To The Daily Sun,
When Jeb Bush had just begun flirting with a campaign for president, he said a candidate had to be willing to "lose the primary to win the general" — meaning that, if he wants to win the general election, a primary candidate could not take positions so far to the right that he ended up alienating mainstream voters.
Jeb Bush saw what had happened to Mitt Romney, whose "self-deportation" line and self-identification as a "severe conservative" put him firmly out-of-touch with the everyday voters in the 2012 campaign. He tried to stick to his moderate ideals.
Unfortunately for Jeb, that strategy is not working — in this primary, it's the most extreme candidates who are gaining.
As the 2016 New Hampshire Republican gubernatorial field grows, the risk of falling into this very same trap is increasingly likely.
For example, each of the Republican candidates for governor — Chris Sununu, Ted Gatsas, and Frank Edelblut — wants to defund Planned Parenthood. Sununu already has, casting the deciding vote to defund the women's health organization.
You'd think they'd want to keep this quiet, given that 71 percent of Granite State voters support a woman's right to choose, and many woman need this organization for general health services. But as they seek to distinguish themselves from one another, they rush to champion their far-right positions. The race to the right has begun, and, as Mitt Romney showed us in 2012, the Republicans may be left with only losers.
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