Oh, those helpful neocons
Having wasted a year backing the inappropriate and absurd candidacy of Giuliani, and having seen their investment in him turn to dust (Rudy won a total of one delegate), the neocons have to figure out where to go next. David Frum is conducting a public thought process at his Diary to decide whether he prefers McCain or Romney. Romney is very smart. McCain is a war leader. But Frum can’t make up his mind. Frum’s dilemma encapsulates the damage the neocons did to conservatism with their premature embrace of Giuliani. They focused all their attention on one candidate, elevating him to “Inevitable” status, because, indeed, their support for him was based primarily on polls and his supposed inevitability, and on the idea that only he could beat Hillary Clinton, and on the idea that only he could fight the war on terror (based on the meaningless happenstance that he was mayor of New York on 9/11), rather than considering his actual qualities and his fitness for the job . As a result, they never went through the process of looking thoughtfully at all the candidates and deciding who, taking in all considerations of politics and character, was really the best. So now David Frum, five days before Super Tuesday, is for the first time doing the mental work of figuring out who is the best candidate, something he should have been doing a year ago.
If the neocons had done their thinking sooner, many of them would have realized that Romney was the logical consensus choice (as they are only now, so belatedly, coming to realize). Instead of neglecting and despising him, they would have helped buck him up, and perhaps we would not now be facing the looming disaster of a McCain nomination.