Friday, February 17, 2012

Breaking GOP 2012 Update -State of Maine Recount! Counties Missing from Official Tally – Romney May Loose Maine – Paul a First State Win- Analysis

Who Won Maine - That's the Question! 184 Vote Romney Margin May Disappear in Recount - image Washington Times

Fromthe Portland Press Herald – the Main GOP is recounting the caucus votes due to pressure from Maine State Republican Committee Members

  • 1. Romney won by 194 votes out of 5585 total, those votes did not include Washington County

  • 2. Clerical and Commuter errors, in much of Waldo County were left votes off the table, and other community vote totals were erroneously entered (Press Herald)

  • In light of the Press Heralds information – a slim margin of 194 votes, with large (for Maine) blocs of votes either missing or entered incorrectly, could change the schematic of the race towards Paul, and/or give Romney a larger edge – but, with the focus on the Establishment GOP and its role in the Romney campaign, one would be under the impression that Paul, not Romney would have something to gain if the votes are recounted, and corrected.

    The large state, (historically the former upper end of Massachusetts, made a singular state in the Missouri Compromise), is one of the larger states in the Union with areas such as Washington County, where the vote was delayed due to snow, slowing the process, especially as the primary is in the format of a caucus. The fact that a winner was declare with 20% (approximately) of the vote totaled, with known errors, is at best incompetent.
    The Maine Caucus is similar to that of the Missouri Caucus both being non-binding where no delegates are awarded until later in the process (In Maine’s’ case May, Missouri releases their delegates in March).

    If Maine goes to Paul, the current state win count would be:
    Gingrich: SC
    Paul: Maine
    Romney: NH, NV, FL
    Santorum, IA, CO, MO, MN

    The next primary contests are on the 28th of February in Michigan and Arizona, a debate is scheduled for the 22nd on CNN at 8 PM EST, both the March 1st Debate and the March 5th Debates have been cancelled, those debates prior to Super Tuesday – therefore the performance of the February 22nd Debate per candidate will not only be of import in Michigan and AZ, but will play to the voters in the Super Tuesday States: Alaska, Georgia, Idaho, Massachusetts, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Vermont and Virginia – of those states, Alaska is one that may move towards Romney, Massachusetts, the Santorum Campaign has Grassroots in place on the ground, no other campaigns are active. In Virginia, there are two names on the ballot, Paul and Romney – where in 2008 Paul bested Romney in the state primary. It is difficult to tell at this stage, but one might not want to count out a Paul in Virginia, where it comes down to a choice between two candidates (See Missouri).

    In the case of Santorum - given his popularity with manufacturing states, (or former manufacturing states) and the middle and western states, may see Idaho, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma and Tennessee go his way. Massachusetts and Vermont could prove to be upsets with Massachusetts going to Santorum, or Paule (Santorum again, has boots on the ground), and Vermont leans Libertarian, therefore, that is as difficult call. Those two states (although not on anyone's radar) will depend on candidates grassroots strength and or the presence of a candidate on the ground. The later is unlikely given the nature of both states (Liberal leaning). That said, with no-one watching: Mitt Romney, although popular with the establishment GOP in Massachusetts, he has an uphill battle with the State’s unenrolled and rank and file Republicans.

    Speculation: If Romney should lose Michigan, it would be a, as pundits note, a blow, simply because he spent his early childhood there, however, if Romney were to loose Massachusetts, it would send a strong message of rejection across the board, as the state is used as a testing ground for moderate/liberals nationwide. With Super Tuesday and the schematics of all states combined, watch for a downplay of importance from the Romney campaign on the role Super Tuesday plays in the nominating process (similar to the reaction to CO, MO, and MN.)

    Thursday, February 16, 2012

    2012 GOP Update – the Catholic Church and Birth Control vs Governing – Media Grasping at Straws with Rick Santorum Anti-Woman Rhetoric

    Rick Santorum - a Problem with Women? - from Christian Science Monitor

    Apparently and according to an Op-ed in the Washington Post, Rick Santorum said “Birth Control is Harmful to Women” – and since he said that (without the entire context of the video which is below) he therefore must be “against women”. However in listening to the entire video – which apparently is one of the few things that the left (or the right, perhaps opposition research) has on Santorum In viewing the entire video, It is quite clear that he was speaking as a Catholic, from a personal perception, which is not to be confused with the way he voted. Santorum supported Contraceptive use from a legislature’s standpoint- period.

