Drunk and Disorderly. Two Things Tim Pawlenty Did Not Need

Bookmark and Share On his Facebook page, 24 year old Ben Foster proudly proclaims himself to be a “political opererative” living in Johnson, Iowa. He is actually a paid staffer on the exploratory committee behind Tim Pawlentys presidential campaign. Last year he became the first full time paid staffer of any potential presidential campaign, but this week he was found drunk and trying to enter the back door of a home in Ankeny, Iowa.

Early Wednesday, 15 year old Chloe Steward was at home and upon investigating what was making her dog bark, she found an arm in the back door and the person it belonged to was trying to get in her family’s home. Chloe ran to her Mom and Dads room screaming. Her father picked up his gun, ran to the door and found Foster still trying to get in. A call to 911 by Mrs. Steward brought the police to their home and after vomiting in their backyard, young Mr. Foster was arrested for public intoxication and trespassing.

After bail of $600 was posted, Foster was released from Polk County Jail and later he released the following statement;

I made a very serious mistake. I take full responsibility for my actions. I want to apologize to all affected by my poor judgment. I especially apologize to the people who were disturbed during the incident and the arresting officers. I give my word that it will never happen again.

As for Tim Pawlenty, his exploratory committee issued the following comments;

Pawlenty is extremely disappointed in Bens actions and his behavior does not meet the standards he expects of his employees, .

The campaign has also placed Foster on a two-week unpaid suspension.

While this is not something that any campaign needs at any time, its a good thing Ben Foster learned his lesson now and not later in the campaign when the nation is more focused on each and every nuance involving the presidential campaign. As for Tim Pawlenty himself, the fact that Ben Foster is only on a two week unpaid suspension says a lot. For one thing, it says that hes a pretty understanding guy who believes in second chances. Then again White House 2012 is trying to ascertain whether or not young Master Ben is maybe a nephew, that Tim Pawlenty’s sister asked if he could help out? But no matter what, you can bet that if Ben Foster has so much as a shot of beer, the term suspension will be used in regards to what he gets hanged with.

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Where the Republican Presidential Contenders Stand on a Government Shutdown

Bookmark and Share As another deadline for a shutdown of the federal government is upon us, CNNs Rebecca Stewart has done a piece which attempts to layout where some of the more likely Republican presidential contenders stand on a government shutdown. Of thirteen candidates , three , Mitt Romney, Haley Barbour and Donald Trump, did not respond to the question, but several others have either answered it or have positions on the issue already on the record. While none of them seek a government shutdown, most of them, including Ron Paul, Tim Pawlenty, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Mike Huckabee, Sarah Palin, and Rick Santorum, all believe that the option must certainly be on the table. The common reason given for it being a real possibility, is that until we can get the budget going in the right direction with large spending cuts, we cannot simply pass a budget for the sake of keeping the government open and operating on deficits that we cant afford.

While all the potential candidates agree that a government shutdown is not what they ultimately want, former Louisiana Governor Buddy Roemer praises the uses of government as a strategic tool and remarks “I don’t like that, but sometimes you have to be skilled at pointing out what could happen if we don’t have some action.”

Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels has not given any clear indication of he would avoid a government at any cost but he told the PBS program Newshour that a “Government shutdown would be a bad thing for us all, it would be very disruptive and I hope we can avoid it,”

Temporary stopgap compromises have created extensions that averted a federal government shutdown twice during the past month, but attempts to come to a final agreement on the budget during this third attempt, are proving to be much more contentious than previous discussions as the latest deadline for a shutdown is fast approaching.

In March. When the first deadline was approaching, a poll of White House 2012 Republican readers overwhelming supported having Republicans stick to their guns and force Democrats to go along with significant budget cuts even if it forced a shutdown of the federal government. In that poll 82.46% of respondents believe that Republicans must hold their ground, while a mere 17.54% believe that they should do all they can to avoid a such a disruption of government.

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AP Gets Early Start on Nov 2nd, 2012 Headlines

A Perfect GOP Candidate Is Hard To Find. Yes, that is the unbiased AP headline of a story published today by AP writer Phillip Elliot. Elliot then presents us with an expose on exactly why every potential Republican candidate in the 2012 primary season is unworthy of Republican votes.

