The End’s Not Near, It’s Here!

So this is less of a blog post and more of a goodbye, unfortunately!

I’ve decided to put Politicin’ on an indefinite hiatus, as the new website Loud Mouth has just launched. Loud Mouth is a website created by young people to act as a platform to showcase the work of young people in the UK, be that photography, creative writing or Journalistic style stuff.

It’s a really great opportunity for aspiring writers, and I’m going to be writing something for them every week on American politics, very much like Politicin’. With exams coming soon, and my hopeful transition to university coming in the autumn I want to try and concentrate on writing for Loud Mouth as well as doing school work etc.

But three months & almost 650 views later this blog was the first thing I ever really publicly wrote and that’s why it’s so hard to end it, for now anyway. But I would honestly like to thank everyone who ever read, laughed, enjoyed or even glanced at my blog, I’ve loved doing this so much, and if you want to read some of my new stuff on Loud Mouth the website is; http://www.loudmouth.org.uk/

It’s such a great website and the people behind it are really great as well.

So again I would just like to thank everyone, especially Katrina & SheSpeaks for their constant likes and comments from the very beginning when I thought no one really read anything I wrote, they’ve been great. So thanks again, and remember don’t vote Rick Santorum!

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Super Tuesday was pretty damn super! Wasn’t it?

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Well, it’s official, I’m a changed man! My first Super Tuesday, and my god it was good, well as good as multiple Republican Primaries can be. I initially thought about trying to blog straight after the results had come in from the US of A, but Thursday is my preferred writing day. I don’t know what it is about Thursday, but it just feels like a good writing day, I also finish school at 12.30 so that might be it, but no we’ll stick with ‘it’s a good writing day’. Anyway, I wasn’t really too sure what to expect from Super Tuesday, there’s so much going on and so much to look at so it’s difficult to try and focus on any specific state. I say that, but everyone was telling me that Ohio was clearly than one to watch, and more on that later. But I do wonder why Super Tuesday takes place, I wonder why they choose to have 10 Primaries on the same day, but I guess it creates an element of excitement and attracts more spectators, and if there was any race that needed an injection of excitement, it was most definitely this one!

Another problem with Super Tuesday? There’s so many damn states I don’t really know where to start… I’ll start with good news; the Republican Presidential Race looks set to drag on into the Summer, which may not sound like good news to some, but it’s good news for me! I mean what else am I going to write about!

Ol’ Mitt won the battle of Ohio, just, but hasn’t quite won the Republican war, yet. He was denied a ‘full house win’ of 10 states as Sweater vest Santorum once again proved that he wasn’t going down without a fight by winning an impressive 3 states. Unfortunately for Mitt Romney & the Republican party, it’s once again the case of the never ending story for the GOP; Super Tuesday’s usually prove decisive, this one not so much. The biggest day of the race was once again evidence of the fractured nature of the Republican party and the lack of grassroots conservative support for Mitt Romney. At this point Mitt hasn’t quite got it in the bag, instead of ‘nominee’ he’s more ‘frontrunner’, the process of changing from the latter to the former is easy for some, evidently it’s not quite as easy for ol’Mitt, and it’s made much more difficult when you face reluctance from your own party.

So we’ve had the good news, which unfortunately means the bad news is on it’s way… As well as Ohio, ol’Mitt took Vermont, Massachusetts, Idaho, Virginia and Alaska. The Sweater Vest king, fighting on a comparatively tiny budget, took Tennessee, North Dakota and Oklahoma, as well as running a remarkably close race in Ohio. So that’s nine states accounted for, which leaves one, and here’s the bad news; Everyone’s least favourite ‘Marshmallow Man from the Ghostbusters’ look a like Newt Gingrich looks as though he’s going to continue riding his dead-horse of a campaign for at least a couple of weeks, Ok maybe that was bit much, but every article needs hyperbole. His win in his home state of Georgia was his first since he won South Carolina in January, and although it wasn’t a huge result, it will at least allow him to continue trying to convince voters that he’s the best alternative to Rick Santorum.

