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!

Why Barack is getting comfortable..

Image

So things are starting to change, the seasons, the weather, it’s probably Newt Gingrich’s annual underwear changing as well, so it’s good for everyone, in fact in England today we had our hottest day so far this year which is obviously great. It was actually sunny, and as soon as the temperature tops 9 degrees everyone’s out in sunglasses and shorts, and personally I’m not a huge winter fan, so I can’t wait for it to warm up a bit, and by British standards anything above 10 degrees is something of a heatwave! Another momentous change could be on it’s way later this year, not Newt’s underwear (not twice in one year!) but ol’ Obama could be ousted, while I’m sure that England will have another sunny day, I, like so many others, cannot see a change in the Oval Office later this year.

It’s been a damn good week to be a Republican, no wait sorry, that should be it’s been a damn good week to be Mitt Romney, everyone’s favourite Mormon (I don’t know any mormons so he wins by default) cleaned up two Primaries this week in Michigan & Arizona. Personally I thought Mitt would blitz both primaries and finally silence Sweater vest Rick, well, it turns out I was half right, he won in Arizona by a hefty 20ish%, Michigan on the other hand was a bit tighter, and when I say ‘bit’ I mean a lot, and when I say tighter, I mean there was some serious sweating going on in the Romney Campaign HQ. I don’t know a huge amount about the demographics in Michigan but I thought that because Mitt’s dad was governor there, he was naturally, a shoo in. Apparently not, in the end he beat Rick Santorum by about 3%, and even then it wasn’t a HUGE WIN, unfortunately for ol’ Mitt, Michigan divides it’s delegates proportionately, so despite his marginal win he has to begrudgingly split the 30 delegates with Sweater vest Rick, and cue more Romney sweating!

When the results were coming in, admittedly I was asleep, (what? it was like 3 AM here and I have school!) but when I woke up and saw the results I was genuinely surprised at the small winning margin in Michigan. As I said, I’m not sure of the voter demographics, but I mean his dad was freakin’ governor, so surely that carries some sort of influence, and also it’s where Mitt was born, so surely home-field advantage! So that raises the question; Why didn’t Mitt blitz Michigan? Now, admittedly, I’ve been giving the other candidates a bit of a hard time, especially Newt Gingrich, and as a result I’ve left Mitt Romney a tad unscathed, so here it goes; while I’ve very much enjoyed deriding both Rick Perry and especially Newt Gingrich, it turns out that Mitt Romney is no stranger to the ‘political gaffe’, in fact after a bit of research into his comments, especially when talking to voters, it really shows that he has the equivalent people skills of a cruise missile!

On friday, it seemed that ol’Mitt went all ‘Rick Perry’ on us all, trust me that saying will soon be in the dictionary, he firstly seemed to boast that his wife ‘had a couple Cadillacs’, brilliant thing to say in Michigan, he then bizarrely remarked something about Michigan’s trees being ‘just the right height’, but then the real big one, he said he didn’t like NASCAR, again good stuff in Michigan, but he did know the owners of a couple of NASCAR teams, you heard him, Mitt Romney in touch with the 99%. By Wednesday the Democrats had created a video, highlighting the aforementioned quotes and calling him ‘out of touch’, honestly, it’s my dream to go into politics be it American or British, and I would love to work on election campaigns, but there is simply nothing Romney’s team could come back with in response to him being ‘out of touch’, at least Barack made an effort with the whole ‘I listen to rap’ thing, I guess Mitt could go down that road, no one would believe him though, well maybe he likes Vanilla Ice?

Of course the bigger picture is that the Republican party is it’s own worst enemy, it’s contributing to it’s own downfall, and essentially serving President Obama’s next term on a lovely GOP dish. Romney has no real backing from the GOP HQ, and with him being the frontrunner, well it’s a disaster. Their obvious reluctance to get behind their man with the best chance of winning their nomination undermines their best chance of winning the presidency, some party leaders have called for unity but nothing seems to work. Exit polls from Michigan showed that half the voters, only 45%, of Republican voters, felt enthusiastic about their REPUBLICAN candidates, the GOP voters are seemingly waiting/hoping/praying for a fresh candidate that, realistically, may never come. It’s time for Mitt to get back ‘in touch’ with the voters, maybe he could start rapping?

P.S – Apologies for various uncompleted versions of this being posted multiple times, WordPress has changed and no longer likes me. Apologies to anyone that commented previously, as those old incomplete posts were deleted!

Mitt & the Maine-stream..

Image

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..

Image

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!

Image

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

             Image

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!

Newt needs some ‘Tebow Time’!

