Memphis Talk Show Host Pens Opinion Piece

WMPS the Point radio host Mark Skoda has written a piece at entitled “South Carolina Can Settle the 2012 Un-Civil War.”

In it, he argues that Republicans should just lie back and let Romney win the primaries. Skoda recounts that he’s been to the primaries in New Hampshire and saw “people fired up” over Romney. Romney’s “historic back to back wins” in Iowa and New Hampshire indicate that he’s the only one with momentum who can beat Obama.

According to Skoda, Gingrich and Perry are behaving in an unacceptable manner, challenging Romney with the Bain business and going over “to the dark side.” In fact, he calls Gingrich “petulant,” “angry,” “curmudgeonly,” “unhinged,” “vengeful” and “destructive.”

That’s quite a lot of slurs in itself for someone wanting a more courteous campaign. Skoda continues: “Romney appears to be the only adult in the room with the capability to mount a real challenge to Obama and win in 2012. A resounding win in South Carolina would stop the talk of a drawn-out primary cycle, eliminate the “dead men walking,” and allow for the consolidation of the party around one of the most competent and positive candidates in the race: Mitt Romney.”

Skoda believes that voters in this cycle are more informed and less likely to listen to the GOP elite or to be swayed by the media. He trumpets Romney’s getting 39% of the vote in New Hampshire and concludes that we can all go home now.

Hardly. He leaves out that Santorum basically tied Romney in Iowa. It was actually a pretty poor showing by Romney. I hear things about votes being found at the end of the evening when it looked like Romney might be second. That makes me raise my eyebrows. For all this anyhow, no one got delegates from Iowa as the caucus does not count.

So Romney wins New Hampshire with 39%. That seems rather poor to me, too. After all, he bought a home there, has been campaigning there since 2009 and has sunk a lot of money into that state. In addition, anyone could vote in the New Hampshire primary – Democrats and independents as well as Republicans. Some of them did, too, perhaps trying to help a Romney victory that they feel – as I do – will only lead to defeat against Obama.

Now Romney has 12 delegates out of the thousand plus needed to win. this means we should all go home and let him take it? I don’t think so.

If Mr. Skoda thinks the Mormon thing won’t come up, well, you are very naive. It will. Obama won’t do it, but his surrogates will and it will be ugly. No Republican is going to do it now, but Democrats will next fall with gusto.

How about that picture of Romney from his days at Bain where he’s clutching a dollar? For a lot of people down on their luck, that will be a huge turnoff. They’ll feel he’s not like me and doesn’t understand the little guy. On Redstate they discussed how two things turn off American voters: someone trying to buy an election with their money and someone evangelizing. I would add that Americans want to feel they could have a beer with the candidate. Mitt would not fall into that category.

As for media influence, I think Romney has bought a lot of it. And were they right in picking McCain in 2008? No. They harp on the small matters, word slips or fumbles while staying silent on Romneycare, global warming (backed by Mitt), job records, flip flops on other issues. Does anyone really believe that Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry are anti capitalism? Gingrich has done well in the capitalist system and Texas business would not be flourishing if Perry was against it. We’re obsessing over an uneven stitch or two in an otherwise lovely garment.

Besides, even if Romney is an ideal candidate, why should most of the country be denied a voice in the primaries? If you’re that confident in your candidate, Mr. Skoda, welcome the competition. Nothing said now against him will hold a candle to what they are saying now. Obama will bring a flamethrower. Debate and contest should only make him stronger.

The other day an article surfaced claiming that cable news network viewing has been flat during the primaries. It surprised them. Not me. The constant pressing of Romney and his inevitability has stolen lots of enthusiasm from Republicans. Why watch if it is all a waste of time? And why vote, if it’s all a waste of time? That’s not a way to win elections.

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