Okay, maybe not fearing - that's too strong a word. But here's the concern: That after the Iowa caucuses, much of the pre-election intricacies will vanish, only to be replaced by one or two basic situations:
- Hillary and/or Romney will show that money and advertising still triumph.
- Huckabee's tally shows the Republicans completely dominated or unaffected by the Religious Right.
- Obama and/or Guiliani show that charisma is king.
- Extremely poor showings by Dodd and/or Paul show how little issues such as restraint of the executive and war matter to the electorate.
- Hillary or McCain win, meaning that name recognition and establishment support still dominates.
Things like those. What would be nice, though probably won't happen, is for two policy-types to emerge from both parties. It would be very interesting to see Edwards debate Romney, especially on issues like taxation, health care, foreign policy, and executive reach. One gets the impression that those two (but not just those two) could really flesh out an issue and in the process, get the electorate informed and engaged with the issues of our times.
Romney as a policy person? Whatever leads you to that conclusion? Romney's record, or to be precise, lack of a record as Massachusetts Governor shows that he has no policy other than getting elected President. It's been patently obvious from the first time he ran for office.