The Quiet Man Versus the Loud-Mouth

Charlie Cook takes a look in his National Journal column at a focus group of Indiana Republicans convened by Peter Hart and Corrie Hunt and finds this gem about the willingness of GOPers to support Donald Trump and Ben Carson:

In what I thought was their most perceptive conclusion about Republican voters’ state of mind, Hart and Hunt observed: “Behind all of this is a sense that these people have done a better job of figuring out what they are against rather than what they are for. Part of the challenge that emerges for Republicans is that there appears to be nothing positive around which they can unite. Much of this discussion was spent railing against what is wrong rather than searching for a uniting vision of what they want in their nominee. A uniting leader may yet emerge, but for now the consensus is around a quiet man versus a loud­mouth.”

Anyone who watched Wednesday night’s CNBC debate and watched all ten candidates endlessly and exhaustively and redundantly attacking government and everything government does certainly understands what Hart and Hunt are talking about. If there was any “uniting vision” it was of people who want to run government so they can disable it. So in that vacuum style points matter.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.