My Closing Argument, and This Ain’t Just Rhetoric

Overview: My Main Philosophical Reason I’m Voting For Mitt.

I feel so strongly that Mitt Romney is the right choice for president that I wanted to make one last post, my closing argument as it were, in hopes of convincing that one last undecided voter out there somewhere to vote for Mitt. I wanted to explain why I, and the other authors here at Mitt Romney Central, have devoted such time, effort, emotion, and yes, money, to the cause of electing Mitt. My list of specific reasons why I like Mitt, and my counterarguments to President Obama’s case, are below. But I can sum up why I feel so strongly with this: Barack Obama’s vision for America is inconsistent with that of our founding fathers and our Constitution.

A Limited Government Preserves Freedom

Our government was founded on the principles of self-determination and freedom. Americans were not content to be told by the British government how much they should pay in taxes or what freedoms they were entitled to. So they fought a war to gain their independence. When the founding fathers then set up their own government, at the forefront of their minds was the concern for how to preserve their hard-won freedoms. So they came up with three fundamental ideas about the new federal government: (i) it should be small, split into different branches with checks and balances over each other’s power, (ii) it should share power with, and in fact have less power over citizens’ day-to-day lives than, the states, where the citizens were better represented, and (iii) our most basic freedoms should be enshrined in a Bill of Rights to make absolutely sure the federal government did not violate them. This combination of ideas, they thought, would assure, over time, that the God-given rights they had won back from their government at great cost would be preserved against tyranny.

Obama’s Vision of a Larger Government is Antithetical to Freedom.

In 2008 when Senator Obama talked of “transforming” America and saying “we can do better,” it was clear to me he was talking about fundamentally changing these key principles. He stood for a larger federal government; one that would try and take responsibility for the poor and do more for its citizens. While that may sound nice, having a government undertake that responsibility also means it must become larger, tax more (a government that undertakes to define what’s fair for all its citizens will also try and make everyone pay their “fair share”) and become more involved in our lives, much more involved than the founding fathers intended. A larger government necessarily becomes more difficult to manage, begins to take on a life of its own, and becomes very difficult to control. A larger federal government also means a shift in power from the states, where citizens can more easily control their own destiny. And once people begin to rely on government largesse, cutting the size of that government and its programs, even if the government cannot afford them (witness our overwhelming deficits and the troubles in Europe as it tries to cut back), becomes very, very difficult. People become less willing to give up that security, even if it means a loss of liberty. And they can become accustomed to the idea that the government represents someone else, not them, and that they are owed something by that government (witness appeals from the left that sound like class warfare). As a result, I believe the policies of President Obama reflect a threat to our liberty. Perhaps not immediate. Perhaps only a little. But what he wants to do, at its core, is inconsistent with the intended size and role of our government, which means we will inevitably lose a little, or a lot, of liberty. How much really depends on how much further down Obama’s road we go. And in my view, we’ve already lost too much.

Example: Obamacare.

As an illustration of what I mean, I’ll use Obamacare. It sounds nice to make sure everyone has health insurance. And there are lots of stories of people who can’t afford insurance, and how having it would benefit them greatly. I get that, and I feel for their situation. This is what Obama meant by “we can do better.” He’d like to use government resources to fix these problems. But, just like when you get your first credit card, you need to look beyond the nice things you can buy and decide whether you can really afford it, because that bill will come due at some time. As for the cost in dollars and cents, it’s clear we can’t afford Obamacare. We just can’t. It adds trillions of unfunded government outlays over the next two decades. And once these benefits are offered to citizens it’s very difficult to take them away. In addition, Obamacare has already begun to infringe on our freedoms. At its core it’s the federal government (not the state, which is the principal difference between Obamacare and Romneycare), forcing us to buy a product. Then, because it forces us to buy this product, it must go further and legislate the minimum requirements of this product (or everyone would buy the cheapest version available). That legislation now includes elements some religions find offensive. How’d we get here? By involving the federal government in something it really was never intended by the founding fathers to be involved in: providing health insurance. Further, because the IRS will be in charge of enforcing compliance with the mandate, it will need to know our personal health information. The founders’ vision of limited federal power, with express limits on what the federal government can and can’t do, has been violated by Obamacare. And having the federal government in this position simply poses a threat to our freedom. The founders knew power corrupts, and while we think we can trust the government now, we don’t always know we will be able to. When will it be your religious belief that’s infringed? Or your freedom of speech? This is why the Republicans resist President Obama so much. This is why Obamacare did not get one single Republican vote. This is why Obama’s own budget was rejected by not only Republicans but his own party. And finally this is why Mitch McConnell said it was his goal to make sure Obama only had one term: to try and make sure the damage President Obama does is not long-lasting. Obamacare is a threat to our freedom, and it’s just one example.

This Ain’t Just Rhetoric.

Let me say that this is not just rhetoric. I’m not just making an argument because I want you to vote for Mitt for some other hidden reason. This is why I’m voting for Mitt, and why I honestly believe everyone should. This is what worries me about the prospect of Obama serving another term. He has already made some strides toward “transforming” America into something I believe it was never intended to be. Obamacare was one very large step in that direction. As Vice President Biden said, it was a “[blanking] big deal.” I know the further we go down this road the more difficult it is to go back. I also know the GOP will fight Obama to preserve that liberty, which is likely to result in more gridlock at a time when our government needs to work together. Unfortunately, though, cooperating with the president can mean, and has meant, the loss of some of these liberties, which makes compromise difficult.
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Opinion: No, Mr. President, YOU Can’t Change Washington

As we’ve all heard by now President Obama has finally admitted that while hope died out quite a while ago, change has now died along with it.

