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“Ron Paul says he’s going to eliminate five departments. Ron Paul passed one bill in 20 years. What give you the idea that he can eliminate anything? I mean, he has absolutely no track record of building any kind of coalition to get anything done anywhere,” Santorum said. “I understand the appeal that Ron Paul has: it’s simple, it’s short—but there’s no track record there.”
That's a decent argument to make against Ron Paul ... but it might be better coming from a guy who actually won his last election. And it certainly would be better coming from someone who—unlike Rick Santorum—wasn't thoroughly trounced the last time he appeared on a ballot. Santorum lost by nearly 20 points 2006, garnering just 41% of the vote. I guess he could describe that as building a coalition ... a losing one.
It's a great illustration of just how pathetic the Republican Party has become: a defeated former U.S. Senator is vying to overtake an ineffective backbencher as the Republican Party's hottest candidate. Meanwhile, Mitt Romney marches to the right, desperate for support from a Republican base that can't stop falling in love with the Rick Santorums and Newt Gingriches and Rick Perrys of the world. It's clear that most of the GOP base doesn't really want Mitt Romney ... but at the end of the day, he very well could be the only option that they have.
Fortunately for President Obama, to become that option Romney has needed to transform himself from the moderate governor of Massachusetts to an inauthentic fire breathing conservative. That might be closer to what the GOP base finds acceptable, but it's the last thing most Americans want.
Originally posted to The Jed Report on Thu Dec 29, 2011 at 09:04 AM PST.