Trunkline 2012: Monday Mentions from The Republican Presidential Race – 12/26/11

Bookmark and Share  Twas the day after Christmas and not a creature stood still on the campaign trail and Trunkline 2012 is here to tell you about each move they made with news on everything from Ron Paul’s newsletter problem, Perry’s faith based pitch to voters, and Virginia’s next move on Gingrich and Perry,  to a last word on Herman Cain and more.

“The United States should stand with our allies to support the Nigerian government in the aftermath of the attacks. The terrorist activities of Boko Haram are particularly worrisome for the United States because of the organization’s affiliation with Al Qaeda.”  –Rick Perry on the Christmas Day bombing in  Nigeria

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BorowitzReport   Andy Borowitz

 Ron Paul may benefit from Iowa’s unique caucus rules, which allow people from other planets to vote.

The Grinch that Stole Virginia from Gingrich

Bookmark and Share    Before Christmas day, the electoral Grinch stole Virginia from Gingrich and Perry as the Virginia State Board of Elections ruled that both candidates failed to qualify for a place on their Republican presidential primary ballot.

The fact that the two candidates won’t even be able to compete for the state’s 49 delegates is not good news but unless this becomes one of the closest nomination contests in recent history, something which is quite possible, it should not determine winning or losing the nomination for anyone.  But there is a bigger picture that the failure to qualify for the ballot in Virginia casts a shadow upon for Perry and Gingrich.  It is a glaring sign of what in the end will probably prevent both men from winning the nomination.  It is a sign of a total lack of longterm planning, organization, and coordination.

Deficiencies in such necessary strategic areas, will make it impossible for either to win any of the crucial early state nomination contests that help establish each candidate’s momentum, or lack thereof, in the primaries and caucuses that come later.

This particularly applies to Iowa where out of 3 million residents, less than 120,000 are expected to participate in the actual Caucus on January 3rd.  That means that regardless of how many ads a candidate ran, mailings they have sent, phone calls they made, or hands they shook, come the day of the Caucus, each candidate must somehow find the percentage of voters who are supporting them and make sure that they get to their designated caucus locations, of which there are more than 1,700.

Just like finding a needle in a haystack, doing this  involves time, attention, staff, money, and coordination, all of which Gingrich and Perry are either without or quickly running out of.

The process involves identifying committed supporters, likely supporters, and persuadable voters.  Doing this requires each campaign to devote much time and energy to building a team of dedicated county chairs and precinct captains who help keep track of these people, target them with specific messages and make sure they vote in the caucus.  One good way to help that process of building an organization capable of doing that is by each candidate going out of their way to get the backing of federal, state and local officials, who have influence among their local constituents and already have a political organization of their own that they can lend to the candidate whom they do endorse.  Unfortunately for Gingrich and Perry, it is now too late for that part of the process.  Not having done enough of that prior to this point, leaves both men a ta great disadvantage, especially when compared to Mitt Romney who has had an organization in place in Iowa since before 2008, and Ron Paul who also has an organization in place since 2008 and whose supporters are diehards that work on behalf of their man relentlessly.

This lack of organization and planning is exactly why Gingrich and Perry failed to get on the ballot in Virginia and to be quite honest, it is an amateur mistake that is embarrassing setback for both of these experienced political hands.

The petition process that Gingrich and Perry failed at is an entrance level class of politics 101 and to be incapable of fulfilling that most basic aspect of the political process raises significant questions of competency.

The petition is not always easy but anyone who knows anything about the process understands that it is critically important to the viability of a candidacy.

Each state has different requirements for ballot access.  Some state’s require a fee, others requires a simple signature, and many require a certain amount of signatures.  In the case of Virginia, to get on the Republican presidential primary ballot, a candidate needs to secure the signatures of 10,000 registered Republican Virginia voters and they must also acquire a certain percentage of those signatures from each of the state’s congressional districts.

But it is not as simple as that.

In addition to the signature of those voters, it is required that their addresses are also filled out.  Additionally, may states also require that the individuals who collect those signatures, be state residents who are registered Republicans and properly fill out the bottom of the petition which usually confirms that they witnessed the signing of the petition by each person named on it.

These requirements often allow for many signatures to be disqualified because of technicalities.  That is also why well organized campaigns usually submit twice as many signatures than required and carefully double check their own petitions before filing them and closely scrutinize the petitions of their opponents after they have filed them.

The scrutiny of petitions is what gave birth to the presidency of Barack Obama.

As we all know, Barack Obama was only in the senate for less than two years before he became President and we also know that he won election to to the U.S. Senate after a series of scandals left Obama without a viable Republican in the general election.  But what few people realize is that Obama first won elected office by using Chicago political tactics and knocking his Democrat opponents for the state senate, including incumbent Alice Palmer, off the ballot because of a technicality on their nominating petitions.  With no Democrat primary opponent to run against in a state senate district where the Democratic nomination is tantamount to winning the general election, this meant that Barack Obama came to power by default.

But the story is an example of just how important the petition is and why it is crucial for a candidate to pay attention to their petition process.