The clip of Obama’s actual statement is the first video clip at this link below.

Now I try to give people a little slack when they make comments that I feel are being misconstrued. For example, do I think Mitt really believes 47% of the country are freeloaders? No, I really don’t. My Mitt translator tells me Mitt was describing the size of the 47% Democratic base, the fact that lowering taxes is less likely to appeal to many of the 47% of the people who are non-taxpayers, and that some voters are honestly not convincible because they’re unlikely to vote against their pocketbooks. Are those people all Democrats? No. Does that group make up 47% of the populace? I don’t think Mitt really thinks that. In the setting of a fundraiser, where the comments are less precise (remember Obama’s “god and guns”?) Mitt just ran those concepts together. I can cut him some slack on that, knowing I could easily do the same, and I know President Obama and Joe Biden have said much worse. And Mitt made clear he thinks there’s a legitimate debate to be had about creating dependency rather than jobs, and that true success will be in growing the entire economy so that all succeed rather than focusing on redistribution of wealth (which has never worked). But do I think he believes half of the country are freeloaders? Absolutely not. Is there a large percent of Dems who won’t vote for a Republican no matter what? Yes. Those are the people he was saying he can’t worry about trying to please in an election. Of course once you’re president, it’s different: Mitt’s said as much before. If elected he’d be the president of everyone, not a subgroup.

So now, since I’m in a generous mood, I think it’s appropriate to analyze President Obama’s latest misstatement.

Now admittedly as a Mitt fan I’m happy to zing President Obama a bit on the face value of his words, just as Obama fans like to do to Mitt. And lest anyone misunderstand, let no one say Mitt’s any more prone to misstatement than President “you didn’t build that” Obama or Joe “put y’all back in chains” Biden.

Part of Obama’s statement is honestly shocking: the candidate who entered office on a wave of “hope and change” and “change you can believe in” has now come to the conclusion, even calling it the “most important lesson” he learned in the last four years (seriously?), that he can’t change Washington from the inside. Ouch. (more…)

Tea Party for Romney–”Unity Rally 2012″

William Temple (center), in colonial dress, and other Tea Party supporters cheer at the Tea Party Unity Rally at The River at Tampa Bay Church ahead of the GOP National Convention. Aug 27, 2012
(Photo – Robyn Beck/Getty Images)

Last night, several notable “Tea Party-ers” gathered for a “Unity Rally” at The River Church here in Tampa. The list of speakers was impressive and some of the headliners were Neil Boortz, Herman Cain, Michelle Bachman, Pam Bondi, and Rebecca Kleefisch.

Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch (who, like Gov. Scott Walker, got to run and win her office/term TWICE!) did a great job energizing the crowd for the Romney/Ryan ticket (1 minute video below).

Herman Cain was his usual entertaining self and used some of his time to show how hard he’s willing to work for the future of our country by making sure that Obama doesn’t serve another term. He said he doesn’t feel spurned by not getting a speaking slot at GOP convention; that he favors time for younger ABCs (American Black Conservatives) like Mia Love.

Mia, current mayor of Saratoga Springs, is running for Congress in Utah and has been endorsed in that race by Mitt Romney.

The Tea Party Folks here last night seemed genuinely excited to get Romney/Ryan in the White House!

Wisconsin Portends Romney Win & Obama “House of Cards” (Noonan/Rove)

Twelve days ago, Democratic National Committee chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz said this on CNN “State of the Union”:

Governor Walker -- Photo: Associated Press

“I think Tom Barrett will pull this out,” she added, “but regardless it has given the Obama for America operation an opportunity to do the dry run that we need of our massive, significant, dynamic grassroots presidential campaign, which can’t really be matched by the Romney campaign or the Republicans, because they’ve ignored the ground operations.”

Let me guess — the “massive, significant, dynamic” Democrat “dry run” was tripped up, rolled over, and crushed by the Republican operation that blind-sided the Democrat machine. No matter, it was just a “dry run,” right? Think again. Wasserman Schultz made another colossal blunder in prognostication; isn’t she supposed be an expert at taking the political pulse? Let’s just call it hubris gone awry.

The Tea Party Express had a significant impact in the Wisconsin race, both in funds spent ($400,000) and the passionate, organized ground game, along with grass-roots calling, etc. Other like-minded Tea Party groups were likely involved as well.

The Wall Street Journal published three outstanding columns yesterday about the significance of the Wisconsin recall election — one by Neil King Jr. and Colleen McCain Nelson, one by Peggy Noonan, and one by Karl Rove.

Rove:

We’ll be talking about Tuesday’s Wisconsin recall election for a long time to come.

The results were a historic setback for organized labor, which failed to oust Gov. Scott Walker in a citadel of modern progressivism. And how it must have stung that 38% of union households voted for Mr. Walker, up a point from 2010 when he was first elected.

King/Nelson:

Republicans have seized on Tuesday’s results, including a surge of 400,000 more votes than in 2010, to show they can dramatically out-raise and out-organize the once-powerful labor unions in a large industrial state, a show of muscle they hope to replicate elsewhere.

Noonan:

People wonder about the implications for the presidential election. They’ll wonder for five months, and then they’ll know.

President Obama’s problem now isn’t what Wisconsin did, it’s how he looks each day—careening around, always in flight, a superfluous figure. No one even looks to him for leadership now. He doesn’t go to Wisconsin, where the fight is. He goes to Sarah Jessica Parker’s place, where the money is.

There is, now, a house-of-cards feel about this administration.

So what happened? According to Rove,

There are two possible answers why the “best grass-roots campaign in modern American political history” failed to deliver victory. First, Team Obama’s vaunted get-out-the-vote effort was simply a facade. That’s not likely, since Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, the Democratic candidate, did receive 158,482 more votes than he did in losing to Mr. Walker in 2010.

