Romney News: Martin Luther King Jr, Huntsman Statement, Jay/Jordan Sekulow Endorsment

It’s a busy day today in the political world…

Governor Mitt Romney kicked it off with this remembrance of our civil rights hero, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr:

On MLK Day, we remember an outstanding American who brought our country closer to its historic promise of liberty and justice for all. 5 hours ago via web · powered by @socialditto



Team MRC joins Gov Romney in saluting Martin Luther King Jr. for his extraordinary and historical work for racial equality. Dedicated on Oct 16, 2011, the very impressive 30-foot stone sculpture memorial of Dr. King is positioned so he gazes across the Tidal Basin at the Jefferson Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. To view an interactive page of the site honoring the civil rights leader, click here. Here’s video of visitors taking in the majesty of the memorial:




The Presidential race is now down to five…

Governor Romney issued this statement today following news of Jon Huntsman’s pulling out of the race:

“I salute Jon Huntsman and his wife Mary Kaye. Jon ran a spirited campaign based on unity not division, and love of country. I appreciate his friendship and support.”



The eagerly-awaited FOX News presidential debate will be held tonight at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center in Myrtle Beach, SC. The action gets underway at 9:00 PM ET on FOX News. The event is also being so-sponsored by the SC GOP and the Wall Street Journal. Moderators are Brett Baier, Juan Williams, and Wall Street Journal’s Gerald Seib. Participants include: Former MA Gov Mitt Romney, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, Texas Gov Rick Perry, Rep. Ron Paul, and former Sen Rick Santorum. The gloves will be off!

We’ll post livefeed info as soon as it’s available, so check back. The official twitter hashtag for the Fox News debate is #foxdebate. You may also use twitter to weigh in on who is dodging their questions and who is answering them and to say you like Mitt’s responses. Tweet “#dodge” or “#answer” with the candidate’s name. See more here.

Romney suporters are invited to join us here on the MRC chat box when the event gets underway. Gov Romney, go get ‘em!


Jay Sekulow, along with co-host and son Jordan Sekulow during airing of ACLJ radio show Jay Sekulow Live!

★ I was very pleased to learn that Jay and Jordan Sekulow, of the American Center for Law and Justice, have announced their support for Governor Romney. I have the utmost respect for Jay and his son, Jordan, who is following in his father’s footsteps. They are a powerful duo (read about their backgrounds below). Jay also gave very stirring closing remarks to Romney’s speech today at the Faith and Freedom coalition rally in Myrtle Beach, SC:

“Jay and Jordan have been on the front lines fighting for conservatives – it is an honor to have their support,” said Mitt Romney. “On issues of great importance to me, including religious freedom and protecting human life, Jay and Jordan have been tireless leaders. I look forward to working with them to ensure that we can bring conservative change to Washington.”

“In order for conservatives to make the changes in Washington that we have been fighting for, we must first defeat President Obama and have a leader with a proven record of getting things done,” said Jay Sekulow. “Mitt Romney is the one candidate who can take his pro-growth message to the American people and defeat President Obama. Throughout his life, he has proven that he will not back down from difficult situations – fixing the mess that President Obama has left will not be easy.”

“Mitt Romney’s record as governor and vision for our country is one that conservatives should be proud to support,” said Jordan Sekulow. “He cut taxes, balanced budgets, and defended both traditional marriage and life in a politically difficult environment. Mitt Romney’s ability to defeat President Obama and enact conservative change is why I support him and so many conservatives are backing his campaign.”

(emphasis added)

Background On Jay and Jordan Sekulow:

Jay Sekulow is Chief Counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice. He is an accomplished Supreme Court advocate, renowned expert on religious liberty, and a respected broadcaster. Jay Sekulow is an attorney with a passion for protecting religious liberty, freedom, and democracy. For nearly a quarter of a century, he’s been on the front lines – working to protect religious and constitutional freedoms in the courts, in Congress, and in the public arena. At the Supreme Court of the United States, Jay Sekulow has argued 12 cases – including several landmark cases which have become part of the legal landscape in the area of religious liberty litigation.

Jordan Sekulow is the Executive Director of the American Center for Law and Justice. He is the host of the Jordan Sekulow Show, a syndicated radio program that provides cutting analysis of today’s political and legal landscape and regularly features elected officials and conservative leaders from across the U.S. and around the globe. He also serves as co-host, along with ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow, of the Jay Sekulow Live! radio broadcast and the ACLJ This Week television broadcast. Jordan, an attorney, has an LL.M. from Georgetown Law Center and oversees the organization’s international offices.
* Organizational references are for identification purposes only.

The Sekulow’s endorsements are especially meaningful in light of the SC primary and the Texas religious leaders’ huddle deciding to back an ‘anti-Romney’ candidate (Romney wasn’t even considered). Jay’s grandfather fled Russia because of religious persecution and, through the portals of Ellis Island, became an American. He spent his life peddling fruit in Brooklyn, New York. Today, his grandson argues cases before the Supreme Court of the United States… He and his son have endorsed Mitt Romney.