Unfortunately, Perry and Gingrich did not do this.

Others like Bachmann, Santorum, John Huntsman, and Gary Johnson did not even have the resources to try to get on Virginia’s ballot. But that was not Gingrich and Perry’s problem.  Their problem was that their campaign’s lack the discipline to pay attention to the details that matter and this lack of attention to detail will cost both Gingrich and Perry and Iowa.

On the flip-side, as I have said many times over the past year, Mitt Romney’s has the most effective, professional, and smooth running  organization of all the candidates in the race.  That edge is invaluable and while it may not be enough to get him a first place finish in Iowa, it will be enough to allow him to finish strong, stay in the game, and continue to strengthen his organization in New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Florida.

While this recent turn of events in Virginia is disappointing for both Perry Gingrich, it is more of a blow to Newt than Perry.

Perry’s campaign fell apart two months ago after his initial horrendous debate performances.  But at the same time Perry fell apart, Newt began to surge.  However;  many people know that Gingrich’s lack of discipline is one of his biggest problems and it plays a big role in the negative impression that Newt has when it comes to electability.  That negative impression was simply reinforced by the shoddiness of his campaign that prevented Newt from getting on the Virginia primary ballot.

Ironically, Newt Gingrich knows that organization is his weakness.  That is one reason why, two months ago, he decided to try to create a real organization in South Carolina, where he intends to build a firewall and take the lead in the nomination contest.  It is in  South Carolina where Gingrich has hired regional and statewide staffers and opened multiple campaign headquarters.  And currently, Newt is still leading in South Carolina.  But that may soon change.

South Carolina’s popular governor, Nikki Haley endorsed Mitt Romney and as a result, Romney will have easy access to the state Party apparatus.  Coupled with the organization Mitt already has in place, he will still probably wind up with an organizational advantage over Newt.  Especially when it comes to the Get Out the Vote operation.

So in the end, this Christmas season has provided us with new seasonal story….the one about the organizational Grinch that stole the election away from Newt Gingrich.  And even though we have not yet heard the end of the story, it is pretty clear that short of a Christmas miracle, Newt is not likely to hammer together the type of strong organization that is required to rewrite what is becoming an obvious conclusion.

Of course their are other opinions such as those of White House 2012 writer IkeFriday, who in his own post about the Virginia ballot episode, notes that candidates may have simply been caught off guard after Virginia suddenly changed the rules regarding their ballot earlier this month.

Friday’s point is an extremely valid one and one that I believe would in fact provide the type of evidence that could win a court ruling in Newt’s favor and get him on the ballot.  However; as someone who has had to deal with New York election laws, the most arcane ones in the nation, as frustrating as the process may be, I find there to be no excuse for a top tier presidential candidate’s campaign organization to be incapable of staying on top of things and mastering the most basic and necessary aspect of the election process, getting your name on the ballot so the people can vote for you.  This is not enough to cause me to stop supporting Gingrich’s candidacy, but as a supporter of Newt and his presidential candidacy, it is my hope that this incident is enough to knock some sense in to the managerial aspect of his campaign.

Hopefully, Newt will not get caught off guard like this again, and in case his campaign is finally beginning to look ahead, I am hereby volunteering my services to manage Newt’s effort to get his name on the ballot in New Jersey.

With Governor Christie backing Mitt Romney, it may not be rich territory for Newt, but if this nomination contest does turn out to be close, my state’s pitifully late June 5th presidential primary and its 50 delegates could prove to be much more important than they are now.  And at the very least, Newt might just want to force Mitt to spend money in New Jersey, where to reach all the voters, you must spend big bucks in the two media markets that it takes to get through to Jersey voters……..the New York media market which is the most expensive in the nation, and the Philadelphia market, the third most expensive in the nation.

 

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From Us at White House 2012, to You on this Christmas Day

The White House 2012 family takes this opportunity to wish you all a very merry and blessed Christmas.

We would also like to extend special Christmas wishes to those who have and are serving in our armed services. And in that spirit we present the following video two special videos.

Christmas Lights :Thank You Troops and Veterans!

A Soldiers Silent Night

And this is just because like Christmas, no one can pass up adorable little puppies, so what can be better than combining the two?

Merry Christmas to All from White House 2012!

The Republican Candidate’s Holiday Messages and the History of Presidential Christmas Cards

A copy of the first Christmas Gift print distributed by President G. H. W. and Barbara Bush in 1989

Bookmark and Share  I tried quite hard to make sure that White House 2012 got on the Christmas card lists of all the Republican presidential candidates but for some reason we didn’t.  I hoped to bring you images of their Christmas cards.  But since we did not make it to the top of all, their lists, we can only bring you the messages and card images of those we could get a hold of.  Then it dawned on me that it might be quite interesting to take a look at the whole White House Christmas card tradition and its history.  Consider it a Christmas gift of knowlege from White House 2012.  And just for the record, Mitt was the only one whe sent me his Christmas card.  Shame on you Newt!
But before we go in to the cards from those who have been President, let’s tak a look at the cards and messages sent from those who want to be President.

