The Other Side of Personal Responsibility

In my last post, I got some flak in the comments section for saying I think it is really important that Obama not be reelected. Here’s a quick follow up to that idea.

Romney has been out-performing Perry in head-to-head races against Obama.  The most recent national poll shows bad news for Romney- Obama is beating him by 4 points.  However, that is a heck of a lot better than Perry, who is trailing Obama by 11 points in the same poll.  Clearly there are a lot of swing voters who are turned off by Perry, but willing to give Romney a chance.

The important thing to remember is that poll is national popular vote, but we elect our president through the Electoral College.  In order for a Republican to win, they would have to take back several of the swing states that Obama won in 2008. These states include IN, VA, NC, FL, OH, CO, NV, NH, WI, and perhaps MI, NM, and PA.

Now in thinking about  how Romney and Perry might fare in a general election, if there’s 1 of those swing states where you’d think Perry might be able to out-perform Romney, it would be North Carolina…. southern state…. 40% white evangelicals… it would be reasonable to think that is the sort of place where Perry could do very well.  Unfortunately, the data doesn’t support that idea.  A poll taken at the height of Perry’s popularity there showed Mitt outperforming Rick in the Tarheel state by 3 points.  So it seems safe to conclude that while perhaps Perry might run up a bigger margin of victory in Texas or Oklahoma, in ALL the states that actually matter, Mitt is the more electable candidate.

So here’s the conclusion:   Since we know ahead of time that Romney is more electable, if we as a party decide to take the risk and nominate Perry and he proceeds to lose a close election to Obama, we deserve the fate we will receive.

We conservatives are big on personal responsibility, so it stands to reason that we must also apply it to ourselves and our own choices, including the decisions we make in the voting booth.


  1. Ok, fine. So Romney is more electable. I still can’t get happy about it.

    I’ll vote for whomever gets tagged with the R in the final election. It’s what I do best.

  2. Ryan Morgan says:

    Ross Douthat of the NYT says it well:

    “During the (Howard) Dean bubble of 2004, National Review ran a famous cover story showing a ranting Dean over the banner: “Please nominate this man.” If I were running a left-wing magazine — The Nation, Mother Jones, Tina Brown’s Newsweek — I would consider recycling that cover line with Perry’s picture over it.”