The other possibility is the Democrats were out-hustled by the Republicans.

Noonan mentions the ground game, grass-roots work, and funding in her editorial, but credits a sea change of sorts:

But organization and money aren’t the headline. The shift in mood and assumption is. The vote was a blow to the power and prestige not only of the unions but of the blue-state budgetary model, which for two generations has been: Public-employee unions with their manpower, money and clout, get what they want. If you move against them, you will be crushed.

Mr. Walker was not crushed. He was buoyed, winning by a solid seven points in a high-turnout race.
[...]
Mr. Walker didn’t win because of his charm—he’s not charming. It wasn’t because he is compelling on the campaign trail—he’s not, especially.[...]

But on the big question—getting control of the budget by taking actions resisted by public unions—he was essentially right, and he won.

As to Obama’s “house of cards?”

It became apparent some weeks ago when the president talked on the stump—where else?—about an essay by a fellow who said spending growth is actually lower than that of previous presidents. [...] But you know, why would he go out there waving an article that could immediately be debunked? Maybe because he thought it was true. That’s more alarming, isn’t it, the idea that he knows so little about the effects of his own economic program that he thinks he really is a low spender.
[...]
Any president will, in a presidential election year, be political. But there is a startling sense with Mr. Obama that that’s all he is now, that he and his people are all politics, all the time, undeviatingly, on every issue. He isn’t even trying to lead, he’s just trying to win.

Most ominously, there are the national-security leaks that are becoming a national scandal—the “avalanche of leaks,” according to Sen. Dianne Feinstein.[...]

This isn’t the usual—this is something different. A special counsel may be appointed.

And where is the president in all this? On his way to Anna Wintour’s house. He’s busy. He’s running for president.

But why? He could be president now if he wanted to be.

It just all increasingly looks like a house of cards. Bill Clinton—that ol’ hound dog, that gifted pol who truly loves politics, who always loved figuring out exactly where the people were and then going to exactly that spot and claiming it—Bill Clinton is showing all the signs of someone who is, let us say, essentially unimpressed by the incumbent. He defended Mitt Romney as a businessman—”a sterling record”—said he doesn’t like personal attacks in politics, then fulsomely supported the president, and then said that the Bush tax cuts should be extended.

His friends say he can’t help himself, that he’s getting old and a little more compulsively loquacious. Maybe. But maybe Bubba’s looking at the president and seeing what far more than half of Washington sees: a man who is limited, who thinks himself clever, and who doesn’t know that clever right now won’t cut it.

Because Bill Clinton loves politics, he hates losers. Maybe he just can’t resist sticking it to them a little, when he gets a chance.

King/Nelson:

Mordecai Lee, a professor of governmental affairs at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, called the recall, which was initiated by labor groups, a “blunder of epic proportions.” He said Mr. Obama, who endorsed Mr. Barrett but did little to help him, may find that Wisconsin Democrats are still somewhat dispirited in the fall.

“Anybody who self-identifies as a Democrat and who voted yesterday for Barrett will of course vote for Obama in November,” he said. “But will they be willing to do anything more than just vote? It will be hard to regain the enthusiasm. It’s like getting kicked in the stomach.”

Rove:

If the Wisconsin results are cause for concern among Democrats, they provide a call to action for Republicans, especially in battleground states. To beat Mr. Obama, Republicans must duplicate the ground game deployed by the GOP in Wisconsin that registered, persuaded and produced a massive turnout.

This won’t be easy. But Republicans are fortunate to have outstanding leadership at the Republican National Committee in Mr. Priebus and also at Romney headquarters in Boston. Their challenge will be to gather the necessary resources and generate the passionate commitment to the ground game at the grass-roots level that was so evident in Wisconsin.

I’m betting they will.

[emphasis added]

I strongly believe the Wisconsin recall election will go down in history as one of the most significant turning points in American politics.

Links to Op-Eds:
“GOP Looks for Post-Wisconsin Boost” — By Neil King Jr. and Colleen McCain Nelson
“What’s Changed After Wisconsin” — By Peggy Noonan
“Wisconsin and the GOP Ground Game” — By Karl Rove

Twitter Follow: @VicLundquist

Why is President Obama worried? Why are pundits now asking Democrat politicians across the country if the Obama administration is panicking? Why do we read “desperate” and “Democrat” in the same sentence almost daily now? Check this table to see how Democrat turnout is shrinking from 2008. This table below the fold tells the story ——–> (more…)

Wisconsin: Romney & Ryan, Faith & Freedom, Sen. Johnson Endorsement, Santorum Raises Eyebrows


They packed the hall yesterday at the Faith & Freedom Coalition at the Country Springs Hotel in Pewaukee, Wisconsin…

Governor Mitt Romney and Wisconsin’s beloved homeboy and rising GOP star, Congressman Paul Ryan, both speakers at the event, inspired the crowd with their remarks. While speaking, Romney did not mention his GOP primary opponents and focused on President Obama (he also worked in a good comment about Joe Biden). At the conclusion of Ryan’s speech, he introduced The Gov with another strong endorsement (SEE VIDEO BELOW).

◆ Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum also participated – but the latter did something that raised eyebrows

WAUKESHA, Wis. — The current state of the Republican nominating contest was on display in Wisconsin on Saturday, with underdog Rick Santorum vigorously slamming front-runner Mitt Romney, while the former Massachusetts governor ignored his GOP rivals and focused solely on President Barack Obama.
[...]
Santorum’s rhetoric against a fellow Republican is a departure from the typical remarks candidates have given at previous Faith and Freedom events held this campaign season. The group draws a variety of GOP voters, and one candidate bad-mouthing another is usually avoided. But the former Pennsylvania senator did not tone down the attacks he frequently uses on the stump.