Michele Bachmann

Bachmann did not waste much campaign money on the holidays, she did however send this messageand video  to her supporters.

Newt Gingrich

Newt sprung for some dough for one of his very rare television commericials.  Of course they are airing in only a few special states.

Rick Perry

Perry sent out a very handsome little card with his family on it

Mitt Romney

Romney sent out a card featuring his family and also prepared a Christmas Youtube video ;

Inside image

Rick Santorum

Santorum sent out a card and an email to supporters that was quiter similiar to it;

As we settle in to the upcoming weekend, Karen and I want to wish you a very Merry Christmas. May you and your family take some time to remember the real meaning of the Christmas season and reflect on the miracle of the birth of Jesus Christ.

Luke 2:10:  And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.”

         I also wish my friends of the Jewish faith a very Happy Chanukah. We extend our best wishes during this Festival of Lights.

         I also want to take this time to express my gratitude for our servicemen and women who are protecting our country both oversees and at home. May the joy of the holiday season be with you and your family wherever you may be.

         Merry Christmas and happy holidays!

        

`

And now from those who have been President and are soon to be former Presidents and how the Christmas card became a routine part of the White House

In 1923 , Lucretia Walker Hardy, the acting general director of the Community Center Department of the District of Columbia Public Schools wrote a letter to President Calvin Coolidge’s secretary, C. Bascom Slemp.   The letter gave birth to a White House tradition that is now taken for granted when carried out, but would practically force a President outr of office if they failed to follow through with.  The letter actually gave rise to two White House traditions, the National Christmas Tree and the White House Christmas, or season’s greetings cards.

In her letter, Lucretia Walker Hardy wrote, ‘The event which Christmas commemorates means more to to the world as a whole than any other holiday we observe”.  She added “The tree would be outward evidence of the President’s desire to give encouragement to the spirit of which it is symbolic”.

Hardy suggested that the tree come from President Coolidge’s native state of Vermont and after offering volunteering her public schools department for the purpose of erecting and decorating the tree, she invited President Coolidge to officiate over it’s lighting on Christmas Eve.

Due to a public event that the First Lady had already scheduled, the President’s Secretary had to deny Hardy’s request to use White House grounds for the ceremony on Christmas Eve, but the Ellipse was chosen as a suitable alternative for the event.

Not long after that, Middlebury College President Paul D. Moody penned a letter to President that read;

“Middlebury College counts it as a privilege to send to you, from its forest preserve in the heart of the Green Mountains , a National Christmas Tree.  It is our hope that this Vermont Tree when electrically illuminated in Washington will contribute toward a spread of the Christmas spirit throughout the nation”.

On December 18th, the 60 foot fir tree was delivered to the Ellipse, and under the supervision and services of the Potomac Electric Power Company, the tree was hauled in to place, just south of the Department of Treasury.  The whole operation cost $500 and it included the expense of  adding an electronic button that would allow the President to light the tree from the Executive Office.

At 5:05 pm, after walking to the Ellipse, President Coolidge stepped on the electronic button and lit the 3,000 light bulbs that adorned what was the nation’s first National Christmas Tree.  While “Silent Cal” did not deliver a speech at the lighting ceremony, a choir and quartet played with great fanfare and at 7:00 PM the Marine Band played holiday music in a concert before thousands of spirited spectators.

Two hours later, Grace Coolidge orchestrated another display of holiday joy from the White House.  Inspired by the the hymns she listened to at her church, Grace arranged for the appearance of 65 members of the First Congregation Church for the singing of Christmas carols.  With the help of the Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone Company, the event was heard by an estimated 1 million people via a broadcast over the radio station WCAP.

The Washington Post described the scene this way;

“From the steps of the White House there went forth last night a message of peace on earth, goodwill to me.  It was the message echoing down through the ages from the days of the three shepherds, and as it passed from the throats of a choir on the portico of the White House, it was echoed by the President and his family and thousands of citizens, all in harmony with the reecho in the hearts of the people of the nation and the rest of the world.  It was the reverence of a Christian people giving at the seat of their government the expression of their praise for the “King of Kings” on the eve of his birth”.

That first Christmas at the White House for the First Family, was the last that they would all spend together.  In the summer of 1924, 16 year old Calvin, Jr. died from Staphylococcus septicemia or as it is more commonly known ……. a staph infection, something which typically starts out on the skin but may enter the bloodstream through a cut or other opening in the skin.

However, in the years to follow, the public events of their first Christmas in the White House continued and in 1927 Coolidge wrote the first presidential Christmas message designed to address the nation as a whole.  It appeared in every major newspaper on Christmas morning and received an overwhelmingly appreciative response that prompted thousands of telegrams to the White House which praised Coolidge for his heartfelt expression.

Over the years the holiday message became more personal and more aesthetically pleasing and as more time passed, the White House Christmas card became an official task of the first family that has inspired the commissioning of famed artists and the plight to find  a unique way to reflect the character of each new family that has occupied the White House

As is the case with all traditions, they begin to take a life of their own as they experience a process of natural evolution that incorporates such things as public sentiments and trends, technology, and other influences, yet through it all, no matter what new spin is added, traditions all begin with first steps and in the case of the White House Christmas cards, those steps were taken by the Coolidges.