In closing, Mitt hasn’t taken so much of a leap towards the nomination, he’s taken more of jump only to be attacked mid-air by a sweater vest clad lunatic Christian conservative . On the subject of good & bad news, it’s good news for Barack as he slowly seems to be rising in popularity, in fact it’s a political see-saw, as the Republicans attack each other, the Democrats & notably Barack Obama seem to rise, note if Newt Gingirch was front runner, Barack would be rising on the political see-saw both metaphorically and physically. The bad news, however, as usual is for the GOP, as the Republican National convention comes into sight, the GOP seems to be coming apart at the seams possibly leaving room for a 3rd party candidate. Good News for Ron Paul then!

Barack… King of Cool.

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You know what? Say what you like about the 44th President of the United States, yeah I’m talkin’ bout Barack Obama, say what you like about him. But one thing you can’t deny is that he’s cool, he’s really cool, he sings Al Green at a conference and doesn’t care. He listens to Jay Z, who I think is a rapper, he is certainly the coolest president in history, I mean sure Taft had the moustache, but Obama just, just, tops him. What I’m getting at is that we cannot, just cannot have someone as un-cool as Rick Santorum, sweater vest and all, being the next president, as a matter of principle, it can’t happen.

Admittedly, this week has been a bit of a dry week, it has been dry, which is why this week’s piece is going to be slightly shorter than usual. There’s been very little material to work with this week, and by ‘work with’ I mean attempt to write a semi-witty article about American politics, the next primaries aren’t for another 5 days, there is very little for someone, who isn’t even in America by the way, to go on, but I like Obama so I’m gonna run with this!

So recently Rick Santorum has been doing pretty damn well, it seems as though he may be the conservative that the Republicans have been looking for. However, for me personally, I despise him, I really despise him as a person and just about everything he stands for. On the other hand, I am quite pleased that he’s knocked everyone’s least favourite living politician, Newt Gingrich, out of the way, if there is anyone I despise more than ‘Sweater vest’ its ol’ Newt. So after writing a paragraph using the word ‘despise’ more times than I think I’ve said the word, I’ll move on.. Rick Santorum quite astoundingly is doing pretty well in Michigan, ol’ Mitt’s favourite second favourite state, but honestly I can’t understand his support, in fact, I can’t understand the type of person who would vote for Santorum.

Now lets be clear, we live in a democratic societies, on both sides of the pond, in fact most of the world does, which is of course a great thing. But Rick Santorum, god bless him, stands for things that take away people’s liberty and free choice; banning of abortion, banning of gay marriage etc. So surely his advocation of Federal bans of these things is, thus effectively removing people’s free choice, is a bad thing? Well isn’t it? Just because HE and others believe that they are right, doesn’t make them right. I can’t understand his views at all, I thought all Republicans want a small non-intrusive government, yet here he is, intruding right into people’s bedrooms, telling them what they should or shouldn’t be doing. Of course all of this ultra conservative rhetoric is backed, by what he believes to be god’s will, but I can’t understand the mentality behind people who decide they know what’s best for others because they are ignorant to other people’s lifestyle.

Got a tad serious for a second there, although I can honestly say I don’t like Sweater vest Rick, I fully respect his voters and believe in a democratic society where people should vote for who they like, but there is something so clearly ignorant about Santorum’s attitude that I just find so frustrating, plus y’know sweater vests aren’t really very cool are they? They aren’t ‘Obama cool’.

Mitt & the Maine-stream..

