(Up front: I’m with the Discerning Texan and FOR Thompson.) South Carolina was really the first test of Republican candidates with a Conservative ‘factor’ and nearly 70% of Republicans voted for someone other than John McCain in yesterday’s primary.
How many of those 67% had McCain as their SECOND choice? How many had him at or near their LAST choice? Well let’s think about it. Here’s the breakdown:
Almost as many for Huckabee, and Thompson and Romney split an almost equal amount, with Giuliani and Paul picking up the change. What would drive most of the other Republicans to McCain in future contests? His stand on illegal aliens? His support for so-called 'Campaign Finanace' reform?
McCain is a classic RINO, and I see nothing to discern him from a pro-War On Terror Democrat. I see nothing-- NOTHING that would make me want to vote for McCain, and a lot that would make me vote against him.
McCain got only 33% of the vote in a state where he had an established organization? Except for the ‘bandwagon’ types, McCain is at his peak. That peak will only be good enough if the opposition remains fractured. If McCain wins the Republican nomination via the fragmentation of his opposition, a small majority of Republicans will vote for him holding their nose in the General Election. The rest will stay away in a funk and the next President will be a Democrat in a landslide.
Huckabee will fade like a Marine haircut. Thompson and Romney will pick up parts of Huckabee’s support. Giuliani will hang in there collecting ‘moderates’ and Ron Paul will remain a sideshow.
For all the hoopla the press creates, you'd swear McCain has some kind of momentum. Two points:
1. There's only been about 150 delagates of over 1900 to the National Convention declared so far.
2. If Fred Thompson keeps doing better every time out, the media can’t continue ignoring him: and he’s the only candidate that actually looks better the more you look at him.
I’m with Fred as long as he's in the fight.
Update 01/22/07: Well it didn't take long. Fred is no longer in the fight. Crap. Looks like it will be between Romney and Giuliani for me. Romney is ahead.