    The fact is the man understands the separation of Church and State, which the current occupant of the White House apparently does not. This is why the Catholic Church is not buying into the whole: if you own a charity or business and you are the Catholic Church and you fund everything, you must pay for contraceptives and abortions – against the tenants of your faith. When the Bishops rejected that as totally unacceptable (again Church and State), the President pulled an “end-run” and figured he’d just have the insurance companies mandate coverage for birth control and abortion - in essence forcing all religious groups to go against the tenants of their faiths.

    The action prompted former Governor of Arkansas and 2008 GOP Contender for the Presidential nomination, to note “We are All Catholics Now” Huffington Post, and leaders of all faiths, including Muslim Clerics, voiced opposition to the President’s plan.
    Therefore, as a practicing Catholic, Santorum, in expressing his Catholic viewpoint, is looked at as someone who is “out of touch” or not with or for women. This is, in essence the most ridiculous statement any opponent might take, especially as his record supports the separation between Contraction and the support of bills that included aid for contraceptive use. It is the political attack practice of drawing a conclusion that the individual and “what they might do” as a Catholic (or Christian), is clearly going to influence their position as President - its bunk and they know it.

    There was great fear with John F. Kennedy first ran for office, - he was a Catholic, and the opposition were concerned that Rome, the Pope, would run the nation. Of course, now, after history has given us the nature of the man, one finds there was no grounds whatsoever for the charges leveled at Kennedy, and his choice of Religious – again Catholic.
    It is that there are practicing Catholics, like a Rick Santorum, and so many Catholics from the other side of the Aisle (Pelosi for example), that do not vote in a manner consistent with the teachings of the Catholic Church – In fact, Nancy Pelosi is at odds with the teachings of the church on almost every single issue, especially her support of Abortion at any stage. Yet they are both Catholics, one is touting the line for the Progressives, and denying her faith, while the other is a Catholic, does not deny his faith, yet legislatures with the separation of church and state in mind. It’s honest and frankly refreshing.

    The line will become from the left, should Santorum win the nomination and that appears to be increasingly possible, (if not probable should he win the Michigan Primary), then it will that Santorum will be “against women” – even though, his record states otherwise – what one has to understand is that frankly – women are not that stupid. Women understand the difference between the two, just as Senator Santorum understands his roles, and what his role would be as President. The fact that he is so proud of the accomplishments of women, (one need only look to his wife, and how he speaks of her, in terms of his pride of her accomplishments), it would be inconceivable that he would attempt to pull an end run around the constitution, for something as small an issue (in light of the much larger problems facing this nation), similar to that of the President. Sorry, but, one can’t see a President Santorum banning Birth Control from the land.

    As far as birth control being dangerous for women, honestly some of it is – as the science of pharmacology develops, there have been, over time, instances where women have suffered because of the use of a particular product ((IUD)), or the benign hormone based birth control, now with much reduced hormones (cancer), is still offering some side effects. There is also, one must note, advances in the product to make them much more “safer” than they were in 2002, or prior to that period.

    One must ask – have they yet perfected a bill or devise for men so that women do not have to remember to take that pill, or surgically implant a device? It is the woman who is constantly made responsible, for an action that involves two. The argument could be made that those on the left, screaming about the former Senator, might be a bit anti-feminist (rhetorically speaking).

    One must also ask: does one prefer a candidate that has a basis in faith and that subscribes to that faith, and has been consistent in their legislation, and the way they lead their lives, understanding the separation of church and state, or does one prefer a candidate that either does not speak of his faith, or, is at best, unclear as to their faith, and disregards the constitution when it comes to legislation.

    As a non-practicing Evangelical Catholic, this blogger appreciates the straight-forward, individual, one who would stand up for the Catholic Church and any Church, while bringing the Constitution to bear on social issues.

