Poll Shows a Replay of 1980 – American Jewish Electorate Divided on Presidential Election

As the general election has just kicked off, with the economy getting the main focus and attention, and Obama taking some hits on his record, it is also important to see how American voters view President Obama’s conduct and his handling of issues that matter to most Americans.

Let’s look particularly at a demographic that may play an important party in determining who becomes the next President of the U.S. in November 2012 – the Jewish American electorate. Since this race is going to come down to a battle over swing states, those that historically and demographically choose the President, the Jewish population in Florida, Ohio, Philadelphia and Cleveland could be the demographic giving Mitt Romney the edge over the President.

A new poll, conducted by Knowledge Networks for the AJC, shows the mixed political mind of the American Jewish community as the nation heads into general election season. It reveals Romney making significant inroads in the Jewish community, getting the support of 28 percent, 6 months before election day. In comparison, President George W. Bush, considered one of Israel’s greatest friends, got only 24 percent of the Jewish vote in his reelection bid in 2004. Senator McCain, also known as a strong supporter of Israel during his years in the Senate, got only 22 percent.

The poll also shows President Obama getting only 61 percent of the Jewish vote, a decline of 17 points down from the 78 percent he got in 2008. 11 percent are undecided, but when asked whom they are leaning towards, 5% picked Romney and 6% picked the president. Even before the Veep pick, the national convention, and the campaign effort which is expected to be aggressive and carefully area targeted in the months ahead, that gives Mitt Romney roughly 33% of the Jewish vote.

Based on this poll data, one could confidentially assume Mitt Romney getting around 39% of the Jewish vote in November. It matches President Reagan’s 1980-1984 support.

The analysis is based on poll data, which could be spinned and twisted brilliantly by both campaigns, but also gives us a glimpse of how the electorate is somewhat similar to 1980 when Ronald Reagan challenged President Jimmy Carter. When asked for the most important issues in deciding their vote, 80 percent of American Jews cited the economy, 57 percent health care, 26 percent national security and 22 percent U.S.-Israel relations. But among those who are more focused on national security concerns or U.S.-Israel relations, only 42 percent would vote for Obama. Forty-four percent of those who cite national security and 45 percent of those who cite U.S.-Israel relations would vote for Romney.

Regardless of how the respondents intend to vote, 60 percent think the Democratic Party is more likely to make the right decision in dealing with Iran’s nuclear program. 37 percent choose the Republican Party. The same is with national security issues and the economy in which 36% trust the Republicans compared to 60-62 that trust the Democrats.

Nonetheless, if this election is a combination of the economy and national security issues, based on the assumption these factors will be key in determining the support each candidate might get – the President’s record, his name recognition, his incumbency advantage and Mitt Romney’s aggressive campaigning mode, one could definitely expect Mitt Romney to pick up high support among Jewish voters. Consequently, that would create an opening and opportunity for the Republican party to open it doors, run competitive Jewish candidates, make Jews feel comfortable in the GOP party, and most of all, be just enough to tilt some highly contested Battleground states in Mitt Romney’s column.

Romney’s Triple-Header Endorsements: House Spkr Boehner, WY Gov Matt Mead, PA Gov Tom Corbett


UPDATE – After John Boehner endorsed Mitt Romney, he appeared on CBS This Morning. Charlie Rose tried to play hardball:


It’s a triple-header today….

House Speaker John Boehner, Wyoming Governor Matt Mead, and Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett announced today they are standing with Mitt Romney.

As Chairman of the Republican National Convention Aug. 27-30, Speaker Boehner remained neutral throughout the GOP primary. Now that Governor Romney is all-but-official to be the nominee, Boehner offered a hearty endorsement:

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH)

Saying he “will be proud to support Mitt Romney,” House Speaker John Boehner gave the former Massachusetts governor his endorsement Tuesday.

“I think Mitt Romney has a set of economic policies that can put Americans back to work and, frankly, contrast sharply with the failed economic policies of President Obama,” Boehner said. “And I will be proud to support Mitt Romney and do everything I can to help him win.”

Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) have already endorsed The Gov.

From the wonderful Equality State, where women were first granted the right to vote, comes today’s endorsement from Wyoming Governor Matt Mead:

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead

“I am proud to have Governor Mead’s support,” said Mitt Romney. “With his help, we can defeat President Obama, reverse the failures of the last three years, and change the direction of the country. I look forward to his efforts as we work to make government smaller, create jobs, and ensure that future generations are not burdened with debt.”

