A little surprising maybe that I had to pick up the paper this morning and be reminded, on an inside page, that we are having a presidential election. I knew it was supposed to be a race when I read in the Washington Post that Rick Santorum is apparently gaining on Mitt Romney.
The Post says, "it reflects the dissatisfaction and unease that grass-roots conservatives continue to feel about Romney, who has the support of most of the GOP establishment and far superior financial and organizational resources." Santorum, the Post says, "appears to have unseated former House speaker Newt Gingrich as the conservative alternative to Romney." I don't know, it seems to me presidential candidates use to have a little more pizzazz than they do this year. No rational American would have been swayed by George Wallace yelling, "Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever!" But you did notice that he was there.
Some whacko, you might say to a friend, is making a lot of noise on the corner down there. Wallace never got elected, of course, but it's kind of hard to imagine any of this year's pale, grey crop making it either. What they need is some colorful figure – a little bombast wouldn't hurt – to ride in and claim salvation. Rick Perry came in with plenty of color and some bombast but it wasn't enough. Same holds true for Gingrich. I'm not sure what's missing – common sense, a plan. If you took a piece of each candidate and made a composite, maybe that would do the trick – something of a GOP Mr. Potatohead.
In the meantime Barack Obama can probably sit comfortably in the White House situation room contemplating this fairly funny situation and consider it his valentine.