Wednesday, June 06, 2007

A reply to a comment that Victor made awhile back ...

Concerning why I would rather not vote than vote Giuliani if he won the Republican nomination. I don't think that it's at all unreasonable to argue that a Giuliani loss would be less destructive for the GOP both short and long-term then to have him win and have the argument that politicians need not concern themselves with social conservatives at the national level validated. In short, we could easily end up where Mark and Rod believe that we already are and I would just as soon not have it come to that.

Giuliani has expressly endorsed a position (pro-abortion) that I consider nothing short of a deal-breaker, pure and simple. So have all of the Democrats, so I have no intention of voting for them. I'm also not nearly as convinced as some people that he would be such a great foreign policy president either - his inability to date to criticize Bush in a substantive fashion at a time when both personal and political support for the man remains at record lows due a variety of factors is something that I consider a definite weakness. Romney, McCain, and (still undeclared?) Thompson have all criticized Bush from a conservative foreign policy perspective for his handling of the war in Iraq, something that I think needs to be done in conservative circles sooner or later and that I would rather be done in the primary than in the general election. Ultimately, I think that the Romney, Thompson, and McCain votes need to coalesce around a single anti-Rudy candidate and while my own preference remains McCain, I think that any of the three would be good picks and would have no problem voting for any of them for president.

14 comments:

paul zummo said...

I'm also not nearly as convinced as some people that he would be such a great foreign policy president either - his inability to date to criticize Bush in a substantive fashion at a time when both personal and political support for the man remains at record lows due a variety of factors is something that I consider a definite weakness. Romney, McCain, and (still undeclared?) Thompson have all criticized Bush from a conservative foreign policy perspective for his handling of the war in Iraq, something that I think needs to be done in conservative circles sooner or later and that I would rather be done in the primary than in the general election.

Excellent point, Torq. All of the pro-Rudy types seem to take it as a given that Rudy is clearly the best candidate when it comes to war-related issues, and it's only his stance on abortion that should give us pause. But there's simply nothing in his background that suggests he is more capable than any of the other lead candidates of leading the country through the war.

torquemada05 said...

Paul:

I completely agree and the examples that Rudy-backers have given (that he rejected a check from a Saudi prince after 9/11, for instance) don't exactly strike me as the most persuasive of examples.

I should also add that when I mean criticizing Bush on the war I do not mean an embrace of the anti-war narrative. Rather, I recommend the strategy referred to by Bottum in his critique of Bush - that we can fight better and tougher and most importantly that we can explain and defend our positions from the presidential bully pulpit (a huge flaw of Bush's, IMO). At a more practical level, I think it is becoming painfully apparent that Rumsfeld's military transformation policy, whatever its merits, did not serve us well in Iraq.

Anonymous said...

No, the fact that the "Surge" seems to be working indicates that Rumsfeld was basicaly wrong, and his military critics basically right. I always admired Rumsfeld, but I now regret my support for him. Just because the Left hates someone doesn't mean they are right...

Tschafer

nowickis said...

Well...
Some Repub pundits wanted to ban Ron Paul from the debates following his expressing his skepticism regarding the war on terror, yet none have expressed a desire to exclude Guliani after he made clear that he's A-OK with legalized abortion. Doesn't this show how in the "big tent" of the GOP, being pro-abortion isn't so bad, but being anti-war is simply beyond the pale?

Victor said...

than to have [Giuliani] win and have the argument that politicians need not concern themselves with social conservatives at the national level validated.

Not really. Such a primary result would be a confluence of the pro-abortion Republicans being able to coalesce around one candidate, while the SoCons were split. And unique matters of personality (we wouldn't even be having this discussion if the current GOP field were identical but Alan Simpson were switched with Giuliani as the one pro-abort).

And certainly a Giuliani primary victory and a general-election defeat would probably marginalize social-conservatives even more, at least in the public image department, as soreheads.

Not to speak of the interim damage from President B. Hussein Rodham Edwards.

That said, I do agree with Paul (Zummo) that I don't think it really is obvious that Rudy would be a better war president on operational matters. It is very much a matter of 9/11 (and other mayor-related) personal charisma, though that I would put greater value than (I'm guessing) pz would in the bully-pulpit matter that Torq mentions.

And I also agree that as much as I detest (Ron) Paul, I don't think he should be excluded from the debates, as long as he's running a campaign as viable as Jim Gilmore's and Tommy Thompson's.

Andy Nowicki said...

Victor, I didn't figure that you would want to exclude Ron Paul from the debate-- my point was that it seems easy to deduce that the outrage of GOP pundits over Paul's anti-war stance compared to the lack thereof with regard to RG's pro-abortion stance (no one calling for RG being ousted from the debates, as some did with Paul) that being pro-war is non-negotiable, while being pro-abortion isn't so bad. I think this shows the GOP's priorities are ass-backwards, though of course the Democrats are far worse on the abortion issus.

Victor said...

Andy:

I think the thought processes of those who do say "kick Paul out" go something like the following:

Abortion is a disputable political issue within the polity, on which citizens can and do take opposing stances. The war on terror is an existential conflict with outsiders who would kill us all, pro-life and pro-choice alike, circumstances permitting. Further, Paul's comments that we brought 9-11 on ourselves betrays a lack of the basic patriotism and love for a polity that is a logical prerequisite, quite before any substantive stances, to fitness for political office within that polity.

I don't endorse all of that thought process (obviously), but large chunks of it are correct.

Andy Nowicki said...

Well, hell-- abortion is certainly an existential matter, from the point of view of the unborn, right? I don't know which chunks of the rationale you buy into, but I for one don't buy that chunk.

Donald R. McClarey said...

I would never vote for Guiliani due to his position on abortion, and I think enough Republicans would agree with me to make his nomination a disaster for the Republicans and not just on the Presidential level. I think he stands a very small chance of getting the nomination however, and his chances will be even slimmer after Thompson gets into the race and begins to draw off some of his he-is-the-toughest-on-the-war support.

Joseph D'Hippolito said...

Gentlemen, I stronly suggest that if you don't like Giuliani, please take a look at Duncan Hunter, a congressman from Metropolitan San Diego. He not only opposes abortion (in fact, he favors a constitutional amendment banning it) but also has a strong stance against Islamic terror.

It's one thing to complain about something; it's quite another to seek (let alone advocate) viable alternatives.

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