► Jayde Wyatt

Obama Voters Who May Vote for Governor Romney: Democrats and Independents

Recently, I extended the invitation to a fellow Californian who will again vote for President Obama. Her name is Pauline Kejmar and she lives in Redlands — she is a Democrat. Her grandson Drew is my son-in-law.

There are still ardent supporters of President Obama and Pauline is one. Through Drew, I asked her if she would give me a TOP 10 list of reasons she believes President Obama is superior to Governor Romney as POTUS and why she plans to support Obama again.

You may ask why I would post subject matter of this type in a grassroots forum such as MittRomneyCentral. My reasoning is that it provides a simple glimpse into the mind of one Democrat and if we are successful here at MRC, we should be able to appeal to the Blue Dog Democrat as well as to the Independent voter (Americans all). To do so, we need to understand their motivations and expectations. I presume that Pauline is far from being a disaffected Democrat as her views below seem to align well with the more liberal wing of the Democrat party.

Governor Huntsman’s likely endorsement of Governor Romney today is the first of four hopefully, which will shift the focus of the campaign away from the Republican competitors to President Obama. WELCOME to any and all supporters of Governor Huntsman and to any of the supporters of Gingrich, Santorum, and Perry who are hoping to join a winning, organized, strong movement to restore America’s standing! Welcome to you!

It is too early to predict of course, but Romney could be on course to beat Reagan’s 1980 win over Carter — impressive indeed. In that race, Reagan won 44 states and 489 electoral votes to Carter’s six states (plus DC) and 49 electoral votes, and America is in far worse shape today. I remember those days. Reagan entered office with a mandate, in part because of Democrats that crossed over to vote for him. By the way, are any of you as sick and tired as I am of hearing Mr. Gingrich invoke the name of Ronald Reagan at every turn? I wish I could ask President Reagan his candid opinion of Gingrich!

President Obama


REQUEST: For any of our readers that voted for Obama who became disillusioned with the direction his lack of leadership has taken America, and who is seriously considering a vote for Governor Romney this time (should he be the Republican nominee), please leave a comment as to why. I may contact you later to invite you to elaborate in a guest post — if you would like.

Following is one Democrat’s opinion as to why President Obama is the superior candidate for POTUS.

By Pauline Kejmar

Ten Reasons why I would vote for Obama over Romney

I. He is better able to bridge the increasing gap between the rich and the poor in this country.

2. He has been very successful in fighting terrorism with the killing of Bin Laden and many other top Al Qaeda leaders and operatives.

3. He fights for consumer financial protection such as regulating credit card fees.

4. He would be less likely to lead us into a armed conflict with Iran using sanctions and cooperation with other allies.

5. He was able to help get Gaddafi out of Libya without using U.S. ground troops.

6. He would be tougher on environmental protection because he believes in global warming.

7. Has a sensible approach to immigration. Illegal immigration numbers have decreased under Obama and deportation of illegal criminals has increased. He has a concern for those young people brought here at an early age to receive a path to legalization.

8. He has brought an end to the nine years of war in Iraq and sent our troops home. He is drawing down in Afghanistan after ten years.

2ND REQUEST: Please leave a comment to this post if you voted for Barack Obama in 2008 but are seriously considering a completely opposite approach by voting for Governor Romney, should he win the nomination. Also, let me know if you would be interested in expounding upon your views and opinions in a guest post to help other readers that have similar concerns. If so, I will contact you via email.

Romney Is Their Guy: SC’s Greenville News, Charlotte Observer, State Rep Murrell Smith

South Carolina is the hotbed of political activity right now and, while his mattress is going up in flames, Newt Gingrich just keeps jumpin’ harder on the bed… Ridiculing Mitt Romney because he speaks a second language? One of the best comments I heard regarding this latest act of Gingrich desperation came from Greg Gutfeld/The Five/FOX News last Friday. He ridiculed Gingrich: “Oh, yeah. That’s real good… mock someone because they’re SMART.”

Through the smoke and mirrors, two SC newspapers, The Greenville News and The Charlotte Observer, AND SC State Representative Murrell Smith, clear the air with their robust endorsements for Mitt Romney:


ROMNEY BEST CHOICE FOR REPUBLICANS
Editorial
January 15, 2012

South Carolina Republicans go to the polls Saturday to have their say on their party’s presidential nominee. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is the strongest candidate on the ballot, and he is best qualified to mount a serious campaign this fall.

Romney is best equipped of the Republican candidates to help this country get its financial house in order, to rein in a federal government inclined to add crushing regulations, to free business capital to create jobs and to improve the lives of Americans up and down the economic ladder. He is thoughtful when it comes to protecting the country, enhancing its national security and improving its relationship with trusted allies. At the same time, his executive experience in the business world and in state government gives him an undeniable advantage in this Republican primary.

With 25 years of business experience on his resume, Romney has an appreciation for the extraordinary ability of American workers, a clear-eyed view of what it takes to create and retain jobs, and a realistic understanding of the pressures on American businesses in a fragile economy and global marketplace. With a term as governor of Massachusetts on his resume, he has a demonstrated ability to provide leadership during challenging times, make tough and unpopular decisions, and work with lawmakers with other political beliefs so he can advance much of his agenda and avoid suffocating gridlock.