“Very few leaders come along with the breadth of experience and knowledge of the economy as Mitt Romney,” said Governor Mead. “At this moment in our nation’s history, with economic uncertainty at home and instability abroad, we need a leader like Mitt Romney to strengthen our economy and maintain America’s place in the world. I am proud to stand with Mitt and will work my hardest to get him elected in November.”

Background On Matt Mead:

Governor Mead is the 32nd Governor of Wyoming. Mead was elected in 2010 and currently serves on the Council of Governors, which advises top federal officials on matters related to the National Guard. He also co-chairs the National Governors Association’s Special Committee on Homeland Security and Public Safety. A recent poll shows that Governor Mead has a 77% approval rating.

Prior to his election, Mead was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve as U.S. Attorney for Wyoming from 2001 to 2007. Mead has worked in private practice and as a local, state and federal prosecutor. He and his wife Carol operate a farm and ranch business in southeast Wyoming.

From the Keystone State, where a Jefferson Republican victory rally in October 1802 saw Pennsylvania toasted as the keystone in the federal union, comes the enthusiastic endorsement from Governor Tom Corbett:

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett

“I’m extraordinarily proud to earn Tom’s support,” said Mitt Romney. “Tom has been a wonderful leader for Pennsylvania and shares my values of spurring economic security through scaling back the size of government and promoting pro-growth policies. There is no doubt that Pennsylvania will be a crucial state in November. With Tom’s help, I know that I will be able to share my vision of restoring American greatness to Pennsylvania voters.”

Now that the long primary season has ended, it is time for Republicans to come together and unite around the one candidate who can defeat Barack Obama and institute a bold conservative vision that we need in Washington,” said Governor Tom Corbett. “That is why I am heartily endorsing Mitt Romney. Our country needs a president who will reverse President Obama’s failed policies and ensure an opportunity for all Americans to prosper. Mitt Romney will restore fiscal sanity to Washington by cutting spending, lowering taxes, and reforming entitlements.”

Background On Tom Corbett:

Tom Corbett was elected Governor of Pennsylvania in 2010. Corbett served two terms as Pennsylvania’s Attorney General. He was also the United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania from 1989 until 1993. Corbett and his wife Susan have two children.

Newsy…

Santorum still hasn’t endorsed Romney:

To crystallize the point that he isn’t going to make an endorsement in the immediate future, Santorum told his supporters that it was entirely up to them who to vote for in next week’s Pennsylvania primary. “I haven’t supported any candidate at this point,” he said.

And, Santorum sent out a mailing still ripping Romney:

The Des Moines Register reports that a week after he quit the presidential race, a fundraising letter from Rick Santorum arrived in Iowa mailboxes saying, “It truly frightens me to think what’ll happen if Mitt Romney is the nominee.”

“The blunt message quickly had Republicans here speculating: Did Santorum order up the mailer right before he suspended his campaign on April 10, so its timing was just a simple and understandable mistake? Or, did Santorum, who is still raising money and possibly not quite ready to come to grips with his loss, send this wording out deliberately?”

Meanwhile, after Newt Gingrich’s Utah ballot check bounced and he said it was “one of those goofy thingsand after making news for being bitten by a penguin, I guess it was too much for Gingrich’s campaign chief, Michael Krull. He quietly departed from the campaign yesterday.

Ron Paul is still doing his thing.

Team Romney is kicking it up! The inner circle is expanding and Beth Myers is on the hunt for a V.P.

Cheers!


(emphasis added to endorsements)

► Jayde Wyatt

Mitt’s Home Stretch, Sen. Pat Toomey: “Rally Around Romney”

It’s been over 10 months since the race began.

It turned out to be a marathon, not a 50 yard dash. Some GOP primary runners sprinted off the starting line, others jogged. As the contest proceeded, some forged ahead then faltered, surged then slogged, took the lead then limped away.

Along with blistered feet, there was blistering rhetoric. We’ve heard warm-up and wind-down speeches and everything in between. It’s been a real spectator sport and at times, a spectacle. But, mostly, it’s been spectacular. Every runner enriched the race. Each competitor pushed the others to run stronger, better.

While not officially over, the tape stretching across the primary finish line is, at last, in sight.

Who do we see coming down the home stretch?

We see the runner who was oft derided because he didn’t grandstand. The runner marginalized because he was steady. The runner who gauged his pace while others flashed past. We see the runner whose lifelong preparation, principles, and message gave him the strength to recover from bumps in the road. We see the runner who wasn’t rash, but knew when to rush. We see the runner who, in the end, proved he had the stamina and stuff to win…

Mitt Romney.

