Santorum Goes After Palin For Skipping CPAC

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Former Pennsylvania Senator and potential 2012 GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum went after Sarah Palin today charging that her decision to skip the Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) conference was a financial one. The former Senator told conservative commentator S.E. Cupp, who hosts an online radio show on Glenn Becks website, “I have a feeling that she has some demands on her time, and a lot of them have financial benefit attached to them.” In what seemed to be a suggestion that the former Alaska Governor and Vice Presidential candidate’s priorities were with speeches and appearances that were paid, Santorum stated that Palin has “other business opportunities.”

Santorum also took sarcastic aim at the suggestion that Palin had family responsibilities to tend to as well. “I don’t live in Alaska and I’m not the mother to all these kids and I don’t have other responsibilities that she has,” he said. Santorum is the father of 7 children.

Palin has turned down invitations to speak at CPAC reportedly due to an ongoing rift with American Conservative Union president David Keene who has publicly criticized her.

Taking on Palin can be dangerous ground headed into a campaign but Rick Santorum seems to be the one candidate who is not afraid of possibly alienating her large base of followers. As others have tip toed around any public criticism of the highly popular former VP candidate it seems Santorum is not going to shy away from taking on the power of Palin. If she runs it could be a good move as everyone will have to weigh in on her candidacy. If she doesn’t it could put a dent in his being able to grab her many evangelical followers from the likes of Mike Huckabee.

The CPAC conference begins on Thursday in Washington, D.C. Scheduled to appear are Santorum, former U.N. ambassador John Bolton, former MA Governor Mitt Romney, IN Governor Mitch Daniels, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, former MN Governor Tim Pawlenty, TX Governor Rick Perry, MS Governor Haley Barbour, MN Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and others.

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Huckabee Prepared To Help Un-Seat Bill Nelson In Florida Senate Race

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Former Arkansas Governor, potential 2012 Republican presidential candidate and new Florida resident Mike Huckabee has pledged to use his to assist the GOP oust Democrat Senator Bill Nelson in 2012. Huckabee was an early supporter of newly elected Florida Senator Marco Rubio and today pledged his support to help the Republican’s gain the other Senate seat from Florida.

In an e-mail sent out to more than 5,000 Floridians on Tuesday, Huckabee stated, “Florida needs another conservative United States senator like Marco Rubio. Democrat Senator Bill Nelson has been in Washington too long and it appears he’s stopped listening to Floridians — after all, you didn’t want bailouts, you didn’t want the stimulus package and you sure didn’t want Obamacare. Thanks to elected officials like Senator Nelson you got bailouts, you got the stimulus and you got Obamacare. Senator Nelson, like all of the Democrats up for re-election in 2012, is a large reason our nation is going bankrupt,” insisted Huckabee. “Sadly last week, when given a chance to begin to redeem poor legislative choices, Senator Nelson voted against the repeal of Obamacare.”

Huckabee’s PAC – HuckPAC – assisted in sweeping many Republican legislators into Washington D.C. in the 2010 mid-term elections and it appears as if the potential and popular GOP candidate is preparing to once again use his name recognition and large base of evangelical supporters to move Republican’s forward in 2012. If that includes himself is yet to be seen.

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Ron Paul Headed To Iowa For Family Leader Lecture Series

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Though he has said that he has not made up his mind on another Presidential run in 2012, Texas Rep. Ron Paul will be making a trip to the early caucus state of Iowa on March 7th to headline a presidential lecture series for The Family Leader, a Christian organization with influence over the ever important evangelical voters in Iowa.

Rep. Paul drew an intense, almost cult-like following of young voters on the Internet with his 2008 presidential campaign setting fundraising records for the Web. He is still popular in Libertarian circles and was recently given the Chairmanship of the House Domestic Monetary Policy Subcommittee, putting the gavel of the panel overseeing the Federal Reserve into the hands of one of the central bank’s most outspoken critics.

Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty kicked off the lecture series today as can be seen here in an earlier White House 2012 post. Rep. Paul will be giving a “pro-family” lecture. The Family Leader’s lecture series, which goes through August, gives Iowans a chance “to become better informed on the pro-family vision of each lecturer,” according to a news release announcing Paul’s participation. The lectures will be videotaped, sent out to the group’s mailing list and posted on its website.

Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., speaks on April 11 and former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum is on tap for May 2. Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker, and Herman Cain, former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, have also confirmed they will participate.

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Santorum’s Social Conservative Stance Could Bring Him The Iowa Victory

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As candidates continue to make stops in the early caucus state of Iowa making speeches at local GOP events and signing books, one thing is apparent – Iowa is an important step for a Presidential contender. More specifically for a Republican presidential hopeful, Iowa’s high percentage of evangelical Christian social conservative voters (60% of caucus voters identify as such). They drove Mike Huckabee to victory in the 2008 caucuses and even Pat Robertson garnered a 2nd place Iowa finish in 1988. As he begins what appears to many to be a run for the 2012 Republican nomination, Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum is banking on his strong social conservative background to propel him to victory in the Hawkeye state.

While Huckabee remains the favorite once again in Iowa, Santorum’s past history on social issues shows that he has the ability to draw many of those evangelical Christian voters especially with Indiana Congressman Mike Pence announcing that he will not enter the 2012 fray. As Santorum himself has said, “Never underestimate the power of social issues.”

In 1994, when Santorum was a second-term Pennsylvania congressman seeking a U.S. Senate seat, he took on then President Bill Clinton’s proposed assault gun ban and rode Pennsylvania’s legion of deer hunters, who saw the legislation as an assault on civil liberties, to victory. Only 36, Santorum won by 87,000 votes becoming the first conservative elected to the Senate from Pennsylvania since 1952. Santorum had one of the Senate’s most conservative voting records and was floor manager of the most important legislation of the 1990s and one of the most highly contested social issues: Welfare reform.

Santorum and his wife have a large family of seven children, the youngest of which, Bella, is severely disabled with Trisomy 18, a condition caused by a chromosomal defect that prevents more than 90 percent of its victims from reaching their first birthdays. Being a staunch pro-life advocate the former Senator is dedicated to trying to reform today’s abortion culture that he see’s as being ever to willing to treat lives such as Bella’s as disposable.

There aren’t many candidates willing to touch the abortion issue but Rick Santorum has shown he isn’t going to shy away from the social issues that he feels are important to the future of the country and it may make him THE sleeper candidate heading into the Iowa caucuses where social conservatives decide the outcome.

While most candidates are focused on the countries economic ailments, many social conservative voters may be feeling neglected. Heading into Iowa, Rick Santorum has a good chance of filling the void. With Mike Pence out and Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin having to make tough decisions to leave lucrative television jobs, Rick Santorum may very well sneak up on America, starting in Iowa.

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Huckabee Says No To Palestinians And Yes To Israel In The West Bank

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Former Arkansas Governor and potential 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said no on Tuesday to a Palestinian state in the West Bank, further cementing his views that the Jews should be allowed to settle anywhere throughout the biblical Land of Israel – an area that includes the West Bank and east Jerusalem. Huckabee said that if Palestinians want an independent state, they should seek it from Arabs, not Israel.

He called the demand on Israel to give up land for peace an “unrealistic, unworkable and unreachable goal.”, suggesting his stance that if a Palestinian state were to be established it should come at the expense of Arab lands, not Israel’s. “There are vast amounts of territory that are in the hands of Muslims, in the hands of Arabs. Maybe the international community can come together and accommodate,” he said in a meeting with reporters.