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Once again my apologies for the awful, it really is, title for this piece, I wanted to try and get Maine into the title somewhere, and lots of people have said that Mitt’s campaign is now ‘back on track’ after a worryingly close result in the ‘Pine Tree State’ (really?). Now I say ‘worryingly close’ but it was probably even closer than that; Mitt was 31% ahead in Maine until everyone’s favourite geriatric – libertarian Texas congressman Ron Paul closed the gap to a mere 3%. Of course Mitt still won, but if it was me; well, I probably would have wet myself in nervousness, several times. Ok so maybe I wouldn’t wet myself, because I would then remember that the winner doesn’t even get any bloody delegates, if I were Mitt I would have abandoned Maine and headed West long ago. If someone wouldn’t mind explaining to me the significance of the ‘straw poll’ in Maine I would be very grateful, it just seems a bit pointless, all that attention and significance, and it means very little. Explanations NEEDED, in the comments section please!

I should probably stop the Maine-bashing now, my parents are going on holiday there later this year and I don’t want the state police to come after my Mum & Dad. Anyway, a ridiculously small amount of people voted in Maine, 5,000 in fact,which again begs the question, why do people really care? The state is hardly representative of the rest of the US, in fact the only state’s it’s even similar to in that respect are New Hampshire and, yeah you guessed it; Massachusetts, Mitt’s state, it even comes with Obama-style healthcare, just don’t tell anyone else. And that, smoothly brings me into my next point, Mitt’s apparent ‘flip-flopping’ is causing him just a few problems, in fact it’s been the main artillery for any and all anti-Mitt talk anywhere in the galaxy.

The annual meeting of the conservative wing of the GOP took place in Washington last week, it brought together just about every US conservative under the sun, including our beloved Sarah Palin (HA!). The CPAC, the meeting thing, came just after Sweater-Vest Santorum triply crushed Mitt, and just before the Maine ‘non vote’. So with Mitt reeling, he had to show that he could appeal to the conservatives, and what better way to do it than trying to do it in front of 10,000 conservative Republicans, who probably don’t like him very much anyway. Well, ol’Mitt won it in the end, he finished 7% ahead of Sweater Vest, 23% ahead of the Pillsbury dough-boy, and 26% ahead of RP. So you’d think ‘big pat on the back’ for Mitt, however things didn’t go down too smoothly, although he won the poll he didn’t exactly do it subtlety; aside from having the word ‘Conservative’ tattooed on his rather sizeable forehead, he instead chose to use the word more than 20 times in an effort to sway his doubters in the audience.

However there were a few detractors who chose to air their views on the former Massachusetts Governor’s supposed Conservative record; a conservative millionaire who owns millions of shares in sweater vests, told an absolute rib-tickler of a a joke, ‘A conservative, a liberal and a moderate walk into a bar, the bartender says ‘Hi Mitt!’, I’m sure hilarity ensued, I know the next time I need a laugh I’ll go straight to the ‘Republican Party’s collection of jokes’. So while the aisles filled with Republican tears of laughter, another lunatic took to the stage in the form of Sarah Palin, she was on day release and before she returned to her straight jacket and cosy padded cell, she avoided endorsing any candidate but seemed to showsome opposition to Romney, she said the nominee ‘must be someone who can instinctively turn right to constitutional conservative principles.’ While she was being promptly removed as a ‘security risk’, it turns out that once again, the Republican faithful are again spoilt for choice, no wait, that should be lack of choice. Mitt, Santorum, Gingrich and Paul have all failed to ignite any overwhelming support thus far, however Mitt could run away with it comes to the Michigan & Arizona Primaries later this month.

So I’m off to sleep now, it’s pretty late in the old United Kingdom, however theone thing that may keep me up is the thought that Sarah Palin could’ve been Vice President right now, really America? REALLY?!

To Mitt, or Not to Mitt, that is the question..

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So I guess I better start off this week’s blog by thanking Rick Santorum, not so much a genuine ‘thanks’, but a sarcastic ‘thanks’, ‘thanks Rick Santorum for winning in Missouri, Minnesota & Colorado!’, I had to change my original title for this week’s blog and it’s entire content because of the sweater vest king’s triple win. Originally it was going to be ‘Viva Las Mitt’ which I thought was pretty damn good, it had a nice ring to it, and of course it would be about Mitt’s win in Nevada, but NO, ol’ sweater vest Rick Santorum had to ruin it!

