Once the midterm elections of 2010 end in 16 days, the race for the Presidential nomination in 2012 will begin formally, and it is clear there will be a major split among Republicans!
Republican National Chairman Michael Steele and former Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin attended and hosted the event in Anaheim, but it was very obvious that there were three significant Republicans who did not want to associate themselves with the rally!
Specifically, Republican nominee for Governor Meg Whitman, and Republican nominee for Senator Carly Fiorina, both running very close races, and both very ambitious and accomplished corporate leaders (of Ebay and Hewlett Packard, respectively) avoided the rally, knowing fully and clearly that in the “blue” state of California, Sarah Palin and Michael Steele are seen as “poison”! And both women are believed to look down on Palin as a woman of few accomplishments, compared to themselves!
But also not present was Senator John McCain, who was campaigning just an hour away from the rally, for Carly Fiorina in her campaign against Senator Barbara Boxer, and going out of his way to make really nasty comments against a fellow Senator, a new tactic only used in the past few years against colleagues of the other party, as it was always felt it was unseemly to do so! One could campaign FOR a candidate without bad mouthing your colleague of the other party, but this is the new reality, which began when Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist campaigned in South Dakota against Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle in 2004! The age of common decency with your colleagues is part of the “old rules” sadly no longer in effect!
But it also raised eyebrows that McCain avoided the rally headed by his own former running mate of 2008, and it is well known that Megan McCain, his daughter, has continued to make criticisms of Palin in her interviews and public appearances!
So the campaign of 2012 will be a very interesting one, with major blood letting to occur, as nearly a dozen ambitious Republicans will be organizing for President, and none of them want to be associated with either Michael Steele’s leadership of the party, or with Sarah Palin, who is seen by many, privately, as unqualified to be President, and as an annoying distraction in Republican party politics! 🙁