Republicans looking to attack Obama, not find a leader

Let me finish tonight with this unbelievable presidential campaign about to get underway.

Watching President Obama today explaining and defending his budget - both the substance and the politics - I was struck by the question: could any of the possible Republican candidates out there do this?  Does anyone of them have the precision of mind, the command of recall, the orderly process of thinking and evaluating, the reasonable moral compass?

You can play this game, too.  Think it through. Throw those names and face onto your mental viewing screen and think deep: Romney - Huckabee - Palin - Bachman - Barber - Santorum - Gingrich.  Is there one of them we think could do what Obama can do?

I’ve been in close quarters with him twice.  The first time, I came to the conclusion that this guy ought to be president of the United States. There’s a peace to his presentation, a calm understanding of the information, of his values, of the world.
I look at the Republican field with all its negatives.  I look at Nate Silver’s numbers and see the problem the party has in finding someone to field against the president, someone who could stand on the same platform, talk the issues with this competence and wonder.

Then it comes to me, that they may not be in the business of “looking” for someone to match Obama - simply someone to “attack” him.

I’m talking about a protest candidate, someone who is yells at the government, mocks the country’s condition, is clever, sarcastic and, when it works best, cute in their cutting.

I look at the joke telling at last week’s Conservative Political Action Convention.  I look at the new poll showing a majority of Republican voters don’t believe the President was born here even though it was announced in the newspapers at the time.  I look at the strange wackiness that echoes through the once-stable party of Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt and Ike and wonder if they’d accept any of those men today?  Do you think they’d take a guy who wanted to take away a state’s right?  To fight for conservation of our wilderness lands?  To build the interstate highway system, create federal loans and grants for higher education?

No, the Republicans aren’t that party.  They’re becoming more and more the party that doesn’t believe in science, whether its evolution or climate change; doesn’t believe in government; doesn’t believe this president is an American. 
It’s veering off being the party of the John Birch Society, adhering to the wild preachments of that Society’s latter-day apostle Glenn Beck: That’s right, the John Birch Society that said Ike was a communist, the apostle who believes President Obama is an avatar of a burgeoning world-dominating caliphate.  

Republicans looking to attack Obama, not find a leader