Politico has a piece out looking at Governor Rick Perry (the Ricker) and his efforts to stay relevant in the 2016 race. Beyond just an examination of Perry’s mistake filled run in 2012, the piece really speaks to a couple of very important points.
First, the race has already begun. Maybe to some this may seem to early. Well, too bad. It is clear that the race is under way and shows no signs of slowing down. If you don’t believe me please explain this, this, and this.
Another point is the quality of the candidates is already better than what it was in 2012. People like Rubio, Christie, Paul, Walker and Cruz have followings on their own and excite people’s interest. During the 2012 it seemed people rose and fell in the polls based on who was the best anti-Mitt Romney at the time. Herman Cain, Michelle Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, and the Rickers all enjoyed moments in the sun before the race became Romney v. Santorum.
That is not the case this time. Candidates are going to have to win people’s support over on the basis of who they are and their agenda. The polls being so close right now (especially when compared to the Democratic side) is an indication of just how much it may take to win people over. You can almost imagine some primary voters feeling like it’s a coin flip between Cruz and Paul for example.
So while the Ricker is having a tough time it seems the GOP race is already in a much stronger position than it was in 2012.