In 1946 the Trumans designed 800 of the following enclosures that went along with the picture shown below of the Trumans boarding the President’s private plane. Between 1948 and 1952, Harry and Bess Truman lived in Blair House as the White House underwent renovations. So the President directed the Government Printing Office to print 1,000 copies of the following photo of the Blair House. It was given as gifts to the White House staff by President Truman during a 1951 pre-Chrtistmas ceremony on December 22nd.

 The President’s Personal, Artistic Touch: Christmas from the Eisenhowers

Although he was not a trained artist, Dwight D. Eisenhower was an avid amateur painter. As such, he allowed six of his works to be turned into Christmas gifts for the White House staff. According to Mary Evans Seeley, a collector of Presidential Christmas memorabilia and author of Season Greetings from the White House, President Eisenhower wrote the President of Hallmark, Joyce C. Hall the following;

“As you know I always hate to inflict art on my friends and members of my staff, but Hallmark makes such a beautiful package job that I am, and I hope others are, distracted into the belief that the whole thing is a superior product”.

With that came many Eisenhower renderings that were included with Christmas Cards:

An interesting story accompanies the second Eisenhower Christmas card. Hallmark designed two personal cards for the President and First Lady. One was a white card embossed with with a wreath along with a red bow and red berries. According Mary Evans Seeley, the day the cards were going to be shipped staff discovered that the ink from the red ribbon and berries were  smearing on each of the cards.  Suddenly, dozens of Hallmark artists were recruited in to an emergency operation which forced them to place a dab of clear nail polish on each berry and bow. The smudging crisis was solved and the cards were shipped to the White House via TWA.

The other personal card became a favorite of the First Lady. It was trademarked as the “Mamie Bangs” card and caricatured the Mamie Eisenhower’s characteristic bangs.

Embossed Wreath Card with Red Coloring that smeared

The "Mamie Card"

1955

1955

This Christmas gift print of the Green Room was given out with the Christmas card above in 1957

In 1957, this card was the personal enclosure that accompanied the the gift print below it

The image below is another painting by President Eisenhower that was reproduced and used as a White House Christmas gift print

And here is the very contemporary Christmas card provided by the Eisenhowers in 1958.

The Kennedy Cards

With the entrance of Kennedy’s in the White House came the touch of refined tastes that did not allow for caricatures and the bland and drab. So After Hallmark designed a a Christmas card that was similar to one the Eisenhower’s used, Jackie took special care to add her own touch to the now traditional presidential season greetings. In 1962 after Jackie oversaw an extensive updating of the White House and then introduced the nation to her home in a nationally televised tour, the home furnishings editor of the Philadelphia Bulletin want to do a special spread on the First Family’s updated digs. But after sending a photographer to take pictures of the renovated home, the editor rejected them and instead sent over Edward and advertising-illustrator artist to draw some sketches instead.

While doing one of his sketches, Mrs. Kennedy happened to see Lehman, got in to a discussion and was impressed by his work. After a particular Lehman painting of the Red Room appeared in the Philadelphia Bulletin, the Kennedy’s were extremely impressed and Jacki soon turned Lehman’s painting of the White House into cards Christmas Cards and gifts.

The Rarest of all Presidential Christmas Cards

A few days before President and Mrs. Kennedy departed for Texas in an attempt to begin his campaign reelection, 500 special Christmas cards featuring a crèche that was in the Green Room of the White House, were delivered to the White House. With the holiday season under way and Christmas fast approaching, they began to sign these cards on November 20, 1963. Mrs. Kennedy signed in blue ink and the President signed in black. The few cards that were signed had not yet been mailed and after the tragic events of November 22, 1963, they never were.

In fact, at the time there was no record of the cards. Not even by the Kennedy Library, but in 1985 fewer than 30 of these dual signed cards were discovered. They are now perhaps both the saddest and rarest Christmas cards in American history.

Below is the official Kennedy White House Christmas Card for 1962

The Johnson White House

5 days after taking office upon the tragic death of President Kennedy, the State Department asked President Johnson what he wanted to do in regards to a Christmas card. The decision was made to send our a very simple and sedate season greeting.