In fact, you know what, we’re going to have some ‘Viva Las Mitt’ in here! Last Sunday was a good day in the Romney household, he completely blitzed Nevada and finished with a giant 48% of the vote, twice more than that chubby chaser Newt Gingrich who got a measly 23%. Another thing pleasing Romney, and his many, many sons, was that the exit polls showed Newt’s support seemed to be falling away among conservatives, evangelicals and Tea Party crazies, these supporters who had previously grabbed him a victory in South Carolina were now firmly in Romney country. This trend continued this week with pretty crappy performances in the Colorado & Minnesota caucuses, in which he finished 3rd & 4th, oh and also a default last place finish in the Missouri Primary, which wasn’t a Primary, confusing, because he didn’t even register in time for it!

So what started badly on Sunday for Newt, ended in a car crash of a result on Tuesday, unfortunately however, his campaign is far from over; he has vowed to stay on at least until Super Tuesday in March where he looks set to do a bit better than previously. In contrast, ol’Mitt was on something of a roll, after knocking both Florida & Nevada out of the park in quick succession, he was widely expected to do well in the three contests this week, apparently the Coloradan, Missourian & Minnesotan (I can’t believe these are actually words for people from these states) voters didn’t read the Romney script!

Before we go any further I have to admit that I had no idea where Minnesota or Missouri actually were, but then I found that the Missouri Primary wasn’t a ‘real primary’, apparently they have the official one in a couple of months, so I wasn’t too bothered about that one. So now I just don’t know where Minnesota is, which I think is ok, it’s one of those states that you don’t really hear about, no offence to those Minnesotans out there, I’m sure it’s lovely. Now to move on before I get hate mail from Minnesota, I already knew a bit about Colorado (Go Broncos! Tebow!) and personally I thought Romney was a shoo-in for both of the aforementioned states, after all in 2008 he won the Minnesota Caucus by a fairly wide margin. This didn’t quite go to plan; the Santorum surge seems to have risen from the ashes in Nevada, the exit polls seemed to show a slightly more anti-Mitt edge than the results reflected, interestingly four out of ten Republican voters said they were principally focused on getting Obama out of the White house, suggesting that some voters are willing to compromise some of their ideological beliefs in to back the man they best believe can get that comfy seat in the oval office, so instead of a vote for Mitt, it’s more of a vote for anyone whose not a Democrat.

Personally I think this is the case with Rick Santorum’s triple wins, instead of actually voting for a candidate the voters believe in, they are just voting for an alternative to Mitt Romney or an alternative to Barack Obama. While this of course great news for ol’Rick and more importantly his array of sweater vests, it’s bad news for the Republican party, their vote is becoming increasingly split between three candidates and this leaves the door open for Obama to walk straight back into the White house. If we’re talking about ‘divide & conquer’, the Republicans are dividing themselves making it much easier for the Democrats to conquer later in the year. Ol’Mitt’s campaign is suddenly significantly weaker, he was hoping to spend February attacking Obama, now he’s spending February attacking Santorum, who can probably expect the same negative ad bombardment that Newt Gingrich has been experiencing the last couple of weeks. Santorum, who has so far been fighting on the caucus and primary front on a very strict budget, has said that the last fortnight has been the best in terms of fundraising, as the results came in tuesday night it was reported he received $250,000 in online donations alone, this really can only mean two things, you’ll be seeing more Santorum and you’ll be seeing more sweater vests!

Mitt knocks Newt into the Gulf… literally!