There are some international leaders, including President Barack Obama, who consider Jewish settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem illegal because they are built on occupied land Israel captured in the 1967 Mideast war. The Palestinians have claimed both areas for a future state. Huckabee stated, “I know my view on this may be seen as the minority, out of the mainstream of the more politically correct idealistic view that we can just have a conference or a meeting and bring the diplomats together, toast marshmallows, build a camp fire and sing Kumbaya. It has not happened. I’m not confident that it ever could or would.”

Huckabee is on a 3 day visit with actor John Voight and hosted by the Jerusalem Reclamation Project, a group that promotes settlements in an attempt to bolster a Jewish presence in mostly Arab areas. Huckabee has said that as president he would move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, affirming Israel’s position that the city should be its undivided and eternal capital and said he would not pressure Israel into making any territorial concessions.

He said any peace agreement has to recognize that “the Jewish people have indigenous rights to the land in which they occupy and live and it goes back not 60 years or 80 years but it goes back 3,500 years.” Huckabee has made several trips to Israel to voice his support for Jewish settlements.

With 2012 creeping closer and the current unrest in the middle east it is difficult to say how Huckabee’s stances on Israel will be seen in the international community. What is apparent however is the stark contrast drawn with the stance of the current administration and President Obama.

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draftricksantorum.com Founder Speaks To White House 2012

Bookmark and ShareIn an exclusive interview, draftricksantorum.com founder Thomas Schultz speaks to White House 2012 about his website and why Rick Santorum is his choice to be the next President of the United States:

WH2012: What brought about the inception of draftricksantorum.com?

Tom Schultz: I first considered making the website in July 2010. Rick had been actively campaigning for several candidates throughout Iowa and it was apparent that he may consider running for President in 2012. Why else would you campaign for candidates in Iowa? I’ve always had the utmost respect for Rick and I wanted to do something to help nudge him to run. However, I waited until after November so that it wouldn’t be a distraction to me while I was busy running my brother’s campaign.

WH2012: Knowing that Senator Santorum campaigned for your brother (Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz), did you have the opportunity to speak with him personally regarding his Presidential aspirations?

Tom Schultz: I never spoke with Senator Santorum regarding his presidential aspirations. Anything I have done after November 2010 is completely independent of my brother. My brother is completely neutral in the 2012 presidential race and is still weighing whether or not he will even get involved. During his election he received endorsements and financial support from three potential presidential candidates: Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, and Mitt Romney.

WH2012: There will potentially be a very large field of GOP candidates vying for the upcoming 2012 nomination. Why Rick Santorum?

Tom Schultz: After taking into consideration each candidate’s ideologies and characteristics, I chose to support Rick for a few reasons:
1. Rick has proven his conservative credentials. He is one of few politicians that is willing to say and do what is right, even when it is not popular.
2. Rick is the one candidate that has the audacity to address the cultural issues that so many politicians avoid.
3. Rick’s understanding of foreign policy issues is one of the best in the potential field of candidates. He is the one candidate who regularly talks about these issues.
Rick is an underdog candidate that is going to make a large impact on the presidential race. He will exceed expectations and this momentum will help separate him from the rest of the field of GOP candidates.

WH2012: With many high profile names possibly making runs at the nomination, what role do you feel your website will play in getting Rick Santorum’s name out and more widely recognized on a national level?

Tom Schultz: One of the key obstacles that Rick Santorum must overcome is low name identification. I intend to focus the majority of my efforts in the early caucus and primary states: Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Nevada. In my opinion, the value of this website will be in identifying activists in those early states that support Rick. These states are clearly the most important players in the race at this time. By managing a grassroots organization of online activists in these states, it will be the most efficient way for this website to raise his name identification where it matters.

WH2012: If he makes an official announcement in the future will we be seeing Draft Rick Santorum .com evolving into Elect Rick Santorum .com?

Tom Schultz: Only if taking that action will bring the highest ROI to his campaign out of the things I have the ability to do. This will entirely depend upon my analysis when that time arrives.

