Romney scrapes the dust at Dobson’s feet; Giuliani stands upright and builds a new coalition
Dobson has laid down the gauntlet, argues LJ in a race42008.com post titled The Third Party Mutiny Continues
If [Dobson] backs down now, he loses a lot of face among his followers. It’s fascinating because polls show that Giuliani does pretty well with the rank and file SoCons. This could have the effect of splitting the SoCon elites from their base (in much the same way the GOP split over immigration this summer). At the same time, Mitt Romney is the only one that Dobson has not given the kiss of death to. Add to that his recent success with securing backing by prominent SoCon leaders, you could end up with the reverse of the Giuliani dilemma, Romney attracting support from the elites but turning off the rank and file.
Note that whatever the outcome the Evangelical elites will divide from their base. We—and many others—predicted as much:
- Tony Perkins and Gary Bauer are blithering idiots—the two praise Romney—Evangelical movement finally jumps the shark
- religious conservatives render themselves completely irrelevant in a single gesture—the Romney question and the “Republican Collapse”
- Evangelical movement jumps the shark (ii): Joyner’s apt analysis
- Mark DeMoss: my dead mentor would vote for Romney—so you should too
- to oppose Giuliani, the Family Research Council is willing to endorse Romney—Tony Perkins sips the Romney kool-aid
Back to LJ:
There is still time for a Dobson-Giuliani summit in which they go into a room and Dobson comes out saying that Giuliani “shares his values” and that after much discussion, Giuliani is an acceptable nominee. The problem with this scenario is that Giuliani is not the type of person who would go out of his way to make nice with Dobson. This could very quickly turn into a battle to see who blinks first … etc., etc.
Whether Giuliani kisses Dobson’s ring or not—and we earnestly hope that he does not—is moot, as polling and campaign strategy indicate that Giuliani is building a new coalition. eye of eyeon08.com reads against the grain of an AP story by Alan “Bury the Lead” Fram to arrive at a novel and compelling conclusion in a post titled When reporters miss the story: Rudy and conservatives
Fram argues that Giuliani’s support from the right is “less than meets the eye.” eye rejoins:
But the important point is that, Rudy Giuliani holds the lead in-spite of weak support from conservatives. Rudy has found a possibly winning coalition does not involve the most conservative elements of the party. That, dear reader, is a story. That shows that his path to winning the nomination is less-than-tenuous. But the reporter doesn’t seem to understand that the goal in a primary is to build coalitions within the party.
According to AP-Ipsos polls quoted by eye:
- Just 37 percent of Giuliani’s conservatives call themselves strongly Republican, compared to 52 percent of Thompson’s.
- While 22 percent of Giuliani’s evangelical or born-again Christian supporters say they are very conservative, 47 percent of Thompson’s do.
- Sixty-four percent of Giuliani’s supporters approve of Bush’s performance, compared to 78 percent of Thompson’s.
Isn’t this fantastic news for the Giuliani campaign? Doesn’t this tell us that his lead is based on people who aren’t going to go fleeing when someone (who?) puts up ads saying that he’s a liberal?
Isn’t this a reason for confidence? They know he is pro-choice, gay-friendly, etc. And they still support him. What additional information is going to make Rudy’s numbers fall? Probably not information about abortion, etc.
At least the reporters aren’t alone in their ignorance. The conservative interest groups don’t get it either … etc., etc.
Who cares about 3rd parties?—Evangelical elites can issue whatever threats they wish. The rest of us have moved on.