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Ok so first of all, the title is a tad misleading, Mitt Romney didn’t really knock Newt Gingrich into the Gulf Of Mexico, although I think a fight would’ve made the Florida Primary much more exciting, I mean give the them both a pair of boxing gloves and a ring and I bet you’d get higher ratings than all the debates put together. Now while I think Newt may have the weight advantage, come on there is a lot there, I think Mitt could take him, I bet if you made him angry he would shake off his docile exterior and go hulk pretty quickly! Oh and secondly, look at the new blog layout! I wanted to try something different and this was one of the best free ones (what? I’m a student I can’t spend money on blogs!), apparently it’s the ‘best layout’ for wedding blogs, but I’ll take it!

Anyway everyone knew that Florida was going to be a big one, in fact literally it is, it’s the fourth biggest state in terms of votes in the Presidential election, and even then it’s the only BIG marginal state, plus after that controversy in 2000, the Sunshine state has quickly turned into political war zone. But if Florida is a war zone, then Romney has won this battle, but still has a way to go to win the GOP war, he’s put the nastiness of South Carolina & the crying of Iowa behind him comfortably with a crushing victory taking a giant 46% of the Floridian vote. Although if there is one noticeable change about ol’ Mitt’s attitude, it’s that there’s very little Newt bashing going on, in fact there wasn’t one criticism in his victory speech, instead he’s gone back to bashing President Obama, here I was hoping for some good Newt jokes..

I’ve been to Florida actually, about 8 or 9 times I think, only Disney World once and I didn’t even get to see Mickey, anyway when ever I think about past family holidays in Florida I remember being happy, probably because it was hot and sunny, two things which England rarely are. It’s just that the Florida primary hasn’t been making the state such a happy place to live, in fact an Independent monitoring group reported that 99% of Romney’s ads were negative, apparently there’s no such thing as a ‘nice attack ad’, and with $15 million to spend, I guess that’s a lot of negativity on the airwaves.

The Sunshine state was also very important as it was the first state with a big Hispanic population: Latino voters comprise about 13% of the electorate, so it was time for both Mitt & Newt to go Cuban for a while. As soon as Romney arrived in Florida he quickly received the endorsements of influential Cuban leaders as well as the governor of Puerto Rico, while many thought his idea of ‘self deportation’ for America’s 11 million illegal immigrants could backfire, nothing really came of it. While ol’ Mitt was busy gaining endorsements, Newt was talking about building colonies on the moon, apparently that’s not a key voter issue but at least he’s looking to the future. In the last few days I’ve noticed that Newt seems to be drifting, and when I say noticed, I mean ‘excitedly noticed’, his nationwide likability is currently somewhere between dog poop and stepping on a land mine.

Meanwhile signs of economic recovery are worrying the GOP, the percentage of Americans believing the economy is back on track has doubled in the last couple of months, if these trends continue the Republicans may find it difficult to remove President Obama from that comfy seat in the oval office, but don’t worry we can all follow Newt to the moon!

Newt Gingrich, Or: How I Learned To Start Worrying About American Politics

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At the time of writing this I’m sitting watching James Bond, Casino Royale in case your interested, whilst drinking a great cup of tea, so at this point, aside from being Hugh Grant, I’m being about as English as possible. And even sitting here in the middle of my comfortable English home, I’m worried … on the verge of weeping actually, the thought causing these ill feelings is that Newt Gingrich suddenly looks like the man most likely to face Barack Obama in the General Election later this year.

Honestly, Newt must’ve been Tebowing (see last week’s article) and Tebowing a lot! It’s the only reasonable explanation for what has been a frankly remarkable turnaround. Until last week Mitt Romney looked a shoo-in for the nomination, he looked set to complete a clean slate of wins in the first three primaries, now he’s just got the solitary win in New Hampshire of which he was always going to win anyway. While of course ol’Mitt is probably weeping quietly somewhere, (we could weep together? maybe?), it turns out that the South Carolina result was most wildly celebrated in the oval office as opposed to anyway actually near South Carolina. The result coupled with the Iowa Caucus overturn has significantly weakened Mitt Romney’s challenge for the nomination, and has also significantly weakened the GOP’s chances of winning back the presidency. The Democrats cannot believe their luck, and as the Republican in-fighting continues, the worst man has moved to the front of the queue.