    The truth of the matter is, all candidates that remain, have either been in the legislature in some capacity, and having done so, have signed bills and supported legislation for spending that would be seen as “big government” and or pork (and yes, that includes Ron Paul), and one who was Governor, who received Pork for the State, and as a private CEO of the Olympics, lobbied hard for Federal Funds. It is who will admit it, who will say, yes I did this because it benefited my state or district, that is the stand-up guy, as long as that individual hasn’t lobbed accusations at his opponents, and only one of the four comes to mind and that is Rick Santorum. Apparently, the left and the right must understand that as well, considering these attacks are, at best flimsy - Santorum is, therefore, the "front-runner" and therefore has not become a threat to Progressives and those candidates remaining in the GOP Presidential nomination process.

    Therefore, as a women who is keenly interested in the character of the President, and that candidates record in government or in working with the government, one gets a glimpse of that candidate might approach the presidency. Of the four, Santorum has, given more time in the debate arena, and in the multitude of interviews, shown himself as a “stand-up” guy. Not the lesser of four evils, but someone who one can actually get behind and support. Yes, even as a “woman”, one of the group that is perceived “owned” by a party based on one issue and one issue only – abortion and contraceptives. Not equal pay for equal work, not equal protection under the law, but on a social issue. Nothing could be more insulting to the intellect of the woman who votes.

    Wednesday, February 15, 2012

    Massachusetts Primary Vote Registration Deadline! GOP Candidates on the Ballot - Rick Santorum MA Grassroots Campaign

    Via the Boston Globe: a reminder that the date to register to vote in the Massachusetts Primary is today, Wed. the 15th of February. One can register on line. The candidates on the GOP Ballot:
    Massachusetts Primary Vote Registration Deadline! GOP Candidates on the Ballot: Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Ron Pual, John Hunstman and Michelle Bachmann - both Bachmann and Huntsman are no longer campaigning.

    Anyone in Massachusetts interested in volunteering for their favorite campaign should check social media.

    For example to Volunteer for the Rick Santorum campaign in Massachusetts visit:

    Facebook: Rick Santorum Grassroots in Massachusetts: Rick Santorum MASS

    Don't forget to register to vote, and check your polling places, as redistriting may have included changes in polling places - that information should be available on one's City or Town's website.

    The primary will be held March 6th, the Democrat ballot has one candidate, President Barack Obama

    GOP Michigan Update – Santorum Leads in Polling, Romney’s “Home Turf” – Romney Campaign – A Must Win for Romney Candidacy

    Romney in sweater (casual) and Santorum in Suit (Presidential) image yahoo news.

    It is not with a bit of déjà vu that the 2012 Mitt Romney Campaign is in some ways, similar to the 2008 Romney Campaign, the mains similarity is the scorched earth advertising policy when it comes to GOP opponents that are polling ahead of the former Bay State Governor. Other than that, it amounts to the number and position of states where Romney has won and especially where he has not – and when he has lost, in most cases it was with wide margins – with Mitt Romney it is, defined by regions, a love him, or leave him electorate. There are certain states, however, where it is anticipated that a candidate should be a “shoe-in”, and in Romney’s Case that is the State of Michigan (and on Super Tuesday, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts), however, recent Polls suggest that Romney may not win the all-important Michigan Primary – rather the former Senator from Pennsylvania, who is now seen as the front-runner, is leading Romney in polls outside of the margin of error.

    The poll, conducted by the American Research Group show Rick Santorum leading with Romney in second, Gingrich in Third, Paul in 4th, and other and undecided at 1% and 6% respectively. The poll was conducted among Republican voters and Independents with the electoral makeup of the state fairly well represented. In a preference to vote question, Santorum leads Romney by double digits – and among gender, Santorum is evenly split between men and women (33% to 33%, while Romney has a slight edge over Santorum with Women (39%) but a huge deficit with men (17%). It is clear that Romney’s Michigan win may go the way of his Colorado and Minnesota wins (two states where they were confident Romney would win handily).

