I just finished reading an excellent article by Peter Wallsten, “Tea Party Shaping 2012 Race”, October 25, 2010, in the Wall Street Journal. Mr. Wallsten breaks down potential rivals Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney quite nicely. However, several notible candidates were omitted from the article.
What I find most interesting about the topic is the extent to which potential 2012 presidential contenders seem willing to go to harness the tea party momentum. It reminds me of when I was in high school, and a hot new girl transfers in. All the suave “chick magnets” come out and start busting a move. Sometimes two or three adolescents at a time would be lurking nearby, waiting for an opportunity to get her attention. Some resourceful suitors would give little gifts, open doors, or promise to take her to “really cool places” on dates. Others, more sophisticated, would resort to flattery.
What they usually found was the hot girl, the object of their adoration and/or lust, already had a life of her own and had other plans. She was already dating a college football player, or some pro hockey player. Preppy school boys simply held little or no appeal.
Anyone following contemporary American politics knows the names of most GOP presidential hopefuls looking to 2012. I have my favorites, but I believe any would be preferable to what currently sits in the Whitehouse.
My advice to any GOP presidential candidate looking to court the tea party passion — beware, she may be too hot to handle. Tea partiers are a savvy group. The reason they are tea partiers is because they know they are beautiful; they are tired of all the pick-up lines that have been tossed their way over the years; they have been promised presents and taken to places they did not want to go; and have been caressed in the night by lotharios only to be ignored the following day. If you seek a relationship with the tea party, the best strategy if you are a true conservative, is to be yourself. Others need not apply. If the tea party gets the idea that you are posing, or playing them, 2012 is over for you.