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The Newt and Mitt Show

So, it’s Newt in South Carolina, and now the Republican primary circus moves on to Florida.

Newt, Mitt, Rick Santorum and dear old Ron Paul – has the Grand Old Party of Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt and Eisenhower ever produced such an oddball collection of monickers or candidates?  Can you imagine any of them in the White House?  I can’t. 

Or did I have similar scathing views back in 1968 when Richard Nixon was battling Nelson Rockefeller for the nomination?  Or more recently when George Bush was fighting off ….  Come to think of it, who did he fight off?

This morning, Barack Obama, arm-wresting with a recalcitrant economy, must be either heaving a sigh of relief or giggling over his corn flakes at the thought of a table contest with one of these guys.  As one Democrat observer commented on the Newt Gingrich triumph, the path to the Republican nomination seems to be turning into a suicide march.  Surely he’s right.

But then again, strange things can and do happen in politics, a vocation in which, as it has often been observed, a week is a long time – especially in American politics.  Remember when Bill Clinton, killed off by revelations about his colouful sex life by gold-digging bimbos, rose from the dead to steal the nomination?  

Still, I think this season’s Republican string quartet will have to play out of their skins to upset the Democratic incumbent, no matter how disappointing he has proved to be.

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