◆ MSNBC Nightly News Report March 31, 2012:

Santorum, speaking on NBC’s Meet the Press today, vowed that even if he loses in Wisconsin, he’s staying in the race:

The former Pennsylvania senator dismisses the notion that a prolonged primary would harm the party’s chances against President Barack Obama in November. Santorum says GOP establishment figures are making that argument to convince voters that “they need Mitt Romney shoved down their throats.”


… 
Santorum said he needs to win Pennsylvania’s primary on April 24.


While speaking at the F&F forum, Santorum and Gingrich both referred to Congressman Ryan, but notice the interesting difference:

While Gingrich called the congressman “a great guy,” Santorum referred to Ryan as “some other Wisconsinite.”

Maggie Haberman (Politico) writes:

Since Ryan’s endorsement, Santorum has been largely silent about the rising Republican Party star on the campaign trail. When asked about the endorsement by reporters, Santorum brushed it off, saying: “What I find out is that most endorsements are worth one vote.”

Besides the lies he tells about Governor Romney, Santorum’s rancorous, uncouth, and gauche behavior serves as a continual poke-in-the-eye reminder of why he should not get anywhere near the Oval Office. For someone who claims he got in the GOP presidential race because of “God’s calling” one would think he’d try to do a better job emulating the supposed caller.

By the way, the Romney and Ron Paul campaigns have filed a joint complaint citing “serious and prejudicial misconduct” from Santorum supporters at a previously-held Missouri county caucus.

Here’s video of Wisconsin’s Faith & Freedom forum:
Newt Gingrich: @5:00
Paul Ryan: @25:20
Mitt Romney: @40:45

Rick Santorum: @1hr:29

◆ After speaking at the F&F conference, Gov Romney and Ryan headed to Muskego, WI, to host a town hall meeting. D.G. Jackson, Romney’s campaign shadow, videoed The Gov and Paul Ryan before going on stage:

The Gov and Ryan also spent time at a phone bank in Madison for Governor Scott Walker.

GOOD NEWS…

Earlier this morning on NBC’s Meet the Press, Tea Party favorite Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson endorsed Romney:

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New Polls Show Mitt Up Nationally and in MI; A Few Other Thoughts

Mitt Romney Thumbs Up

Direction of Latest Polls.

A new poll came out today showing Mitt with a 2% lead over Rick Santorum in Michigan.

Gallup’s Tracking Poll yesterday showed Mitt with a new nationwide lead, but that’s just window-dressing (note the link is to the poll as updated daily, so the results may have changed by the time you click on it; for the story at CNN click here).

More importantly, since the nomination is won state by state, the real story is that PPP‘s polling today showed Mitt up 39% to 37% in Michigan:

Mitt Romney’s taken a small lead over Rick Santorum in PPP’s newest Michigan poll. He’s at 39% to 37% for Santorum, 13% for Ron Paul, and 9% for Newt Gingrich. Compared to a week ago Romney’s gained 6 points, while Santorum’s just stayed in place.

Even better news, however, is that Mitt may have a lead in early voting that Santorum could find hard to overcome:

Romney will go into election day with a large lead in the bank. Only 16% of Michigan voters say they’ve already cast their ballots, but Romney has a whooping 62-29 advantage over Santorum with that group. Santorum actually leads Romney 39-34 with those who are planning to cast their votes on Tuesday, but he’d need to win election day voters by even more than that to neutralize the advantage Romney’s built up.

As I’ve been opining here on MittRomneyCentral, Santorum’s very socially conservative comments appear to be doing him damage, even among those that are inclined to agree with him (and I thought the damage would be mostly with the independents; also note who’s running the negative ads):

The last week of the campaign in Michigan has seen significant damage to Santorum’s image with GOP voters in the state. His net favorability has declined 29 points from +44 (67/23) to now only +15 (54/39). Negative attacks on Romney meanwhile have had no negative effect with his favorability steady at +20 (57/37). Two weeks ago Santorum’s net favorability in Michigan was 34 points better than Romney’s. Now Romney’s is 5 points better than Santorum’s. Those kinds of wild swings are the story of the GOP race.

One place Santorum may have hurt himself in the last week is an overemphasis on social issues. 69% of voters say they’re generally more concerned with economic issues this year to only 17% who pick social issues. And with the overwhelming majority of voters more concerned about the economy, Romney leads Santorum 45-30. Santorum’s winning those more concerned about social issues 79-12 but it’s just not that big a piece of the pie.

Mitt is also cutting into Santorum’s lead in key support groups:

Romney has made significant in roads with all of Santorum’s key groups of support. 2 weeks ago Santorum had leads around 30 points with Evangelicals, Tea Party voters, and those describing themselves as ‘very conservative.’ Santorum’s still winning all those groups, but by significantly diminished margins- it’s only 7 points with Evangelicals and Tea Partiers and 10 with ‘very conservative’ Republicans.

So much for not being able to convince the conservative base. Did anyone really believe that? Bueller?

A Few Other Thoughts

Mitt’s Availability to the Press. Interestingly there were two contrasting stories in Politico today, one criticizing Mitt for not appearing on Meet the Press, with the other reporting how available he has been to local talk shows in Michigan. Hmm…if I were running for a national office but the voting was state-by-state, where would I go? National shows or the ones where the voters are? (LOTS MORE AFTER THE BREAK!)

