Joe Scarborough, the former Florida congressman who hosts the popular MSNBC morning show “Morning Joe,” is already fighting to keep Hillary Clinton out of the White House.
“I don't want Hillary Clinton to be elected for eight years, and for Democrats to control Supreme Court nominations for 16 years, the shape of the federal bureaucracy for 16 years,” the Republican told Secrets.
And he’s not just whining about it on his show. Scarborough has just released a new book that essentially comes down to one theme: The GOP has to pick a pragmatic conservative that can get elected.
“Time is wasting,” he warned. “Hillary Clinton’s supporters are already preparing for political battle. Next time we’d better be prepared to win. There is no substitute for victory, and I for one am damned tired of my party losing presidential elections.”
His new book, “The Right Path,” is likely to become the blueprint for governors like Chris Christie of New Jersey and Scott Walker of Wisconsin as they make their case that candidates able to reach out to the center like former Presidents Reagan and Eisenhower are the only type of Republicans that can beat Clinton.
“If we are going to win elections, we have to choose more wisely,” said Scarborough, who also mentioned Ohio Gov. John Kasich and South Dakota Sen. John Thune as his temperamental political favorites.
His readable new book looks at presidents from Eisenhower to George W. Bush for clues on what it takes to win. He echoes the argument from former pundit William F. Buckley Jr., who junked his conservative-or-bust mentality after former Sen. Barry Goldwater’s defeat to Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964 to accept that beating liberals sometimes requires voting for Republicans who are “moderate temperamentally, ideologically or both.”
Scarborough said that recent GOP Senate picks from the Tea Party wing have wrecked the party. “We have to stop electing amateurs in primaries who serve as little more than ideological indulgences, who exploit resentments that play well enough among the base but whose positions make them nonviable in general elections,” he wrote.
His recommendation is for the GOP to pick somebody who can talk to Republicans and moderates.
“If the Republican Party is big enough to reach out to disaffected moderates,” he concluded, “then it will be big enough to win the White House in 2016, even if Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee. The question is whether the GOP will choose to go the way of William F. Buckley or Glenn Beck.”Paul Bedard, The Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.