I would personally like to thank Mr. Schultz for taking time to grant WH2012 this look inside at draftricksantorum.com. For more information on Rick Santorum or to donate to his America’s Foundation PAC please visit www.draftricksantorum.com

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Pawlenty’s PAC Running Low On Cash

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As first reported by Politico, Former Minnesota Gov. and 2012 Presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty’s political action committee ran through most of its cash during the midterm election campaign, according to a financial disclosure filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission. The filing shows that his Freedom First PAC spent more than $2.8 million in 2010, leaving it with just $155,000 heading into the new year.

“In 2010, Gov. Pawlenty’s Freedom First PAC helped elect a new conservative majority in Congress and a next generation of conservative leaders in states across the country,” said spokesman Alex Conant. “We were able to donate directly to over 200 candidates thanks to the support of thousands of contributors across the country. After a great Election Day, we gave our donors a break.” The question is however, can the former Minnesota Governor count on those donors to build the coffers back up should he decide to make a run for the White House in 2012? The low cash balance could also be a sign that the potential 2012 presidential candidate is ready to wind down the committee. A bid for the White House would require Pawlenty to set up a separate account for political donations.

The former governor has now raised more than $3.5 million between his various state and federal PACs since January of 2009. Over that same period, he spent more than $3 million helping various Republican candidates get elected to office. If he is looking to make a run for the GOP nomination, he will need to raise a larger sum in a smaller amount of time if he expects to compete withe the potential field that could include Republican powerhouses Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich.

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Santorum Builds Veteran Iowa PAC Team

Bookmark and Share Former Pennsylvania Senator and potential 2012 Presidential candidate Rick Santorum has added 2 veteran Republican operatives as advisors to his PAC operations in Iowa. A move which signals the seriousness of the former Senators presidential aspirations.

According to Santorum’s press release, (Santorum) announced today that his political action committee, America’s Foundation, has brought on Nick Ryan and Jill Latham of the Des Moines, IA-based Concordia Group LLC to serve as advisors.

“I am extremely pleased to have Nick and Jill on board to assist with my PAC’s efforts in Iowa and across the country. They have a proven track record of building grassroots support for candidates and conservative causes. As I continue to consider a run in 2012, they will play a critical role in helping determine if we are able to build the necessary support to embark on a possible run,” said Senator Santorum.

According to the Des Moines Register, Nicholas T. Ryan, founder and President of Concordia Group LLC, has extensive experience in Iowa. He served as a top political advisor for Congressman Jim Nussle (R-Iowa) from 1999-2006, and ran three successful congressional campaigns in Eastern Iowa. Nick is also the founder of the American Future Fund which was established as a multi-state issue advocacy group designed to effectively communicate conservative and free market ideals.

“I have respected Senator Santorum for years and am excited to have the opportunity to work for him. He has a deep understanding of the issues that matter to conservatives across the nation,” said Nick Ryan. “Senator Santorum is a full-spectrum conservative who has a demonstrated ability to motivate conservatives and Republicans. I am honored to help him continue the work he has started in Iowa by helping so many conservatives get elected this past November.”

Jill Latham serves as Principal at Concordia Group LLC. Prior to joining the Concordia Group, Jill served as Iowa Political Director for Governor Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign. Jill has vast experience in government and politics, having worked on Capitol Hill and around the country, including President Bush’s re-election campaign in 2004. She also served as the Political Director of the Republican Party of Wisconsin from 2005 2006.

“As someone who played an active role in the 2008 Republican presidential primary, I have seen firsthand what appeals to Iowa Republican caucus goers conservative values, honesty and a commitment to standing up for what you believe in all attributes that Senator Santorum has. I look forward to working with Senator Santorum over the weeks in months ahead,” said Jill Latham.

There has been much speculation that Santorum will be making a bid for the GOP nomination in 2012. He has quietly been building a team in new Hampshire and now Iowa. He has visited both states frequently, stopping in Iowa 9 times in the last 15 months. To learn more about Rick Santorum’s credentials visit the Draft Rick Santorum website.