    It has the campaigns somewhat rattled, according to an article in the Canadian Nanaimo Daily News Headline: “Romney campaign may need bailout in native state of Michigan” - from a new television ad picturing the Governor driving a New Chrysler, while attempting to explain his opposition to the auto bailout. However, in an op-ed in the Michigan papers,

    In a separate op-ed published in Tuesday's Detroit News, Romney says he opposed the Obama administration's bailout of Chrysler and General Motors because it was "crony capitalism" that amounted to "an $85 billion sweetheart deal" for auto unions at the expense of company creditors.
    "The indisputable good news is that Chrysler and General Motors are still in business," Romney writes. "The equally indisputable bad news is that all the defects in President Obama's management of the American economy are evident in what he did."

    The most telling quote from that article comes at the close “"Romney is in the position now where he is having to defend the position that sounds a lot like what McCain said last time."

    Romney’s PAC and his campaign intends to turn their attention to the rise of Santorum, however, they bought over one million dollars in advertising targeting Gingrich in Michigan, Romney is attempting to keep both Santorum from Winning and Gingrich from outperforming Romney – there is, by preference, the same distance between Gingrich and Romney in the American Research Poll as between Romney and Santorum, the front-runner. It is a strategists nightmare, and one in which, should Romney come in second in his home state it would be a major setback, however, to come in third, would be a confirmation that the man is not electable in a state that is considered his.

    The Problem that Romney faces with Santorum, is twofold – one Romney continues to resonate on the low side with the base, doing better with moderates, and holding steady in the 20’s, secondly, Santorum knows manufacturing, and had done much to support U.S. Manufacturing (U.S. jobs) while in the Senate – (see (the library of Congress to dispute claims made about Santorum’s voting record, especially by the Ron Paul Campaign). One need only search by candidate by year to find legislation that was sponsored (written) by that legislator and those that were co-sponsored, or supported by that legislator. The claims about big-government spending made by both Romney (who lobbied for billions for the U.S. Salt Lake Olympics), and Paul (who sponsored a host of bills on benefits for seniors among other projects (pork) for his district), fall flat when one views the records side by side). It is a case of the pot calling the kettle black in order to get a leg up.

    Two is the question of electability - between Romney and Santorum, one might say that Santorum lost a Senate Race, after having won multiple races, however, one might say that Romney lost a senate Race and barely won the Governor’s race in Massachusetts, while also losing the 2008 bit for the GOP nomination – as of now, polls show Santorum has a slight edge over Romney nationally in the GOP, while polling against Obama (which changes daily), either besting the President, or doing somewhat better or somewhat worse (by one point) than Romney in head to head matchups (which to be sure are just for “fun” at this stage of the game). The main focus of the candidates now, is to win the base and the independents in order to secure the nomination – anything else is simply eyewash.

    The fact of the matter is that Santorum is now surging, and at this stage in the game, that surge with a win in Michigan or several Super Tuesday States, would be enough to propel him to the confirmed front-runner. Romney is in the position where he has to play catch-up and normally the instinct is to use negative advertisements that are over the top – which, has worked in 2 of the states, it backfired in Iowa, where Romney literally helped Santorum by destroying the Gingrich Campaign, allowing Santorum to rise and beat Romney.

    Santorum is now facing the vetting process that Gingrich faced, but there is little that is not an open book, or has not been brought to the forefront, the former Pennsylvania Senator is somewhat ‘squeaky’ clean in comparison to the other candidates – and he appeals to the bulk of the electorate those who work for a living or did work in – manufacturing. It is the loss of manufacturing, the chronic unemployment in the nation (although on paper improved somewhat), and the obvious passion with which Santorum addresses the need for manufacturing, and the jobs they would crate, that is resonating. Although the pundits and the inclination of the national GOP is that a front-runner should have been chosen in the first caucus, the fact is that the longer these candidates battle it out, and the longer they are vetted, they become the stronger candidate.

