Although I haven’t concluded my period of mourning for Fred, I’ve more or less come to my conclusions:
1) As tempting as it might be to vote for Fred *should* his name appear on my NY ballot when I go vote Tuesday after next… it would be a wasted vote, especially as Fred was only polling at 10% at the most recent Rasmussen Report - and with FredHeads splitting out more or less evenly over the remaining candidates, I’d do better to give my best man a boost if it helps
2) Despite the MSM McCain-amania (or as I prefer to call it, their love of Ol’ Grumpy Grandpa the Backstabber) - he is still a left-leaning Rockefeller RINO who has regularly eaten at the table of Feingold and Ted Kennedy. Tsunami Tuesday may not be as nice to him as he thinks it will. This RINO is also self-admittedly clueless about the environment.
3) Huckabee is unsupportable (even with the somewhat unexpected, yet understandable, Duncan Hunter endorsement) in my estimation for his heavy reliance on the Clinton playbook, lack of foreign policy knowledge, and general desire for nanny-statism, even if it comes with a (pseudo)-Christian flavouring.
4) Ron Paul has some good conservative bonafides, but a lot of negatives as well, with his anti-Israel and his pre-1930s (dare I say, pre-1910s) goldbuggery and military isolationism, not too mention his advanced age - like McCain, he might sit the first term, but would not be likely to inspire many to vote him in a second term. On the plus side, his unshakeable defense of following the Constitution as our guide and our law is unparalleled among the remaining candidates.
5) Rudy - I have absolutely no respect left for this shyster who has had a family life that makes the (Ozzy) Osbournes look like Ozzie and Harriet, and whose extreme social liberalness once threatened to send the evangelical voters to third parties or over to the Donks.
That ultimately leaves me reluctantly with Mitt as the recipient of my former Fred vote. I know I’ve been rather critical of Mitt both here and on RedState and other conservative forums, but I’ll reluctantly vote for Mitt in NY’s Tsunami Tuesday for the following reasons:
1) He is (now) eminently electable. Unlike the other candidates and especially unlike MSM-pimped frontrunner McCain, he *knows* the economy, and how to grow business and trade. While he did not sign onto the APT promise not to raise new taxes, I believe that he will exhaust as many options as possible before raising taxes - to include the first line measures of reducing spending standing up to a pork-loving DemCong.
2) He may not be all that I want as a defense conservative, but as a leader and a manager, he will select men and generals and give them leeway to prosecute the war to an end with results - after all, he would be CinC, but foremost, a civilian leader - not an armchair general. In this, I hope I am not wrong - and perhaps he might really do me a personal favor and appoint Fred Thompson or John Bolton as Secretary of State to do the tough talking to Achmahdinejad and his cronies.
3) Solid social values - I disagree with his particular faith as the path for redemption and salvation, but the LDS church does subscribe to many of the outward works and social values that Christians also strive for in Christ. The works do not save in and of themselves, but when folks follow godly principles and conduct, they benefit as a nation.
Now while I have said much about Mitt’s abortion and LGBT flip-flops… I will eat crow here and say that I hope that he sticks by whatever “epiphany” he has had regarding his newly found support of life and the like, and that at the very least that he will appoint a solid conservative judge to replace Ginsberg or one of the other aging liberals.
Mitt has been a very distant second to my row of choices behind Fred… since Hunter, Brownback and Tancredo dropped out before Fred.
But it is time to face facts, folks. Barring the Second Coming or some other similar miracle as posited by Steve Stark over at RCP… Fred has one back to bed, and we have to pick the guy who can stop RINO McCain and the HuckRINO.