Also: "Fred Thompson never did grasp the dynamics of the race or the country, and his amazingly lackluster campaign reflected just how disconnected he was with the people, despite the anticipation and expectation that greeted his candidacy," Huckabee writes.
Scherer continues: "Huckabee writes of Gary Bauer, the conservative Christian leader and former presidential candidate, as having an 'ever-changing reason to deny me his support.' . . . He calls out Pat Robertson, the Virginia-based televangelist, and Dr. Bob Jones III, chancellor of Bob Jones University in South Carolina, for endorsing Rudy Giuliani and Romney, respectively. He also has words for the Texas-based Rev. John Hagee, who endorsed the more moderate John McCain in the primaries, as someone who was drawn to the eventual Republican nominee because of the lure of power."
As for Huckabee's former campaign manager . . . Chip Saltsman is making the battle for RNC chairman into an air war. "Saltsman will travel the country next week to meet with high-ranking Republicans as he considers a bid to be the next chairman of the Republican National Committee," per CNN's Mark Preston. "But don't look for him running through any major airports. Instead, Saltsman will pilot his own plane -- a Piper Arrow -- which will allow him to touch down in small airports and avoid the inconveniences of commercial flying."
Who wants the job? "GOP aspirants face the possibility of a nightmare scenario: taking the helm of a party so weighed down by doctrinaire hard-liners and hectoring moralists that no one, especially an RNC chair, will be able to change course and avoid a tsunami of culturally disinhibited, secularizing 'creatives,' Hispanics, African Americans, and a young netroot-savvy demographic cohort larger than the Baby Boom," Tom Edsall writes for Huffington Post.
Whither the GOP? It helps to agree on a diagnosis, before the treatment regimen can begin: "[Republicans] differ, though, on whether the heavy losses Republicans suffered in the past two election cycles were a result of unique circumstances and the ever-swinging political pendulum or structural problems that could keep them shut out of power for years to come," Politico's Jonathan Martin writes. "GOP officials and strategists at party conferences last week offered sharply contrasting assessments of what went wrong, and of how difficult it will be to rebuild. Perhaps not surprisingly, the split tended to fall along generational lines."
Harsh words, from a rising star: "Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, poised to ascend to House Republicans' No. 2 leader this week, said the Republican Party in Washington is no longer 'relevant' to voters and must stop simply espousing principles," per the Washington Times' Stephen Dinan.
Says Cantor: "Where we have really fallen down is, we have lacked the ability to be relevant to people's lives. Let's set aside the last eight years, and our falling down in living up to expectations of what we said we were going to do. . . . It's the relevancy question."
Arnold doesn't want to hear about "values": "This dialogue about 'we have to go back to our core values.' What is that?" Schwarzenegger said during an interview on "This Week." "How far does 'core' go back in history in America?" Thirty years? Fifty years? Because we know that Teddy Roosevelt talks about universal healthcare. . . . I think it's all nonsense talk."