John Huntsman worked as an ambassador for Obama. Mitt Romney implemented Romneycare in Massachusetts. Newt Gingrich had two affairs and two failed marriages. Sarah Palin has had “countless impolitical moments”.

An infamous premature headline

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For every potential candidate, Elliot has a reason why they should lose.

Santorum is no good, he lost a Senate election in 2006. I wonder if Elliot knows that Abraham Lincoln lost the 1858 Senate race to Stephen Douglas, before defeating that same Stephen Douglas two years later in the Presidential race.

Tim Pawlenty apparently is too much into green energy. And of course, Haley Barbour is a racist, southern hick.

Of course, no freshman Republican is even considered in this article. After all, anyone can tell you that two years as a Senator does not give someone enough experience to run for President. Not if you are a Republican, that is.

I don’t remember the article about finding the perfect Democrat candidate in 2012. If Barbour has to defend his statements on segregation, should Obama defend his anti-white statements in his books? What about Obama’s church affiliation? How about his many “impolitical moments”?

Beyond mere gaffs and embarrassing associations, Obama brought us the failed stimulus plan that increased our debt over a trillion dollars with nothing to show for it. He gave us the unconstitutional Obamacare law and is currently in contempt of court for his executive order banning oil drilling in parts of the gulf. Obama’s attorney general has refused to follow through with voter intimidation prosecutions, refused to uphold more than one federal law on the books, and has betrayed his own racist leanings. Obama has now plunged us into a conflict with Libya where no one seems to know what the goals or end game is and where the only objective seems to be to blow stuff up but ensure that we are not responsible for winning.

But it’s not just Republicans who have reasons to not re-elect Obama. After promising to walk the picket lines wherever union rights are being denied, Obama was absent in the union showdown of our generation in Wisconsin. Obama has reversed his promise to close Guantanamo Bay, and continues to push back the date to bring our troops home from Iraq and Afghanistan. In fact, Obama’s legacy in Afghanistan is a surge strategy headed up by General David Petreaus. While Republicans are frustrated by the incompetent handling of the attacks on Libya, Democrats (if they are consistent) should be upset that we are getting involved at all. Obama is turning out to be more of a war hawk than his predecessor. He went back on his campaign promise to avoid an insurance mandate, skipped single payer, and extended the Bush tax cuts.

Where is the AP story about how hard it is to find a perfect Democrat candidate for 2012? The story of the 2012 election is not written yet. That is up to the voters. Do we want four more years of President Barack Obama?

Can the Libyan No-Fly Zone Tear the G.O.P. Apart?

Bookmark and Share The recent decision by President Obama to have the United States intervene in the civil war taking place in Libya has the potential to unleash a bruising and divisive debate within the G.O.P. that may very well play itself out in the race for the Republican presidential nomination. For many Republicans, nearly a decade of simultaneous wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have begun to divide the Party almost as much as they divided the nation years after they began. The question of America’s role in the world has always inspired sharp opinions. In 2000 it was Governor and presidential candidate George W. Bush who himself famously stated his desire to make sure that the United States was not in the business of nation building. But then, after 9/11, it was President George W. Bush who created a Bush Doctrine that settled on a policy of preemption.

The circumstances that surrounded Afghanistan and Iraq were unique and there was no question that the leaderless wasteland of Afghanistan was a breeding ground for the terrorist attacks that brought the United States in to a dangerous new reality. Iraq was more complicated. While Saddam Hussein did not directly have any fingerprints on 9/11, whether you want to discount it or not, evidence demonstrated indirect involvement through Hussein’s support of terrorism and the entry in and out of Iraq by known Al Qaeda operatives. Furthermore, despite the lack of a discovery of a hard discovery of WMD’s in Iraq, evidence did in fact make it clear that Saddam had used, was developing and did at least at one point have WMD’s and was willing to use them. There is even evidence that before Operation Iraqi Freedom hit the ground and after a devastating earthquake in neighboring Syria, Saddam shipped his WMD’s out of Iraq under the auspices of shipments of humanitarian aid to Syria. Imagine that..Saddam Hussein and humanitarian assistance.