Whether it was taking over the faltering 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics or the governorship of a state with budget problems, Romney has demonstrated a management style and leadership traits that would serve him well in the White House if his party is victorious in November. His intimate knowledge of the business world, that also includes familiarity with some of the sharp edges of the free-market system, would serve him well, too.

As he wrote in a column on these pages a few months ago when the National Labor Relations Board had endangered the new Boeing plant in South Carolina, “America’s workers have long been the most productive in the world. If we unshackle them from the self-interested restrictions of federal bureaucrats and union bosses alike, I have no doubt that they will produce wonders far beyond those, like Boeing’s Dreamliner, that have already made America the great country that it is.” That is not a dreamy-eyed philosophy, but one that comes from a man who has spent more time in the business world than in government work.



ROMNEY HAS WHAT S.C. REPUBLICANS ARE LOOKING FOR
Editorial
January 15, 2012

South Carolina Republicans on Saturday will have the last real chance to slow Mitt Romney’s climb to the GOP presidential nomination. But why would they want to?

The former Massachusetts governor doesn’t spark fire in many S.C. bellies, but business-oriented Republicans need not feel queasy when voting for him. Romney is a lifelong leader with remarkable business credentials. From Bain & Co. to the 2002 Olympics, Romney has demonstrated an ability to turn things around in a crisis.

Leading Bain Capital in the 1980s, Romney shined in his role as investor. In January 1991 he returned to Bain & Co. and within two years had rescued it from collapse. Similarly, the Olympics in Salt Lake City were nearly $400 million behind where they needed to be when Romney came in. He took charge and led the Olympics to success, and to a profit.

Republicans are debating Romney’s record at Bain and how many jobs he created. But with a stubbornly high S.C. unemployment rate currently at 9.9 percent, is there really any candidate in this primary field who could be better trusted on that front than Romney?

He has as much or more executive experience as any of his rivals. As a Republican governor in a liberal state, he showed the ability to pass important public policy under challenging circumstances, and he helped erase a projected $3 billion deficit.

Some voters may wish he would throw out the red meat that Rick Santorum and Ron Paul do, but Romney’s sensible, authoritative, conservative approach will do more for the cause than theirs will.

Romney Press Office: Romney Announces Support of South Carolina State Rep Murrell Smith

SC State Rep Murrell Smith

“I’m proud to have Murrell’s support,” said Mitt Romney. “Like me, Murrell believes our country needs to empower, not hamper, small businesses and entrepreneurs to give our country lasting economic growth. I look forward to working with Murrell in the months to come to spread this message to all South Carolinians.”

“President Obama’s time in office has been a historic failure,” said State Representative Murrell Smith. “Our country cannot afford four more years of the same policies of higher taxes, reckless spending, and a disastrous healthcare law. Mitt Romney is a conservative businessman who spent his life in the real economy. He knows how to turn our country around and create jobs for the middle class. I urge all South Carolinians that want to change the direction of the country to join me in supporting Mitt Romney.”

Background on Murrell Smith:

Murrell Smith Has Served In The South Carolina House Of Representatives Since 2000. He is a member of the Ways and Means Committee and Chairman of the Health and Human Services Subcommittee. He recently received the business advocate award from the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce and was named a taxpayer hero by the South Carolina Club for Growth.
(emphasis, italics added)

Much more below the fold, including video of Romney on the Huckabee Forum Part 2 and Charles Krauthammer’s advice for The Gov regarding tomorrow night’s debate (Myrtle Beach, SC)…

(more…)

Texas Ranch Meeting: About Conservatism or Religion? The Obvious Truth

Over the last 10 days or so, much as been reported about a meeting or conference of evangelical leaders to be held at the ranch of a judge in Texas. That meeting happened yesterday. There have been literally dozens of newspaper and online articles published leading up to the meeting, and afterward, with all of the accompanying speculation and anticipation. Their goal? To decide upon the “conservative alternative” to Mitt Romney. Really? They must think all Americans are completely ignorant.

Senator Rick Santorum (Photo credit: AP)


Saturday in The Dallas Morning News, Robert Jeffress (yes, that one) was quoted:

“The fat lady hasn’t sung yet, but she’s in the green room warming up. It looks like Gov. Romney is going to win the nomination,” said Jeffress, who was not at the meeting but made headlines last year when he warned that Mormonism is a cult.

Jeffress cautioned that while some say evangelicals will have no choice but to vote for Romney, millions could stay home as they did in 2008 unless the former Massachusetts governor gives Christian conservatives a reason to turn out for him. He suggested that Romney, should he become the nominee, strongly promise that he will appoint anti-abortion judges to the U.S. Supreme Court.

From the many reports I read about the meeting of over 150 leaders, they cast votes (more than one time) to choose one of the “not-Mitt” candidates still remaining. Their selection was Rick Santorum, to the chagrin of Mr. Gingrich (I wonder why they decided against Newt? — a real head scratcher!).

Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council says conservatives are looking for a candidate who will repeal the nation’s health care law, fight for pro family values and address the national debt.

Governor Romney was the first to declare he would seek to repeal ObamaCare — and forcefully. Which other candidate has better family values than Governor Romney?

