I think he’s a class act and would make a great President. As a former Scoutmaster, I am familiar with Perry as an Eagle Scout and author of a book about Eagle Scouts that I gave my son when he became one. Problem is, for me anyway, the nomination cannot go to someone who would just be a great President. It also cannot just go to someone who is a great talker. I’m looking for the person who satisfies a Pareto… Read more »