So with the Republican National Conference over and the Democratic National Convention starting, one only has to look at the speakers to see who the rising stars (“the benches”) are for each party. Let’s put them in a depth chart
- First String: VA Gov. Bob McDonnell; WI Gov. Scott Walker; SC Gov. Nikki Haley; NJ Gov. Chris Christie; LA Gov. Bobby Jindal; SD Sen. John Thune; Former Sec. of State Condoleezza Rice; WI Rep. Paul Ryan; FL Sen. Marco Rubio
- Second String: NH Sen. Kelly Ayotte; OK Gov. Mary Fallin; NV Gov. Brian Sandoval; KY Sen. Rand Paul; OH Sen. Rob Portman; PR Gov. Luis Fortuño; NM Gov. Susana Martinez; Former FL Gov. Jeb Bush; TX Sen. Ted Cruz
- Third String: ND Sen. John Hoeven; TN Rep. Marsha Blackburn; WA Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers; Saratoga Springs Mayor Mia Love; OH Gov. John Kasich; Former MN Gov. Tim Pawlenty
- First String: CO Gov. John Hickenlooper; Former VA Gov. Tim Kaine; MD Gov. Martin O’Malley; Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; MT Gov. Brian Schweitzer; MA Senate Candidate Elizabeth Warren
- Second String: Newark Mayor Corey Booker; San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro; Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel; Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx; NC Sen. Kay Hagan; Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter; Vice President Joe Biden; MN Senator Amy Klobuchar; Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Vilagarossa
- Third String: WI Senate Candidate Tammy Baldwin; House of Representatives Candidate Joaquin Castro; MA Gov. Deval Patrick; Former OH Gov. Ted Strickland; Houston Mayor Annisse Parker
Hello California, I am here to fix you.
RadarOnline.com is reporting Condoleezza Rice, former NSA Adviser and Bush Secretary of State, was Mitt Romney’s second choice to be Vice President, being shunned over Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan. And why was she not picked?
Because Condoleezza Rice is pro-choice and pro-civil unions. Once again, litmus test over competency. Ms. Rice is BEYOND competent and capable to be Vice President and would be an excellent candidate. But as usual, her more moderate positions (which are more in-line with American values) are not extreme enough for the social conservative wing of the GOP.
“Mitt thought she would add much needed foreign policy experience to the ticket, thinks she is incredibly bright and he knew she would help with the all important female vote and African American support.
However, sources say Ms. Rice is aiming to run for Governor of California in 2014 against Jerry Brown, and in a more liberal state, her moderate social views would endear her to the independent voters and “conservative” Democrats in California.
“She will continue to stump for him but she is very excited about the prospect of running for elected office for the first time in her life. California still has very high unemployment and companies are leaving the Golden State because of very high taxes and regulations. Condi’s position on social issues makes her a very viable candidate.”
So last night was Condi Rice’s national political coming-out party (don’t start with the jokes).
Her speech was impassioned, intelligent, and she did all that without a teleprompter. She has shown to be a capable leader with an innovative vision for this county.
So what is her path from here? Two-fold, in my opinion: (see also: 10 Reasons Condi Should Run for Governor)
1. She takes a Cabinet position in a Romney administration (my preference: Education), serves through Romney’s first term, and then runs against her “good friend” Barbara Boxer in 2016, setting herself up for the 2020/24 nomination
2. She runs for Governor of California in 2014, serves a term or two, and sets herself up for 2020/24.
If Romney loses, she could easily be the frontrunner for the 2016 nod, and at the least, the top of the shortlist for VP.
She has proven an ability to be LOVED by the GOP grassroots and rise beyond her association with the Bush administration. How, I don’t know? But she is capable.
With Condoleezza Rice’s speech last night generating almost as much interest as Paul Ryan’s, former California Republican Party Chairman Ron Nehring seizes the opportunity to make the case for a gubernatorial run in 2014:
· She has the respect of the Republican volunteer and donor communities. The donors would step up, and it would be easy to fill the headquarters and cover the precincts.
· Her public speaking skills are powerful, as demonstrated by her speech to the Convention.
· Her personal story is compelling, growing up in segregated Birmingham, Alabama and rising to hold one of the most critical posts in our government.
· In academia and government service, her background denies the Democrats their favorite lines of attack that were most effectively used against Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina in 2010. Yet, she has management experience as Stanford’s Provost in the 1990’s, turning a $20 million deficit into a surplus in two years. …
· Barbara Boxer attacked Rice in relation to her role in the war in Iraq. The occasional hits she’s taken from the right are exclusively in the area of foreign policy – not particularly relevant in the role of Governor.
