I poll and I have opinions. My polling shows, just like everyone else, that the two Republican frontrunners for the Presidential nomination are mogul Donald Trump and neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson. Mr. Trump is the master of the media, captures a lot of attention, and produces wonderful ratings for those who follow him. (Full disclosure: see below that my highest viewed post for Forbes was about him!). Dr. Carson offers the same kind of straight talk, no holds barred. One is loud, the other quiet. But they are capturing a lot of support because they do come from or are defined as politicians. Their appeal is that they speak their minds, eschew political correctness, and make good copy.

But they generate a lot of controversy and that is not the formula for a GOP victory. Out of office for eight years, the party needs to show it can win a national election. In Presidential election years it has a huge demographic deficit and risks drawing young and minority voters, otherwise disaffected from the whole scene, to come out on Election Day just to vote against the Republicans.

So the GOP needs something bold and fresh, but it also needs to show it can govern when it gets the chance. Even though it has been eight years since George W. Bush was in office, his legacy is still tarnished by leading the United States into one war on the basis of a lie, making the situation in Iraq even worse than it was, leading us into another war in Afghanistan and failing at that, recording huge deficits, and ending his term in a Great Recession. The party has gone on to win two Congressional election cycles but failing to govern. Congress’s job approval rating is again down to 9% — which is not pretty.

Some candidates for the 2016 nomination will be gone shortly which will allow the voters and the press to focus more clearly on those who can win. And the Presidency is not all about cutting real estate deals and separate twins conjoined by the brain. It is about identifying problems, offering solutions, working with an ungainly legislative body, horse trading, rallying the American people into a majority coalition to pass legislation, and getting things done.

It is about building a governing majority and keeping – not about alienating large numbers of constituents, one group at a time. In this regard, in the GOP’s search for the purest conservative, it is tripping over itself to anger whole groups of voters it needs to overcome its minority status. It is also waging a battle that no one understands. What does it matter if someone is the real conservative when only 38% see themselves as conservative, including a decreasing number of young voters?

The GOP has to be steady and it has to be bold. Being steady means avoiding the risk of nominating someone who has never governed. It has to show that its leader can be illuminated by conservative principles but still run a government that is inclusive, fair, and competent.

At the same time, the party has to broaden itself. White voters are shrinking as their share of the electorate – and Republican Presidential nominees have been getting only 57% of the share of white. So the party will need to at least stop the bleeding by attracting minorities and young people.

To be sure, if the Democrats nominate someone too controversial, things could backfire and voters can be brought out to stop that nominee. But I think the ideal GOP ticket for next year includes representatives of the two must-win states – Ohio and Florida. So my ideal choices are Ohio Governor John Kasich for President and Florida Senator Marco Rubio for Vice President.

Why not the other way around? Mr. Kasich, as I have written before, has a proven track record as both a legislator and executive. He has successfully led his state out of a recession and produced a budget surplus. He has plenty of experience on issues related to the military, budget in and taxes, and economic development. Mr. Rubio is the face of the future – he is young, articulate, passionate, and has a powerful story to tell as an American.

Democrats Joe Biden and Kirsten Gillibrand vs. Republicans John Kasich and Marco Rubio. Sounds fresh, intelligent, exciting, and right to me.