Carl M. Cameron (Real Clear Politics) writes:

Resilient Romney Bests His Last GOP Challenger

… Romney… proved to have one key prerequisite to running a competitive general election campaign: He can take a punch. When he got decked, which happened repeatedly, sometimes by his own corner, Mitt Romney picked himself off the canvas and began launching haymakers on whatever rival was standing in his way — and there were several of them.

No Republican candidate ever captured the nomination after having trailed so many rivals at one time or another in straw votes, fundraising, public opinion polls, and buzz. They came at him in waves, as though they were running a relay race and Romney was running a marathon by himself. In the ended, he bested the entire tag team of Trump, Bachmann, Perry, Cain, Gingrich & Santorum.

Romney’s last two competitors are trotting a mile behind:

One Romney adviser said Tuesday that the campaign would mostly refrain from engaging Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul, although both men vowed in similar language to remain in the race as the conservative alternative to the front-runner. The focus, this Romneyite said, would be “on Obama and bringing the Republican Party together.”

Senator Pat Toomey offers advice to spectators determined to defeat Obama:

“Now is the time for conservatives to rally around Gov. Romney and help deliver a victory in Pennsylvania and America this November,” conservative Sen. Pat Toomey said in a statement issued hours after Santorum’s withdrawal. “I am confident Gov. Romney will be a great president and will return our country to the conservative principles that make our nation great.”

Toomey represents Pennsylvania, a state Obama carried four years ago by 10 points. But with the sour national economy, the most recent polling shows it much closer than the race between Obama and McCain — and it’s not a state that Romney’s forces are planning to concede to the Democrats. As for the 11 states Romney lost to Santorum, for the most part they were either low-turnout caucus states or places such as Alabama, Mississippi, Missouri and North Dakota, where Republicans should win in November.

Cameron continues:

So perhaps there has been no lasting harm to Romney’s general election chances, despite all the punches that have landed on that still-handsome mug. But many conservatives remain wary. They will watch how Romney campaigns from now on, whom he picks as a running mate …

While politicos will now chatter about V.P. possibilities and we Romney supporters are breathing somewhat of a sigh of relief, we understand it’s a time for others to catch their breath, reflect, and face reality. Governor Romney earned the right to grip the GOP baton. He will be the one to take the race to Obama. Each participant made the race ever so exciting. Sincere thanks to all.

We hope all who love America and our opportunity society will soon rally to Romney. Like Senator Toomey said, we need everyone to chime in, cheer the baton-bearer, and help chase Obama from the White House.

Believe in Romney.

He can win this thing.

Then, America wins.

(emphasis added to article)

► Jayde Wyatt

Romney Aide Reveals ‘Real Mitt’, Superdelegates, Santorum Exiting?

Mitt Romney's aide, D.G. Jackson, is always nearby.

Taking a quick hop away from the bunny trail to bring you the latest…

Here’s an intriguing look at a day with Mitt Romney through the eyes of the guy I call ‘Shadow Man’. In political speak he’s known as Mitt’s ‘Body Man’ – Garret Jackson:

Starting the Day, and Ending It, at Romney’s Side
By Ashley Parker
April 6, 2012

MILWAUKEE — Garrett Jackson and Mitt Romney are stuck together like the
peanut butter and honey sandwiches they both love.

Mr. Jackson, 25, is Mr. Romney’s “body man,” the personal assistant who spends more time with the candidate than even Mr. Romney’s wife, Ann, does. Mr. Jackson is often the first person to see Mr. Romney in the morning; the candidate is dressed and ready, waiting with his iPad, at least 15 minutes before Mr. Jackson arrives at his hotel room to fetch him. And Mr. Jackson is the last person to see Mr. Romney each night, before leaving him alone to call his wife and catch up with what Mr. Jackson calls “his fun books” — “The Hunger Games” trilogy most recently, he said.

Perhaps more than anyone else in the campaign, Mr. Jackson understands the likes and dislikes, the rhythms and moods, the quirks and habits of the famously reserved Mr. Romney. Mr. Jackson knows him so well that he recently began blogging about his days with Mr. Romney, an acknowledgment that a young, energetic and devoted aide might help voters connect to a candidate who has been called out of touch.

Mr. Jackson knows, for instance, that Mr. Romney’s preferred breakfast is McDonald’s pancakes (“We eat in the car most of the time”) and that for snacks and drinks, he likes Cherry Coke Zero, chocolate milk, water and Peanut M&Ms. Often on hand are the supplies for their beloved peanut butter and honey sandwiches.

He knows that Mr. Romney always wants a plan, so first thing each morning he lays out that day’s itinerary — everything from political events (“two town halls”) to appropriate attire (“business casual”).

