Politics. One day finds candidates embroiled in heated, hateful exchanges against each other. The next day one bows out and pledges to support the other.

Of course, there may well be a cost for that pledge.

Consider Newt Gingrich’s failed attempt to gain the Republican nomination for president. The former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives owes more than a million dollars to various supporters. His best bet for retiring a chunk of the debt is to call on former foe Mitt Romney, who is in the driver’s seat for the party’s nomination.

The broken trail of presidential hopefuls — Perry, Bachman, Cain, Santorum, etc. — all dueled furiously for votes. The guy they all accused of not being conservative enough to carry the Republican banner is standing on top of the pile.

What does that say about the looming showdown with President Barack Obama?

The failure of so many candidates to move up with claims of staunch conservatism may well be an indication that voters are more concerned about something other than conservative agendas. And the constant disgruntlement about the president indicate that there is something more urgent than the liberal agenda. Can anyone say, “Economy”?

The real test of this nation rests in the November election. The election will not be about whether Obama is a Christian or is hiding his birth certificate. It’s not about Romney’s Mormon faith or his moderately conservative politics. People are looking for a candidate who will work across party lines and carry out a measurable degree of statesmanship.

With a little cooperation between the two parties, the economy would move forward at a stronger pace. When that occurs, voters will believe that the leaders they elect are committed to the values that are truly American.

— The Cullman (Ala.) Times, May 4


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