This National Journal piece gives a good sense of the jockeying:

“We have been successful as the conservative alternative to Mitt Romney,” Santorum told reporters in Mount Pleasant, S.C. Later, he said in a statement that every candidate had “coveted” the endorsement. “It is time to coalesce behind the full spectrum conservative in this race who will fight for their values and won’t waiver when times get tough,” Santorum said. That was a reference to himself. The next sentence was a reference to Romney: “Now is the time to stop a moderate from becoming our party’s nominee.”

Newt Gingrich and his camp disputed Santorum’s interpretation of the results. Former congressman J.C. Watts, Gingrich’s national campaign co-chairman, said Santorum and Gingrich were separated by only nine votes on the first ballot. “It is clear that 100% of those attending are not for Governor Romney, but in fact are splintered in whether to support Newt Gingrich or Rick Santorum,” Watts said in a statement. He called it “misleading” for the Santorum campaign to claim an endorsement from all 150 leaders at the meeting.

[emphasis added]

A SIMPLE TEST OF LOGIC:

Facts First: Any person that does a small amount of research, and dives below the soundbite images painted by Gingrich, Perry, and Santorum regarding Governor Romney, discovers that he governed as a conservative in every way. One of the best examples is regarding his pro-life record. In every decision he made or action he took as governor, was always on the side of life. Proof ——> HERE. There are many examples of Governor Romney’s proven conservatism, not least of which are the numerous Tea Party leaders and organizations that have enthusiastically endorsed him over all other presidential candidates.

Now the Logic: Ask yourself this question — If Mitt Romney were an Evangelical, would that meeting have been convened? Take your time as you contemplate your answer to this simple question. Remember, Mr. Newt Gingrich was included as a possible choice by these evangelical leaders — a serial adulterer whose last affair lasted in secret for six years during the time Gingrich publicly scolded President Clinton for his extramarital relations. In fact, Mr. Gingrich came in second in the voting at this ranch meeting!

Again, would that meeting have been convened at all by 150+ evangelical leaders had Mitt Romney’s religion been Evangelical? The obvious answer is clearly “no” it would not have even been considered.

What if Mitt Romney were Evangelical and had won both Iowa and New Hampshire? I can tell you this: Had Governor Romney been Evangelical, he would have won Iowa by tens of thousands more votes than the 8-vote margin he received. Santorum only came close because of the clarion call “to preach Santorum” from the pulpits the Sunday prior (ala Huckabee 2008 surprise). Interesting, is it not, that the IRS let those instances alone?

Conclusion: If GMR were Evangelical, he would have won Iowa by a HUGE margin. If GMR were Evangelical, the Texas ranch meeting of 150+ evangelical leaders would never have happened. If GMR were Evangelical, the primary race would be effectively sealed after his winning two unprecedented states.

If this logic is anywhere near the truth, then what was yesterday’s meeting all about? These “leaders” traveled from all over the nation to meet out at the ranch, spending an enormous amount of time and money. They all reported that the meeting made no mention of Mitt Romney or his religion. Right.

That meeting had nothing to do with conservatism.

“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” — John Adams

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An Independent Who Knows and Loves Mitt — and Not for the Mistletoe

Autumn McAlpin

“America’s Calling” was an event organized in June of 2007 in Boston for volunteers to make outbound calls to their contacts to raise funds for Governor Romney’s 2008 campaign. Meg Whitman (CEO, eBay) chartered a 737 for all volunteers from California wishing to travel to/from Boston to participate. My wife Cindy, our son Mitchell, and I took the day to make it happen.

With us was Autumn McAlpin, a friend and talented writer and author. Of course, one of the passengers up and back was Meg Whitman; the return flight included Ann Romney. At the time, I was writing for CommittedToRomney blog and decided to see if I might get an interview from Meg and Ann. Then I thought, Autumn had a lot more experience writing than I, and as a woman would likely connect with them better than I.

They both graciously accepted to give an interview to Autumn (I made the two photographs below on those flights). See Autumn’s bio at the end and the link to her weekly column — The Orange County Register has a tradition that slants libertarian (as a paperboy, I delivered The Register at age 12 in Anaheim).

Autumn accepted my invitation to provide this editorial to you; her thoughts on Governor Mitt Romney.

By Autumn McAlpin:

I recently came across an article by a fellow journalist who first met Mitt along the campaign of ’08. She recalled that while seated under a mistletoe at a coffee shop at Christmastime, Mitt extended a handshake rather than a peck. She claimed this platonic gesture from a happily married man disillusioned her, even costing him her vote.

Really?

The concept of politicians shaking hands and kissing babies is as cliche as the striped red tie. Such sentiments form the fodder for the “Presidents are merely puppets” ideology. But in our country’s current state of emergency, is another puppet what we want?

In 2008, the polls showed we did. It was edgy, even cool to pick a candidate who was the youthful minority, the underdog. But now, after four lackluster years of watching a puppet shake hands and kiss babies (all the while with a shell-shocked look on his face), this country is now ready to elevate our expectations of our commander in chief.

I first met GMR in 2008 as part of his grassroots campaign, but had actually known his son Josh since college. This personal connection drew me to the Romney camp, but my involvement in the campaign and eventual ballot choice was not predicated by it.