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Mitt Romney: The Only True Executive Leader — The Most Conservative, Proven Leader (by David Parker)

NOTE: The guest editorial that accompanies the table below is absolutely outstanding. Due to the length of this “Experience Comparative,” in order to read the whole editorial, you will need to click the “CLICK HERE TO CONTINUE READING…” link at the bottom.

In 2006, a close friend of mine introduced me to David Parker, a personal friend of Governor Mitt Romney. I was contemplating doing some grassroots work to promote his run for President and wanted to know more about the man. Candidly, I was skeptical. How could a governor of such a liberal state be a Republican, let alone a conservative? David met me for lunch at Strawberry Farms and laid out the high points of Governor Romney’s strong conservative action, from his record of protecting life to his hundreds of vetoes. I was sold!

David L. Parker

David organized this amazing matrix, comparing the leadership experience and skills of the four remaining Republican presidential candidates. In my opinion, this table — along with the accompanying Op-Ed piece by David — should be published in every major newspaper in the nation, including the New York Times and The Wall Street Journal! I honestly believe that if every literate voter were to carefully study this table and Op-Ed, the nomination would be over now.

As you compare each candidate below, add Obama to the list and subject his experience to these points — the results of his trial and error leadership are dismal indeed. Most impressive to me is the comparison below of leadership experience in the private, public, and philanthropic sectors — Santorum, Gingrich, and Paul simply don’t measure up to Governor Romney’s extensive background of executive leadership. Why any person would consider voting for a candidate without proven executive experience — after voting for Obama the community organizer — I will never understand. (there is good reason it is extremely rare that a congressman or senator is ever elected as POTUS)

You can make a big difference in this elections season. Please pass this Op-Ed piece by David Parker to as many people you know as possible.

“No Apology, the Case for Mitt Romney” — by David Parker

Are we so blind in our pursuit of our conservative ideology that we fail to recognize needed pragmatism? Our nation, a center-right nation, is not conservative, nor liberal, but an amalgamation of many people, each with individual agency, thought and perspective that leans center-right in the majority.

[ editorial continues below the table ]

Yes, we are clumped together at times in ideological conclaves, but to impose or dictate our conservative ideology in absolute myopia is a failed and fractured model, just as it is with those on the other side of the aisle. We cannot win and they lose, nor visa versa. We are one Nation under God, and thus we need to be sufficiently pragmatic and persuasive to win the majority, and lead those who believe in contrary principles of liberal thought to the more conservative Promised Land — America, an exceptional nation!

Accordingly, leadership and governance, and ideological advocacy demands pragmatism over some perceived capacity of force majeure.

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Romney Dominates Nevada Caucus; Entrance Polls Tidbits

Well, the final results aren’t final yet . . . but it’s clear that Romney won this important swing state’s caucus, and won it big. (Update . . . Romney did get just over 50%, but the entrance poll results have just been revised this morning, so much of what you see quoted below is somewhat off from what the linked poll says NOW. Sorry, I’m not going back and re-calculating things at this point).

He’s got 43% of the vote with 43% of precincts reporting, but the results of Clark County (Las Vegas) as not coming in as fast as expected. Don’t fret though Romney fans, Mitt will win a majority of the votes and I’m guessing he’ll be somewhere between 52-55% of the total vote when all is said and done. If things track as closely as they are in the entrance polls, Clark County should go for Mitt by over 60% (and they’ve nailed the non-Clark County…rest of NV…percentage at 43%, exactly how the real results have turned out)

Debunking the “Romney won Nevada because of the Mormon factor” myth:

Yes, Mitt dominated among LDS voters with 90% choosing Romney, BUT (and it’s a very big “but”), EVEN IF NOT A SINGLE MORMON WENT TO VOTE, ROMNEY WOULD HAVE WON THE STATE WITH A 42%-26% margin over Gingrich.  Romney won Catholics 52%-19% over Newt and “White Evangelical/Born Again” by a solid margin of 46%-26% over the former Speaker.

Debunking the “See, the poor won’t vote for Romney” myth:

On CNN’s coverage tonight, the anchors/pundits seemed to be getting as much mileage as possible out of the fact that the only economic demographic that Romney did NOT win was those that make $30,000 or less (which were only 10% of the voters in NV last night).  They were trying to tie this to Romney’s “I’m not concerned about the very poor” comment and even went on to conclude that this “underscores the fact that blue-collar workers, who you can’t win without their support, do not see that this is a guy that will fight for them.”  SERIOUSLY?!?!?  I realize that these pundits aren’t statisticians, but it’s pretty straightforward to figure out why he didn’t win this demographic.  First off, he hardly “lost” this demographic.  Paul and Newt both got 31%, and Mitt got 30%, a virtual 3 way tie for first.  Secondly, the age of the voter is VERY determinative of income when looking at your youngest age group especially.  Voters aged 18-29 were only 8% of the vote (quite similar to the 10% in that income of $30K or less), and Paul won that group 40% to 39% over Romney.  Paul has been wining the young college-aged voters in almost every state . . . it’s his base and he’s definitely turning out this group of folks that do not typically vote in a GOP primary.  Good for Paul. But these college kids are a HUGE portion of the “makes less than $30,000 year” group, and I don’t think anyone would consider college kids “the very poor,” they are just in a temporary low-income stage of their lives.

“Strong Moral Character;” Mitt good, Newt Very Very Bad:

In perhaps the most revealing entrance poll finding, those that felt a candidate having “Strong Moral Character” was their number one trait they sought in a President, Mitt got 54% of the vote … Newt got 1% of those voters.  No, that is not a typo, ONE PERCENT (Paul got 32% and Santorum got 13%).  Looks like Nevada voters are pretty good judges of character, eh?  THIS IS WHY YOU’RE LOSING NEWT!! YOU BLAME MITT FOR YOUR LAGGING VOTE TALLIES, BUT YOU NEED TO LOOK IN THE MIRROR BUDDY!

