May I just say that I, for one, am really looking forward to the 2012 GOP primary. Republicans almost always wind up going with the candidate who’s “next in line.” Thus, this year’s GOP race went through some unpredictable twists and turns but ultimately wound up where one would have expected far in advance — with next in line John McCain taking the ring. But if McCain wins, it’s not really clear who’s next in line. Both Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee have a solid case to make that they finished second in the primaries. And then there’s Sarah Palin.
And in a lot of respects I think Palin’s emergence has helped make Huckabee look really good. Months ago, he was this social conservative darling with undeniable political talent and a seemingly weak grasp of national policy. But compared to Palin, the guy looks like the most knowledgeable candidate on the planet. And while he has a lot of Palin’s small town charm, he’s actually charming enough that a lot of city slickers find him pretty charming too (sign me up). He’ll have a few years, and a Fox News show, to try to improve his command of various issues and then you could see him being a quite formidable contender. If, that is, he can find a fundraising base.
And then there’s Jeb, America’s next Bush waiting in the wings.