The prospective Republican presidential primary field can be broken down into three tiers: There’s the tea-party wing, where Sens. Rand Paul and Ted Cruz are already competing for the most conservative voters.
This is called the winning wing.
There’s the gubernatorial wing, where lesser-known Republicans like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Ohio Gov. John Kasich will be looking to parlay their executive experience into a spot on the national stage.
This is called the unknown losers wing.
But most important to the process is the establishment wing, the candidate whom party leaders and donors gravitate toward, usually early on. Despite rumors of their demise, GOP insiders have always played a critical role in Republican presidential nominations and are showing no signs of slowing down for 2016. The establishment gravitated to Mitt Romney not long after his 2008 loss, anointed George W. Bush as the front-runner well before the 2000 presidential campaign began, and shepherded Bob Dole and George H.W. Bush through conservative insurgencies
And this wing worked out…how, again?
Well, GHW Bush got stomped by BJ Clinton. His first win was essentially due to his perceived role as four more years for Ronald Reagan. Once it became obvious that was not what he was, he crashed and burned in spectacular manner.
Bob Dole – pure establishment, pure loser. Crushed by Clinton even as BJ was knee-deep in an ocean of scandal.
George W. Bush – unable to score a popular vote victory, winning the Presidency via the electoral college – where he could have lost had a few hundred votes gone the other way in Florida. Four years later, barely eked out a victory over John Kerry, returning to office with no mandate and no political credit, where he floundered for four lame duck years while destroying his own party’s prospect.
John McCain – A long time establishment figure who got smashed by a black guy with about ten minutes of experience as a working politician.
Finally, Mittens Romneycare, the establishment darling who Godfathered Obamacare in his home state, thus taking the most potent weapon against Barack Obama out of his hands.
I count the establishment wing over this period as losing 4 1/2 elections out of six. Apparently they are hell-bent on making it 5 1/2 out of seven.
Why do Republican voters pay attention to these guaranteed losers? Is it because they have all the money, or because Republican voters are moron losers, and so feel comfortable letting them make their decisions for them?