Autumn & Meg


As an independent voter, party lines are more of a blur to me, and I will always vote for who I feel is the best candidate. Just as in 2008, I have no doubt GMR is the best choice.

We’ve all done the research: GMR floats on a legacy of fixing things–from corporations to the Olympics, he’s the man who’s brought in in the eleventh hour to do remarkable things in dire circumstances. Well, the circumstances are dire, and the hour is here.

In Boston 2007, I had the privilege to sit down with Ann Romney as we discussed her family, health, and husband. By every account a gracious, intelligent force for good herself, she convinced me that GMR did not seek this position for his own hubris. We all know he has already humbly proven himself capable in his business world. Rather, he felt called to fulfill a position for which his life circumstances had trained and qualified him.

Ann & Autumn


Other conversations with friends and family who know the real Mitt reveal the same — business mogul (and former eBay C.E.O.) Meg Whitman told me the story of how GMR had shut down operations at Bain Capital once when an employee’s teenage daughter went missing, encouraging the large work family to support the search efforts. Friends have told me of times when he’s generously donated money to those in need, treated masses of teenagers to dinner, rolled up his sleeves in community clean-up efforts. He is by all accounts a man who is deeply allegiant to his wife, children, grandchildren, and country.

For reasons unbeknownst to me, GMR does not scheme for these glimpses to be splayed across the airwaves for those seeking their mistletoe kiss. Rather at the podium, he focuses on the real day-to-day issues facing the POTUS post — our economy, our military, education, and healthcare. He backs up his beliefs, and dominates the debates. I know he’s qualified and prepared to roll up his sleeves and get to work doing what he does best — fixing. And the thought of our country getting fixed thrills me.

2008 was not a complete political loss for us as it gave the media a chance to flush out their antics– the “flip floppery,” the religious persecution, the hair jokes. And now the groundwork is laid, the candidate well known, and really, there’s just not anything to dig.

When seeking an edge, we’ve got Lenny Kravitz. When seeking a presidential candidate, we need a fixer, a doer, a believer who will reinstate our allegiance to our Constitution and restore national pride — someone who is not running for his own personal gain, but who is willing to lend his talents and willingness to serve in the most difficult leadership role in the world.

If you are looking for someone to kiss under the mistletoe, Mitt may not be your guy. But if you are ready to FIX this mess we’re in, ready to support a candidate who will easily be the most productive, effective, and respected President since Reagan, it’s time to commit to Mitt.

Autumn McAlpin is an author and screenwriter who also pens the weekly “Cracking Up” column for the Orange County Register (www.momscrackingup.com) Autumn lives in southern California with her husband, Michael, and four children.

“If we mean to have heroes, statesmen and philosophers, we should have learned women.” — Abigail Adams

Barron’s: “Romney Will Win Again” — Gingrich Will Exit with his “Tail Tucked Between His Legs”

The show is on in South Carolina these days. I have only been to South Carolina one time for a few days and I loved it! The people are warm and the barbeque is awesome!

Juana Summers gives an outstanding view into the Huntsman stump in her Politico article today. His frequent speaking of Chinese is the topic (the entire article is great); excerpts:

Check the Mother!


I wonder what the Donald thinks?

“I didn’t think the Mandarin thing worked at all. I thought it was ridiculous,” said Donald Trump, a harsh critic of China, on Fox News. “And frankly, I think Huntsman’s stance toward China is — it’s almost like he’s an Obama plant.”
[...]
In Huntsman’s case, it’s not just the television talking heads who found his use of Chinese in the debate politically tone-deaf — and perhaps even a bit contrived.
[...]
“They played the clip several times, and I was watching the audience react to it. The Chinese was off-putting for some folks. During the Chinese, the dials just shut down,” he said.

Speaking a foreign language to an audience in which only a handful of those present speak that language is an obvious form of bragging and is brash in my opinion. “Off-putting” is the key word from the article.

Oh, and did you hear yesterday that Mr. Gingrich told the world yesterday that “in the end” the voters will choose him as the conservative alternative? Every time Gingrich speaks, it reminds me of a little boy that runs in front of a TV when the family is watching a really good movie together, knowing that all eyes are on the TV. Gingrich has an insatiable need to be seen and heard. I believe he knows time is short for him before his final moment of irrelevance arrives.

The Washington Post reported this yesterday:

Taking questions from the crowd, Romney was asked by an elderly woman: “Do you believe in the divine saving grace of Jesus Christ?”

“Yes, I do,” Romney said, giving a simple answer to a question that went to the heart of his Mormon faith.

But Romney used the opportunity to extol the virtue of religious tolerance. “Our president will be president of the people of all faiths,” he said. As the crowd applauded, he added: “I happen to believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God and my savior, but I know other people have differing views and I respect those views and don’t believe those qualify or disqualify people for leadership in our nation.”