The debate last monday evening was the beginning of the ‘Gingrich surge’, this debate by the way was the 16th debate! The 16th! Apparently Mitt has been most displeased with the frequency of the debates and I do agree, 16 debates really?! Anyway it was this debate that the wily ol’ Texan Rick Perry asked ol’Mitt to release his tax returns, which have now been released at a bit of a measly 15% tax, it had then emerged the Romney had lost to Santorum in Iowa, then Rick Perry realised who he was and dropped out and endorsed Newt, and Sarah Palin somehow managed to get past security to endorse him as well! In the end of course as everyone knows, Newt won SC by a giant 12%.

Although many thought, I was hoping, the Newt train would be derailed before the voting began, it  didn’t happen, although as I said many thought it would, and here’s why: – Newt’s second wife, you know the wife he left to go marry another woman whom he had been having an affair with while being indicted for ethics breaches as the Speaker of the House, while bitching at Clinton for having an affair, Yes that second wife, was giving an interview on how he had supposedly asked her for an open marriage so he could continue his affair with his soon to be third wife… yeah just give it a second for the classiness to waft over you.. And I’ll continue, while this looks like a train wreck of a situation nothing really came out of it, Newt didn’t dip in the polls and comfortably won days later.

**He was asked about all this in a debate, in fact I believe it was the first question of the debate, and he went freakin’ nuts, youtube it!

The problem is that when the topic was raised in the debate, Newt shouted it down calling it ‘despicable’ and that’s not even the problem, the problem is that the crowd stood and applauded his rude response, applauded, why? The Republican supporters sitting in the audience supposedly represent the moral side of America, they pride themselves, most of them, on their moral and religious values, and yet stand and applaud and even worse, vote for the man, while the ‘open marriage story’ may not be true, they vote for a man who left his first wife to marry his mistress, while his first wife was undergoing cancer treatment, and then left his second wife to marry his next mistress, as well as being the only Speaker of the House to be impeached in front of congress.. I mean what are these people applauding? They’re applauding the direct contradiction of their own beliefs and want this man as President!

He’s also promised Sarah Palin a ‘major role’ in the next administration, and if all of this before was not enough of a reason to not vote him, this last part definitely is!

The last Mitt standing…

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Now if anyone saw my post last week, eloquently titled ‘Could Huntsman pull a Santorum?’ I predicted that John Huntsman’s popularity would surge as have the other GOP candidates at some time or another, and what do you know? He DID surge in New Hampshire! Some of the cynics out there will deny me of my ‘future predicting skills’ by saying that he has been building foundations there for months, some will say ‘He even skipped Iowa to concentrate on New Hampshire’, but I still contend that his surge is evidence of me being able to predict the future, which reminds me, if you want your future predicting, I suggest you donate money to me, I’m not quite sure how, but start stuffing coins into your USB ports now!

Anyway back to the politics, as you all will know the results from New Hampshire are in! Mitt of course, as strongly predicted, won by a frankly huge margin; he was a whole 16.5% ahead of an impressively second placed Ron Paul, with John Huntsman again very impressively coming in third with Newt & the two Ricks in pursuit. You would think that Mitt would be happy, well he probably is, after all he has now won in both Iowa & New Hampshire, a feat only accomplished twice before in history! His victory in New Hampshire was by Rick Perry’s standards very smooth, despite a slight gaffe on Monday morning when he seemed to confess his guilty little secret that he enjoys firing people. However the fact that this didn’t derail his candidacy especially in this climate, just goes to show that he’s in fullcontrol of this race, we have a saying in the UK that if your football (soccer) team plays badly but still wins, you support a great team!

