Could Rick Santorum Really Win the Republican Nomination for President?

William Galston, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institute, and a contributing editor to the New Republic, thinks so:

[A] group of movement conservatives has called an emergency meeting for next weekend in an attempt to find a “consensus” candidate. Many of this group’s leaders attended a similar meeting with Rick Perry last summer. This time around, they may try to pressure him to withdraw before it’s too late and divisions in the ranks of arch-conservatives end up easing Romney’s path to the nomination.

If the Staunch Conservative vote coalesces in time to keep Santorum alive after Florida, the tempo will slow considerably in February, and the race could take an interesting turn as the large Midwestern states begin to weigh in at the end of that month. In principle, anyway, Santorum appears well-positioned to unite anti-Romney conservatives and downscale “Disaffecteds.” But it’s still early, and we can’t yet know how well he’ll withstand the scrutiny and attacks that will inevitably come his way.

So here’s the choice for Republicans: an American Mussolini (Rick Santorum) or a fake conservative, a Manchurian Candidate (Mitt Romney).

I bet they’ll pick Mussolini.

If you think likening Santorum to Mussolini is unfair, check out this video of Mussolini Santorum callously and aggressively dismissing the Palestinians as not even being a people (“there is no Palestinian”) and essentially making a might-makes-right argument against them. By the logic in this video, after invading Iraq the United States would have been within its rights to simply drive the whole Iraqi population into Iran and declare the country America’s 51st state, immigrating Americans into it. Rick Santorum is what the psychological literature calls a “high RWA” (right-wing authoritarian). He’s a Western politician more befitting the ethos and mores of an earlier time, not the 21st century.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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6 Responses to Could Rick Santorum Really Win the Republican Nomination for President?

  1. Paradigm says:

    I have to agree in that there are no Palestinians. There is no cultural, historical or genetic quality that distinguish them from other Arabs in the region. The word “palestinian”, as you most likely know, refers to the Philistines, thought to be an Indo-European people from Asia Minor, in no way related to modern day “Palestinians”. This claim of being a people with a land is just a trick to make their demands seem more legitimate than they are.

    • Santi Tafarella says:

      The historical correctness (or incorrectness) of the claim misses the forest for the trees. The big picture is that both the Palestinians and Israelis must somehow arrive at a two state solution in which both peoples learn to love one another and recognize the right of the other to exist, and in which trade develops between the two.

      Yes, I meant to include love in the equation. The whole tragedy of the conflicting groups in the region is a failure of empathy and love coming from both sides. Somehow the better angels of human nature have to be activated in the human beings living in the region.

      As long as a two state solution is not moved toward, the world will be in danger of a Middle East war. Santorum’s callousness simply feeds the hate surrounding the issue. His presidency would be very obnoxious and militarily aggressive. It’s the wrong path for the 21st century.

      What’s telling about the above clip is Santorum’s thought process. He shows himself to be someone who reasons very rigidly from first principles and arrives at ridiculous conclusions.

      —Santi

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