Toast

Mitch Daniels, that is. One of the brightest presidential prospects, perhaps the best “Not Romney” of them all, may have self-destructed. Two problems: one of consequence, the other more symbolic.

The symbolic is his interest in declaring a “truce” on social issues. But, as they say, one man’s symbolism is another’s red meat. The best one can say is that some social issues are not worth destroying an otherwise conservative candidacy over. Gov. Daniels should have merely left this alone, but it is not, by itself, what has harmed his chances for the Republican nomination.

Of greater consequence is his apparent surrender to the Democrats in Indiana on the vital issue of right to work. Jennifer Rubin expounds of Gov. Daniel’s problem, and the bottom line is that he crossed a line no Republican facing Obama should cross: de facto support of greedy unions and their continuing rape of state budgets.

Why is this such a blunder? Simple answer: the long-term prosperity of a state depends on its ability to foster a pro-business climate, one in which firms large and small can invest in with some confidence that their costs will be manageable. One of the most important factors is the ability of a firm to hire, compensate, and, if need be, fire those workers it needs. And most emphatically to not be subject to the whims of some sclerotic union bosses and their Democrat minions.

It is no accident that the right to work states are, for the most part, those which have prospered in the past decade or so. Likewise, look where the pro-union states are clustered: the Northeast and Midwest; you can almost smell the stink of failure from them as businesses leave for more prosperous climes.

Gov. Daniels disappoints, and his prospects look almost as dim as Sen. Thune, who officially dropped out of the running yesterday.

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