The GOP seems determined to embrace "crazy" candidates while eschewing moderates who could actually win national elections, writes Roger Simon on Politico. Take the recent snub of Chris Christie, who was not invited to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference. Who was invited? Such "winners" as Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney. Neither of them could win a national election, yet Republicans apparently see them as the future of the party. Meanwhile, Christie "is a winner in a party that embraces losing as a sign of faith and purity."
"Because he is a Republican governor in a Democratic state and has an approval rating of 74%," and because he is not afraid to praise the president or lambast his own party when he sees fit, Christie is seen as "suspect." If they were smart, Republicans would learn to nominate likable candidates who actually inspire passion, but Simon predicts nothing will change. "To many hard-core Republicans, the party has wasted nomination after nomination on wishy-washy mock conservatives who are not true believers and who are not willing to drink the Kool-Aid," he writes. "Crazy? Crazy is what a lot of Republicans yearn for." Click for Simon's full column. (Or check out why one columnist thinks Christie wouldn't win at the national level.)