The Johnson's 1963 Christmas Card

This beautiful Christmas card depictingthe  official White House Christmas Tree became the Johnson’s official Christmas card in 1967

A brief look at other Presidential Season’s Greeting Cards

The N.C. Wyeth painting of "Building the First White House" depicted here, was a patriotic poster used by the Pennsylvania Railroad and in 1971 the President had Hallmark use it for the White House's official Christmas Card

This George P. A. Healy painting of Abraham Lincoln was the Nixon gift print that was sent out to many along with the Christmas card depicted above

A George Durie painting entitled Farmyard in Winter became the source for this 1975 Gerald Ford Christmas card

Mrs. Carter discovered a hand colored wood engraving of the White House and it became the Carter's official 1978 Christmas card

A Thomas Williams Jones painting of the North entry to the White House became the cover for this 1988 official Christmas card for the Reagan's

George and Barbara Bush commissioned artist Mark Hampton to do this watercolor of the Oval Office for their 1990 Christmas card

This 1992 Bush gift print of the National Christmas Tree was drawn by Kamil Kubik

As the Clinton’s moved in to the White House, Hallmark kind of lost its historic place in the handling of the White House Christmas. Instead the Clinton’s chose to go with American Greetings, a greetings card competitor to Hallmark that was a longtime friend of the Clinton’s, big financial supporter of his campaign, and a member of the American Greetings Board of Governors.

So in 1993, the Clinton’s received Charlie Riddle, creative director for American Greetings, and they worked with him on developing a Christmas card photo of the First Couple that conveyed the exact sense of wholesomeness and warmth that the First Lady specifically requested. The end product was the photo used on the card below. It features the President and Mrs. Clinton in the State Dining Room, next to a Christmas Tree and off to the side of a fireplace with the Lincoln portrait hanging right above it.

This year’s Christmas card from the Obamas;

I hope that you enjoyed this little walk through White House Christmas history and as we do all take a much needed from break from politics I leave you with these words spoken by Ronald Reagan from the White House in 1985.

“Let us reach out tonight to every person who is persecuted; let us embrace and comfort, support and love them. Let us come together as one family under the fatherhood of God, binding ourselves in a communion of hearts, for tonight and tomorrow and for all time. May we give thanks for an America abundantly blessed, for a nation united, free, and at peace. May we carry forward the happiness of the Christmas spirit as the guiding star of our endeavors 365 days a year. And as we light this magnificent tree, may all the youthful hope and joy of America light up the heavens and make the angels sing.”

“Merry Christmas, ands God bless you all.”

Woefully incapable of saying it any better myself, on behalf of White House 2012 I state quite simply, “ditto”.

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Romney Consolidating Support From The Mainstream Media and the Political Establishment

Bookmark and Share   Mitt Romney spent this weekend acceptingseveral high profile endorsements.  It began on Friday morning with an endorsement from South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.  As the weekend progressed Romney received an important endorsement from the Des Moines Register, The Oklahoman, and then capped it off with an endorsement from Republican elder statesman Bob Dole.The Des Moines Register and Oklahoman e

In their editorials, while The Des Moines Register and Oklahoman credit Romney for being a substantive leader but the main reason for thier endorsements seems to come down to the issue of electability.  In the case of the more liberal Des Moines Register, it comes down to electability and the ability to work with Democrats.

According to the Register:

Romney’s strategy on taxes is unique among the Republican contenders in calling for reforms that would benefit middle-income Americans and not just those at the top of the economic pyramid.

This ability to see the merits of tough issues from something other than a knee-jerk, ideological perspective suggests that Mitt Romney would be willing to bridge the political divide in Washington. Americans are desperate for the Republicans and Democrats to work together. His record of ignoring partisan labels to pass important legislation when he was governor of Massachusetts suggests he is capable to making that happen.

For those reasons, Mitt Romney deserves the support of his party in the Jan. 3 Iowa caucuses. If he is the GOP nominee, the nation would have a clear choice in November 2012.”

The Oklahoman takes a decidely less non-partisan approach in their endorsement but in the end, like the Des Moines Register, electability and the ability to get things done by working with Democrats would seem to be the decisived factors.

The Oklahoman writes;

The Heartland states contribute significantly to America’s greatness. We  must contribute to the restoration of that greatness. This is where the  unemployment rate is among the lowest in America, where religion and family  values still matter, where people work hard to earn a living and aren’t focused  on government handouts and entitlements. This is home to some of the largest  military installations in the country, a place where men and women in uniform  are respected.

The reddest of the red states stand on a high moral ground. They are not mired in the estuaries of bicoastal elitism. We matter and we must make our  voices heard.

This isn’t about pride. It’s about putting a new president in office to lead  this country back to its once powerful world position. It is time to get serious  about the current and future well-being of the country.

Today we face economic disaster — partisan gridlock in government,  unfathomable national debt, lack of moral leadership, threats from terrorists,  energy dependence — the list continues to build and weaken the foundation of our  nation.

We cannot let a bad president with a bad record walk into a second term  because the Republican Party couldn’t unite around a candidate who is not only  electable but capable of leading, uniting and governing America.

That leader is Mitt Romney.”

While I have no problem with the reasoning behind these endorsements and in many aspects agree with their praise of Mitt Romney, one of the things that strikes me most is that if you read each endorsement in their enitrity,  their fundamental focus is on comapring Romney to Obama, and not neccessarily Romney to Gingrich, Paul, Bachmann, Santorum, Perry, and the other whom he is currently running against the primaries and caucuses.  This brings us back to their main reason for theses newspapers endorsement of Mitt Romney…..the electability issue.  But the problem with allowing electabilty in the general election  to be the determining factor in selecting the nominee during the nomination contest is that it does a disservice to the issues and therein lies a the basis for questioning just how effective these endorsements will be in the Republican nomination contest.

