Governor Rick PerryThe South Carolina Republican Presidential Primary is on January 21, 2012. I live in South Carolina, so the Republican Presidential candidates have just about a month to convince me of one thing: that he or she will help cure the disease and not just the symptoms.
I already know that it's imperative that President Obama not win a second term, and not just to save me from more gray hairs and so-not-cute wrinkles due to constant scowling at the nightly news. But, just as important and too often forgotten is the need for a President who will have the strength and the convictions to push America back from the precipice on which it is balancing on one entitlement-ridden foot. Who won't just treat our painful symptoms like high unemployment, economic disasters, and unsustainable spending, but will also cure the source of the disease itself: Big Daddy Government and the entitlement, dependence, economic ruin, and Statism that it causes?
The front-runners are Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, and Rick Perry. I have not and will not support Mitt Romney in the primaries no matter how many times I am told "he's the most electable!" I think that supporting someone based upon whom you think can win is a sure-fire way to lose. Plus, while this election will rightly be framed as 'it's the economy, stupid,' the economic downturns are merely a result of the main problems we face. We must cure the relationship between we, the people, and the Big Daddy State. If we don't do it now, it will be too late. Obamacare was the "Hail Mary" from the Democrats in accomplishing this; Obamacare was not about health care or people, it was about government and increasing our dependence on the state. Romney has neither the fortitude nor the desire to combat that.
But, in the cases of Speaker Gingrich and Governor Rick Perry, I can wholeheartedly and enthusiastically support either one of them, albeit one maybe more so than the other.
Newt Gingrich showed that he can accomplish some of what we need when he was Speaker. It took six decades to get some sort of welfare reform -- and Speaker Gingrich was the one who did it. But does he have the ability and the desire to recognize that sometimes a temporary cure, even if a fundamentally super smarty pants one, only prolongs the disease?
See, one of my biggest problems with the Tea Party movement is its tunnel-visioned focus on cutting spending alone. While that does need to happen, it's merely a symptom of the disease. It's like if a dentist treated an abscessed tooth with just pain killers and antibiotics. Sure, he'd take away your pain and maybe even the immediate infection. But unless he actually extracts that diseased tooth, the problem will just come back -- and could be fatal.
So, I'm leaning toward Governor Perry as the person who has the best track record of being willing and able to perform the extraction, even if painful, to provide a cure. With smaller government, the courage of his conservative convictions and common sense. He doesn't just talk the talk, he walks the walk. He may not talk purty sometimes, but his walk is extraordinary. And may be just what this country needs.
This post is part of a weekly conversation with each of our 5 Moms Matter 2012 political bloggers. Read the original question and find links to all their responses here: Which Republican Candidate Deserves the Nomination?
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