But no matter where you personally stand on the merits of our actions in Afghanistan and Iraq, the two wars have given rise to a level of war weariness that transcends Party affiliation. Within the G.O.P. itself, many Republicans have been attracted to Congressman Ron Paul, who touts what is essentially an isolationist position that would have the United States close its eyes and place its hands over ears while yelling “Im not hearing you.” To a degree Ron Paul is right. But only to a degree. 9/11 should have proved to us that the United States cannot ignore events that take place elsewhere. Today’s world is far too small to think that a ripple someone else will not eventually find its way to our own shores. But over overreaction can be just as bad as too little action.

And that is where the debate within the Republican Party begins.

We are already beginning to see the emerging field of Republican presidential candidates go to their respective corners of the political boxing ring on the issue. Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, Tim Pawlenty, John Bolton and Rick Santorum have jumped on the President for too much inaction in Libya. After the French took the lead in support of rebels opposing Moammar Gadaffi, Mitt Romney has attacked President Obama for relinquishing America’s leadership role in the world to the French. Romnney also recently said I support military action in Libya. I support out troops there in the mission they’ve been given. But let me also note that thus far the President has been unable to construct a foreign policy, any foreign policy,” . Romne added “He [President Obama] calls for the removal of Moammar Gadaffi but then conditions our action on the directions we get from the Arab League and the United Nations.”

But Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour, has seemingly broken ranks with his potential Republican opponents. On the involvement of the United States in military action to create and enforce a no-fly zone over the skies of Libya, Barbour said “I think we need to be cautious about being quick on the trigger,”. But Barbour has gone even further by suggesting that we must reevaluate our commitment in Afghanistan. According to him “What is our mission? … Is that a 100,000-man army mission?”.

Barbour connects his lack of interest in military intervention to fiscal responsibility, an argument that will have plenty of legs with a national electorate that has come to realize that our national debt is itself becoming a major risk to our national security. But while Barbour is framing American military and foreign policy on economic grounds, potential candidates like Sarah Palin suggests that we have a responsibility to promote freedom and the benefits that come to all from it, when she poignantly tells “We should not be afraid of freedom.”

At the moment, most of the developing G.O.P. presidential field is content with supporting the United States involvement in the creation of a Libyan no-fly zone, and to criticize the President for both, not acting on it quicker and not having a clearly defined end goal after its creation. But as Haley Barbour shows, that view is not unanimous and as Americans become increasingly weary of deficit spending, “nation building”, and policing the world, Barbour’s unwillingness to get on the no-fly zone bandwagon may distinguish himself from a field of potential candidates whom the electorate may see as leading us into foreign entanglements that cost more than they are worth.

The debate has the potential to divide the G.O.P’s predominantly fiscal conservative base into unbridgeable factions of neo-cons and libertarian Republicans. Such a division already exists, with one side led by Ron Paul and the other largely led by the Republican establishment. But should this emotional divide grow further apart, it could mean the difference between winning and losing the presidency in 2012. Haley Barbour could be positioning himself as the catalyst for compromise that could at least temporarily unite the two sides. And such a compromise over this existing division will be necessary. And not just for the political victory of the Party, but for the strength and security of the United States.

The future of freedom and our nation relies on our nation’s ability to effect positive change in the world that we live in instead of it being effected by the negative influences of the forces opposed to freedom. But as President Benjamin Harrison said; “We Americans have no commission from God to police the world.” While those words are quite true, can we take them to the extremes that Ron Paul does? Ron Paul believes we caused 9/11 and brought it upon ourselves. Such thinking cost him more votes than it got him and it suggests that America has no role to play in defending freedom or even the allies of freedom.

But is it possible for a Republican to rise to the occasion of true leadership by carefully articulating when it is necessary for American use of force in the world?

Until such time as such a Republican rises, the debate that was largely marked by the 2008 exchange between Ron Paul and Rudy Giuliani that is seen below, has the ability toput the Party asunder.

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And while we are on the topic be sure to click here and take this week’s White House 2012 which asks whether it is wise or not for a potential Republican candidate to support American involvment in the creation of a No-Fly Zone over Libya

Tim Pawlenty Makes it Officially Unofficial

Bookmark and Share With the promise to, Tim Pawlenty has officially become an unofficial candidate for the Republican presidential after filing the papers that opened up his own presidential exploratory committee.

