Roger Green posed today’s question on Facebook, but I decided to answer it next because it’s closely related to the first question, which I answered last Thursday.
So, Roger asked:
“…please rank all the 17 GOP candidates, including the ones who have dropped out, from barely tolerable to utterly loathsome.”
It took me awhile to work out HOW to rank them before I could even begin to do so. The problem is that I’d never consider voting for ANY of the Republican candidates, so, how on earth could I rank them in a way that didn’t in some way imply that I could?
The answer was to rate George Pataki as zero, then move into negative numbers to better show display how “utterly loathsome” they all are. So, here are the rankings and my reasoning:
0 George Pataki: I ranked Pataki as a zero because he’s the only Republican candidate who is pro-choice and supports LGBT human and civil rights. That’s enough to raise him just above the negative numbers, and makes him least loathsome. However, unless he’s changed his mind (and if he did, I haven’t heard about it), he’s like all the other Republicans and opposes marriage equality. That’s enough to keep him out of positive numbers.
-01 Lindsey Graham: His politics are certainly loathsome, but he’s not a prize prick like all the rest of the negative numbers. His politics put him in the negative list, but his non-dick status keeps him from sinking any lower.
-02 Chris Christie: This is already getting tough! I despise Christie, and think he’s a bully and an arrogant prick, however, his politics are slightly better than the next worst candidate.
-03 Jeb! (just don’t say) Bush: He’s nicer than Christie, but his politics are awful, made worse by seeming to be chosen by focus groups: I have no idea how sincerely he believes anything he says. His family ties to the Saudi royal family are also a major concern for me.
-04 Rick Perry: Well, he’s gone, so his placing doesn’t matter, but while he’s an idiot, I at least sensed that he sincerely held his weird beliefs. Authenticity ought to count for something, and his keeps him from being as lowly-ranked as his truly awful politics should require.
-05 John Kasich: Like many of the others, he comes across as insincere. Among other things, he’s nearly as rightwing as the other Republicans, and certainly no moderate, so it’s dishonest to pretend he’s not the same as his comrades. He also has been particularly nasty as governor of Ohio, waging the local version of his party’s war on women and LGBT people.
-06 Marco Rubio: The man is a moron (not the only one on this list). He’s just like Kasich in trying to pretend he’s more moderate than he truly is, but he gets ranked lower because he’s so much dumber.
-07 Rand Paul: This man seems like he’s from another planet or dimension. Terrible positions on issues, yes, but every once in awhile he does the right thing—but, even a stopped clock is also right twice a day…
-08 Carly Fiorina: Not just another moron, she’s also lied about her past, and her tenure as a CEO was so awful that it ought to forever bar her from elected office. Worse, though, she’s been selling utter lies about Planned Parenthood and, when confronted with that fact, merely doubled down. She is awful, but she might pave the way for a better female candidate in the future—maybe 30-50 years from now.
-09 Jim Gilmore: I admit it: I had to look him up because I couldn’t remember who he was. Then I found out I’d almost forgotten to blog about his entry in the race—he’s that forgettable! He’s been pretty rabidly anti-gay in the past, and probably still is, and—wait, who am I talking about again? I’ve forgotten…
-10 Piyush “Bobby” Jindal: He’s another quitter, and I have NO idea why he ever entered the race in the first place. I don’t know if he’s really a sexist, misogynistic, homophobic doubchebag, or if he was just playing one for the TV cameras. Either way, a truly despicable person.
-11 Donald Trump: The ONLY reason The Hair is this high on the list is because he’s not a homophobic bigot and far-right religious extremist like all the remaining candidates. And that is The Hair’s ONLY redeeming quality.
-12 Scott Walker: Another quitter, Walker is vile for so many reasons. He’s rabidly anti-worker, he’s a wholly-owned subsidiary of Koch Industries, and he’s also racist, sexist and homophobic. However, he didn’t usually play the god card all the time unlike all the remaining, lower-ranked candidates on the list. Sure he IS a religious extremist, but he didn’t say so at every opportunity.
-13 Ben Carson: The remaining candidates could have been ranked equal, but that would have violated the spirit of the question. So, Benny gets ahead of the others only because he can be a nicer guy than the rest. He’s thick as a brick, without even the slightest understanding of what the US Constitution says or means, and he’s sexist and homophobic, but at least he’d not a total douchebag.
-14 Mike Huckabee: The Huckster doesn’t have a single redeeming quality, except one: He can come across as the nicest, smoothest used car salesman/TV preacher imaginable. Still, he’s vile, his politics are despicable, and for some reason he’s decided to go full arsehole in the campaign. He’s also a bigot.
-15 Rick Santorum: Utterly without any redeeming qualities, except that he couldn’t win election as anything. He’s vile, disgusting, and detestable, his politics are utterly despicable, and he’s a bigot.
-16 Rafael “Ted” Cruz: The single most disgusting Republican of my adult life, the Canadian-born Cruz gets the bottom-most ranking because he’s a bottom feeder, someone who would destroy the entire country in order to score some silly small political “point”. He’s vile, disgusting, and detestable, his politics are utterly despicable, and, of course, he’s an arch-bigot. He also gets the bottom of this sewer because he’s so dangerous: A confirmed theocrat, he’d appoint Supreme Court justices to overturn Roe v. Wade and marriage equality—and those are the nice things! Nope—Cruz is the most utterly loathsome candidate on a list with nothing but loathsome people on it.
Much of this post is tongue in cheek, but much of it also shares my sincerely-held beliefs about these candidates. I’d never vote for any of them for any office, but at least we’ll never hear again from most of them. That’s a definite positive for us all.