Even though it is still nearly three years away, speculation is already rampant among the media as to who shall be running for president in 2016.
It seems that one the Democrat side Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden are usually believed to be running. The Republican side is much more wide open with a myriad of people possibly running, but what seems to me to the three most commonly mentioned names are Rand Paul, Chris Christie and Jeb Bush.
While, as a libertarian, I abhor the very thought of Hillary or Biden being president (or anyone being president), it is the Republican party that appears to be doomed for irrelevance and thus it makes sense to analyze their possible primary choices before the time comes for the party to make a choice.
The Republican Party is a party in crisis. On its face the largest problem is, what some have characterized as, the Republican civil war.
In the wake of the disastrous 2012 election, where all of the high hopes and big talk of the Republican establishment came to naught, there became a very apparent divide between the more libertarian wing of the party and the old guard establishment.
Even before the election Republican leaders such as Bill Kristol flat out said that these libertarian people should just leave the party.
This attitude is very important to take note of as Chris Christie has also expressed similar sentiments and there can be little doubt that Jeb Bush does not have family membership in perpetuity into the neo-con hall of fame simply on his family name alone.
The Republican Party has won the popular presidential vote one time in the past 20 years. For its leadership to be explicitly telling members to leave, demonstrates several things.
Either the leadership believes in its principles and plans to stick to its guns until the bitter end, or that the establishment wants to remain in power and thus wants to crush any intra-party disagreement that threatens their power. I suspect that in reality it is a mix of both.
Yet one must stop and wonder what has possessed the minds of the Republican leadership. Anyone can see that the world is changing, and yet with the word that the establishment wants old fuddy-duddies like Bush and Christie to run simply demonstrates how out of touch they are.
The very name Bush is anathema to our generation. We grew up with the Iraq and Afghanistan wars hanging in the background and still feel the effects of them today. As the crisis with Syria demonstrated last year, the US population is war weary and not really interested in the tired, old talking points about policing the world.
The divide within the Republican Party is really a divide between those who want to make the Party see the realities of the 21st century and those who want to continue sailing the ship straight ahead on the same course even if that means sailing into oblivion.
I for one do not see the Republican Party changing its course enough to attract our generation in the necessary numbers and I certainly won’t shed a single tear at its inevitable demise.
Yet those who do wish to use the Republican Party to effect the changes they want to see implemented really need to step up their game in ensuring that they no longer nominate stale half-mummified relics of the past if they want to attract our generations votes.