In a nearly two minute video announcement Pawlenty evokes the names of Lincoln and Reagan and offers an inspirational, sound bite based message that essentially tries to convince voters that he understands their pain and shares their pain. He uses the circumstances that he once saw in his state of Minnesota as the source of his ability to relate to the tough times that Americans are going through. But with great optimism, Tim Pawlenty goes on to argue that with him at the helm, it will once again be morning in America, as he delivers to the federal government, much of what he delivered to Minnesota state government.

The roll out of Pawlentys exploratory committee is not likely to change anything. It has long been understood that he will be running, so it is not as if someone who has been thinking about running is now have second thoughts because of Pawlentys likely candidacy. But Governor Pawlentys move closer to the announcement of an official candidacy could begin to prompt others to start readying for similar announcements of their own. An early start that lacks the fog that can be created by his future opponents, Pawlenty could gain an edge by defining himself to voters before others have the chance to define him for them.

The introduction of Pawlentys exploratory committee was made live on Facebookandnot filled with any dramatic fanfare but it did fulfill its purpose by having all most major media outlet in the nation report the news. That is after all the main purpose behind such announcements. And you can bet that whatever hoopla this announcement lacked, will not be missing when he makes it official and launches his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.

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Can The TEA Party Win On A National Level?

Bookmark and ShareWith the 2012 GOP field of presidential hopefuls lending numerous rumors and anticipation to it’s constituency the polls seem to be giving early indications that those names who have been there before have the advantage heading into the spring.

2008 candidates Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney have been neck and neck in most polls and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich along with 2008 Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin have been receiving a large helping of media attention. So with the polls showing the familiar names leading the pack, where does the TEA Party fit into all of this?

Most media outlets recognize CNBC’s Rick Santelli with launching the movement with a speech from the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange on February 19, 2009 while giving a speech against the Obama administrations proposal to help homeowners with their mortgages. Keli Carender, blogger, teacher organized some of the earliest Tea Party style protests, before they were even called Tea Party protests. In February of 2009, Carender held a rally against the economic stimulus package in downtown Seattle. Ron Paul supporters credit him with launching the movement as far back as 2007 when the GOP held the keys to the White House and the federal budget deficit began to grow.

Despite who claims credit for the origins of the movement it flexed it’s muscles during the 2010 midterm elections. Some credit has to be given to the TEA Party movement for the Republicans taking the majority away from the Democrats in the House of Representatives. It was their message of controlling government spending and debt that propelled the GOP to victory.

So why is it that most polls for 2012 show the members of the ‘old guard’ as the early favorites? Sarah Palin is held in high regard by many who consider themselves TEA partiers but has shown little indication that she is making a run in 2012. Ron Paul won the CPAC straw poll for the second straight year but in national polling is far behind the leaders. Tim Pawlenty has been campaigning to and garnering new found support amongst the TEA Party faithful but has yet to make any real gains to put himself on the same level of support as the early polling favorites. MN Rep. Michelle Bachmann has been hinting at a run and is the founder of the House TEA Party Caucus but has made many highly publicized gaffes and hasn’t even been a blip on the radar if the polling is any indication.

It is apparent from the results seen in 2010 that the TEA Party movement has a certain bit of influence. They are well organized and always draw media attention to their message of government fiscal responsibility. The question is can they bring the same message and support on a national level during a run for the White House as they did on the local level bringing a GOP majority to the House? The early polling doesn’t seem to say they can. It is very early in the process however and things can change quickly in the world of politics.

I believe that 2012 will be a huge test for the TEA Party movement. If they can get a candidate amongst the leaders for the GOP nomination they should be able to cement themselves as a true influence in national politics. If they fail to break through during THE largest race in the nation, they could be relegated to a mere footnote in American political history. Their message is a good one and seems to resonate with most Americans perception of the countries economic situation. Will that roll over into support from the independents that are necessary to win the White House? Time will only tell. Early indications however show that they have inroads to make within the GOP first.

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Key Iowa Supporter Abandons Huckabee for Pawlenty

Bookmark and Share A key supporter and critical architect of Mike Huckabees 2008 winning Iowa caucus campaign, has bailed on Huckabee and cast his lot with former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty.

Eric Woolson, a formidable media strategist and campaign press operative, was the manager of Mike Huckabees come-out-nowhere Iowa victory in 2008 and despite a recent meeting with Huckabee when his book tour took him to the Hawkeye State, According to the Des Moines Registers Tom Beaumont, Woolson has said that he expressed to Pawlenty an interest in helping him. Woolson stated “I think he’s got a terrific record. He’s got a great story to tell. He hasn’t said he’s running yet. If he decides to run, I’d love to help him tell that story to Iowans.”