Would you like a pick-me-up for the weekend? I needed one out of South Carolina. Well, Jim McTague of Barron’s brought it today in his column (you need to read it online from the beginning — made my week!). Clips:

Most of us savor a modicum of drama in our ho-hum lives, so I forgive the pundits for trying to spice things up by making the Jan. 21 South Carolina GOP primary sound as crucial for Mitt Romney as the Battle of the Bulge was for the American Army in 1945. Nevertheless, I’m not swallowing the hype.

Mitt Romney will cruise to victory—despite his Mormon religion, which puzzles many and offends some, and despite an expensive, cynical and cinematic attack on his stint as an investment banker by America’s Biggest Sore Loser, Newt Gingrich.

[...]

Mr. McTague continues on Gingrich:

The flip is no mystery: Much as nature abhors a wounded animal, the American electorate dislikes political losers. Despite his gift of a saber-sharp debating tongue, Gingrich finished near the bottom in both Iowa and New Hampshire. Romney, who always looks as relaxed as a curled cat, broke the tape in both races. Straggler Gingrich is being abandoned in favor of front-runner Romney. Gingrich should brace himself for another round of humiliation.

Here are some other reasons that South Carolina’s Republicans will go with Romney. First, despite the vocal discomfort of leaders of the state’s large evangelical Christian community with Romney’s Mormonism, it will be no big deal for most voters. Consider this: Conservative talk-radio host Glenn Beck, a Mormon, is heard on 12 South Carolina stations. Beck drew large, enthusiastic crowds when he visited the state a couple of years ago for book signings. This tells me people will pay closer attention to Romney’s politics than to his religion.

SECOND, ROMNEY WILL WIN because Gingrich made a mistake in airing a nasty television attack ad about Romney’s career as an investment banker at Bain Capital. Gingrich would have us believe that it was “bane” capital. The $3.4 million ad campaign, which depicts Romney as a ruthless corporate pirate who made a fortune buying up companies and throwing employees onto the street, is essentially financed by Las Vegas casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, who made a $5 million donation to Gingrich. That’s a problem, because gambling is taboo in South Carolina. The state has some of the strongest anti-gambling laws in the nation east of Utah, and it appears to be stubbornly proud of them.

Under a literal reading of the gambling statute implemented in 1802, any game employing dice, including Monopoly, is illegal. Card games are illegal, too. Recent attempts to modernize the law and permit charitable raffles and some other forms of gambling have met with strong opposition from religious groups, who view gambling as sinful. If you want to gamble in South Carolina, you have to board a cruise ship in Charleston or Myrtle Beach and sail into international waters, just like on the old television series Mr. Lucky. Gingrich will be associated with Las Vegas, and this will turn off voters.

Romney will win again. Gingrich will exit, stage left, tail tucked between his legs. So will the tangle-tongued Rick Perry. Niche players Ron Paul and Rick Santorum may hang on for Florida simply for the ego trip.

(emphasis added)

That’s the wrap on South Carolina for the morning.

How much longer do we have to listen to the Gingrich whine?

“The tendency to whining and complaining may be taken as the surest sign symptom of little souls and inferior intellects.” — Lord Jeffrey

“Firmness in enduring and exertion is a character I always wish to possess. I have always despised the whining yelp of complaint and cowardly resolve.” — Robert Burns

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Fmr Ambassador to Holy See Praises Romney’s MA Pro-Life Accomplishments

Mitt Romney, loving grandfather to 16 grandchildren, relishes moments spent meeting babies along the campaign trail. (Photo/ Reuters/ Jason Szep)

Newt Gingrich is airing ads in South Carolina slamming Mitt Romney over his pro-life stance. As one who repeats ad nauseum that he is a “Reagan conservative” he would also have to slam the one he’s pompously self-identifying with. Ronald Reagan was once a pro-choicer and later flipped to a pro-life position. Besides his bludgeoning of the free-market, here’s another favorite Gingrich meme in the Palmetto State: “He [Romney] can’t defend his record; it’s too liberal for South Carolina.”

Not so, Newt.

Today, National Review’s Kathryn Jean Lopez penned an article titled Governor Romney Was a Great Friend to the Pro-Life Movement in Massachusetts. She features a new video which will be released this morning by the Romney campaign with a message from the former U.S. ambassador to the Holy See, Mary Ann Glendon. She is a founding member of Women Affirming Life. It is titled Shares Our Values – Mitt Romney Pro-Life Accomplishments. (Also a Harvard Law professor, Glendon co-chairs the 63 member Justice Advisory Team for Romney.)

Take a look:

I’m Mary Ann Glendon and I am a founding member of Women Affirming Life and I have been active in the pro-life movement in Massachusetts and nationally for three decades. [Internationally, too.] The pro-life movement is all about changing hearts and minds and it struck me as very unfortunate that Mitt Romney has been criticized by some people for coming to a pro-life position on the basis of information. That’s what the pro-life movement is all about. Governor Romney showed great political courage and expended much of his political capital in supporting pro-life measures when he was here in Massachusetts. It was a very difficult political environment. 85 percent of the state legislature is Democrat controlled.

Governor Romney in that environment vetoed legislation that would have permitted destructive embryonic research; he vetoed legislation that would have permitted the over the counter sale of the morning after pill; he supported abstinence education in the schools.

