From “the spark is gone” to the “walking dead” is quite a jump, but the latter is how Chris Cillizza at the Washington Post characterizes the present phase of the Republican primary.
In Monday’s The Fix, a daily political weblog at the Post website, Cillizza begins with: “This is how primary campaigns end — not with a bang but with a whimper. Or, more accurately, a whine,” and discusses the latest Santorum temper tantrum with New York Times reporter Jeff Zeleny as the latest “in a series of head-scratchers from Santorum… and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich over the past week or so, pointing to “a familiar pattern that typifies the final throes of candidates virtually certain to come up short in the primary.”
Cillizza also recalls Gingrich’s latest, shameful outburst when he called President Obama’s touching personal reflection about the killing of Trayvon Martin “disgraceful,” and quotes John Weaver, the senior adviser to John Huntsman’s presidential campaign as saying: “What we’re seeing are signs that the nomination battle is effectively over…The lashing out at the media and grasping of straws, as in Newt’s comments about the killing of Trayvon Martin, are indicators we’ve entered the walking dead period.”
Cillizza attributes this “walking dead” syndrome to the fact that these presidential wannabes (Santorum and Gingrich) have been non-stop on the road for a year or longer — they are worn-down, “the bone-tiredness and frustration … begins to set in” — and compares this campaign to Hillary Clinton’s 2008 Democratic primary fight, “tired of trying to win an unwinnable race.”
He points out:
Their windows of opportunity, which were always open a crack (at best), have now slammed shut. The danger for both men is that they linger in the race so long past the point which they should that they tarnish the (mostly) positive impressions they have left on the Republican electorate in the race. (Kind of like how Kareem Abdul-Jabbar just kept playing and playing — and playing.)
Finally, “We’ve reached the end of the end — or damn close to it — in the Republican race for president. The only question now is when (or if) Santorum and Gingrich recognize it.”
I can just hear a defiant Santorum and an egomaniacal Gingrich claim, “it ain’t over till the fat lady sings “
So, regardless of bone-tiredness, good or “bad” math, these two diehards may be in it until the bitter end, unless some real fat lady in the “elite Republican establishment” croons some very convincing words in their ears.
But, me, a Democrat, worried? Heck no.
Read more here.