“He always goes, ‘What’s up, boss?’ Or, ‘What’s up, doc?’ ” Mr. Jackson said, referring to Mr. Romney’s prompt for a schedule update. “He’s a very good listener, and then if he’s confused by something, he’ll start quizzing me.”

Mr. Jackson also knows that, more than almost anything, Mr. Romney hates being late. He views it as the ultimate politician’s affront, one of the few things that can rile him. Before the campaign started, if Mr. Jackson was running a few minutes behind in picking up Mr. Romney at his townhouse in Belmont, Mass., Mr. Romney’s bags would be waiting in a tidy pile outside the front door. “I knew that was his little nudge, his way of saying, ‘I walked out and you weren’t here; you were a little late,’ ” Mr. Jackson said.

The two once hopped out of a traffic-snarled taxi in Midtown Manhattan and sprinted — in the heat of summer, in jacket and tie, both carrying briefcases — seven blocks to a luncheon to arrive on time.

Mr. Jackson’s job is to anticipate the candidate’s every need, and his black briefcase is stocked with Sharpies, batteries, granola bars, collar stays, flag pins, hand sanitizer, Advil, Tide pens, chargers, note cards and half-eaten meals wrapped in napkins. He has offered his back as a hard surface on which Mr. Romney can sign posters and, at an event in Mason City, Iowa, Mr. Jackson dived to the floor to steady a rickety chair that his boss stood on to address a large crowd. Mr. Romney teased that Mr. Jackson only had to catch him if he fell — but a photo of Mr. Jackson crouched awkwardly, holding the chair, flooded the Web.

“After the infamous chair photo came out, he was calling me Mr. Chairman or Chairman Jackson,” Mr. Jackson said.

Jackson continues:

I talk about his underappreciated sense of humor, the fact he’s just a normal guy,” Mr. Jackson said. “I’m always, like, ‘Gov, let me take your laundry,’ but he’d rather wash his own shirt in the sink, using an iron to dry it.”

He added, eyes wide, “I did not know that was possible.”

Mr. Romney usually does laundry once a week — either by hand in the sink or in a hotel’s coin-operated washing machine — and refuses Mr. Jackson’s attempts to send it out. “He’s so cheap,” Mr. Jackson said. “It costs, like, $5 per shirt in the hotel laundry.”

This article is an enjoyable must-read; continue here. Hats off to Mr. Jackson for taking good care of The Gov!

UPDATE – VIDEO Life of the Body Man; check out the fantastic image @1:02!

The Boston Globe published an update today on what may be going through Santorum’s mind…

Santorum moves fuel predictions he will exit

Santorum has scheduled no public events over the holiday weekend and has made no major media buys, fueling speculation that he might quit. Polling in Pennsylvania that shows him slipping against front-runner Mitt Romney raises the prospect of an embarrassing home-state loss that could hurt his chances if he were to make a run for the nomination in 2016.

A Santorum campaign spokesman said the candidate had a busy slate of events scheduled for next week and promised that a list would be released soon.
[...]
Romney is campaigning hard in Pennsylvania, and when Election Day rolls around Santorum’s home-field advantage may have evaporated.

“He’s already lost Pennsylvania once, why not twice?’’ said Tom Parsley, 64, a construction contractor who also thinks Santorum should quit the race. Parsley twice voted for Santorum for the Senate, but could not support his third run. “The way he presented himself was just way too extreme.’’

Haven’t heard an update today on little Bella Santorum; continued prayers for her recovery…

There’s a growing consensus from Republican National Committee members:

(more…)

Mr. Santorum: “Irrelevant”…”Fading”…Will Lose, Then Quit

You may recall Marlon Bateman providing us a glimpse into the fundraising luncheon March 27th in Irvine, CA. He is a recent Marine veteran — see his brief bio and photos HERE.

By Marlon Bateman

It has been a good run for Rick Santorum. Now it’s time to take a bow. Even Seinfeld had to eventually come to an end. Unlike Santorum though, Seinfeld was entertaining to the end!

As Santorum’s campaign desperately clings to hopelessness, his rhetoric against Governor Romney has become personal, and in cases, has crossed the line and hurt the Republican brand.

The competition for the GOP nomination has been good for Romney. It has identified weaknesses and given him time to deal with them and turn them into strengths before he faces Obama in the fall.

“Mitt Romney will almost certainly be the GOP nominee,” Kristol wrote after the Wisconsin results. “Rick Santorum is entitled to stay in the race, and to offer voters in the remaining states an alternative. But it’s probably time for him to do what Mike Huckabee did in similar circumstances in 2008 — basically to stop attacking the almost inevitable nominee, and instead to adjust his own message going forward to a positive and issues-based one.”