    Watch the next debate: Feb. 22nd on CNN

    Primaries: February 28th, Arizona and Michigan

    Tuesday, February 14, 2012

    GOP Update: Target Michigan – Romney’s PAC to attack Gingrich with Half a Million Dollars in Ads – Will they Never Learn? Negatives Produce Negatives

    The Candidates - For all the negative ads run on his behalf, Romney remains flat - image from

    To date, the proclaimed 2012 GOP “Front-runner”, Mitt Romney, has managed to win the states of New Hampshire, Maine, Nevada and Florida – four out of 9 states which have held either primaries or caucuses, some of which were non-binding. Of the four states that Romney did win, the only one that is of possible consequence is Florida, none of the others are considered all important “swing states”. His polling continues to trend flat, even though there are now four candidates in the race. He is either ahead of the pack by a small margin, or tied, or behind given the day of the week or the pollster, therefore something is not quite working for Mitt Romney. It could be his record as Governor of Massachusetts, where he ran as, what amounts to a Progressive Republican, and then governed as a moderate, more Democrat than Republican at times in a state that’s electorate is ruled by the unenrolled voter (over 50% of the Commonwealth’s voters choose not to affiliate with a political party.) Then again, it could be his flat performances in the majority of debates he has participated in, with one or two examples noted in this blog where he clearly won.

    However, it could be the negatives surrounding Romney, as in Negative attack ads produced, not by other candidates, but by the Romney Campaign and the Super Pac, Restore Our Future, against any candidate that is leading Romney or close to leading in the polls in any given state. Romney made a lot of friends via his PAC prior to his candidacy for the 2012 nomination which, by campaign laws, once he became a candidate, he could no longer be directly involved with Restore Our Future. However, Romney had made donations to campaigns across the nation in 2010, supporting candidates that eventually became Congressional Representatives, Governors and Senators. This sets up a “scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” situation when it comes to endorsements (Which are translated into Delegates to the GOP convention – thus pumping up Romney’s Delegate count.) It is not that what Romney did is in any way illegal, or for that manner, no different than candidates in the past – it is the vitriol and plane falsehoods and half-truths against that are played out in each state against the closet opponent in ads funded by the PAC that are questionable. It is one thing to attack an opponent on their record, it is another thing, altogether to go that extra step and make false claims. This is something that Super PACS are known for, for the most part – a scorched earth policy to political advertising, the goal to undo the candidacy of the opposition, no matter if the claims may be over the top false.

    It is a tactic that worked in Iowa, for the most part, ads against Newt Gingrich were so damning and frequent, that he lost the large margin he held over Romney, and Romney lost Iowa, to Rick Santorum – who was, at that time polling at the back of the pack of candidates. To Santorum’s credit, he had be the only candidate (besides Michelle Bachmann) who actually committed to spending time in the state of Iowa, a plus. However, the point is still made that Romney lost the state, despite the large investment in negatives advertising by the PAC. He continued in the same vein, won New Hampshire (where he actually showed up), and then lost South Carolina, despite the negatives. It worked in Florida - the PAC had been running ads in Florida weeks before the primary – and the State’s Republican leadership, endorsed Romney – making for a double whammy that slammed the Gingrich campaign. It was not however, to this point of view, the negative advertising of which the PAC and Romney are so fond, it was the debate which Gingrich lost of his own accord, that cost him the State of Florida.

    Suddenly, Romney found himself facing Rick Santorum again, in a three state contest, where it was assumed that Romney as front runner would win the States of Colorado and Minnesota, and possibly the non-binding caucus in Missouri – but Santorum won all three, and not by small margins, rather commanding leads.

    Batter up! It’s on to Michigan and Arizona, and yes, Restore our Future has been and is at it again – in Michigan, a State seen as critical for Romney to not only win, but to do well, in double digits. The three points to five point wins are not mandates – they are, although a win, problematic, for a “front-runner”, when at least 50% or more of the base are turning to another candidate(s). As of this moment, that appears to be happening in Michigan, a mere two weeks or less before the primary, Rick Santorum is leading Romney in polling (Rasmussen and Public Policy Polling), and Restore Our Future is, according the New York Times investing $500,000 in advertising, in addition to $700,000 that has already been spent in the state - the ads will be the same that have been run absent Newt Gingrich:

    “Newt has tons of baggage,” a narrator says. “Beating Obama is important, too important to risk on Newt Gingrich.”
    The ad will run throughout Michigan in the major media markets of Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing and Flint, as well as in the less populous northern regions. It will also run on Fox News on the western side of the state.
    Suggesting that Restore Our Future had other ads in the works, a top strategist for the group, Carl Forti, said Monday that the “Risk” ad “will stay up initially.”