Understandably however, the rest of the GOP candidates were not so pleased with the New Hampshire result, which is probably why they are looking to unload everything on him in South Carolina, literally unloading campaign ads costing millions and millions of dollars in an effort to stop the Romney freight train. The problem for Mitt is that it could work, South Carolina is a completely different ball game to the liberal New Hampshire, in deeply conservative South Carolina it’s likely that Mitt’s mormonism will come up more than a few times, as well as other religious issues that Mitt has been accused to flip-flop on a few times, namely that controversial one, abortion.

And… cue Newt Gingrich, ol’ Newt and his backers have been the main culprits so far in terms of ‘attack ads’ in South Carolina, trying to remind everyone of Mitt Romney’s, frankly, sketchy history; he dramatically changed his stance on abortion in 2005, hence the ‘flip-flop’ image that has stuck with him ever since. As if this wasn’t enough, his rivals have been hammering him over his record at Bain Capital, where they say he laid off tens of thousands of workers in order to maximise profit. Even Rick Perry (remember him?) has been getting in on the action calling Mitt a ‘vulture capitalist’, this portrayal of him as a ruthless capitalist could be dangerous in a state like South Carolina where the unemployment rate is almost double that of New Hampshire & Iowa, and also double the national average.

Rick Santorum’s ultra conservative image didn’t play well in New Hampshire, but is likely to play very well in South Carolina and with his already large endorsement from a prominent Christian evangelical he stands a very good chance. John Huntsman’s chances on the other hand are a mystery, the most moderate of all the candidates would have loved a second place finish in New Hampshire, but he’ll struggle to get past 5% in South Carolina.

In the past couple of days ol’ Mitt seems to have moved his focus onto challenging President Obama, it may be too soon though, South Carolina is going to be a dirty fight…

Could Huntsman pull a ‘Santorum’…?

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So as the results flooded in from Iowa, everyone including myself was biting their nails anxiously as the three horse race faded into a two horse race eventually split by 8 votes! The tightest of margins in a state where 122,000 Iowa Republicans cast their votes, the largest turnout ever, hooray for democracy!

While Mitt Romney will be understandably pleased at having the prestige of winning, as opposed to his sour ‘silver medal’ last time around, commentators were quick to point out that it was no real victory. He may have won the caucus, but Rick Santorum was the real winner. With Mitt pouring at least $4 million into Iowa he finished with 25% of the vote, Santorum on the other hand spent a pittance in comparison and came from seemingly nowhere to almost steal a victory. 

In a startling comparison Mitt’s campaign spent on average $156 per vote, while Santorum spent a mere $21 and got a lot more value for money. However the money probably doesn’t mean that much to Romney what with his riches, the thought that may keep him up at night is that 75% of the voters avoided Romney completely…

Now as we turn from Iowa to New Hampshire, there was something missing from Iowa, something I couldn’t put my finger on and then I remembered! Iowa was missing an entire person, oh and his campaign, John Huntsman!

His decision to skip Iowa altogether has been met with a degree of skepticism as well as admiration, for a man who never really had a chance in Iowa it surely makes sense for him to build a strong foundation in a state like New Hampshire where he stands a much greater chance of doing well. 

Ron Paul, or his twitter account at least, decided to take a shot at Jon Huntsman in a delightfully funny post; – 

@jonhuntsman we found your one Iowa voter, he’s in Linn precinct 5 you might want to call him and say thanks,”

Great stuff from Ron Paul, although he might not be laughing too long. It’s argued that Rick Santorum’s late surge was the result of the ‘undecideds’ who were suddenly swayed in his direction, many of these swing voters didn’t like Mitt Romney or Ron Paul and found a comfortable conservative christian alternative in Rick Santorum. My argument is that Jon Huntsman could pull a ‘Rick Santorum’ in New Hampshire, his supposed ‘liberalism’ will play much better there, and his strong foundation which already gives him 10% could create a surge as once again GOP voters look for the alternative to Mitt Romney. 