The defection from Huckabee to Pawlenty would be an organizational setback for a potential Huckabee presidential campaign and it is a sign of the soft commitment and sense of loyalty that Huckabees supporters have for him.

Woolson says that he likes Pawlenty’s record, style and profile as a governor. He is also concerned by Huckabee’s late time frame for making a decision on whether or not to seek the Republican presidential nomination again.

Woolson adds;

“As you look at the monumental task of unseating an incumbent president, Republicans need to get about the business of getting that job done and I want to get on with the task of getting that done.”

Tim Pawlenty has not as of yet accepted Woolsons offer, but he also not yet made his own decision to run for President or not. That is expected to come sometime during the course of the next month in a half.

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Florida; The Sunshine State, I mean the Nomination State

Bookmark and Share With ten months to go before Republicans begin holding their binding presidential nomination contests, the field of candidates is still taking shape, the primary and caucus calendar is still being worked out, and a clear choice for the nomination is as far away from the minds of voters as Barack Obama is from reducing the nation’s debt. All the lingering questions that are leaving the G.O.P. blowing in the wind, even as President Obama continues to show weaknesses among voters, are helping to assure us a few things and that is that Sunshine State of tomorrow, is looking more and more and more like the Granite State of yesterday.

Up until 2000, no Republican has ever won the White House without winning the New Hampshire Primary. That year, John McCain, defeated then Governor George Bush. That year, Bush went on to win South Carolina, the state immediately following New Hampshire, and then eventually both the nomination and the Presidency. In 2012, it is likely that New Hampshire will again produce a primary election winner who could easily fail to win the Republican nomination. That person is Mitt Romney.

Romney currently leads most all New Hampshire polls. But that doesn’t say much about Romney’s overall viability as candidate for the G.O.P. nomination. By all rights, Romney should be winning New Hampshire. He was the governor of a neighboring state whos media market dominates it, he has a residence in the state’srecently campaigned among New Hampshire voters little more than three years ago, and has maintained a presence in the state ever since. The fact is that Mitt Romney should be the frontrunner to win, not only the New Hampshire Republican Primary, but the Republican presidential nomination as well. And while for many different reasons he is the frontrunner, his hold on to that tile is tenuous at best.

In a ginned up TEA movement environment that has a pervasive limited government mentality running through the Party like hot water filtering through a tea bag, the “big-government” healthcare plan which Romney created in Massachusetts when he was Governor, is leaving a bad taste in the mouths of Republican voters. It is indeed his biggest weakness, a weakness that causes people to stop and scrutinize Romney’s record even closer. And under that scrutiny, his other flaws begin to take on a new dimension that accentuates his flip-flops on issues like abortion, and a personal wealth so vast that people begin to feel that he is out of touch with the common man.

All of these are themes which a well armed, articulate, opposing campaigning can drive home and use to significantly hurt Mitt Romney, especially outside of the seemingly friendly pro-Romney, environment in New Hampashire.

Which brings us to Florida.

When all the dust settles on the brewing primary and caucus calendar battle, Florida’s nomination contest is more than likely to follow the first four—- Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina. Florida is currently trying to move up the date of their primary to one which would come before these states, but the very real possibility of the RNC penalizing the Sunshine State for such a move by taking away the national convention that is suppose to be held in Tampa, will more than likely resolve the problem. If that is in fact true, while Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina, will still be important, especially for Mitt Romney, it is more than likely that these four states will produce mixed results.

Depending of course on who is running, Iowa is likely to choose the most predominantly, high profile social conservative, something which even though Mitt Romney is, the heavily concentrated evangelical vote in Iowa does not believe. Here a Huckabee, Palin, Bachmann-like candidate is more than likely to win, if they run.

Romney is more than likely to win in New Hampshire. He has to if he wants to survive. Romney may also win Nevada, but this is certainly not a foregone conclusion. People like Newt Gingrich and Ambassador and fellow Mormon, Jon Huntsman, will make it harder for Romney to solidify a victory. But even if Mitt did win Nevada, a likely loss for him in the state to follow, South Carolina, will muddle any clear frontrunner status.

