A lot of this hope is based on my personality. I'm not a person who lives for adrenaline rushes--I prefer the comfy chair in my nice quiet and stable home. So, as much as I'd like to know which kook will be running against Obama, I'm doomed to wait anxiously. (And I've decided that each of them deserves the appellation 'kook.' I'll justify that if called upon to do so.)
I don't expect the Republicans or any political group, or even my own family, to follow my political whims, but I'm wondering what it means that GOP voters aren't paying fealty to the Romney campaign siege machine. The conservative blog I read no longer has comments about policy positions or even much combativeness. I think I see mostly lethargy and apathy there. The GOP base has given up hope on the not-Romneys without accepting that Romney deserves the nomination, perhaps because lately he's been demonstrating less economic vision. But more likely because his heavy hand and oh-so-innocent demeanor have worn thin.
The evangelicals are sticking with Santorum. They seem to be the only group with any enthusiasm left. But they are a smallish group (which I'm glad of, since I don't care for their theocratic leanings or intolerance of non-Christian and non-traditional ways). Perhaps this is the proof that the evangelicals don't own the Republican party. That means they're just a few steps away from the same level of disappointment that the rest of the GOP is feeling.
One of the funniest factoids is that perhaps 2 percentage points of Santorum's vote in Ohio came from Democrats playing dirty tricks in the GOP primary. I didn't hear that acknowledgment in Santorum's speech. It's an extra bit of weirdness in this campaign that Santorum has called on Democrats to execute an Operation Chaos on his own party. Is that a reflection of how desperate he is for votes, or of how much he dislikes Romney?
Personally, I used to feel sorry for Romney as he tried to woo the GOP. But not any more. I've tired of his earnest lines about cleaving to the conservative line with all his heart. A lot of people have, because his unfavorables have grown considerably. Perhaps we'll see a presidential election where Republicans don't rally around their choice. But will it be because they're defiant or because they're dispirited?
PS. My sweetie asked me if I thought the Republican party would split into an evangelical party and a business-friendly party. I don't see it happening. Their platforms would be similar enough that any split wouldn't last. I think they're doomed to cohabit the same party and get on each other's nerves for quite a while into the future.