    One has to ask, if the PAC has already spent over a half million dollars in negative advertising in Michigan, why then is Romney polling behind Rick Santorum? (Note of the same ads run in Minnesota, Romney managed to come in third in that state’s Caucus.) It is a risk, indeed, a risk that the negatives will bury the candidate for whom one is rooting.

    It is abundantly clear that after months of attack ads the Romney Campaign would have been better served if they had run ads that were compare and contract on Romney’s achievements versus the rest of the candidates, or even against the main target of all the candidates vying for the Presidency, the current occupant of the White House. When one is already hampered by negatives with one’s base, to top that off with a barrage of at best misleading and at worst false claims against one’s fellows, the one is playing with fire – and one will end up holding onto a fistful of delegates and then releasing them to the nominee at the Convention in Tampa in August. This is the same pattern employed in 2008, and when one follows the same tactic that did not work in the past, history tells us, they are doomed to repeat the results.

    Love them, hate them (although hate is too strong a word, seriously), the four candidates left in the field, should be judged on their records, their ability to connect with the populace vis a vis their stand on current issues, and their performance in debates. They all offer different views (although some are similar), and all are accomplished in their own way, and ultimately qualified – it is up to the voters in each of the states to choose based on how well they personally identify with one candidate or another, and those negatives, regardless of misleading or false ads against a candidate, will surface all of their own accord. It is more productive, for the candidate to compare and contrast their policy viewpoints, or records, against another candidate, keeping the truth in front, lest they all, to a man (as there is not woman in the pack), produce “dirt” that will, in the months following the convention, serve to aid the opposition. Of course, then the results may indeed be the same, so in what might be viewed somewhat ironically, the backlash will be against the campaign or the campaigns PAC’s (of which now the President is a fan), who goes negative to the extreme. It will be the candidate who confronts the attack with integrity, that will prevail, not the attacker.

    Monday, February 13, 2012

    Rick Santorum Leads Romney in Michigan Polls - So Much for Inevitable Nominee

    Romney and Santorum - image the

    From the Santorum is now leading Ronmney in two polls in the State of Michigan - what is noted as a must win for Romney. After the weekends CPAC Straw Poll and slim win in the State of Maine, it was not inevitable that Romney would continue to hold states, specifically with his difficulty in relating to the rank and file (of all political parties).

    Romney CPAC – Severely Conservative Governor of Massachusetts? – Failure To Connect with Conservatives - Analysis

    The Contenders: Romney, Gingrich, Santorum, Paul - no clear front-runner at this stage: image from

    Mitt Romney’s Speech at CPAC included a line that rang hollow with some of those in attendance:

    “I fought against long odds in a deep blue state, but I was a severely conservative Republican governor.”
    (Red State)

    The fact that his statement is at odds with the way that he mostly governed in Massachusetts, appearing most moderate at times – which is understood to work for Massachusetts, given the alleged high number of Democrats in the Bay State – what is true, is that the state has few Registered Republican’s by percentage (11%), and more registered Democrats (36%) with the majority of the state clearly “unenrolled” - of those, given the chance the vote will go towards the least offensive of the two party candidates – or the candidate that connects most with the people. In Romney’s case, he was elected as the least offensive, given Shannon O’Brien’s remarks on parental notification for abortions being lowered below the age of 18 – a statement that saw a steep decline in her poll numbers three weeks before the election in 2002. Up until that point she was leading in all polls, given her stellar record on gun ownership, she was what would be called today – a “blue dog” Democrat. It was the massive amount of unenrolleds voters that pushed the election to Romney. It was perceived as Romney being more moderate and winning an election by the GOP, in the same way that the more moderate Weld is perceived. That said, it may work in Massachusetts, or be perceived as working in Massachusetts, but it does not work in the heartland or in areas of the nation where the electorate is clearly conservative – rather than “severely conservative”.

