that this time around the GOP may actually nominate someone “patently unqualified” to be president:
This is how presidential vetting traditionally works. The press pack pounces on the logical fallacies in a candidate’s positions and the shakiness of his resume. Party elites and top fundraisers then decide, if they have not already, that any candidate subjected to this kind of non-ideological media assault is unelectable. And eventually voters—especially when the calendar moves beyond activist-dominated Iowa—get the message that they are trying to elect a president and not merely thumbing their noses at the establishment.
As a result, neither party has nominated a patently unqualified candidate for president in more than a century. But ever since voters in primaries and caucuses replaced party bosses at the centre of the nominating process, there has always been a theoretical risk that the unofficial vetting system could break down. And this year, in particular, there’s a substantial case to be made that all bets and vets are off.
What Shapiro leaves out here is the role the new media, with its viral videos and tweetable soundbites, is playing in this process. Related: Has there ever been a candidate less suited for the new news cycle than Mitt Romney?
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