Call Jack Back

Ever since the conservative base of the Republican Party pushed Illinois Senate candidate Jack Ryan out of the race, I have had a bad feeling. Most know that I supported Ryan and felt that it was deplorable what happened to him. The private divorce records had nothing to do with his running for Senate and should never have been opened. But that being said, it is a shame that the GOP forced one of their own out of the race.

Jack Ryan was no perfect candidate. He was behind in the polls and running a pretty quiet campaign, something that would have needed to change to gain any ground. However, there was no harm in leaving him in the race. After the "no-sex sex scandal" story came out, his popularity actually increased and many who never thought about voting for him expressed a desire to right a wrong.

Now with no prominent Republican stepping forward, there is the draft Ditka campaign going here in Illinois. According to the Chicago Sun-Times:

Chicago Bears legend Mike Ditka said Monday that he is indeed mulling over asking GOP leaders to appoint him to replace Jack Ryan as the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate.

"A week ago I had no interest. I do have a little bit of interest right now," Ditka told the Chicago Sun-Times on Monday night. "But I'll make a decision by the end of the week. I am going to talk to some people in the next couple of days and I'll find out a little bit more about what I am going to do with my life."

Now I am all for the comic relief that a Ditka/Obama debate would provide, what a wasted opportunity for the party. Does it not strike anyone else odd that the Republicans would rather offer up a novelty candidate as opposed to a legitimate conservative candidate? This is not to say that Mike Ditka could not be a good representative of his state, I have nothing against Ditka. However, is Ditka going to provide any support or advance any agenda that will help bring conservative ideas forward like Ryan would have? I highly doubt it.

Any candidate facing Barack Obama has an uphill battle. Obama is a keynote speaker for the Democrats at the convention later this month. His candidacy is so important that even George Soros has been involved, with his management fund donating $ 60,000 to put Obama in place. This should worry everyone. Obama makes Ted Kennedy look like Rush Limbaugh, yet the Republicans apparently have accepted defeat and have thrown in the towel. It is time for them to wake up and get Jack Ryan back into the race. He is the best shot at defeating liberalism and promoting a conservative agenda.

Upon hearing the news of Ryan's exit from the race, Jonah Goldberg wrote:

Okay, I haven't followed the Ryan thing closely. But here are few thoughts. First, he should go. Maybe there's a legitimate privacy issue, maybe it's unfair, maybe this, maybe that. If he's damaged goods and can't win (I don't know if that's the case, but it sounds like it) he should drop out.

And there was Kathryn Lopez who wrote:
If you put aside his comparisons with Clinton (it's wasn't the sex, it was the lying and abuse of power...), Will Saletan has a good point about Ryan: why would Republicans defend him? (It's less of a point when you realize the GOP seems to be about to pull the plug on his candidact.) Again, make the point that the court files should not have been released, but they are out, Ryan is toast, and there are others (Edgar, Thompson) who can jump in and have a shot. Hit the road, Jack--justly or not.

I wonder what these two think now that the events have completely unfolded. Why is it not better to defend and support Ryan over the potential of having the uber-liberal Obama take office? Ryan may be slightly damaged in the eyes of a few, but the tag team of Durbin/Obama is quite frightening to consider. Maybe there is something I am missing that they can fill me in on.

Posted by Timothy Perry at July 13, 2004 10:35 PM