    Sarah Palin who was a keynote speaker at CPAC, noted on Fox News Sunday that:

    I trust that his idea of conservatism is evolving, and I base this on a pretty moderate past that he has had, even in some cases a liberal past," Palin said. "He agreed with mandating on a state level what his constituents needed to be provided, needed to purchase, in the way of health care, and Romney care which of course was the precursor to Obama care. Now that’s a problem."
    "He’s still in the 30 percentile mark when it comes to approval and primary wins and caucus wins," she said. "He still hasn’t risen above that yet, because we are not convinced."
    (from Politico)

    One can be sure that Mitt Romney wants to be President, and that he feels that he is able to do the job, given his experience with the Olympics, for example, however, it is his failure to connect to the average guy, and his record as a moderate, that has conservatives running in any direction but towards the former Governor.

    From the standpoint of someone who survived the proverbial frying pan (Romney), only to get tossed into the fire (Deval Patrick), it is difficult to tell if there was much of a difference in policy at times – there is still the focus on entitlement programs, there are still consistent “fee or tax increases”, it is a given that one will be taxed or “fee-ed” in Massachusetts now, be it a Republican Governor in the mold of Romney or a Democrat in the mold of Deval Patrick. To be fair to Romney he did balance the budget in Massachusetts, but not without raising “fees”, a sticking point with most Conservatives in the “Bluest State”. For example, fishing licenses, for those who enjoy casting into a trout stream, are the fees that were raised to the point where most families could no longer enjoy a day trout fishing in Massachusetts. There is a very thin line between the very poor in Massachusetts and those working for a somewhat living wage, one pays the fees and taxes to support the other (or in Mitt Romney Speak - the safety net) – a case one might suspect is the same in most states that have costly entitlement programs such as: universal mandatory health insurance for example.

    The aforementioned makes Romney a hard sell – he could stand on the fact that he was elected Governor while running as a Republican, and leave it at that. Severely conservative however, is a stretch.

    On Friday, on drive time talk radio WRKO’s “Howie Carr” managed to get Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell on the phone at CPAC - on-air (Paraphrased) Carr: Governor, I understand you’re a conservative, both fiscally and socially? Governor McDonnell: Yes I am. Carr: Then why are you supporting Mitt Romney?!

    McDonnell then gave a statement that screamed "patented by the Romney campaign". The usual talking point on Romney’s ability to get elected, his experience as a businessman, etc., which when a surrogate is speaking on Romney in that manner, is known in Massachusetts as “Romney calling in favors” – it is the fact that his PAC (which he no longer can control) supported so many Conservatives and moderates during the 2010 election, who now elected, are his stepping stone(in terms of their being both surrogates, as well as delegates (super delegates by virtue of the office held or prior office held),) to the nomination – in Romney’s plan.

    Unfortunately, there is that nagging electorate to which he cannot seem to connect – those looking for a candidate that has a consistent conservative message, a candidate that connects with the people, not only conservatives, but the total electorate – 100% of the people.

    Of course the aforementioned is somewhat utopian, but not impossible, even with the partisanship that exists today, like never before, it is not impossible for an individual perceived as honest, and willing to lead the nation, without dictating to the nation, someone who stands on the principles of the Constitution, someone who is a conservative, without being “severely” conservative. These individuals exist, and they are generally found standing at the podium to the right and left of Mitt Romney.

    According to Beltway mentality – it is simply “Romney’s Turn” perhaps, in the same manner is which any moderate is “next in line” if a previous election were lost (see the nominee history of the Republican party over the past few decades, and no more explanation is necessary, with only one glaring exception – Ronald Regan. However, there is no Ronald Reagan, there will never be another Ronald Reagan, there are, however, fiscal and social conservative packages, again standing next to Romney at the podiums. One almost feels sorry for Romney, who again, it not his desire to serve that is questioned, it is his Conservative Credentials – constantly – it is almost as if he should, in some people’s minds, be mounting a challenge against Barack Obama, as a registered Democrat.

    To be fair, people do change their minds, on one issue or two, but changing one’s mind, on all issues, over and over again, begins to appear to be a case of pandering to get elected. It could be true that Romney has changed his viewpoint on Abortion or on Taxes. It is not that he is insincere either, it is, again, the perception of insincerity and the perception of non-conservatism that will follow him through the remainder of this campaign. It may have been, to those in the Beltway, “his turn”, but to those voters seeking change, and leadership and fiscal or social (or both) conservatism, it is apparently, not his turn at all.

