THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Senator John McCain may actually win the GOP nomination due to a split in the conservative wing of the Republican Party. Drudge Report now claims that Rudy Giuliani will endorse John McCain as early as Wednesday, effectively sending most of his left-centrist supporters over to the McCain camp.
Meanwhile the conservative wing of the GOP is split. Fiscal-conservatives are leaning toward Governor Mit Romney, and social-conservative are leaning toward Governor Mike Huckabee. The conservative wing of the GOP makes up 2/3 of the Party. Normally conservatives control the direction of the party, but so long as this group is split, it opens the door for the minority 1/3 of left-center Republicans to control the party. These center-left Republicans are otherwise known as the "Republican In Name Only" or the "RINO."
The historical alliance of fiscal and social conservatives is what is known as the "Reagan Coalition," as Ronald Reagan became the first GOP candidate to unite them into a controlling majority within the party. That coalition was split in this election cycle, due to the party putting forward candidates weak on social-conservative issues. Social-conservatives responded with the "Value Voters Summit," and put forward their own favorite candidate -- Governor Mike Huckabee. This angered the establishment within the Republican Party, which immediately took aim at Huckabee through talk-radio and the Internet. Many have said the Reagan Coalition is dead. Rush Limbaugh responded by saying it isn't dead until he says it is. Sorry but Rush is WRONG -- dead wrong.
THE 'REAGAN COALITION' IS OVER! It died in the summer of 2007, when the GOP couldn't put forward a candidate that satisfied the demands of social-conservatives. Now the conservative wing of the Republican Party is split, between the social-conservatives (who overwhelmingly support Huckabee) and the fiscal-conservatives (who tend to lean toward the establishment favored Romney).
As Romney and Huckabee duke it out for the 2/3 conservative vote of the GOP, the left-leaning RINO McCain will ride into first place with a solid 1/3 left-center Republican vote -- especially after Giuliani supporters jump on board his bandwagon. A McCain nomination would spell certain disaster for the GOP in November, as McCain will have difficulty garnering the social-conservative vote. He may actually gather some of the fiscal-conservative vote, but only for fear of a Hillary victory. Without the social-conservatives on board, no Republican candidate can win in the general election this November.
A Romney nomination would present the same problems as a McCain nomination, but less so. Romney would be able to gain the support of the RINOS and most fiscal-conservatives, who ironically seem to be enamored by him, even though he was a successful governor of a very Liberal state (Massachusetts). But one group Romney will have great problems with is the social-conservatives, the group he needs most. While some social-conservatives will cast their vote toward him for fear of a Hillary victory, some will not. A good number of Evangelicals will simply stay home in November, rather than cast their vote for a man they believe to be dishonest about his supposed 'Pro-Life' beliefs. How any governor could claim to be 'Pro-Life' while approving $50 abortions in Massachusetts is beyond the capacity of most social-conservatives to overlook. Unfortunately, the Mormon thing is also an issue. Though most practicing Catholics wouldn't let that get in the way, the issue becomes a bit more sticky with Evangelicals who typically view Mormonism as a "cult." In the general election, Romney will not be able to garner enough social-conservative votes to beat Hillary on his own steam. His miserable loss to McCain in both Florida and South Carolina demonstrate that beyond the shadow of a doubt.
Huckabee is expected to do well in the Midwestern states on Super Tuesday, and early indications seem to point toward victory in the old South as well. This is the Bible Belt, and virtually all the political analysts agreed that Huckabee would have taken South Carolina by a good margin had Fred Thompson not still been in the race at that time. So as long as enough social-conservatives continue to turn out for the vote, it looks like Huckabee will remain a viable spoiler in the conservative wing of the Republican Party. As it was in Iowa, so it is on Super Tuesday. Regardless of where McCain stands in the polls, this race in the GOP is really between two men -- Romney and Huckabee. The winner will determine the fate of the party. If the two battle it out long past Super Tuesday, the conservative vote will continue to be split, and McCain will win the nomination based on his appeal to the 1/3 left-center wing of the GOP. A McCain nomination will result in a Hillary victory in November, and may even result in social-conservatives breaking away from the GOP. If Romney knocks Huckabee out of the race on Super Tuesday, than he may get enough support from the social-conservatives to knock McCain out of the race before the GOP convention. In doing this, he may save the party, but he won't get enough support from the social-conservatives to beat Hillary in the general election. If by a long shot, Huckabee actually manages to edge Romney out of his lead, causing him to eventually drop out of the race, than he stands a chance at not only saving the party, but perhaps even beating Hillary in the general election. As to what's going to happen, your guess is as good as mine now. We shall see. As for me, I'll be praying for Huckabee.
It's official. The Catholic Knight is retired. I'm hanging up the helmet and passing the torch. There will be no more articles, no more commentaries, no more calls to action. THIS BLOG IS CLOSED. I've spent a very long time thinking about this, I believe the time has come, and is a bit overdue. I want to thank my readers for everything, but most especially for your encouragement and your willingness to go out there and fight the good fight. So, that being the case, I've spend the last several weeks looking for bloggers who are fairly active, and best represent something akin to the way I think and what I believe. I recommend the following blogs for my readers to bookmark and check on regularly. Pick one as your favourite, or pick them all. They are all great.....