By the sounds of it, Huntsman is confident about his chances; “I feel pretty good about having come from the margin of error. We came into this state as a complete asterisk, at zero, and now we’re bumping into the teens,” Huntsman said. “And with the unpredictable nature of the race so far, I think we are positioned pretty well.”

“That’s about to change in about 48 hours, and then the big bright light is going to be here on New Hampshire,” Huntsman said. “And in true fashion, New Hampshire always tends to upend conventional wisdom.”

Whether Huntsman can make a mark in New Hampshire remains to be seen, but certainly he is due a surge some time or another and if he’s a praying man he should get going now. Mitt Romney on the other hand is polling a superb 43% which is more than enough to put him over the top, Ron Paul? Well he made fade out or it may just be getting going, who knows? One thing the candidates can be sure of is that Newt Gingrich is angry, and he’ll be psyched up for New Hampshire, if that’s something no one wants, it’s an angry Newt Gingrich. 

On your marks, get set… IOWA!

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Firstly, before I go any further I must apologise for the title of this post, because frankly it’s bloody awful, but it’s been about two weeks since my last entry so I’m feeling a bit dry. Anyway I hope everyone had a merry Christmas and a happy new year! And even if you didn’t have either of those, I think we all know that Ron Paul did!

Now my mother always told me never to trust a man with two first names, but there is something quite likeable about Ron Paul, and I admit that I quite admire him as well; he has shown steady growth over the festive period and in most polls he seems to be sitting comfortably in second place. His superb early organisation in Iowa has harvested his growth, and he also possesses a large amount of frighteningly passionate volunteers who I think would literally jump in front of an unconstitutional bus for him!

With less than 12 hours, UK time (sorry guys.), until the ‘caucusgoers’ get voting the latest polls put Mitt Romney with 23%, RP at 22% and Rick Santorum at a decent 18%, another admirable feat for a man who has been largely ignored by just about everyone until about last friday. While Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich seem to have disappeared down the caucus plug hole, hallelujah! You can’t count them out overall, especially Gingrich, who unfortunately seems to still be in with a fairly good chance in the long run. Many argue that his surge came slightly too early, and his lack of organisation never gave him a real chance of winning ,however many potential voters earmarked Gingrich as the most ‘knowledgeable’ candidate which could put him in good stead to face Obama next year.

While the Iowa caucus seems as though it could go either way, the New Hampshire Primary could not be anymore different, with ol’ Mitt streets ahead. Romney, who started the campaign as the frontrunner has defied many critics by seeing off Michele Bachmann who rose and then not so triumphantly fell, Rick Perry who ‘ummm….d’ his way to the bottom and of course the future Times ‘Man of Year’ Herman Cain. The most remarkable thing about Mitt’s campaign so far is that he has managed to stay ahead despite the best efforts of his own party who seem reluctant to support him, many in his party claim that he is not a ‘true conservative’ and that he has consistently flip-flopped on various ideological issues in order to win votes. Gingrich labelled him a ‘Massachusetts Moderate’ while Rick Santorum claimed that he ‘ran as a liberal in order to get elected’. While this could possibly be looked upon as candidates undermining each other, the main problem for the GOP will be that if Mitt wins the nomination, the democrats will have a lot of ammunition that could easily take ol’Mitt apart…

The main cruise missile in the Democrat’s arsenal will be Romney’s tenure as governor of Massachusetts, although he is remembered for being a pragmatic and effective governor, he successfully overhauled the state’s broken healthcare system, which sounds like a bloody good thing, though not if your a republican apparently. Mitt’s criticisms of Obama’s healthcare reforms were met with accusations of hypocrisy, which in parts are very similar to his own reforms as governor, and unfortunately this doesn’t set him well for what could be a very difficult campaign for him and the Republicans.

Anyway back to the caucus! If ol’Mitt wins I’ll be pleased for him! If Ron Paul wins, well I won’t really care but I’d be a bit worried! If Rick Santorum wins I’ll be surprised! If Newt Gingrich wins, well I worry for humanity…