    The "problem with the lower turnout at the elections" would also be improved if those in the rank and file did not know, for instance, that Romney is the Frontrunner, or the Eventual Nominee. This message is pushed down the throats of Republicans and those who might vote in a Republican primary causes apathy – pure and simple. A why bother to go and vote when it has already been decided who is going to win state of mind. With the realty being that no one has this nomination secured, by a long mile, and that it should be noted that there is clearly no one frontrunner, by virtue of winning states, rather there is, for the first time in a long time, a competitive race for the GOP nomination. It should be: now get out and vote.

    The strategy may have done more to hurt Romney than help him – or he may have suspended his campaign early, depending on the turnout and the outcome. It should have been run that way, but it was not. Republican’s and those who are leaning conservative or are conservative are still choosing, vetting each of the candidates that do well, and with Super Tuesday on the horizon, (slightly less super with some of the states opting to hold earlier primaries or caucuses), it will be the bellwether going forward as to which of the four remaining will be the contenders for the nomination. It is, form this standpoint, far from decided, and it is as it should be. The most conservative (speaking fiscally and socially): Rick Santorum, followed by Newt Gingrich, followed by the Libertarian Ron Paul, then there is Mitt Romney, those are the choices, all of which are capable, some of whom have baggage, (which is called making a mistake or simply governing to the will of the people of a particular state (in the Case of Rick Santorum – otherwise known as Squeaky Clean and, in this mind, the “eventual nominee” by virtue of his ability to connect, and his credentials), and some are perceived as having a weaker Conservative foreign policy than others (Ron Paul), but the later three are perceived as standing by their convictions, regardless, while those in the trenches, just are not sure where Mitt Romney stands – it comes down to trust – and all the aforementioned combined are what makes a candidate: electable.

    Sunday, February 12, 2012

    Mitt Romney Election Dysfunction – Narrowly “Wins” Maine, follows 3 point “Victory” at CPAC Straw Poll – Is he Electable? (SNL Video)

    The State of Maine Caucus, with 84% of the vote reported, called the race a win for Mitt Romney, former Massachusetts Governor. The tally: Mitt Romney: 39.2, Ron Paul, 35.7, not campaigning in the State of Maine, Rick Santorum at 17.7% - both Gingrich and “others” were in single digits. Of note, in 2008 Romney took the State of Maine with 51.9% to John McCain’s, 21% (New York Times).

    CPAC, held its annual convention, and straw poll the same day – which Romney won, again, by a squeaker, in the national poll, 27 to 25% for Rick Santorum – in the Convention poll (those attending, which includes establishment GOP), Romney won by a larger margin, of 38 to 31 (Santorum) respectively. (Huffington Post) Romney’s win inside CPAC is being compared by some media, to that of George W. Bush, who had previously won CPAC at 42% in 2000 (The Blaze)

    What’s next? – Arizona and Michigan, which has little to no polling since Rick Santorum swept the states of Colorado, Missouri and Minnesota last week: See Real Clear Politics The last polls showed Romney leading, with Gingrich in close second in both states. It is unclear at this point, this far out from the primaries, if these numbers will hold up – but the momentum is clearly on Rick Santorum’s side, considering he has won swing states, where Romney has not.

    The video below from Saturday Night Live, goes over the Romney losses to Santorum, and pretty much sums up the entire Romney character.

    Romney’s election history
  • 2008 – Presidential run – looses to John McCain, drops out after Super Tuesday

  • 2002 – Narrowly wins the Governorship of the State of Massachusetts against a pro-gun, Democrat, Shannon O’Brien – O’Brien had been polling ahead of Romney throughout the contest, (Free Republic), until they debated the issue of abortion, trying to outdo one another as to who was more “pro-choice”, O’Brien called for 16 year olds to be allowed to seek an abortion without parental consent, and her numbers plummeted ((see What’s Wrong with Mitt Romney, for video. Romney won with less than 50% of the vote, less than any other Massachusetts Republican candidate for Governor (legal insurrection)

  • and lost to Ted Kennedy in 1994 by 17 points .

  • Overall, one has to question the fact that this early in the game, with Romney’s election statistics, why he is being touted as a frontrunner.

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