Debunking the “Strong Conservatives and Tea Party voters don’t like Romney” myth:

Like New Hampshire and Florida, Romney, once again, won self-identified conservatives and supporters of the Tea Party in Nevada.  This time though, he won A MAJORITY of these groups.  Romney beat Newt 54%-21% among conservative voters and 50%-23% among Tea Party supporters.  Yet I still see pundit after pundit say that Romney still has a lot of work to do to appeal to conservatives (while they “obviously” love Newt).  CAN THEY NOT READ A POLL?!?  Among “very conservative” voters he Mitt still won 49%-24% over Newt, and even beat him 39%-30% among those “strongly supportive of Tea Party.”  Some narratives are hard to kill, but when a state in the Northeast (NH), Southeast (FL), and West (NV) all show Romney winning conservatives and Tea Party supporters I think it’s proof positive against that media meme. The real take-away/new-media-narrative should be that Newt has work to do to appeal to as many conservatives as Romney has been.

Odds and Ends:

The Economy was the number one (even by a majority) issue on voters minds, and Romney carried these voters by 62%.  By an even larger margin, the candidate quality of “Can Defeat Obama” was number one, and Romney absolutely dominated here with 73% of the vote.  WOW!  ”Right Experience” was the top quality to only 15% of voters, but Romney cleaned up here too with 55% (Rick Santorum pulled in a whopping 1% here).   Romney also continues to dominate the Suburbs winning with 69% there; historically this is a key demographic for winning a general election.

Turnout Issue:

Newt and some liberals keeps saying that Mitt’s trying to suppress turnout in order to win.  When we look at the field compared to 2008, however, I don’t think it’s any surprise that turnout is lower.  Last time around there was much more diversity, and much more famous personalities in the field.  You had a Pro-Choice candidate with strong personal appeal/popularity in Rudy Giuliani, War Hero John McCain, popular actor Fred Thompson, and folksy former pastor Mike Huckabee in addition to Mitt and Paul all in the race this far into the process.  Substituting character-challenged Gingrich and personality/experience-challenged Rick Santorum in place of Giuliani, McCain, Thompson, and Huckabee is beyond even comparing apples and oranges. They all had more money and organization that either Newt or Rick too and that is how turnout is driven. Like all of Newt’s complaints/excuses, this one rings hollow as well.

CONGRATS MITT AND NEVADA!! ANOTHER GREAT WIN FOR ROMNEY!!

Lies Cometh Before the Fall … Newt ABSOLUTELY Lobbied for Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac; Newt for Lobbyist-in-Chief!!!

It’s all downhill from here for Newt … I’m predicting right here and now that Gingrich has hit his high point and is about to whither under the forthcoming information about his last 15 years spent in lobbying/influence-peddling activities. The following will make for a beautiful montage using the disgraced and ousted former Speaker’s own words … and the timing and subject are perfect for anyone who doesn’t want Newt as the nominee. Why? Because it’s Fannie and Freddie and Florida folks! Florida took a hit second only to Nevada in the housing crisis and these GSEs (Government Sponsored Entities) were at the root of the problem. This is the perfect storm. The script will play out perfectly.

Remember when Newt said on Fox News “I do no lobbying of any kind. I never have. A very important point to make. I have never done lobbying of any kind.”

How about his ludicrous initial claim back in the November CNBC debate that he was paid by them to be a “historian” who told them how “insane” they were?

Sure Newt. At least we now know that he was lying through his teeth. He released one year of this contract yesterday and there was no mention of him being a “historian” but rather he was hired as a “consultant” by and to the chief lobbyist of Freddie Mac. Well, as it turns out, “consultant” was just a euphemism for “lobbyist” and Newt’s whole story doesn’t pass the smell test.

Over a month ago, Mitt challenged Newt on this claim calling Newt “the highest paid historian in history”

The fact that Newt has only released one year of a six year contract is rather curious as well and the other contracts are apparently lost somewhere:

a spokeswoman for [Gingrich's] firm said it was unable to find an earlier contract dating to 1999 and renewed until 2002. The spokeswoman, Susan Meyers, also could not say whether Gingrich or any of its employees produced any written reports for Freddie Mac as part of the nearly $1.8 million in consulting fees it was paid.

Well, today’s news from Politico is especially damning to Newt and proves that he was involved in hard core lobbying efforts for the controversial and beleaguered GSE:

New details from Newt Gingrich’s contracts worth $1.6 million with Freddie Mac show that the Republican hopeful wasn’t just a boardroom consultant, but served as a high-profile booster for the beleaguered organization. He even gave a rallying speech to dozens of the group’s political action committee donors in the spring of 2007.

Shortly after the “rah, rah” speech, as one source described it, Gingrich gave an interview for the Freddie Mac website, where he supported the group’s model at length. The interview is no longer on Freddie’s site.

Gingrich said in the interview that Freddie has “made an important contribution to home ownership and the housing finance system,” even though many Republicans revile it.

On April 3, 2007, Gingrich gave a presentation to employee donors of Freddie Mac’s political action committee, according to several sources familiar with the presentation. It was the “rah, rah” speech described by a source who worked closely with Freddie at the time. Newt spoke about what was going on in the country and he offered his view of the issues.

That same day, Gingrich spoke to a larger Freddie Mac employee cabal where he explained his vision for transforming bureaucratic government into a “21st century organization” — a signature talking point for Gingrich who focused on technology in government early on.

