Let this be the start of the 2012 campaign, I have been doing a lot of reading about who is going to run and who says they are not running for President in 2012. The funny thing is that I seriously think it really won't matter for the Republicans unless the economy gets much worse over the next two years and here is why I think that.
If we have gridlock in Washington, it favors the President because Washington is unable to monkey with regulation and taxes, so businesses have a little relief and start doing business again. Unemployment drops below 9% and Obama regains some of his following. The independents vote with their wallets and see this pairing as okay over the last two periods of single party control. Now add the splintered Republicans/Tea Party and you have Obama winning in 2012 regardless of who is running against. These are just the facts and you can argue all day, but none of the Republicans are good enough to unseat a tolerable Obama.
If the economy goes to hell in a hand basket, then the independents will look to anyone that can turn the country around and they will take Christie with bells on because of the results he will have shown in NJ over the last 3+ years at that point. Christie is a wartime President and the war is on federal spending, so he doesn't get elected in 2012 unless the crap has hit the fan. The independents will look to a hardliner to fix what the feel good intellectual was unable to do. This is the only way a Republican wins in 2012.
With all that said, what are we to be doing in preparation of the up coming election cycle? We should be holding the recently elected yahoo's feet to the fire and keeping track of who is next on the chopping block. The good Senator from Oklahoma seems to be volunteering to be retired early for his completely out of step views on earmarks. Yeah they are only a small part of the spending problem, but they are a huge part of the corruption problem. Sen. Inhofe if you don't realize what the People are telling you, then it is time for you to go either retire or standby to be removed. Senator you really should read and heed Sen. Coburn's take on earmarks because he gets it.
Back to the 2012 Presidential election for a second. No one in their right mind would run against Obama willingly because it is a two pain in the ass with the outcome as a total crap shoot, so that leaves only the crazy and the vane. If the economy continues to fall then Christie wins in a landslide after being begged to come in and save the day. Otherwise you are just cannon fodder like Dole or McCain, and really who wants to be lumped in with that group. Plus there could be a 3rd party populist candidate in the race ensuring an Obama victory, so if you are serious about sitting in the Oval office 2012 is only good for one person, Obama.
I say work to reform things on the local level and do what you can for your fellow human beings, but 2012 as all elections are about the economy so only time will tell.