That would then leave the G.O.P. field facing Florida.

With 99 delegates to the convention, it will be the biggest number of delegates awarded in any contest up to that point and a win here could provide critical momentum to one of the candidates as they head into a Super Tuesday event that will contests in anywhere from 9 to 11 states spread out in the South, West and Mid-Atlantic. Among these states are California with 172 delegates and New York with 95 delegates.

While these Super Tuesday primaries involve multiple influencing factors such as differing regional and ideological bends, the desire to find a clear frontrunner will allow Florida to provide significant numerical and psychological momentum to the campaign of the candidate who wins its primary. Florida could either solidify frontrunner status for someone like Romney, or provide a candidate like Haley Barbour with a big boost of confidence, especially if Barbour wins South Carolina as he heads into Florida. If she were to run, Florida could make or break the campaign of Sarah Palin and it can do the same for Tim Pawlenty

Florida is the real wildcard here. It will have the ability to confirm a candidates frontrunner status, take it away from them, or produce a new frontrunner right before a large chunk of delegates make up their minds. People like Haley Barbour certainly see the importance of Florida. That is why along with an aggressive, under-the-radar presence in South Carolina, his potential campaign has been aggressively courting and cultivating Florida. In addition to keynoting a state Republican dinner he is calling legislators and key Party leaders, seeking their endorsements and if they don’t, he is dissuading them from giving any money to other candidates until he has made a decision.

In the final analysis, Florida is shaping up to be far more important than New Hampshire use to be and while it is not going to speak definitively for the entire Republican Party, it will have a far bigger voice than most other states.

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The Neapolitan Party

Early on in this race, we are starting to see a clear breakdown in the Republican party into three distinct flavors. The question will be whether one candidate can unite the party once the others have melted away.

Can Republicans compromise on one flavor?

The social conservatives are known for their stances on family values, morality, and for some, Christianity. They are the candidates that the Family Research Counsel and American Family Association would love to see win. They are openly supportive of the TEA Party movement and are popular among talk radio listeners and Glenn Beck fans. They are big on national security, small government, and spending cuts, but these stances are drowned out by their social values. They are often controversial and pull no punches in attacking the Left. This flavor includes Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, Jim DeMint, Herman Cain, Haley Barbour, Rick Perry and Rick Santorum.

Then you have the fiscal conservatives. They are proven businessmen. They have cut costs in government, they have balanced budgets, they have produced growth, and many of them have large personal fortunes. They have made the tough, controversial decisions having to do with the size of government, and they have produced incredible results. However, even though many of them are pro-life, pro-family, and generally socially conservative, this does not come out strongly in their campaigns. They are willing to work across the aisle, and sometimes alienate their own party by doing it. Social conservatives don’t trust them, but they enjoy a closet relationship with the TEA Party movement. They are strong on national security and foreign policy. These candidates include Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty, Mitch Daniels, Rudy Giuliani, and Donald Trump.

Finally, there are the libertarians. Although they may live socially conservative lives and oppose things like abortion on a personal and state level, they will die by the principle that such things are beyond the scope of the Federal Government’s regulations. They oppose foreign wars and take a very cynical approach to free trade, the UN, and other foreign entanglements. They oppose the war on drugs and would take a chainsaw to the Federal Government’s authority without hesitation. Secretly, many conservatives love them, but most would not actually vote for them. These include Ron Paul and Gary Johnson.

And then there is Newt Gingrich. Newt can be credited with helping bring about one of our nation’s most prosperous times as he worked both across the aisle and strongly against a Clinton administration to balance the budget.

Newt can win the general. Can he win the primary?

Newt also is a dedicated social conservative, who despite his own personal family issues from a decade ago is a strong advocate for socially conservative issues. Newt also advocates for limited government, but certainly not anywhere to the extent that Ron Paul does. Gingrich is smart on foreign policy and thinks outside of the box.

His American Solutions website and conservative crusade starting from when he was considering a presidential run in 2007 have helped to codify and establish the conservative brand going into 2012. He has been a strong TEA Party ally without appearing to be a one dimensional TEA Party candidate.

Could Newt be the candidate who can unite enough of the Republican Neapolitan breakdown to win in 2012? He could certainly defeat Obama in a debate and would have a strong showing in a general election. The question is if he can get enough of the social conservative, fiscal conservative and libertarian Republicans to abandon their favorite in order to unite behind him in the primary.