Republicans must decide which is more important to them…….. changing presidents or or facing up to the challenge of changing one president on for for another who will bring about fundamental changes of the process.

If they want to simply change presidents and beat Barack Obama, Romney is the obvious choice.  But Romney does not neccessarily mean change in the fundamental way that government works.

The Des Moines Register put it this way;

“Romney disagrees with Democrats on most issues, but he offers smart and well-reasoned alternatives rather than simply proposing to swing a wrecking ball in Washington. He is a serious student of public policy who examines the data before making a decision. His detailed policy paper on the economy contains 87 pages of carefully crafted positions on taxes, energy, trade and regulatory policy, complete with 127 footnotes.”

That sounds like good solid reasoning, but the truth is that many Republicans, especially conservatives, want someone who is willing to propose swinging “a wrecking ball in Washington”.

They want real reforms, not “87 pages” of “regulatory policy” and 127 bureaucratic footnotes.

This is why Mitt Romney has not yet locked up the Republican nomination.  Too many TEA movement and conservative Republicans want a leader who will take a wrecking to things like Obamacare, our arcane tax code, and the government mentality of overregulation.  And that is precisiley what they do not find in Mitt Romney’s attempts to improve a broken system by tinkering with it.  Voters do not want to repair the existing government engine with duct tape and crazy glue.  They want a new engine.

Yet the fear of selecting a nominee who may have a harder time beating President Obama is overcoming the desire to hire a Republican mechanic who is willing to install that new engine.

For that reason, in the end, despite my own declared support for Newt Gingrich, I believe Mitt Romney will  be the nominee and while I will have no problem with that, I also know that under Mitt Romney, we are prolonging the existence of the establishment and therefor, while we can expect to see an improved economy and a stronger America under Romney than we are seeing under Barack Obama, we will not be tackling the underlying systemic problems in the process which continue to get government in the way of the economy ands our strength as a nation.

Many voters share that same sentiment and it continues to be responsible for the delay in their final decision regarding who they want to vote for in the Republican presidential nomination contest.

Meanwhile, the continuous steady flow of Romney endorsements from the mainstream media and political establishment will be do one of three things for Romney.

It will set up an atmosphere of confident inevitablaity in the candidacy of Mitt Romney as the person who is most qualified to be President and is most capable of beating President Obama.

The more mainstream media outlets and established political fugures like Bod which endorse Mitt Romney, the more likely many anti-establishment voters will vote aginst Romney and for someone like Gingrich, a candidate who has the establishment has made clear they do not like.

The electability and establishment arguments will cancel themselves out and ultimately allow Romney to win the nomination because of the advantages that establishment organizational support for his candidacy will provide him with when it comes to GOTV efforts.

While I am confident in those being the three causes of this establishment and mainstream media support for Romney, I am wise enough to defintively say which one scenario will prevail.  I can only say that at the moment, electablity seems to trump radical reform.

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Trunlkine 2012: Thursday’s Summary of News and Views from the Campaign Trail– 12/15/11

Bookmark and Share  Trunkline 2012 is proud to deliver youj a wrap up of today’s events on the campaign trail that includes some debate about tonight’s debate, Newt’s practical conservatism, the cause for Perry’s poor debate performances, Bachmann’s Iowa tour, and much more including a special cartoon of the day.

“The assault on all things Christian is “as constant as the north star.” In fact, the Lord tells us this is the way it is to be for us. For the overwhelming majority of American Christians, martyrdom is less about losing one’s head literally for our faith as it is about not losing it metaphorically when a non-believer walks all over those things we hold most dear.”  – Bob Eschliman for SteaveDeace.com

  • Tweet of the Day:

Monica CrowleyMonicaCrowley  Monica Crowley

Barney Frank is sporting a cast on his left hand.  He won’t disclose how he tore a ligament in his thumb, so let your imagination run wild.
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  • Cartoon of the Day:

The following cartoon comes from Draw For Truth

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Trunkline 2012: Tuesday Tidbits From The Republican Presidential Race – 12/13/11

Bookmark and Share  Obama’s election strategies and chances are outlined in todays’s Trunkline 2012, aliong with news of a stunning Iowa poll, battleground state polls, Rick Perry talking,….coherrently, Iowa evangelical leaders liunning up behind Bachmann, Santorum’s possible upset victory, Ron Paul’s assistance of Mitt Romney, and much more.

“I’m not going to sign those silly pledges, I don’t pander…I’m not going to set my hair on fire, I’m not going to Don Trump’s debate.”  – Jon Huntsman, Jr. in an interview with CNN

  • Twitter of the Day: 

Today’s daily tweet is an example of just how fair and unbiased National Public Radio is: 

NPR Politics
nprpolitics NPR Politics

Newt Gingrich’s Economic Plan: Big Tax Cuts For Rich, Huge Deficits For All http://n.pr/vfslXX

Trunkline 2012: Monday Mentions from The Republican Presidential Race – 12/12/11

Bookmark and Share  Gingrich and Romney trade barbs, Paul becomes appealing, Santorum raises money with Romney’s bet, and some juice on Marco Rubio and Ben Bernanke.   All of this awaits you in today’s Trunkline 2012.  And don’t forget to take the poll in it.

