Sunday, February 12, 2012

Presidential Race and 2013 budget

Good Sunday morning. Now that we know how those riveting Maine caucuses turned out, it's time to figure out what everything means (yes, that's sarcasm!). By the way, did you know the Iowa Republican Caucus turnout was nearly 22 times that of Maine? And Maine votes for a week. Interesting.

Mitt Romney got his butt kicked for most of the week. Is there any other way to spin that, despite the Romney people's best efforts? Rick Santorum took the triple-header sweep Tuesday by winning Minnesota, Colorado and Missouri contests. So Romney at least gets to say he won Maine and he won the CPAC straw poll. And no question, he did. However, combine the totals from both of those events yesterday and you get about 9,000 votes. That's it. In light of that, I found a tweet from the Romney campaign a bit amusing.
"Tonight, I thank the voters of Maine. I’m committed to turning around America & am heartened to have the support of so many."
Now, of course, maybe I'm taking this tweet a bit too literally when it reads "to have the support of so many". Is it talking about the entire country? I would hope so, because the campaign would be hard pressed to show the Maine results in any way represent "the support of so many".

Saturday's results at least attempt to change or redirect the narrative with Romney that, despite running for president for the past 6 years, he still can't seem to win over the majority of his own party. We will have a few weeks until the Arizona and Michigan contests. But what, if anything, can Romney do to really get conservatives on his side? He tries to use the word, "conservative", it seems, as much as he can. But if you're a conservative, should you have to keep repeating that word again and again to convince people you are one? Shouldn't they already know from your record?

What happened to Ron Paul? This was supposed to be the cycle that the Ron Paul Revolution went mainstream. Caucuses were supposed to be his thing. While Paul came close in Maine, he still hasn't won a single caucus. Actually, he hasn't won a single state of the first 9, regardless of the form of that state's election. It's getting more and more difficult for Paul supporters to convince traditional Republicans that their candidate can be the nominee. It seems more unlikely with each passing contest.

Santorum had a nice week winning those 3 races Tuesday. But what does he now do with them? He was all over the network morning news shows. He likes to be that "little engine that could". But for him to truly be the Romney alternative, doesn't he need to start showing he can raise the cash and set up the campaign operations to actually win on Super Tuesday, March 6th, when 10 states hold their elections?

And then there's Newt Gingrich. Where was he this week? I still find it hard to believe he'll give up. But he seemed to be no factor at all recently. Without debates and big money, it seems like he will need his hated elite media to keep him relevant, won't he?

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