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Pawlenty Advocates Bankruptcy For States


Bookmark and Share In a move that puts him at odds with the bulk of his own party, Former Minnesota Governor and 2012 Presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty has stated that it would be worth considering to let states file for bankruptcy to avoid more costly pension liabilities. Citing the fact that cities can declare bankruptcy, Pawlenty speaking at a county GOP dinner in the early primary state of New Hampshire, said he would prefer that voters keep pressure on lawmakers to curb spending and obligations that lead to bankruptcy in a story originally reported by the AP.
This puts the Minnesota Republican hopeful at odds with the Constitutional voters in the GOP who see the move as a loss of state sovereignty and those fiscal conservatives who see the move as irresponsible governing getting a pass. The positive side of the debate is that many conservatives see the restructuring of state labor union agreements as a result of a bankruptcy declaration a step in the right direction in helping the states future financial outlook.

As the debate rages on regarding states declaring bankruptcy one thing is certain, Tim Pawlenty is not afraid to draw a conclusion and draw it in the first in the country primary state of New Hampshire.
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Huckabee’s “A Simple Government” Book Tour Kicks Off In Early States

Bookmark and Share It would be difficult to prove that Mike Huckabee may be tipping his hat a bit as to his Presidential aspirations when looking at his upcoming book tour, but don’t overlook it as coincidence either. The tour scheduled to promote the former Arkansas Governor’s newest book, A Simple Government, is heavy on stops in early primary states.

The tour, details of which were first reported by CNN, starts late next month in Iowa, hitting 6 cities in the Hawkeye state. On the docket are Des Moines, Davenport, Dubuque, Waterloo, Cedar Rapids and Iowa City. Huckabee will then spend a couple of days touring Midwestern states before traveling to another early primary state, South Carolina, which is the third state on the GOP primary calendar. The South Carolina stops consist of Florence, Columbia, Anderson, Greenville and Spartanburg. Huckabee won the Iowa caucuses in 2008 and performed well in South Carolina as well.

For someone who isn’t sure they are even running for President in 2012, the book tour schedule certainly doesn’t hurt if that decision is leaning to a ‘yes’. Huckabee has performed strongly in a string of recent polls, as he highlighted during an interview with Fox News on Thursday. “What can I say? The American people are extremely smart,” Huckabee said with a smirk. “I’ve always said it. That proves it. What else can I say?”

Then there’s the book itself. The subject matter is tailor-made for the small-government sentiment dominating national politics and the Republican Party.

The book is divided into 12′ prescriptions’ for creating a simpler, more commonsense federal government. And though his suggestions touch on everything from defense policy to immigration, the message is consistent: a smaller, less complicated government is a better government.

How well the book sells could also weigh heavily on Huckabee’s decision to run or not to run in 2012. Should he choose to make another go at it, he would be leaving his very economically prosperous TV and radio gigs to mount a campaign. Considering that he just built a $3 million dollar house in Florida with a $2.8 million mortgage…………….the success of his book may very well be the deciding factor for the Huck.

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The Tea Party Response To The State Of The Union….Hey Michelle, The Camera Is Over Here.

Bookmark and Share With the State of the Union Address behind us the country can decide how they chose to interpret the message the President gave. But what will they think of the message or to be more specific, message(s), that the GOP gave in response? In this authors humble opinion it may not have been the proper strategy to put forth 2 messages from 2 different GOP Representatives to one message given by the President. A message which was built up all week under the premise of coming together as legislators to govern. The Republican’s couldn’t even come together for a common response.

Paul Ryan‘s giving the official Republican response,” House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) told reporters Monday. “And Michele Bachmann, just as the other 534 members of the House and Senate, are going to have opinions as to the State of the Union. Again, this is a process that happens every year, and I look forward to all comments, but it’s Paul Ryan that’s giving the official Republican [response].”