Between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich, which of the two would be a stronger candidate against President Obama?   Vote here, now.

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Trunlkine 2012: Thursday’s Summary of News and Views Tales from the Campaign Trail– 12/8/11

Bookmark and Share  A very interesting Trunkline 2012 awaits you today as the campaign trail reveals Romney and Gingrich taking heat from everyone, Perry getting serious in Iowa, Santorum preparing to make a big announcement, Christie turning the table on hecklers, Ann Coulter’s case of verbal diarrhea, a place for the Governor of Puerto Rico on the G.O.P. presidential ticket, and other juicy tidbits and tales, and the quote and Twitter of the day.

“How many jobs did Barack Obama create as a community organizer?  As a law professor? Maybe now you see the problem.”  – Opening line in new Mitt Romney SuperPAC ad

  • Twitter of the Day
Marco Rubio marcorubio Marco Rubio
Obama Admin was quick to call Honduras a “coup” in 2009 but #Ortega stolen #election in #Nicaragua met with silence http://nyti.ms/tdebpY
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Wednesday’s Words and Wit from the Presidential Campaign Trail: 12/7/11

Bookmark and Share Today we pay tribute to our fallen heroes at Pearl Harbor and pay tribute to the Greatest Generation, the one that saved the world.  And from the campaign trail, Trunkline 2012 brings you news about Newt  picking running mates and his cabinet, Obama’s forgeries, Ron Paul’s help in making nominating Mitt Romney, and more

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The Newest Ads Being Aired by the Republican Presidential Candidates

Bookmark and Share    With the Iowa Caucuses right around the corner, the time has come for each candidate’s campaign to make some critical strategic decision.  Including whether or not they should start exhausting their treasuries with expensive television ad buys.

While Mitt Romney and Rick Perry currently have some relatively well stocked financial war chests, others like Gingrich, Bachmann, and Santorum do not.  For them, deciding on whether or not they should focus on Iowa or wait to invest their money in South Carolina may be a close call.  If they lose the caucus and their money in Iowa, they may not make it to South Carolina.

So at least for now, many of the campaigns have decided to move ahead with what for some are introductory ads in Iowa.  Candidates like Mitt Romney and Rick Perry have even decided to go a step further and start airing ads in some of the battleground states that will follow Iowa.

Whatever their decisions, time is running out and now is when their strategies must really start going in to effect and the initial ads they put out help give us a look at those so strategies.  For that reason, White House 2012 presents to you the candidate’s most recent ads:

This Perry spot is well done and goes a long way in making good use of the debate blunder which all but derailed his campaign. With Rick Perry, at this stage in the game, no one ad can really turn things around for him. He needs to run the type of spots that reintroduces himself to voters and creates the impression of a competent, likable, down to earth guy, who is in touch with core conservative values and able to advance those values in government. Which is exactly why Perry has spent a significant amount of money running several different ad, before most other candidates even ran one. So while I won’t grade each of the Perry ads below, I will grade the accumulated effect of the string of ads he is running all at the same time. All together, I give them an A-. Between the situation Perry faces and what he has to work with, together these ads do the best they can and each one is produced well and tap into voter sentiments effectively.

The following Perry spot is an exceptionally wise production that taps in to the all important evangelical vote in Iowa. And while racking up points for himself from voters with this ad, he also takes a few points away from Mitt Romney among them. Without ever mentioning Mitt Romney or his religion, this Perry ad subtly interjects Romney and his Mormon faith which many evangelicals have a problem with.

This ad tries to distinguish Perry as a Washington outsider while at the same time addressing the issue of energy. The spot blends the two together quite well, but in the end, this advertisement is unremarkable and not very memorable.

Below is the first ad that Romney ran in Iowa. It started earlier this week and is almost identical to an ad he had already been running in New Hampshire. It is designed to tap into the key issue of the campaign…..the economy. It tries to do so by selling Mitt as a man who understand how the economy works and who has first hand experience in the real economy. But the ad lacks any real human touch and any sign of real passion. While Perry and even Newt Gingrich have ads that generate warmth and go a long way in ing a friendly, personal rapport with voters, Romney’s ad seems to be a bit cold and mechanical. While the message in it is a good one, the delivery is flat. I give it a B-

The ad below belongs to that of Newt Gingrich. It is the first ad he has aired in Iowa and in his entire campaign. What is most notable about it is the calming gentleness of his presentation. It is designed to take the hard edges off of the reputation as a polarizing figure that preceded his entry in to the presidential election. It is well done and succeeds at what it sets out to do…….introduce a Newt Gingrich who is in touch with conservative sentiments and seems surprisingly electable. Between production value, the message, and the surprisingly convincing, warm and gentle impression of Newt that it creates, I give this ad an A

The last ad up is Ron Paul’s first to hit the public airwaves in his 2012 presidential bid. It is airing in both Iowa and New Hampshire and while it has a certain bite to it, it really does little to convince people that his bite is any more meaningful than his bark. As the ad states, Ron Paul has been screaming about cutting the budget and abolishing agencies “for years”. And how far has he gotten? Nonetheless, the ad is fun and creative but with lingo like “that’s how Ron Paul rolls”, it essentially appeals to the same age demographic which most of supporters already come from. I give the ad a B.