Governor Romney was a great friend to the pro-life movement in Massachusetts. In a very difficult political environment, when many doors of the State House were closed to us, we always were welcomed by Governor Romney and his staff. He was a great pro-life governor and he will be a great pro-life president.

(emphasis added)

This is the best video recommendation I’ve seen for Governor Romney’s support of ‘life’ in Massachusetts. Many thanks to Mary Ann Glendon.

Note: Professor Glendon is also a signatory on An Open Letter Regarding Mitt Romney (Dec 30, 2011) in which the statement is made that “[A] good case can be made that Romney has fought harder for social conservatives than any other governor in America, and it is difficult to imagine his doing so in a more daunting political environment.”

Given that religious leaders are holding a two-day meeting (yesterday and today) to decide which anti-Romney candidate they will lay their collective hands on, we Romney supporters really must do all within our power to share this article everywhere, along with this one and this one.

Southern Baptist Convention leader, Richard Land, was mentioned in the articles linked above as one who is attending the two-day meeting in Texas. If he stands by the favorable position he took on Gov Romney in 2007, I’m somewhat encouraged.

► Jayde Wyatt

Romney Endorsements: Amb John Bolton, SC Leaders, TN Gov Haslam, KS Secty of State Kobach

While Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry have their hands super-glued on the aspects-of-free-enterprise-are-frightful gong, we’ve got another Romney endorsement roll out…

FORMER U.N. AMBASSADOR

Fmr U.N. Amb John Bolton


We learned tonight that Former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton has endorsed Mitt Romney and will be an adviser on his top foreign policy team. (Music to my ears…)

Wall Street Journal:

… The move is a blow to Newt Gingrich, who is close to Mr. Bolton and said recently that he would nominate the former ambassador as his secretary of state were he to become president.
[...]





SOUTH CAROLINA

Elected officials and leaders from the Palmetto State have decided Mitt Romney is their choice:

Mitt Romney has demonstrated throughout his life that he has the values South Carolinians are looking for in our next Commander-in-Chief,” said Senator Ronnie Cromer. “Whether it has been in business, the Olympics, leading a state, or in his family life, Mitt Romney has displayed the virtues and leadership quality that we want in our President. His economic plan to revitalize the economy and bring fiscal sanity to Washington stand head-and-shoulders above the rest of the field and stand in stark contrast to President Obama’s failure to create jobs and get spending under control. If conservatives are looking for a candidate who will not only share their values, but put them into action, they need to look no further than Mitt Romney.”

Mitt Romney is the kind of strong conservative leader our country needs right now,” said Speaker Pro Tempore Jay Lucas. “Having spent his life in the private sector, Mitt Romney knows exactly what it takes to grow the economy and create jobs. He will put in place the kind of limited government principles that will help get our nation back on the right track and is the best candidate to win in November.”

“Mitt Romney has put forth a pro-growth jobs plan that will help turn around our economy and get America working again,” said Greenville Mayor Knox White. “Mitt Romney believes in America and will work to restore the founding principles that have made our country great by returning to a ‘smaller, simpler, and smarter’ federal government.”

These leaders share my vision that free people, not government, are what makes this country great,” said Mitt Romney. “With their continued hard work, we can turn this country around and ensure that it continues to be the greatest nation on Earth.”

South Carolina Elected Officials and Leaders Endorsing Mitt Romney:

Businessman and Former Prosecutor Robert Bolchoz
Former Congressman Henry Brown
RNC National Committeewoman Cindy Costa
Senator Ronnie Cromer
Speaker Pro Tempore Jay Lucas
Greenville Mayor Knox White
Kershaw County Council Chairman Gene Wise


TENNESSEE

The Governor from The Volunteer State, Bill Haslam, is also supporting Romney:

Governor Haslam’s focus on balancing the budget and providing state services efficiently and effectively to taxpayers should be an example to politicians in Washington,” said Mitt Romney. “His priorities to cut spending, reduce regulatory burdens, and strengthen a business-friendly climate are key steps to put our country on the right path once again. I look forward to working with Governor Haslam to help spread my pro-growth message and defeat President Obama.”

TN Gov Bill Haslam

“I am proud to announce my support for Mitt Romney. He’s been a governor and had the responsibility of leading as an executive by cutting spending, keeping taxes low and creating a strong environment for job creation,” Governor Haslam said. “He also has private sector experience and understands the importance of balancing revenues and expenses. Mitt is a problem solver, and what we really need in this country right now is someone that can tackle tough issues. With Mitt Romney in the White House, Tennesseans can be confident in a leader that is focused on creating jobs and encouraging prosperity for Americans.”

Background on Governor Bill Haslam:

Bill Haslam Was Elected The 49th Governor Of Tennessee With The Largest Margin Of Victory In Any Open Governor’s Race In The State’s History. His top priorities are to make Tennessee the No.1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs by fostering a business-friendly environment for recruitment and expansion; to continue the state’s momentum in education reform with the focus on doing what’s best for Tennessee children in the classroom; and to ensure the state budget is managed conservatively and state government is run as efficiently and effectively as possible while delivering quality service to the citizens of Tennessee.

Prior to serving as Governor, he was the Mayor of Knoxville for eight years, and before entering public service, he managed his family’s business, driving all over the country to find good locations for new truck-stops and helping it expand to a nationwide business.