Somewhere in Pennsylvania / Photo: AP

But is it productive for the GOP when Santorum implies it would be the same to vote for Obama as it would to vote for Romney? Or to say that Romney would be the worst person to go up against Obama? At what point do you say this is completely counterproductive to the mission of the party? This kind of rhetoric must end and the party must come together behind its best shot at the White House — Mitt Romney! [Truth not seen by Santorum & quotes by Romney, Rove, McCain below fold] (more…)

Lastest PA Poll: Romney by 5!

Public Policy Polling Banner

The Keystone State race just got a little more interesting. According to a poll released last night by Public Policy Polling Governor Romney leads former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum by a 5 point margin, and whereas Romney was down by 18 points last month that makes for a 23 point swing in one month!

The PA numbers:
[table "79" not found /]

Rick Santorum has staked his continued candidacy hopes in winning his home state. Pennsylvania is one of five states to hold their primary contests coming up on April 24. The other four states (NY, DE, CT, RI) are each a “gimme” for the Governor. If Romney wins a clean sweep of those four PLUS Pennsylvania… well it will officially be more over than it already is now.

Anyone else think it’s quite telling that Santorum may lose his home state, and Romney won his 72-12? A 60 point margin!

Below the fold: cross-tab takeaways, and a “When will Santorum exit the race?” poll.
(more…)

Santorum’s Blind Ambition is Trumped by Delusional Confidence

The tug to write about Mr. Santorum is too strong. I had decided last week that Santorum was smart and that he knew he had been marginalized and would therefore drop out. There is so much to discuss about Obama and his desperation right now — but Santorum’s oblivious intransigence is absolutely fascinating to me.

Political Future or Not?

By the way, I stand by everything I wrote last Thursday in my prediction that Santorum will drop out in April. I think he is a smart man. He has fought hard and he has done well.

I use the word “oblivious” because his rhetoric and body language convey that he has no idea that he is standing alone, out in the open, in the middle of the battlefield, about ready to be “taken out” — to quote Ed Rollins last night. Santorum all but declared victory last night after winning exactly two districts! (to Romney’s 75+) Is there a better word than “stunning” to describe Mr. Santorum’s personal ambition right now? Maybe “blind ambition?” It is just so interesting to observe what appears to be his delusional confidence! Seriously.

Following are are some of the quotes I was able to scribble down as I toggled between CNN and FOX News during the primary returns — these quotes are not verbatim, but they are very close to actual quotes, if not precise.

James Carville: “Santorum is like the chicken that got his head chopped off — the chicken keeps running around but the chicken doesn’t know it’s dead yet!”

Joe Trippi: “The fat lady is singing…No matter how you put it, it’s over…it will potentially hurt his career moving forward”

Ed Rollins (using combat terms): “Anytime Romney steps on the gas with media [buys], he can take [Santorum] out…He did it in Wisconsin when Santorum was way ahead…They’ll take him out in Pennsylvania…He won’t be able to hold his head high if he gets clobbered in his own home state. Now’s the time to step aside.”

Karl Rove: “Santorum said that his home state of Pennsylvania is a ‘make or break’ state for himself and Romney — that’s raising the stakes and showing weakness all at the same time!”

Charles Krauthammer: “Santorum said in his speech tonight that it is halftime. It’s not halftime. It’s the 4th quarter, there’s two minutes left, and he’s out of time outs. It’s really over. He should courageously drop out before Pennsylvania…I think the general election started today.”

Steve Hayes: If [Santorum] continues to make these speeches and say the kinds of things he says tonight…he’s increasingly disconnected from reality…It’s not the case anymore that ‘the establishment’ is against Rick Santorum (referring to several specific examples of strong Tea Party leaders’ support of Gov. Romney).

To the question of timing as to when Santorum, Gingrich, and Paul will drop out, Steve Hayes, Mary Katharine Ham, Kirsten Powers, and Charles Krauthammer each gave their answers. They all agreed that Ron Paul will not ever drop out; they were split on Gingrich dropping out soon or staying to the end, and three out of the four said Santorum will compete in Pennsylvania, stating that doing so will be “dangerous” for him. Krauthammer said this though, referring to Santorum dropping out before Pennsylvania:

“I can’t imagine he’ll do otherwise. It would be illogical in terms of his future if he acted otherwise. I do think he leaves within three weeks.” (before the Pennsylvania primary)

Krauthammer used the word “illogical” above. I will add to that “irrational.” As I wrote last Thursday, Santorum is not stupid. He is persistent, determined, and even stubborn, but he is not stupid. Today, he leads Romney in Pennsylvania by about six points. The moment Gov. Romney “steps on the gas” (to quote Ed Rollins), he will take Mr. Santorum out in Pennsylvania. Once Santorum sees this happening, I believe he will quit. If he does not, he will not only lose Pennsylvania, he will have his head handed to him that same day in Connecticut, Delaware, New York, and Rhode Island.