California Republicans have seen their party decline to the point of irrelevance in recent years and it may be that they need a wildly outside-the-box figure — Rice or someone else — to revive their fortunes.
McCain was great, we dearly respect him.
Can’t wait to see John Thune run for office in 2016 or 2020
Former SOS Condi Rice…wow. Biggest applause in possibly both nights so far. Dr. Rice has a future in politics, even though she won’t admit it. Coming out party, indeed. I got goosebumps from her speech.
- “We stand for free peoples and free markets. We will stand and support them.”
- “Our armed forces are the sure shield and foundation of liberty.”
- “We can not be reluctant to lead, and you can not lead from behind.”
- “The desire to live in freedom is indeed universal.”
- “Peace really does come through strength.”
- “We are abandoning the practice of free trade and it will come back to haunt us.”
- “Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will rebuild the foundation of our strength – the economy.”
- “When a nation loses control of its finances, it eventually loses control of its destiny. This is not the America that has inspired people to follow our lead.”
- “The essence of America…is not nationality or ethnicity or religion. It is an idea. And what an idea it is! That you can come from humble circumstances and you can do great things. It does not matter where you came from, but where you are going.”
- “We have never been jealous of each other, and never been envious of each others successes.”
- “Greatness is built on mobilizing human potential and ambition. We have always done that better than any country in the world. People come here because they believe our creed of opportunity.”
- “We must continue to welcome the world’s most ambitious people to be a part of us.”
- “You may not be able to control your circumstances but you can control your response to your circumstances.”
- “Self-esteem comes from achievement, not from lax standards and false praise.”
- “Think of when America made the impossible seem inevitable.”
NM Governor Susana Martinez, “todos es posible!” Funny, personable, and did amazing for the biggest stage of her life so far.
- “Success is not built on resentment and fear.”
- “My boss fired me. So I took him on. And beat him by a landslide.”
- “I’ll be damned…we’re Republicans!”
- “We don’t always see eye to eye, but we came together in a bipartisan manner and turned that deficit into a surplus. And we did it without raising taxes.”
- “If he can take credit for government building small businesses, he can take responsibility for government adding $5 trillion to the federal debt. Because he did build that.”
- “We each pave a path, and for me, it’s about paving a path for those little girls to follow. They need to know: no more barriers.”
- “It’s success and success is the American dream. And that success is not something to be ashamed of or demonize.”
VP Nominee Paul Ryan. CHILLS ALREADY. The smartest man in the GOP. “Hello Wisconsin!” A lot more subdued than “pitbull and a hockey mom.”
- “I accept the calling of my generation to give our children the America that was given to us, with opportunities for the young and security for the old.”
- “After four year of a run-around, America needs a turnaround.”
- “They’ve run out of ideas. Their moment came and went. Fear and division is all they’ve got left.”
- “With all their attack ads, the President is just throwing away money. And he’s pretty experienced at that.”
- “Let’s get this done and that is exactly what we are going to do.”
- “When he talked about change, many people liked the sound of that…”
- “Without a change in leadership, why would the next four years be any different from the last four years?”
- “That money wasn’t just spent and wasted. It was BORROWED, spent, and wasted.”
- “The greatest threat to Medicare is Obamacare and we’re gonna stop it.”
- “Our opponents can consider them on notice: in this election, on this issue, the usual posturing on the Left isn’t going to work. Mitt Romney and I know the difference between raiding and protecting. Our nation needs this debate. We want this debate. We will win this debate.”
- “What is missing is leadership in the White House!”
- “The man assumed office four years ago. Isn’t it time he assumes responsibility?”
- “One President, one term, five trillion new debt.”
- “They have no answer to this simple reality: We need to stop spending money we don’t have.”
- “We will put government back on the side of the people who built jobs and the people who need jobs.”
- “Yes, you did build that!”
- “We will act in the conviction that the United States is still the greatest force for peace that this world has ever known!”
- “President Obama is the kind of politician who puts promises on the record and then pulls the record.”
- “College graduates should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters!”
- “Obama offers a country where everything free…BUT US!”
- “By the way, being successful in business, that’s a good thing!”
- “Mitt and I also go to different churches. But in any church, the best kind of preaching is done by example.”
- “Our rights come from nature and God and not government!”
- “We will not seek to replace our founding principles, we will seek to reapply them!”
Day 2 was not quite was it was in 08 with Sarah Palin’s VP speech (the gold standard of VP speeches in my opinion), but damn if Condoleezza Rice, after two days, isn’t in the lead with best speech of the convention.
**Tweet of the Night: ShirleyQLiquors: well.. ok.. but… at the debate, Joe Bidern can still get up and holler “THEY GONE PUT YALL BACK IN CHAINS”
PS, Holy Pam Bondi boobs