Image

Well, it would be an understatement to say that it’s been a bit of a tumultuous week! Not only have we had two GOP casualties with John Huntsman inevitably pulling out but also just as inevitably, Rick Perry has decided to go as well! While Huntsman’s exit was to be expected, Rick Perry’s was slightly less so, I mean yes he’s been polling at a pretty crappy 5% in just about every state since Iowa but he was a resilient Texan! So not only has it been a bad week for the GOP HQ who have seen two other people who aren’t Mitt Romney drop out, but also the Denver Broncos lost on Sunday night, what? I like American football! So that means no more Tebow Time, what? I’m not the only person who likes Tim Tebow?

Oh and in case you don’t know who Tim Tebow is, that probably applies to most of us in the UK, he is the Quarter back for the Denver Broncos and he’s been causing quite a stir in the sporting world. Basically during the American football season when the Broncos have been losing, he has inspired some great comebacks to win the game, after he throws the winning touchdown he prays on the field, no seriously, and it’s turned into a bit of a phenomenon, google Tebowing!

Anyway back to the politics, if there was one man in need of some Tebow inspired ‘divine intervention’ it’s Newt Gingrich. He, like many others, have stated that if ol’ Mitt wins the South Carolina Primary on Saturday then the race is effectively over. Which is probably very true, Mitt’s running away with it in the Florida polls at the minute, but that isn’t really the case in South Carolina anymore…

It’s remarkable really, Mitt was streets ahead of everyone in South Carolina about a week ago, however a few things have changed since then. Essentially Mitt Romney has served a punching bag over the past week taking hits from just about everyone, the main attacker has of course been Newt Gingrich, with the former Speaker of the House investing in excess of $3.3 million of campaign ads over South Carolina’s airwaves. The most notable, a now infamous 27-minute documentary entitled ‘When Mitt Romney came to town’, I thought it was a new romantic comedy starring everyone’s favourite mormon, but in fact it was about Mitt’s 15 year tenure as head of Bain Capital featuring endless interviews of people who had lost their jobs and homes when the companies they worked for were taken over by Bain and closed. Another bizarre advert from Newt Gingrich productions slated Mitt for lying and for speaking French. Yeah apparently your not allowed to speak more than one language if your running for President, no wonder John Huntsman never had a chance!

While the ‘French attack’ will go down in history for being the most ‘bizarre political advert ever’, Newt’s 27 minute Mitt flick back fired slightly, it seems just about everyone rounded on Newt’s ill conceived ‘documentary’ accusing him of being ‘ignorant’ and ‘dumb’, although it seems Sarah Palin thought that it was ok, but that’s not good for anyone. And while many thought that Newt’s popularity might wain, it has in fact done the opposite in the past few days, he’s surged in the polls, and even more so in the past 12 hours when it was revealed that former Texas governor Rick Perry was pulling out, only to then proclaim his love for Newt! The forgetful governor’s endorsement may not seem much, but his 5% of conservative support could make South Carolina a very tight race.

Yet more bad news for Mitt Romney, I’m starting to genuinely feel sorry for him, it looks like the Iowa Caucus result is to be overturned, although not officially until tomorrow, it looks like ol’ ‘sweater vest’ Rick Santorum has won by 37 votes, instead of the 7 votes Mitt won with originally. Just craziness. But not the sort of craziness Mitt Romney needs two days before the primary, if he loses in South Carolina then the race could be blown wide open, with his solitary win in New Hampshire, a state he was always going to win, it’s not looking like Mitt’s for the taking anymore…

An odd but fortuitous turn of events for Newt Gingrich, he must be Tebowing somewhere!

The last Mitt standing…

Image

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…

Hell Mitt, just give them all $10,000!

 

 

Image

 

Can you believe it, it’s gone so quickly! With only about 20 days left until the Iowa caucus, time is running out for Newt Gingrich to pull out of the running for the Republican nomination…

Yes possibly a tad optimistic on my part, but it worked with Herman Cain; I literally looked at his picture for about half an hour every morning willing him to quit, and look at him now, honestly this is real talent right here. Unfortunately this looks doubtful to work on Mr Gingrich who this week looks to have solidified his position as Republican frontrunner, after a surprisingly assured performance in last sunday’s debate in which he came under pretty sustained fire from everyone around him, I say ‘sustained’ as an understatement, to Newt’s credit he took more hits than a chubby kid playing dodgeball, he managed to stay and finish strongly at the apparent expense of ol’Mitt. 