INVITATION:

Before I close this out, I wish to inform all supporters of Senator Santorum, who might be visiting us to test the waters, that we want you to join us, lock arms, and go shoulder to shoulder against Obama to defeat him under the strongest mandate this country has ever seen. We want you to join us now. We need you now. You are always welcome with us.

Finally and with full candor, if Rick Santorum allows his emotional ambitions to drive his thinking, and he decides to go down fighting in Pennsylvania, I frankly hope that he loses to Governor Romney by more than the 18 points he lost by in his last Senate campaign. Why? Because of his desperate lies in stating that Gov. Romney is essentially the same as President Obama — I wonder who is wrong? All the Tea Party leaders that have strongly endorsed Gov. Romney or Rick Santorum?

Let’s project out in time a bit. And I don’t mean to be presumptuous in the least. Let’s say that Gov. Romney is elected POTUS; that he is able to enact a large percentage of his strategic plan; that he is successful for four years which leads into another four years of additional success. We are now at the 2020 cycle. History knows that Rick Santorum got trounced in 2006 attempting to get reelected to the Senate and he got blown away in the April 24, 2012 primaries ripping Gov. Romney the whole way out.

What are his chances then? I believe Rick Santorum is a smart man and wants to have influence in the future.

“That which is given with pride and ostentation is rather an ambition than a bounty.” ~ Lucius Annaeus Seneca

.

Prediction: Senator Santorum to Quit Presidential Race in April

This week, a number of news outlets have reported a conspicuous drop in Santorum’s typical strident rhetoric against Gov. Romney. I believe this is a less than subtle way to position himself to exit the race. Yesterday’s New York Times reported,

Rick Santorum has eased up on using phrases like “worst Republican in the country” when tearing into Mitt Romney. And he is no longer saying that a vote for Mr. Romney would be basically the same thing as a vote for President Obama.

Meet subdued Santorum.

After several highly publicized remarks that left many in his party questioning whether he had crossed the line in attacking a fellow Republican, Mr. Santorum has struggled to find the balance between being a tenacious underdog and leaving himself open to criticism that he is just an embittered also-ran.
[...]
The sudden restraint has surprised some of his supporters.

[emphasis added]

Senator Santorum is not stupid; think about it. Just a few days ago, he rips Gov. Romney publicly and that very same day publicly states he would consider a veep position under a President Romney. Yes, I did a double-take as well! But why let up now? The NYT article even quotes his supporters saying that his “passionate” language is one of the things most appealing.

Here is the reason I believe. There are eight primaries between now and April 24th. Romney is expected to win six of them and probably by a wide margin. The other two are Wisconsin (4/3) and Pennsylvania (4/24). As of 7:30 p.m. PST tonight, Intrade shows the probability of a Santorum win in Wisconsin at 11.8% and a win in his home state of Pennsylvania at 31.1%. The other six states are below 5% except Connecticut (6.8%). Above, I said Santorum is not stupid. He is looking at these same probabilities and he is thinking now.

Here is where the dew of reality is descending upon Santorum’s thoughts.

Rick Santorum’s private thoughts (my conjecture):

“Wow! I could lose this thing fast in the next few weeks. I have to win. I put too much into this thing with my wife, my children, and Bella — And dang it, I worked harder than the other guys and I deserve to win! I have to win Wisconsin to build the momentum into my home state but Mitt is so much more prepared and his machine is killing me in Wisconsin. I have to win Pennsylvania! If I lose Wisconsin, that will not be good going into Pennsylvania! Mitt is picking up steam in Pennsylvania this week. I have to win Pennsylvania! Having to answer to that dang 18 point loss in my senate race in 2006 has been shear [pain] in this race — embarrassing! There is no way I will lose Pennsylvania — No way!”

Do you see where Rick’s mind is right now? Can he win Wisconsin next Tuesday? Absolutely he can if we let up at all. I strongly believe Governor Romney has Santorum in a strangle hold with Wisconsin, especially if he trounces him Tuesday. Romney will likely smash Santorum in DC and Maryland and if he has a really strong win in Wisconsin, Santorum will be all but dead going into Pennsylvania.

