Alan Keyes for President, Again... The Benefit and the Burden
On Friday Alan Keyes filed papers with the FEC to begin his candidacy for President and made an official announcement the same day. This will be his third go at the presidency following his 1996 and 2000 campaigns. As we've seen in his previous campaigns, there is a tangible benefit to his candidacy as seen through the positions he relentlessly advocates. At the same time, his candidacies, which are inevitably doomed from the beginning, present a burden for Conservatives during the election. Let's look at both:
As I've mentioned on numerous occasions before, I am a HUGE Keyes fan. There is currently no other candidate I would rather vote for than Alan Keyes. He is a man of character, conviction and brilliance as well as a tremendous communicator. That said, I won't vote for Alan Keyes, he won't win the primary (obviously) and I don't see any time in the foreseeable future in which Keyes will be in a position to win the White House. As in the previous 8 years, he is simply not electable and because Conservatives are already fractured over who to vote for his candidacy creates a burden for Conservatives this cycle.
Romney, Thompson, Huckabee, Brownback are all appealing options and no one has a lock on the Conservative base. This causes a dire problem as it is and will continue to allow a more left leaning candidate such as Giuliani to win the primary. I am a believer in the concept that Conservatives win elections with the 2004 election being the shining example of the theory. This is not because Conservatives necessarily vote in larger masses than others, but because Conservatives energize the Republican party and candidates. But this cannot happen when Conservatives are divided as they are now. The Keyes candidacy will further fracture that base. In all probability the level of support Keyes will gather will be negligible, but with as divided as Conservatives are now that little bit of support drawn away from another candidate will become critical.
But Keyes' candidacy is not all bad...
Keyes campaigns are always used a platform to encourage Conservatives and our nation as a whole to draw closer towards those principles our nation is founded on. As an incredible mind and communicator Keyes is quickly able to cut to the core of the issues and focus our attentions on what is truly important.
For example, during his announcement Keyes explained that:
"he's "unmoved" by the lack of moral courage shown by the other candidates, among whom he sees no standout who articulates the "key kernel of truth that must, with courage, be presented to our people."
He added, "The one thing I've always been called to do is to raise the standard . . . of our allegiance to God and His authority that has been the foundation stone of our nation's life"
--and he decried the lack of "forthright, clear, and clarion declaration" from the other candidates concerning this issue."
He's right on the money. While so many of the candidates are attempting to tackle the surface of the problems our nation faces, Keyes cuts to the quick an erosion of our nation's allegiance to God and His authority. But he can articulate these hard-line positions where others cannot or will not because Keyes doesn't have a chance at winning the election. So expect a number of rousing speeches and articles from the Keyes campaign. Listen to them. Read them. I guarantee they will be inspiring and influential on your views of this election.
So what do we do with all of this? Does the benefit of Keyes' campaign outweigh the burden? I'll let you decide, but I implore you to do two things:
1. Listen to Alan Keyes as he uses his campaign to lay out a vision for the future of our nation because it will be both convicting and inspiring. Start with an incredible series of articles he has prepared for this election cycle called The Crisis of the Republic.
2. Don't vote for Alan Keyes. He will not win the primary, or the election and a vote for him will only serve to further the chances of Giluiani during the primary.