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Trunkline 2012: Monday Mentions from The Republican Presidential Race – 12/5/11

Bookmark and ShareThe “late” edition of Trunkline 2012 has talk of Newt, Mitt, Michele, Rick Perry, Donald Trump, Chuck “the Schmuck” Todd, Nancy Pelosi, some advice from Mark Levin, the lies involved in Fast & Furious, and more news from the campaign trail.

 “I just think it’s time to have a president whose idea of being “hands on” doesn’t mean getting a better grip on the golf club….” – Mitt Romney

  • Tweet of the Day:

PublicPolicyPollingppppolls  PublicPolicyPolling

 If Gingrich meets the same fate as the last 2 front runners, Mitt well positioned to win in Iowa: http://tinyurl.com/c5upzmx
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Trunkline 2012: Saturday Political Opinions and the Cinema Politico Movie of the Week: 12/3/11

Bookmark and Share  Saturday’s Trunkline 2012 offers you a , uh, eh, ahh, well I guess the best way to put it is a unique movie of the week feature along with the main news of the day involving Herman Cain, and tidbits about Newt, Mitt, on of the Rick’s, our presidents corruption problems, a preview of tomorrows TV news programming, the weekly Rpublican national message, and more

C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers,” the director of the Obama’s National Economic Council, Gene Sperling, is interviewed by The Wall Street Journal’s Gerald Seib and The Economist’s Greg Ip —- NBC’s “Meet the Press” RNC Chairman Reince Pebius, Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod —-CBS’s “Face the Nation”: Former White House press secretary Robert Gibbs  —-ABC, “This Week”: Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.),  former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum —-CNN, “State of the Union”: Reps. Ron Paul of Texas and Michele Bachmann of Minnesota,  Arizona Sen. John McCain and former White House budget director Alice Rivlin and former Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Holtz-Eakin —-“Fox News Sunday”:   Sens. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.)discuss how to shrink the ballooning federal deficit. And Michele Bachmann gets interviewed.

  • White House 2012′s Cinema Politico: This week’s feature presentation is Crude Independence

First-time director Noah Hutton captures the change in Stanley, North Dakota, after a historic 2006 oil discovery. Crude Independence is a rumination on the future of small town America and a tale of change at the hands of the global energy market.…

It’s an odd and bizarre flick but it’s free 

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Trunlkine 2012: Thursday’s Summary of News and Views Tales from the Campaign Trail– 12/01/11

Bookmark and Share  Trunkline 2012 has a few surprises in store today.  They include the start of a third party presidential candidacy, Newt’s cocky declaration, His pledge regarding the Mexican border and meeting with Donald Trump while Romney makes a presidential visit, Michele Bachmann’s Vice presidential choices, Huntsman’s daughters still struggling to make a difference and other juicy gems.

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Wednesday’s Words and Wit from the Presidential Campaign Trail: 11/30/11

Bookmark and Share    Today Trunkline 2012 brings you some good and bad news for Newt, Michele Bachmann’s strong stance against extending the payroll tax holiday, Herman Cain’s decision to make a decision about keeping his going , Mitt Romney’s attempt to prevent Newt from passing him by, Chris Christie’s attempt to prove that Mitt is the man, Allen West on  becoming the next Vice President and more tid-bits from the campaign trail.

Mitt Romney  MittRomney   Mitt Romney

The right answer for America is to stop the growth of government & start the growth of the private sector. VIDEO: http://mi.tt/tQmwch
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  • Quote of the Day: 

“Real leadership is not what you see in the White House right now. I think it’s a sad day in our country’s history to have a bystander in the Oval Office, and that’s we have.”   NJ Governor Chris Christie during a meeting of the RGA on 11/30/11

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Trunkline 2012: Tuesday Tidbits From The Republican Presidential Race – 11/29/11

Bookmark and Share   Today’s campaign trail turns up a Trunkline 2012 with news about Herman Cain’s reasessment of his campaign, a look at who would benefit and who would be hurt if Cain drops out of the race, the new draft Sarah Palin for President ad, Bachmann blasting Newt, why Chris Christie shouldn’t be President, and much more including two new Trunkline 2012 features, the Daily Tweet and the Daily Quote.

 “The president acts like a politician running for office, not a sitting leader. That has had a poisonous effect on the country.”-Rick Santorum in an interview with the Nashua Telegraph

  • Twitter of the Day:

ConservativeNDC A.K. Baker

“The current Occupy Wall Street movement is the best illustration to date of what President Barack Obama’s America looks like.”

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