Let's take a quick look at some potential nominees for '12, shall we?
In a time of unemployment hovering around 10%, Mike Huckabee says preventing gays from marrying each other is more important than being gainfully employed, and Rick Santorum says that the problem with Social Security is that we aborted all the workers. [Ed--Yahoo has completely changed the story at that URL since I read it. Anyway, here is coverage of the relevant comment.]
It's a shell game. If you get people lathered up about gays and abortions, they don't notice that you don't have a fucking clue about what to do with the economy or entitlement reform.
Meanwhile, Newt Gingrich says stuff like this:
"I am convinced that if we do not decisively win the struggle over the nature of America, by the time they're my age [my grandchildren] will be in a secular atheist country, potentially one dominated by radical Islamists..."
(Try reading that out loud with a straight face. Go on. I'll wait.)
The less said about Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann, the better.
Mitt Romney, probably the least awful Republican people actually talk about, is thought to be dead in the water with GOP primary voters because of the health care legislation he presided over in Massachusetts. Which is a convenient way to avoid discussing the fact that evangelicals in the South and Midwest will never, ever vote for a Mormon in large numbers. And you cannot win the GOP nomination without them.
I suppose Daniels or Pawlenty could stage a rally, but they'd better get cracking since no one who doesn't obsessively follow politics (i.e., most voters) have any idea who they are.
I'm glad I gave up on the Republican Party a long time ago. Because if I felt invested in their success, this would depress the shit out of me.