Earlier today, Captain Ed announced that he’d caucus for Mitt Romney when Minnesota holds its caucuses on Super Duper Tuesday. Of the remaining candidates, I find myself agreeing most with Mitt. Something that Captain Ed said, though, raised some red flags for me. This is the part that caught my attention:

This decision did not come easily. Some have complained about the choices available to the Republicans, but I have seen the field as a collection of highly accomplished, experienced candidates, almost all of whom I could support, enthusiastically, in a general election. That made the decision as hard as it was, and it forced me to analyze what I want to see in a nominee.

Frankly, this isn’t a great bunch of candidates. John McCain is certainly strong on the Iraq war but he’s also the guy who would pick justices who would preserve his only legislative ‘achievement’, campaign finance reform. He’s also the man who thinks that manmade global warming is so important that he’s willing to co-sponsor a huge tax increase to reverse manmade global warming.

That’s before we start talking about his role in the McCain-Kennedy Grand Bargain amnesty bill. Sen. McCain says that he “got the message” on immigration reform, that he’ll shut down the borders first before giving all the illegal immigrants amnesty. As I wrote here, we got the message, too, when he hired Juan Hernandez as his “Hispanic Outreach Director.”

That isn’t the resume of a great candidate. The only way you get there is if you’re good at rationalizing and if you use the loosest of subjective criteria.

Next there’s Mike Huckabee. His resume reads like a liberal’s. He’s cut some taxes, raised others. He tried giving illegal immigrants taxpayer-subsidized tuition breaks. That’s before we start talking about his foreign policy credentials, which are meager at best.

He’s run the Arkansas GOP into the ground, too, because conservatives frequently opposed his initiatives. According to the Washington Times article, anyone that didn’t follow him in lockstep was undercut by Huckabee.

Here’s another statement that I disagree with:

The Democrats have no one who can match that experience. Putting McCain or especially Fred Thompson against the Democratic nominee, whether that is Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton, effectively cedes the inexperience argument. It argues that Republicans consider resumes to be irrelevant, and that will have us fighting with one hand tied behind our backs.

Having Fred Thompson as the nominee “effectively cedes the inexperience argument”? Who was the man that gave the most intelligent answers, whether the subject was foreign policy, immigration, specific entitlement reforms, the overall economy? Who mopped the floor with the other candidates in the ABC debate in New Hampshire? Who mopped the floor with them again in FNC’s South Carolina debate?

Putting Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama on stage in a debate against Fred would be a delight. He’d surgically destroy their arguments, just like he did with Mike Huckabee, Ron Paul and Mitt Romney during the ABC-sponsored debate from New Hampshire. Fred’s the only GOP with whom the word gravitas fits. Simply put, Fred was the smartest man on stage at the GOP presidential debates.

I’d further argue that Fred’s experience on the Intelligence Committee and Foreign Relations Committee gives him a depth of knowledge on the most important issue of the race that neither Hillary or Obama has.

To be fair, though, there’s much in Captain Ed’s post that I agree with. Here’s the part that I agree most with:

Both Rudy and Romney have led entire organizations in both the public and private sectors, with Romney getting the best in this area. They have had the buck stop at their desk. Both Rudy and Romney have transformed failing entities (New York City and the Salt Lake City Olympics).

It’s impossible to argue with Captain Ed’s arguments here. Both gentlemen have turned disasters into undeniable success stories. Here’s another statement with which I agree:

Mitt, however, has shown that he will fight in every state, while Rudy played a bit of rope-a-dope, and has apparently lost the gamble. Until the debate, I thought Rudy might have had the right idea, but Rudy still hasn’t come out of the gate in any effective manner.

Mitt has the resources needed to compete in each state, something that’ll be needed in the coming months.

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Cross-posted at California Conservative

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