Carly Is a Winner

The strong performance of Carly Fiorina in the second-tier Republican debate and the evolving 2016 presidential race makes her perhaps the strongest and best Republican candidate yet.  Conservatives should care not just about strong candidates, but about true conservative candidates who will not wilt.  Carly fits that need, too.  There is not a single issue in which Carly is not on the right side. 

She ran as a conservative Republican in a California, a state leftist Democrats dominate, which has not elected a conservative Republican since Reagan’s second term as governor.  This puts Carly Fiorina (and Scott Walker) in a special class.  Indeed, if Carly had beaten Boxer in 2010, she might well be the Republican presidential nominee today. 

Conservatives like Huckabee, Perry, Jindal, and Cruz have run and won as conservative Republicans, but they have won their elections in Republican-run conservative states that routinely go Republican in presidential elections.  While these probably are true conservatives, none is a conservative who has had to persuade non-conservatives to vote for him.

There are Republican candidates who have succeeded in winning non-conservative voters, but these are Republicans like Christie, Kasich, and Pataki, who run as pragmatists, good administrators, compromisers – blah, blah, blah to us conservatives who see in these others Republicans who do not grasp or fear to fight the ideological civil war in our nation.

The attraction of Fiorina (and Walker) is that she did just what Reagan and only Reagan did in modern political history: Carly (and Scott) fought an ideological election campaign in a state conservatives must win but often lose. 

Fiorina has an additional advantage that will grow just as the Democrat presidential race descends into a dispirited and confusing morass.  If Hillary wins the nomination, despite all the simmering scandals and dull speeches of this creepy woman, then the single campaign argument of Hillary – she is a woman – vanishes.  In fact, ordinary women are much more likely to relate to Carly Fiorina, who worked her way up the business world, than to Mrs. William Jefferson Clinton, whose sole accomplishment is that she married Slick Willie and lassoed her future to his political star.

Carly is a breast cancer survivor, a mother who has suffered the pain of losing a daughter, and a technologically savvy self-made women, who can explain to old Hillary just what a “server” is and why having a private server as the nerve center of our nation’s State Department is very dangerous business. 

In every way imaginable, to ordinary Americans, Carly is a much more relatable and appealing person than Mrs. William Jefferson Clinton.  Given the profound ugliness of Clinton’s character, women who want to elect a member of their gender to be president, but who are not ideologically motivated, would choose this gutsy, articulate self-made woman over Mrs. Clinton.

Fiorina’s nomination would also thwart what may be the secret strategy of the left: a Donald Trump third-party run.  If Carly is the Republican nominee, then what rationale does Trump use for his spoiler run?  She is not a career politician.  Her career, like his, was in business.  Carly’s conservative credentials are at least as strong as Trump’s – indeed, what true conservative would find Trump more appealing than Fiorina? – and the rationale for running would be so flimsy as to raise doubts in millions of voters’ minds. 

So if Trump still ran, and particularly if Biden or Kerry were the Democrat nominee, it would be hard to avoid the perception in the eyes of tens of millions of female voters that those old insider men were picking on Fiorina and conspiring to keep her from winning the presidential race.  These voters, who would likely turn up and vote Democrat in most elections, might turn up and vote for Fiorina, giving her the presidency, or stay home and not vote, making 2016 a Republican landslide across the board.

As the campaign progresses, we will find out more just how serious Trump is about electing a Democrat in 2016.  If that is the real plan, then Republicans ought to take a very close look at Carly Fiorina, the un-Hillary and the antidote to Trump.