Thursday, December 6, 2012

Rob Portman heading for the Twilight Zone?

What...What in the world did  Ohio Sen. Rob Portman have in mind when he joined 37 other Republican senators,  a majority of whom were from southern states, in opposing U.S. support for a United Nations Disabilities Treaty?  I mean, even John McCain and a wheel-chair bound ex-Sen. Bob Dole (pitifully rolled  onto the Senate floor for moral support) favored  the measure.

Maybe I read too many articles about Portman being  a calm and deliberative nice guy from Cincinnati who  was Mitt Romney's cupbearer throughout the campaign as a  GOP "rising star".  Maybe I almost believed that  George W. Bush's budget director and trade representative could lend a glimmer of sanity to the Republican side. Or maybe he simply caved under the maniacal pressure from Tea Partyers and homeschoolers who foolishly supposed  the measure would be a blow to U.S. sovereignty as well as curtail  the rights of parents with disabled children.

After all, in June, the  hometown conservative Cincinnati Enquirer, long a Portman booster, had an online story with a provocative  headline asking:  The Loyal Soldier: Is Rob Portman the next vice president?  Not yet, as the November election results told us.

Yet, in the disabilities vote, Portman turned up on the southern conservative roster in a 61-38 tally that failed because a two-thirds vote was required for passage.  We were told that the biggest concern of the 38 aginners was what it might do to homeschooling.  Sixty-one other senators, including all of the Democrats,  considered that hogwash, which, of course, it was.

Oh, my. The drum roll continues anyway in the media.    Now the  Dayton Daily News is  suggesting that  a Kasich-Portman presidential ticket could arise in 2016.  After all, the Columbus Dispatch has reported that the governor's name has "surfaced as a potential" presidential candidate.  Don't clip. Don't save.

Still, that would be perfect match.  Kasich has been known to say silly things.  And Portman has downgraded his own public image with his  crazy swing to the far right in opposing the disabilities measure. It could be harder for this GOP "comeback" team to receive  serious consideration  unless by 2016, the party has decided to move its show to the Twilight Zone.


Anonymous said...

Unfortunately for the Dayton Daily News, a Kasich-Portman ticket isn't possible under the 12th amendment of the Constitution.

David Hess said...

A Kasich-Portman presidential tandem would be a dream ticket -- for Democrats. Two Ohioans on the same ballot? I'd like to know what the writer of that speculative story was smoking. As for Portman's cave-in on the disabilities treaty, chalk it up to another victory for Grover Norquist and Rick Santorum. The anti-tax, anti-government bloc of the GOP caucus has so paralyzed the vanishing Republican moderates that they would vote against chocolate milk and apple pie to avoid a primary challenge. Portman should be ashamed of himself, assuming of course that he could muster the courage to face his own spineless vote.