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Hunter for President?!

It turns out that California Congressman Duncan Hunter is seeking the Republican nomination. Although he is the outgoing chairman of the Armed Services Committee, the article rightly places him among the least known of the candidates. He’s touting his strong stands on national defense and immigration control in Iowa, He (perhaps) sensibly is not for increasingly our number of troops in Iraq but for putting the ones we already have there to better use. He’s also pro-life. I have no opinion on his candidacy, except that it has no future unless he manages to win in Iowa.

If you scroll down further, you can be a bit disappointed that Huckabee’s autobiographical, 12-point program book will not quite be available for Christmas giving. It turns out that he’s also a man from Hope.

At this point I might be for any candidate who could really speak persuasively about what we should do in Iraq now. I hesitate to say it, but the president seems increasingly at a loss. And David Tucker’s incisive post below pushed me toward the temptation of despair.

Discussions - 6 Comments

Some paleos could tolerate Hunter, he says as the self-proclaimed "expert" on what paleos think. At least those I associate with.

He is for "fair trade" which, contrary to popular belief, is a popular position with the less ideological and less movement oriented "regular guy" base. It is a toxic position for some of the base.

He is also strong on immigration and unlike some he has a bit of a track record. He was for building whatever fence they have now at the So Cal border. (I heard some reference to a "double fence" but I don’t have time to clarify that now.)

He is also pro-War, and very much so. This is a problem for paleos, but the sense I get is that people tend to think that because things are going so poorly in Iraq, it limits the ability of any future GOP President to seriously consider undertaking grand neocon schemes like invading Iran and Syria. By then it will just be a matter of damage control.

A willingness to tolerate a pro-War candidate is partially due to the feeling that immigration trumps all else, but it is also because the anti-War GOP pool is quite shallow. (Paul (TX), Duncan (TN), Jones (NC). ??)

To me, Hunter sounds almost Reaganesque in his calls for a "strong national defense" apart from the issue of the War. To me some people seem like they just can’t let go of the Reagan Cold War coalition.

He also doesn’t have much of a track record on cutting spending.

I saw him on C-SPAN (I am such a geek) last weekend, and I was impressed. He handled himself very well I thought and was downright combative with the liberal press. He even called them liberal right there. I don’t even agree with him on the War, but my heart was warmed by the way he almost sneered about the press. He also handled the trade question very well.

Paleo support for Hunter is not deep, though. He is more like the best of the rest. Support for him would evaporate if Tancredo declared.

BTW, Tancredo’s stock seems to have gone up because he refused to back down on his Miami comment. The fact that he had to cancel his speech because of bomb threats just reinforces that he spoke the truth.

Anyway, Hunter needs to start acting like a candidate. He doesn’t even have a website. I wonder if his intentions are other than winning. I’m sure he knows he is a long shot, but is he just in this for increased name recognition, for example.

Do you think his position on trade makes him a non-starter with certain elements of the base? If so, I find the fact that abortion and gay marriage may well be negotiable but trade isn’t an indication of some seriously misplaced priorities.

P.S. Dr. Lawler, you seem to have become the spokesman for dark horses at my and others’ request. Thanks! I will try to keep you abreast of the thoughts of us who reside over here in the fever swamps of the far right.

What Dan Phillips says is correct. Of all the current candidates who have actually declared, Duncan Hunter is the best.

McCain, Giuliani, Rice (who has hinted), Brownback, and Huckabee all support the third-world invasion of the United States.

Romney and Gingrich now say they are anti-immigration, but both of them have documented pasts (especially Gingrich) of supporting the third-world invasion of the United States.

If Tancredo declares, then support for Hunter may evaporate. Otherwise, Hunter may be the best shot.

There is also the possibility of Lou Dobbs at the Reform Party. Many bloggers are trying to draft him. Although he may now be a little too socially liberal for some paleos, he does have the right views on the three big issues: he’s against the war in Iraq, against free trade, and against the third-world invasion of the United States. I think immigration is so important I’d compromise on some social issues for a strong anti-immigration candidate.

There is also a rumor that Rep. Ron Paul (TX) and Jerome Corsi (Human Events) may team up and run for the nomination of the Constitution Party.

Wow Peter you really took to heart the complaints here about too much blogging about "establishment" candidates! You have certainly been digging up some dark, dark ponies for the horse race.

Yeah...Duncan Hunter is "the best of the rest." But he’s a hell of a lot better than McCain or Giuliani.

My fear about Tancredo and Hunter entering the primaries is, that they’ll split the Right vote (just as McCain and Giuliani will, thankfully, split the Statist/mushy-middle/Soccer Mom vote).

I’d "cut off my own left n*t" to see Ron Paul enter the GOP primaries and Duncan Hunter to throw his support to Dr. Paul, who is our Thomas Jefferson.


I don’t worry about Hunter and Tancredo splitting the vote. Tancredo has so much more support, name recognition, and good will built up that if he gets in any support Hunter has built will evaporate.

Similar thing happened in ’96. People worried that Buchanan, Graham, Keyes, and Dornan would split the right vote but by the LA straw poll it was clear who was going to carry the banner. These things have a way of working themselves out.

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