The opposition party traditionally delivers a speech following the president’s address. GOP leaders selected Republican Rep. Paul Ryan (Wis.) to offer this year’s official Republican response. But the Tea Party Express, a national small-government group, asked Minnesota Rep. Michelle Bachmann to deliver a separate tea party response via its website. The speech was also carried live on CNN, who has never been known to be a GOP friendly media outlet.

I believe Paul Ryan did a good job in the ‘official’ response. He pointed out the spending that was proposed by the President and the fact that we were told the same things the last time around. He was candid and at the same time was optimistic that both sides could do what was right for the country. Realistic? If history repeats itself, probably not, but it is what America wants to hear. Ryan did a good job in being firm yet not too confrontational on a night in which the country saw a show of unity within the halls of Congress. He gave a general direction of where we are at and where the GOP wants to take us and he did it with style.

Bachmann’s response was a bit more confrontational. She did not appear to be looking at the camera at any time. Whomever filmed the speech did a less than stellar job as she never once looked at the people whom she was addressing, and in my opinion, came off as a bit more rhetorical where as Ryan came off as more sincere. It was poor planning by the Tea Party Express. In a time dedicated to unity in the wake of the shooting of Rep. Giffords the second ‘un-official’ Tea Party response may have appeared to some that there is a huge split between the Republican party and the Tea Party. And after the responses to tonight’s State of the Union…Michelle Bachmann did not do the Tea Party any favors. In my opinion it may have been damaging in the long run. It seemed disconnected in more ways than one. But then again, the Tea Party has been never been considered part of the GOP establishment and in most instances, and it hasn’t seemed to hurt them.

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Huckabees Decision Could Weigh Heavily On The Rest Of The Field

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With his polling numbers looking good on almost every front, Former Arkansas Governor and potential 2012 Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee’s decision whether or not to make a run in 2012 could weigh heavily on the chances of the other potential candidates. While Huckabee insists that he’s thinking seriously about running for president again there has been little to almost no organization or movement to show that he is prepared to officially enter the field. The latest evidence: Chip Saltsman, his campaign manager in 2008 and one of his closest confidantes, has accepted a job as Chief of Staff for freshman Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN).

So what impact would a Huckabee decision to NOT run have on the remainder of the field? For a few candidates it could help boost their profiles immensely. Most polls are showing Huckabee as the front runner for the Iowa caucuses, followed closely by Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich. If Huckabee decides not to run, his evangelical Christian constituency—turned off by Romney’s Mormon faith and Gingrich’s messy love life—would be up for grabs. And if 2012 is anything like 2008, faith will dominate much of the debate leading up to the GOP primaries leaving Palin a chance to grab a large constituency of social conservative evangelicals.

Leading the list of lesser known potential candidates who would see a great boost should Huckabee decide to sit this one out are Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum whose faith and social stances would be attractive to Huckabee’s evangelical base as well as Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, who has recently promised to reverse the repeal of the DADT policy. Also among those who would benefit from a Huckabee non-candidacy would be US Rep. Mike Pence and dark horse candidate Hermann Cain, who has been compared on many fronts to Palin.

It is still very early in the process but if early polling is any indication, Mike Huckabee potentially holds the cards for those candidates looking to garner the support of the evangelical right. It appears from early indications that as Huckabee goes, so will go that constituency. For the lesser known candidates, Huckabee’s decision to run or not to run could decide if they sink or swim in a primary. Now might be the time to be bartering for a endorsement from the Huck.

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Pawlenty Urges GOP To Call Obama’s Bluff On The Debt Ceiling

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In an interview with the Wall Street Journal and on Fox News Sunday, Former Minnesota Governor and 2012 Republican Presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty has made his statement about where he will stand in regards to getting the countries fiscal house in order by calling on GOP Congressional leaders to stand up to President Obama and the Democrats assertion that failure to raise the debt ceiling would be a ‘disaster’. White House economists have said it be an inevitable economic disaster to use the debt ceiling as’ a negotiating tool.’ Long-term interest rates remain at historically low levels, indicating no urgent need for dramatic austerity measures, they say, adding that such cuts in the short run would ‘jeopardize the economic recovery.’