TEA-Paw’s TEA Party Tribute and Pitch for Needed Votes

Bookmark and Share In a new You-Tube commercial put out by former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, otherwise known as T-Paw, turns himself in to TEA-Paw with a tribute to the TEA Party.

It starts out with gently changing clips of individual TEA Party members, smiling and proudly participating in demonstrations for their beliefs. As these scenes play out, Pawlenty is overheard talking about the TEA Party.

He says;

“Each generation needs a change historical change in this country. usuallyit starts with a group that is somewhat fresh, somewhat new. Starts out with a little bit of an outsider status but then over time they become the driving force for change. I think the TEA Party is a welcome, helpful, energetic, forward leaning organization.”

The commercial then goes into what is becoming stylistic of the Pawlentyycampaign’s adds…….fast paced clips of scenes shot at rapid changing angles, roll out while the music and voice of Pawlenty builds to a crescendo of determined patriotic fervor. These words are taken from his stump speech which usually ends with a rally cry for Americans to take back our government.

As stated here in a previouspost “TEA-Paw” is leaving no stones unturned in his attempts to not only get TEA Party support but to turn himself in to a TEA Party leader. If that can fly when people like Mitt Romney finish eviscerating Pawlenty’s record, has yet to be seen. But Pawlenty is trying hard early.

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Tim Pawenty’s TEA Party Patriots Summit Speech

Bookmark and Share As recently reported here in Whit House 2012, former Minnesota Governor and future presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty “rallied the TEA Party” at a TEA Party Patriots summit held in Arizona. Now we would like to show you that speech in the speech below this post..

Much of the speech is a stump speech given at the many events he has been hitting. But with lines such as “the Constitugtion was not written to imit freedomm. It was written to limit government”, Pawlenty is honing his message to those who consider themseves a part of the TEA movement.Given that the TEA Party and its agenda is embraced by the G.O.P., the strategy is a good one and he is carrying it out well.

Currently Pawlenty is not a top tier candidate among the TEA Party, but with spoeeches like this, he soon can be.

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Mike Huckabee, Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney: Who Will Step Up First?

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Depending on which poll you read and what day it is on you can see a wide variety in data of who is leading the potential Republican field for the 2012 nomination. Some polls have shown Mitt Romney with a small lead over Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin. Others have Huckabee on top with a slight gap between himself, Romney and Palin. Sometimes former Speaker Newt Gingrich appears as has Mitch Daniels, Ron Paul and various other potential candidates. The only consistency appears to be that Huck, Sarah and Mitt appear at the top almost every time.

So the question remains – Who will break out of the pack when the official announcements begin to show up on Twitter? Moderates are mostly for Romney, and Conservatives are split on Huckabee and Palin. However, Huckabee backers support Sarah Palin if he does not run and vice-versa with Sarah Palin’s supporters. Which means they both better hope either one of them does not run for President. However in the large scheme of things, this is wide open. Though Romney, Palin and Huckabee are frontrunners now, it could all change once someone announces their run.

After CPAC we may begin to see some new names and faces appear such as John Thune, Tim Pawlenty, Haley Barbour and Mitch Daniels. Rick Santorum cannot be discounted as well as little known Herman Cain who made a splash at the conservative conference.

If one of the big three makes an announcement soon it could hamper the ability of some of the lesser knows to get their name out through the media frenzy that is likely to follow especially if that person is Sarah Palin. We may not know how the candidates will play their hands and how voters will react but one thing we do know is that the early indications point to Mike Huckabee, Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney as maintaining a firm grasp on the minds of potential voters.

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T-Paw Premeirs Before the Florida State Senate

Bookmark and Share The President of Floridas Senate promised to make sure that all the potential Republican presidential candidates pass through Florida so that voters can kick their tires and try them out. So in keeping with that pledge he delivered Tim Palwenty to the Republican state senate chamber where the former Minnesota Governor delivered what has become his standard stump speech.

It consists of his wifes telling him that he could not pass up the opportunity to run for Governor over 8 years ago. And how she gave him an inspirational speech about how only he could insure the right future for the people and Minnesota and other remarks that made him feel like Rocky Balboa. The punch line of the story is that after a few months in office as Governor, he cam home and his wife was disgruntled with the lack of time he had for household duties. When he reminded her that his job is what consumes his time and that she was the one who told him to run, she responded, “Yeah, but I didnt think you were going to win. I just wanted you to get it out of your system so that we could get on with our lives.

