Friday, January 04, 2008

Mitt Can't Buy Love

After my interview with the Savannah Morning News/Evening Press to run the tiny South Carolina bureau, I almost didn't get the job — for the same reason Willard Mitt Romney won't win the sandlapper primary. "He dresses like a banker" was the word.

Decades ago, after looking at my clips, they hired me anyway. Our own Cap'n Brylcreem won't be so forgiven on Robert E. Lee's birthday, Jan. 19th.

He looks like, acts like, and is a banker/salesman type. That's not going to cut it in what may be a defining moment in the campaign. Unless the Cap'n an omnipotent angel to skunk John McCain in a few days in New Hampshire, he goes into South Carolina as a certified loser, a double loser. Plus, he dresses like a banker.

The tiny recap in S.C.'s biggest newspaper, The State, nails it. It muses on whether Fred Thompson might align with McCain and calls the next to votes as:

In N.H.: Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s win sets up a near-death struggle between faltering former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and suddenly resurgent U.S. Sen. John McCain here, where Huckabee is not a factor.

In S.C.: The GOP winner in New Hampshire — likely McCain or Romney — will arrive in South Carolina to find himself trailing Huckabee. Romney, who polls show is running closest to Huckabee in South Carolina, has the backing of U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint; McCain has U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham’s backing.

Brylcreem adAs I ranted yesterday, the Republicans have the much more politically complex and exciting contest. Fortunately for the good guys, no matter how they play it, this year promises to divvy up the elephants into such piles as evangelicals (as in Iowa), moderate conservatives (New Hampshire), and to-hell-with-anyone-not-like-me (scattered).

Golllllley Huckabee brought his simplistic rhetoric and little bag of coins to Iowa to face the multi-million spending shape shifter...and embarrassed him. That's not likely to happen in New Hampshire in a few days. There Huckabee has a tiny organization and has spent little time.

Up Route 93, they don't like things Massachusetts anyway. We have political cooties. Plus, they are well aware of the Cap'n's ephemera painted over to look like positions (oops, there they go again). I'm calling McCain over Romney there.

Unctuous Willard is almost certain to slide into Columbia awaiting his third strike. He may hold out for more defeats in January. Right now Huckabee is way ahead of him in South Carolina. I'd bet McCain would soar there following a victory next week.

McCain suddenly has a nice look. I'd prefer the much more beatable Huckabee, but the base of those who can tolerate Mike's simple mindedness should be much too small to get him there.

No matter how this plays out on the Republican side, there's not enough Elmer's wood glue for all the splinters before November.

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