The former Minnesota Governor stated that Congress and the White House should pass legislation that would put interest and debt payments ahead of other federal spending and allow the federal government to pay its creditors as tax revenue flows in. With the surge of tax payments that come in between April and June, that would at least buy time to try to cut spending dramatically, he said. “This debate about how we’re going to restructure spending is inevitable. My view is, let’s have it now,” Mr. Pawlenty said, “Let’s call their bluff.”

Joining Pawlenty in his belief that the debt ceiling should not be raised is New Jersey Governor Chris Christie who has drawn the national spotlight since taking office for taking dramatic steps to cut New Jersey’s budget gap.

Pawlenty also questioned President Obama’s stance in 2006 as a Illinois Senator against raising the debt ceiling during the George W. Bush administration. A move the President now says that would be ‘reckless’ for Republican’s to make. On the Senate floor in 2006, then Senator Obama stated, “The fact that we’re here today to debate raising America’s debt is a sign of leadership failure. Leadership means the buck stops here. Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better. I therefore intend to oppose the effort to increase America’s debt limit.” A statement to which Pawlenty said, “His positions then and now are wildly inconsistent and reflect hypocrisy.”

If his challenge is taken on by those in his own party, some whom which are in support of raising the debt ceiling, will become a heated topic as it is reached early this spring. It is apparent that Tim Pawlenty however is making his economic stance well known to those who see it as the number one issue leading up to the 2012 primaries. Taking the lead on the debt issue could be the leadership role and topic Pawlenty needs to get his name out and mentioned amongst the Huckabee’s, Palin’s and Romney’s.

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Draft Santorum Website Is Up And Running

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Thomas Schultz, brother of new Republican Iowa Secretary Of State Matt Schultz, has kicked off the effort to draft former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum to make a run at the Presidency in 2012 with a new Draft Santorum website, according to the Des Moines Register.

Although he is aware of his brothers efforts the newly installed Secretary Of State for the Hawkeye state maintains he is remaining neutral in the Iowa caucus campaigns for now. Matt Schultz stated in reference to the draft Santorum campaign started by his brother, “I have had no involvement in the creation of the site or content, nor have I involved myself in any presidential caucus campaigns. And at this point, I have not decided if I will get involved in any presidential campaigns.” Santorum did however campaign for Schultz last summer and was seen with him frequently making the rounds at the Iowa State Fair.

With his campaign intentions being made public to a Pennsylvania tv station last year and the frequent flyer miles to the early caucus and primary states he has been logging as of late Rick Santorum may need no drafting to make a bid for the Republican nomination in 2012.

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Huckabee To Lead Health Care Repeal Petition Drive

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In what he called, the most massive petition drive in the history of the country. , former Arkansas Governor and 2008 GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee called Tuesday for Congress to repeal the health care laws passed last year by the Democrat led House and Senate and signed by President Obama. The repeal process is expected to move forward on Wednesday with the backing of the new Republican majority in the House of Representatives. Democrat Senate majority leader Harry Reid however has vowed to not even bring the House repeal bill to the floor of the Senate for a vote.

“We were told — and sold — everything except the truth about the details in the health care act, noted Huckabee on Tuesday. And then, despite a majority of Americans rejecting this massive change in public policy, Congress enacted it anyway. Thats not the way its supposed to work in our representative democracy. This massive 2,500-page piece of legislation went to the floor of the House without being read by pretty much anyone, was rammed down the throats of an unwilling public, was enacted in the middle of the night — and in the height of hypocrisy, exempted the president, the vice president, congressional leadership and committee staff from the bill that Americans didnt want.”