Later that month, Gingrich also gave a “feature interview” that appeared on Freddie Mac’s website providing an extensive Q&A where the former Speaker of the House defended the government-sponsored enterprise model, according to a copy obtained by POLITICO.

Gingrich went so far as to say that “I’m convinced that if NASA were a GSE, we probably would be on Mars today.”

Freddie Mac declined to comment. A Gingrich spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

“The housing GSEs have made an important contribution to homeownership and the housing finance system,” Gingrich said in the interview. “We have a much more liquid an stable housing finance system than we would have without GSEs. So while we need to improve the regulation of the GSEs, I would be very cautious about fundamentally changing their role or the model itself.

Further Gingrich acknowledged that this is not a viewpoint conservatives normally embrace. “Well, it’s not a point of view libertarians would embrace,” he said in the interview. “But I am more in the Alexander Hamilton-Teddy Roosevelt tradition of conservatism. I recognize that there are times when you need government to help spur private enterprise and economic development.”

Really Newt?!?!? Really People? This is the “conservative alternative” to Mitt?!?!   Wow . . . Just wow . . .

These revelations make Newt both a liar and a lobbyist.  Sounds like just what Obama would like to run against.

UPDATE #1: “Methinks [Newt] doth protest too much” . . . Politico makes a good point on something Newt revealed in last night’s debate.

Gingrich — adamant that he wasn’t a lobbyist as he explained why he only released one year of his Freddie Mac contract, which dated to 1999 (he uttered something about going through a confidentiality process) — volunteered that at his firm, they brought in a “lobbying expert” to explain to his team what qualified as lobbying and what didn’t.

That expert “is prepared to testify,” Gingrich said.

Romney didn’t pounce. But why one would hire a “lobbying expert” other than to explain to staff how to walk up to the “bright line” Gingrich described, but not legally cross it, was not clear.

So Newt’s got his lawyer ready to say that Newt never officially lobbied with Fannie/Freddie . . . or at least he was trained/coached as to where that line is. However, what’s that old saying that if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck . . . ? Newt’s trying to be too cute by half, and it’s the beginning of the end for him!

The American people want a TRUE DC outsider, that man is NOT Newt . . . it’s Mitt!!

Update #2: Newt releases his 1999 contract now because it contained the following …

The contract specifically excluded lobbying services, stating “nothing herein is or shall be construed as an agreement to provide lobbying services of any kind or engage in lobbying activities.”

The second contract released Tuesday night provides more detail on the work Gingrich was hired to perform, including “serve as advisor to Freddie Mac in the areas of strategic planning and public policy.” It also called on Gingrich, who is mentioned by name in the second contract, to “engage in discussions” with Freddie Mac’s chief lobbyist and senior officers “to strategize on approaches to Freddie Mac business opportunities and challenges.”
Gingrich, who was hired to help the company reach out to Republicans, also was expected to “contribute to Freddie Mac corporate planning and business goals” and to “meet with major stakeholders of Freddie Mac.”
The contract also states that “neither The Gingrich Group nor Newt Gingrich will provide lobbying services of any kind nor participate in lobbying activities on Freddie Mac’s behalf.”

OK, so the document essentially says that Newt is going to lobby for Freddie Mac, but that no one can call it or construe it as lobbying. That will play really well with folks, eh?

Even MORE revealing is that Newt’s campaign is trying to pull a switch-a-roo / misdirection trick here by releasing these contracts out of chronological order. So the 1999 contract says “no lobbying” but the 2006 contract contains no such phrase. Anyone notice a problem? Everyone knew and realized that Newt was lobbying and they couldn’t keep that terminology in the later contract. He would be more free in his activities advocating and lobbying in behalf of Freddie.

Update #3
I believe another poster is going to address Newt’s lobbying to Congressmen for Medicare Part D when he was on the payroll as a consultant from several Pharmaceutical companies who would benefit from it’s passage. Kathleen Parker has just put up a column arguing my exact same point. Newt was a lobbyist:

Gingrich’s claim to have been hired as a historian, meanwhile, is a hard sell when no such role exists. It is also a stretch for him to present himself as an ­anti-establishment, Reagan-conservative rebel when he is raking in money for his association with companies, some of whose interests are anything but conservative.

Yet another mother lode for Gingrich has been the health care industry. Various companies paid Gingrich $55 million between 2001 and 2010, according to Bloomberg News. When asked what the companies received in return, Gingrich told The Post that they got to visit with “a really important guy who really knows a lot and who really has lots of information.” That person would be Gingrich’s Holy Trinity — Me, Myself and I.

He also earned more than a million from drugmaker Novo Nordisk, reportedly to help expand the U.S. market for its diabetes treatment. Again, there’s nothing wrong with this as long as Gingrich was honest about his role with the company. The company’s annual report to shareholders listed Gingrich under “public-policy activities,” which, the company added, “are often referred to as lobbying.”

He also personally urged GOP congressmen to support the $395 billion Medicare prescription drug benefit, according to, among others, Rep. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and former congressmen Jeff Bradley (R-N.H.) and Butch Otter (R-Idaho).

I saw a segment on CNN today with Wolf Blitzer where Rep. Flake flat out stated that Gingrich lobbied him hard on voting for Medicare Part D. Also in that piece I found this nugget:

A lobbyist for Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae whose tenure overlapped with Gingrich’s told me on background that both signed the same contract. This person immediately registered as a lobbyist and said that Gingrich was clearly exerting his influence, though he may have been able to maintain a legal, if not entirely ethical, distance from the definition of lobbying.

