By Hashim Arain
Recently, it was reported that Rick Santorum dropped out of the race for the presidency. Santorum was a late bloomer when it came to challenging the leading candidate, Mitt Romney, in terms of getting delegates and voters in various states across the country. With Santorum dropping out of the race, this gives huge momentum for Mitt Romney to secure the Republican nomination for president.
During most of the primary season, Santorum was an alternative contender to Mitt Romney for obtaining the most conservative of the electorate votes, because most conservatives around the country felt uncomfortable with Mitt Romney potentially getting the nomination. The problem that most conservatives have with Romney is that when he was governor of Massachusetts, Romney tended to enact more liberal pieces of legislation. For example, Romney enacted a healthcare law for Massachusetts; this law is very similar to what President Obama did when he enacted the healthcare law back in 2010.Yet Romney defends his healthcare law and term as governor, in saying that it was necessary to have pass those laws for the state of Massachusetts and obtain bipartisan support. Romney argues that as president, he would not implement the same legislature.
The healthcare law has outraged many conservatives, citing that it is too much government interference in terms of this issue. Now, some conservatives are skeptical of Romney because he approved a healthcare law that is very similar to the President’s. Rick Santorum however, seemed to be a clear conservative choice to many voters across country that were skeptical of Mitt Romney. Santorum had strong positions on mostly social issues, especially regarding abortion and gay marriage. He was strongly opposed to both abortion and gay marriage, which conservative voters across the country seemed to like about him.
However, Santorum always came in second to Romney when it came to the primary contests, nearly winning battleground states like Ohio and Michigan; Romney won both of those states by very slim margins.
Now that Santorum is out of the race, it is time to focus on how Romney and President Obama will match up against each other. Political observers and reporters have been saying for months now that Romney will get the Republican nomination and now it’s becoming reality. Romney will have to face questions about flip-flopping on some of his positions on certain issues, Obama on the other hand, will have to defend his defeats over the past four years, and convince voters to reelect him. This election will be very close, according to the website Real Clear Politics; recent polls show Obama holding a very slim lead over Romney. These polls change daily though, and it appears that this election could be anyone’s race.
I think that this election will be difficult for President Obama the second time around; some say that Romney has more experience than the President because he worked in the private sector creating jobs. The thing that the Obama campaign can do is reiterate the administration’s accomplishments over the past four years, dealing with the economy and health care reform. It’s going to be an interesting and close election. All I can say is fasten your seatbelts and enjoy the ride that is the 2012 election.