Bloomberg Businessweek reported in February:

Yet six years ago, as he sought a third Senate term in Pennsylvania, Santorum proved he can also lose in such a politically competitive state — and lose big.

Santorum’s last race — an 18-percentage-point defeat in 2006 bid — raises questions about his appeal to independent voters who could help decide the national election in November, as well as to Republicans who will determine who gets the party’s nomination.

Santorum’s loss was “the largest defeat by a Republican United States senator seeking election or re-election in modern Pennsylvania history,” said G. Terry Madonna, a polling expert and public affairs professor at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster.

So think about it. If I am Santorum and I know I now have two choices (after losing Wisconsin): 1) I could do what I have said I would do and stay in the race all the way to the convention (remember: “principle”) and lose Pennsylvania and be thoroughly embarrassed again, or 2) I could exit stage right and declare my loyal support to Romney and hear everybody cheer me to glory.

How does Santorum avoid losing Pennsylvania again?

If Santorum were to lose Wisconsin to Romney, which do you think he will choose? 1? or 2? I predict Wisconsin will be another close race but that Romney will win it. If this happens, Santorum will “evaluate” the race at that point and decide to exit entirely. What seems hard to predict is when he would make that announcement. I think it would likely be the weekend following the Wisconsin primary and not a lot later so that it does not appear to be correlated with a fear of embarrassment — which a loss in his home state certainly would be.

The most compelling argument for Santorum to attempt a graceful exit from the race, upon losing Wisconsin, is this (he is not stupid — Santorum is the epitome of the political animal): He wants a future in politics — and presidential politics at that. If he were to lose Pennsylvania bad (very good possibility), he would be almost for sure pushed out of the race with people laughing, and his political reputation would be all but destroyed.

If he were then to attempt to run for POTUS in future years, it will always be remembered of him that he could not win reelection (2006) to the Senate in his home state (historically huge loss) and that he bad-mouthed Romney for months before being trounced again in his home state of Pennsylvania (2012). And why? Because of a) a huge ego, b) stubbornness, and c) strident social positions. He would be washed up and would forever be overlooked as a serious national candidate. He will not allow that to happen — not when he can control the outcome now.

As we say in business, the risk-reward consideration is making this untenable for Mr. Santorum. I think the probability that Santorum will compete in Pennsylvania is less than five percent.

He will not allow himself to be embarrassed. Not by Governor Romney!

GO MITT! Let’s all work as hard as we can to bring a HUGE win to Mitt in Wisconsin — We do not want the Wisconsin results to even be close! We can finish off Santorum next Tuesday.

“As the world’s finest democracy, we do not do guillotines. But there are other less bloody rituals of humiliation, designed to reassure the populace that order is restored, the Republic cleansed.” ~ William Greider

Exit Question: What is a One Term Obama Presidency Worth to You?

Mr. Santorum: He Could Win Pennsylvania’s Popular Vote & Receive Zero Delegates — A Goose Egg — Indeed! (“his time has passed” / “terrified”)

THE UNPREPARED, UNTESTED MR. SANTORUM

In the last week, we have all read articles or seen interviews with Santorum and Gingrich operatives passionately stating how their candidate is in this race to the end and to win it. Keep in mind the reasons they are so vociferous. Every one of them receives a salary from the campaign. It is in the self-interest of each campaign worker to keep their candidate in the race as long as possible and so they will always continue to talk him up!

Dan Hirschhorn wrote an Op-Ed in The Daily yesterday that provides outstanding insight into Pennsylvania politics as related to Mr. Santorum. It is titled, “NOT PENN. PALS — Even if he wins his home state, Santorum could walk away without delegates”

Santorum Delegates: As in NONE.

BTW, if you have not read Karl Rove’s latest, it is worth the read to see why Obama is really worried!

EXCELLENT reporting by Hirschhorn!:

As Rick Santorum desperately tries to make a dent in Mitt Romney’s formidable delegate lead, he faces an unlikely obstacle on the primary calendar: his home state of Pennsylvania.

Yes, Santorum is currently favored — though hardly a lock — to win the popular vote in the state he represented in Congress for 16 years.

But Pennsylvania’s non-binding primary rules for distributing delegates raise the prospect that Santorum, who has said he’ll win the vast majority of the state’s delegates, could actually come away from next month’s primary empty-handed at a time when he can ill-afford it.