Oh, and let’s not forget that before Newt’s ties to Freddie/Fannie had been revealed, he was the one spouting off the harshest rhetoric of any GOP candidate calling for investigations and even imprisonment of congressmen who had ties to or profits from Freddie/Fannie. Wonder if he’d like to roll back that charge, or if he’s willing to apply his own harsh charges to the man in the mirror.

So, do you take Newt at his word that “I do no lobbying of any kind. I never have. A very important point to make. I have never done lobbying of any kind.” . . . ?

Any way you slice it, Newt is serving up large portions of his own “pious baloney.”

Gingrich: A Man Who has Never been a “Leader” — A Person Without a Core

Nobody believes that Newt Gingrich was ever serious about a run for the presidency. So why did he enter the race you ask? Think about it. The man loves the limelight. It is all about Newt. Have we ever seen any man on the world stage, in any era, with such an insatiable love of self? Is there any person even close in comparison to Mr. Gingrich in self absorption?

Photo Credit: Drudge Report

One man comes to mind: Hugo Chavez. I insert that name here because the man’s ego and self-love is enormous, but even Chavez does not compare with Gingrich. As dangerous as Chavez is, hobnobbing with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, he is not as dangerous as Newt Gingrich.

The world knows Chavez as a corrupt dictator (non-leader); a dictator of a third world country — Gingrich would have the world believe his “core” is now different; that character is not important. Chavez is a known entity. Gingrich has the world fooled; to this point — today. Gingrich was literally kicked out of the Speakership by those he was “leading!” And hit with a huge fine! As Speaker, 84 ethics violations were filed against him. He was kicked out of the House leadership with a vote of 395 to 28! Mr. Gingrich is seeking power of the greatest nation on Earth.

Try to imagine what would be written in the elementary school history books about all the “firsts” that a Gingrich presidency would usher in. Need I list them all? Just think about all the character lapses in marriage, numerous unethical decisions, the many times he has said, “Yeah, that was a mistake” (about 10 times in the last three months alone), etc.

Did you hear what Gingrich said Saturday night during his speech? He said something like, “You know, it is not my ability to debate that brought this win; it is my ability to articulate the values Americans want to see in their President . . . “ He said that! Gingrich actually believes that of himself! (have I ever mentioned arrogance in reference to this person?)

What does he tell us? “Forget all that stuff in my past, “I have matured. I am 68 years old. I am a grandfather now. I sought redemption . . . ” “I”, “me”, “I”, “I”, “I” — What? I remember maturing from age 15 to 25. Gingrich tells us he is still maturing as he pushes 70 years old?! You know what that is code for? They are the words of a two-timer — a person who is used to wanting his cake and eating it too. Are they not? Have you ever compared the number of self-described pronouns used by Gingrich vs. Governor Romney in any of the debates? There are too many to count.

Gingrich hates the “elite media” right? He said so with conviction by yelling at John King at the debate. He has everybody fooled on this front too. Consider this from MailOnline, speaking for the press:

Gingrich loves the press. In some respects we are, as John McCain famously noted, his “base”. He craves the media. I’ve never seen a man so happy as Gingrich was when he ambled into the spin room in Myrtle Beach last Monday night and about 200 of us swarmed around him hanging on his every word.

Romney would have rather been anywhere else in the world than that in the middle of that heaving, sweaty scrum. But Newt was in pure heaven. He loves the game.
[...]
At the end of the Charleston debate, Gingrich warmly thanked CNN and afterwards he spoke cordially with King.
[...]
In South Carolina, it was an open secret that the press were rooting for Gingrich, not out of bias or any belief that he would be a weaker candidate against Obama but simply because the press wants a good story and a knock-down, drag-out battle for the GOP nomination to cover.

Let’s face it, Gingrich loves the “destructive, vicious, negative” news media. He knows how to play the game. And the press loves him for it.

[emphasis added]

Gotta love how Governor Romney is peeling away layers of the gloves in Florida. The world has not yet seen even a glimpse of Mr. Gingrich’s sullied, hidden career. Well, we are about to find out a lot more than we ever thought existed about Mr. Gingrich. Frankly, I was surprised that more than a handful of people voted for the guy. But I think it is because of what Ann Coulter said yesterday; that voters don’t think more than “three seconds” about the man’s past.

Jayde’s great article below refers to the reporting of Reid Epstein of Politico. In my opinion, Governor Romney was generous in his reference to Gingrich by using the term “leader” in any form:

“Speaker Gingrich has also been a leader,” the former Massachusetts governor said. “He was a leader for four years as speaker of the House. And at the end of four years, it was proven that he was a failed leader and he had to resign in disgrace. I don’t know whether you knew that, he actually resigned after four years, in disgrace.”
[emphasis added]

It is only my opinion, but based on what I have learned about Gingrich’s “leadership”, his style is more like that of a dictator. He has the reputation of giving his word to one person on a specific direction and then taking a wholly different tack without blinking an eye. A true leader is above reproach and does not exhibit any ethical lapses.

Gingrich would have us believe these major character flaws were “mistakes” of his past. They are not mistakes at all. They are actions which serve as spotlights on major core character weaknesses. A true leader is honored by those whom he leads. A true leader puts the team he leads before self and deflects credit to those members of the team that follow his lead. A true leader knows how to execute (Gingrich is not an “execute”ive). Gingrich has always struggled to keep a team in place. Why is that?

Consider the hundreds of sincere testimonials that have been published from people that have been “led” by Mitt Romney throughout his career. How do those compare to what people say about Gingrich when he has had power? Is it possible to find any testimonials in support of Gingrich that even compare? Are there any? I have yet to hear of any or read any of them.

There are those around Hugo Chavez that would like to kick him out of office like the House did with Gingrich, but Chavez has the power to rule with an iron fist to keep them from the insurrection.

(more…)

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