Now around here, the English countryside, we love Mitt Romney, in fact no we don’t, most people don’t know who he is, well I like him more than the other GOP candidates and I genuinely believe that he should/will win the nomination even if I stronglbelieve that he will lose to Obama in the General election next year. But one thing we English do like is a joke, we’re funny people, Rick Perry on the hand, well he doesn’t like jokes, probably because he doesn’t get them or whatever, but the point is that Mitt Romney’s debate looks set to be remembered not for his strong performance, but for his ‘$10,000 bet attempt’.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about then here it is, Rick Perry claimed that Mitt had supported healthcare reform in a passage in one of his books, Mitt of course denied this vehemently and put out his hand and said ‘Rick, I’ll tell you what $10,000 bucks? Ten thousand bet?’. Now admittedly a bet like this probably doesn’t go down well in these times of austerity, sure the bet was to some degree in fairly poor taste, three weeks before the Iowa caucus there probably aren’t many of the 99% making bets of any nature, but it was the fashion of the responses from the other candidates that really stood out. 

The response from Michele Bachmann’s camp was that ‘For someone to go and throw around a $10,000 bet, just goes to show even more that he’s not the same level as the people of Iowa or the country’. Yeah you heard it, Michele Bachmann taking the moral high ground, the woman whose husband turns people ‘straight’ for money, yeah it’s Mitt Romney thats out of touch…

RIck Perry’s camp on the other hand said that ‘it’s the language of Wall Street and not the language of Main Street Iowa,’ Although save the best for last, Linda Upmeyer, Newt’s campaign chairwoman bizarrely said ‘When i make a bet with somebody, it’s usually for the five dollars I have in my hand’. It’s as if she genuinely though Mitt was going to take a wad of twenties from his pocket on stage and start slapping them down. How many of us have said throughout our lives have said ‘I bet you a million quid’ or in an American’s case ‘I bet you a million bucks y’all’ as harmless jokes, the sheer shamefulness of some of the responses in attempts to sink another man’s candidacy is shocking. 

But I guess it’s that time of year when everything a candidate says get scrutinised beyond all civilised meaning, it’s also christmas time and I’m sending out some joke books, anyone know Rick Perry’s address?

 

 

Up Newt creek without a paddle..

 

Image

I have a confession to make, before I type one more syllable I must tell you, the guilt… well, it’s crushing me. I have stolen, no borrowed, the title for this article, it was first uttered by Jon Stewart on his fantastic Daily show, and he was of course referring to the abnormally large headed, former speaker of the House; Newt Gingrich and his frankly meteoric rise from single digit stumbling in the polls, to leading in 3 of the 4 ‘early states’ and currently polling at 33% in Iowa. 

A month from now Iowa will vote for a candidate to face President Obama in next years election, and with Newt sitting 15 points clear he looks to be that candidate. On a scale of 1 – 10 on how scared this makes me, and hopefully everyone else, I’d say it’s, well about the same as Newt’s polls in Iowa ironically, it ranks about a 33 on the ‘scared scale’. However, I’m still holding out some hope for ol’ Mitt Romney, surely he deserves it though right? Last weeks article covered the rise and fall of the ‘non Mitts’ and from the man who has held the highest place most consistently I will honestly feel bad if he doesn’t win the nomination.

Now I was going to write this weeks article about Herman Cain aka The Herminator, still laughing about that, but unfortunately the Herman Cain jokes weren’t coming to me. After he hilariously withdrew from the race last week that means his quite substantial support had to go somewhere, and that somewhere is the Newt Gingrich 2012 campaign. And as someone so rightly said a couple of days ago ‘it is startling that Gingrich should be the main beneficiary of Cain’s shenanigans’. While I don’t think this support for Gingrich is short lived I think that Romney is still very much in this race, although he may be quite a way behind Newt in Iowa, he is still holding firm in New Hampshire.

Iowa for Mitt Romney was always going to be something of a struggle; 60% of the voters are evangelical christians who said they would never vote for a mormon, four years ago he campaigned hard in Iowa and spent in excess of $10 million trying to win, only to lose to Mike Huckabee. Instead he’s focusing more on the liberal state of New Hampshire, where many think Mitt Romney can do very well. Someone very aptly commented on one of my articles last week saying that polls were just an indicator and unless you get people out there canvassing then it’s unlikely to get the result you want, Newt Gingrich needs to be made aware, no wait, don’t tell him! His lack of organisation could cost him dearly, with over 1,600 separate precincts in Iowa, and each precinct needing a precinct captain to organise volunteers, it’s something of a mammoth effort.

The upcoming caucus should be interesting, if not slightly predictable, the real entertainment will come January 10th over New Hampshire way…