With a 2012 run in the near future, Huckabee seems to be drawing a line in the sand when it comes to the health care bill which has been a hot button topic since it was passed by the Democrat majorities last year. With the Democrats remaining in control of the Senate and repeal seeming unlikely a petition drive may be the way in that those who favor scrapping the laws need. Although it may not be an actual feasible means to force the Senate to address the issue it does have the power of public support behind it that can be used as ammunition in a possible Huckabee candidacy in 2012. Former New York Governor and potential 2012 candidate George Pataki also favors a petition drive for repeal. If the the petition drive gains steam and the Senate refuses to hear the House repeal bill, Huckabee could have a hand up in showing the people that he will be working for what they want in 2012.

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It’s Go Time For Pawlenty As Book Tour Kicks Off

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Former Minnesota Governor and potential GOP 2012 contender Tim Pawlenty kicks off his “Courage To Stand” national book tour on Wednesday in Washington, DC with an appearance at a National Press Club luncheon and then at Barnes and Noble just a few blocks from where he hopes to reside in 2012 – the White House. From there he will travel to Florida, then Texas and on to the early primary state of new Hampshire and the caucus state of Iowa. Coincidence? Don’t bet on it.

A book tour is a great way to get your name out to the public who seems fixated in recent polling on the more nationally known candidates such as the Palin’s Romney’s and Huckabee’s of the world. The former governor also has been hitting the media circuit since leaving the Governor’s mansion earlier this month. On Tuesday alone he appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America and “The View” as well as doing two stints on Fox News and one on CNN. Today, he was set to do “Fox and Friends”, MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” and CNBC’s “Squawk Box” in the morning and Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” at night. Whether he is promoting a book or running for President (or as most suspect…both), Tim Pawlenty has been a busy man. Over the last few days few potential candidates have had the media spotlight as much as Tim Pawlenty unless of course you’re Sarah Palin.

Pawlenty made some news by separating himself from Palin’s use of crosshairs in a graphic on her political action committee’s website last year while at the same time defending Palin in his book against the critics of her selection as John McCain’s running mate in 2008. A short list that Pawlenty himself was on before McCain chose Palin. It could turn out to be a solid strategy with all of Palin’s vocal supporters. Make yourself relevant and newsworthy while not being terribly offensive to Palin and her supporters in the event she decides not to run. Also, don’t seem to attatched to her in case she does. It’s a fine line that so far the former Governor has been walking rather well.

If Pawlenty is to be accepted as a major player in the presidential nominating contest, he needs to convince the media and political activists that he’s for real. Now seems as good a time as any to get his message out while promoting his book and taking advantage of the media spotlight being given to it. He needs to find his place in a field of candidates that is sure to grow over the next few months and he appears to be gearing up to do so.

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Huckabee and Romney In A dead Heat In Early Iowa Polling

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In a poll taken by New Jersey pollster Rick Shaftan, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney are in a literal dead heat in the Hawkeye state if the caucuses were to be held today. Huckabee came in with 22% support from those who said they would definitely participate in the GOP caucuses while Romney came in at 21%. Bucking a trend of early poll slips, former Alaska Governor and Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin came in third place with 13% support from potential caucus goers while former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich garnered 6%.

The poll mirrored many others in showing that Huckabee and Romney have a strong grip on the early support. Huckabee narrowly edged out Romney in 2008 to take the Iowa caucus. However 25% of participants in this poll were still undecided which beats both top tier candidates which potentially gives an open window and a glimmer of hope for the lesser known candidates heading into campaign mode and eyeing Iowa.

A new Gallup poll released Monday found Huckabee with the highest favorable ratings among potential Republican candidates.

Shaftans poll, first reported by POLITICOs Morning Score, surveyed 556 voters who cast ballots in the 2010 Republican primary and said they were either very likely or definite participants in the partys 2012 caucuses. It had a margin of error of 4.1 percent.

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