Which means the April 24 primary could represent yet another chance for Romney — who kicked off his Pennsylvania campaign this week by trotting out supportive Republican leaders — to finally deal Santorum a knockout blow.
[...]
Interviews with about two dozen Pennsylvania Republicans and a review of the delegate candidates brings Santorum’s challenge into focus.

The ranks of delegate hopefuls are littered with Republican state committee members, elected officials and others with close party ties, who will ultimately be more beholden to a state party leadership that, while officially neutral, is visibly leaning in Romney’s direction and increasingly vocal in its fear that Santorum could hurt the party in a general election — especially after witnessing his 18-point drubbing in 2006.

Romney, Ron Paul and even Newt Gingrich got some of their supporters on the ballot as delegate candidates. But Santorum’s campaign officials, who have struggled with ballot organization issues across the country, privately concede that they just didn’t have the time, nor resources, to organize their own supporters to run as delegates when the paperwork was due earlier this year.

“At this point the delegate candidates are lined up everywhere but with Rick,” said Charlie Gerow, a longtime GOP strategist supporting Gingrich.

The state party has so far not made an endorsement in the race. But Bob Asher, a Republican National Committeeman and one of the most powerful forces in state politics, is backing Romney. So are top party fundraisers and members of Congress from the Philadelphia suburbs who, like many elected and party officials, worry that a Santorum candidacy would send independents fleeing from the GOP and damage their prospects in down-ballot races.

“I think most people recognize we have to put forward the best candidate to beat Barack Obama,” said Rep. Jim Gerlach, a suburban congressman and Romney backer who’s also a delegate. “There’s a lot of support to make sure Gov. Romney is ultimately our nominee.”

Added a top Republican fundraiser who’s neutral in the race: “People like Rick, and they often like his policies. But his brand is so tarnished and we’re all terrified at the prospect of him on top of the ticket.” (more…)

Santorum: Sold-Out The Working Man & Fiscal Conservatives — No Right to Work (Guest: Greg Stapley)

By Greg Stapley

Rick Santorum is not who he says he is.

Santorum has been loudly proclaiming not only that he is the one true conservative in this race, but that he’s the only candidate who understands and will fight for working Americans. To hear him tell it, you’d think he invented conservatism.

Greg Stapley

Not so fast, Senator. There are a few things that working people and conservatives alike should know about you and your record before they pull the lever.

I am certainly not a one-issue voter, but one principle is so fundamental in the raging battle for America’s soul that it has become the threshold across which all candidates must pass before they can legitimately claim the title and honor of Conservative. That principle is freedom from forced unionism.

There was a time in our nation’s history when unions helped and protected workers. However, today’s union movement has been largely co-opted by left-wing social engineers, who are using the economic engine of forced union dues to fund sweeping changes to American society, government and values — changes that are the antithesis of the conservative principles I hold dear.

Against the wishes of large swaths of their membership, today’s union bosses routinely pick their members’ pockets by using forced dues to support politicians and agendas that are have nothing to do with the workplace, and are often opposed to the values and philosophies of those members.

In 27 states (it was 28 until just last month — congratulations, Indiana!), union bosses have become so powerful that they have secured mind-boggling legislation which allows them to deny gainful employment to honest, hard-working citizens who want nothing more than to put bread on the table without funding some union leader’s social and political agenda. This keeps the bosses in power. More importantly, it keeps the money flowing from their unwilling members’ paychecks to union coffers and on to their cronies in government. They just need a few cooperative politicians to keep these laws in place for them.

And Rick Santorum — “Reliable Rick” — is Big Labor’s go-to guy on the “right.”

Denying a basic freedom like the right to work is about as anti-conservative as it gets. No politician can give lip service to the principles of individualism, self-determination or the pursuit of life, liberty and happiness while at the same time colluding with entrenched labor interests to compel workers into unions that forcibly take their money and do little to help them.

But remarkably, despite his claims that he is a champion of blue-collar America, Rick Santorum has done exactly that.

For example, in an astonishing effort to ingratiate himself to the union bosses who control the campaign purse strings in his home state of Pennsylvania, then-Senator Rick Santorum actively worked to defeat the federal right to work bill in the United States Senate. (104th Congress, S. 1788, the National Right to Work Act of 1995. (“On the Cloture Motion (motion to invoke cloture on motion to proceed to consider S.1788),” Senate Bill Clerk, Vote Number: 188, www.senate.gov, 7/10/1996)

Had it passed, millions of American workers who are currently trapped in union shops, compelled to follow union rules and forced to pay union dues against their will, would have been liberated from the clutches of their union overlords. Sadly, no thanks to Rick Santorum, these workers are still imprisoned in forced-union Perdition. (more…)

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