KANSAS

Kris Kobach, Secretary of State for Kansas, gives Romney the thumbs-up:

Kris Kobach, Kansas Secty of State

We need a president who will finally put a stop to a problem that has plagued our country for a generation: millions of illegal aliens coming into the country and taking jobs from United States citizens and legal aliens, while consuming hundreds of billions of dollars in public benefits at taxpayer expense,” said Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach. “Illegal immigration is a nightmare for America’s economy and America’s national security. Mitt Romney is the candidate who will finally secure the borders and put a stop to the magnets, like in-state tuition, that encourage illegal aliens to remain in our country unlawfully. He is also the candidate who will stand shoulder to shoulder with the states that are fighting to restore the rule of law. I am pleased to stand with this true conservative.”

I’m so proud to earn Kris’s support,” said Mitt Romney. “Kris has been a true leader on securing our borders and stopping the flow of illegal immigration into this country. We need more conservative leaders like Kris willing to stand up for the rule of law. With Kris on the team, I look forward to working with him to take forceful steps to curtail illegal immigration and to support states like South Carolina and Arizona that are stepping forward to address this problem.”

Background On Kris Kobach:

Kris Kobach Is The Secretary Of State Of Kansas. He was formerly the chairman of the Kansas Republican Party and a professor of constitutional law. Kobach has been a longtime advocate for immigration reform. He is the co-author of the Arizona and Alabama laws against illegal immigration, and he served as Attorney General John Ashcroft’s chief adviser on immigration and border security while at the U.S. Department of Justice. He has degrees from Harvard, Yale, and Oxford Universities. He lives in Piper, Kansas, with his wife Heather and daughters Lilly, Reagan, Molly, and Charlotte.

(emphasis added to endorsements)

► Jayde Wyatt

Two for two: Can Mitt Romney be stopped for the nomination?

From USA Today:

NASHUA, N.H. – Iowa: Won by a whisker. New Hampshire: Won in a walk.

Can Mitt Romney be stopped for the Republican presidential nomination? There is time, his opponents say, although perhaps not much. To be precise, another 10 days to unleash a barrage against the front-runner and persuade conservatives to coalesce around an alternative who then could carry the South Carolina primary.

On Tuesday night, though, the confetti cannons were being fired at Romney’s victory party. He achieved what no non-incumbent Republican has ever done: win both the Iowa caucuses, dominated by evangelical Christians, and the New Hampshire primary, with its live-free-or-die independents.

“Thank you, New Hampshire,” Romney told an exuberant victory party. “You know, tonight we celebrate. Tomorrow, we go back to work.”

After watching one rival after another soar and then crash, the slow and steady candidate prevailed in this year’s opening contests — and succeeded in the state where his presidential ambitions crumbled four years ago as Arizona Sen. John McCain surged from behind to defeat him.

If he also manages to win the Palmetto State on Jan. 21 — scoring what South Carolina GOP strategist Chip Felkel admiringly calls “the trifecta” — supporters and opponents say the former Massachusetts governor credibly could claim to be the presumptive Republican presidential nomination.

. . . .

The Romney camp is braced for what one top strategist called “a war” in South Carolina, a state known for its bruising primary politics. The TV ads and two debates are likely to be the harshest to date

A majority of voters in New Hampshire said Romney would be the strongest general-election candidate, and he was seen as broadly acceptable.

. . . .

Nationally, he is showing growing strength. In the daily Gallup Poll, he has ticked up to 30% for the first time; Gingrich is second at 18%. That puts history on Romney’s side: Since 1976, the candidate who led nationally after the New Hampshire primary has won the nomination.

What’s more, Romney is the only candidate whom a majority of both conservative and moderate Republicans see as an “acceptable” nominee, according to a Gallup Poll taken Thursday through Sunday.

. . . .

The next goal for Team Romney: a Trifecta.

New Hampshire, Day 2 (Saturday)

Saturday I had another great day in NH. I’ll give blow-by-blows below. Sorry for the late post, but it’s been eventful here!

Rally in Derry

We started our day getting up early, grabbing food, and driving to Derry for a rally. I’d guess probably 800-1,000 people were there by the time Mitt came in at 8:30. We happened to catch a glimpse of John Sununu right before the rally began:

Governor Sununu in Derry, NH

Mitt was accompanied on stage by Ann, Tagg and his wife and kids, and then Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Nikki Haley from South Carolina. Both “opening acts” were great. Senator Ayotte was very sincere in her concern for the future of our country, and Governor Haley really rallied the troops.



The three together were fantastic.
I think this “Wall of Champions” photo is appropriate.

Mitt of course gave a great speech, covering the themes he has throughout: this is a battle for the American soul. Will we be an entitlement society, or an opportunity society with the right to “pursue happiness.”

After the rally, the media swarmed Mitt. I’m not sure if this level of coverage is normal, but something tells me that coverage is increasing all the time.

They surrounded Mitt

“Backstage” with the Romney Family

When the media moved in on Mitt, I followed Jim and Rod Davies outside the gym to try and meet up with their sister, Ann. (more…)