Below you can see some of the rest of Pawlentys speech before the Florida legislators as recorded by NewsServiceFlorida.com

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White House 2012 Poll Has Paul Winning CPAC Straw Poll

Bookmark and ShareAccording to a poll of White House 2012 readers, Ron Paul is predicted to be a favorite among the conservative conferencevoters in the CPAC 2011 Straw Poll. But the prediction of the White House 2012 is that it will be close withMitt Romney not far behind. Paul pulls ahead of Romney with a 2.22% lead. 22.96% for Paul to Romney’s 20.74%.

In a relatively strong showing, White House 2011 survey participants predict CPAC voters will place Mitch Daniels in third place with 11.11%of their vote, followed by Newt Gingrich in 5th place and Herman Cain in 6th place.

The poll askedreaders;

Of the potential candidates on this weekend’s Conservative Political Action Conference ballot, who do you expect to be the winner of the CPAC Straw Poll?

CPAC is expected to release the results of their actual straw poll on Saturday, February 12 at 5:15 PM EST.

But while we to seee how accurate White House 2012readers werein their prediction, WH2012 has another question for you.

Do you think Sarah Palin will run for President?

Take this week’sWhite House 2012 pollhere and tell us if you think will actually run, not run, or run but as a Third Party candidate?

Poll closes Sunday, February 20th, 2011 at 12;00 PM EST.

For results of previous White House 2012 polls visit here

Gingrich Takes the Number One Spot in Iowa Ranking

Bookmark and Share Craig Robinson of the Iowa Republican has issued his update of the staus of the emerging Republican presidential field in Iowa. His assesment offers many surprises but his detailed reasons behind why he places each potential candidate where he does,has you understand thathis seemingly unconventional logic is actually based on veryconventional thinking which should allow you tonot to be so surprised his conclusions. In other words, his rationale for where each candidate stands, makes a lot of sense.

Holding the number one spot on Robinson’s ranking is Newt Gingrich. Robinson notes that Newt has spent over a decade in Iowa. He has rallied Iowa Republicans before , during and after elections and addressed them when there is no election. He explains for example that when the Iowa State Fair rolls around, Newt doesn’t just come and by for a few photo ops, he spends the day talking listening and talking to the people and telling stories.

According to Robinson;

“Newt Gingrich is as formidable of a caucus candidate as Iowans have ever seen. The combination of being a storyteller, historian, political operative, and excellent speaker make him the clear frontrunner in Iowa.”

Upsetting current perceptions is Robinson’s established opinion that at this time, Michele Bachmann comes in at number two in the first in the nation caucus state. To a degree, Robinson admits that himself but we writes;

“Unlike the other candidates on this list, Bachmann will appeal to both social conservatives and tea party activists. If she runs, its easy to see her doing really well in Iowa.”

Robinson concludes;

“Bachmann may be an unconventional candidate, but she is the only candidate who doesnt have any major obstacles between herself and a caucus victory. If she runs, she will be a frontrunner in Iowa by the time the caucuses near.”

The complete list can be found below and I urge you to read Craig Robinson’s deep analysis of each candidate and why they stand where he’s see them.Just click on each name to read his assessments. You won’t regret reading each one.

Two notable points regardingRobinson’s placement of the potential candidates. One;Mitt Romney is in fourth place and lacking the kind of momentum to get much higher and Robinson raises a point that I also blogged about here on White House 2012. Romney really can’t afford to ignore or Iowa. And two; Huckabee and Palin appear nowhere on his list and I doubt either one of them were 11th or 12th and he only discussed the top ten. It would like Craig Robinson sees the writing on the wall and tells him neither of the two are running. Hence Michele Bachmann’s high standing.

  1. Newt Gingrich
  2. Michele Bachmann
  3. Tim Pawlenty
  4. Mitt Romney
  5. Rick Santorum
  6. Ron Paul
  7. Haley Barbour
  8. Mitch Daniels
  9. John Thune
  10. Herman Cain
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2012 GOP Contenders Battle For The Christian Vote

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As the clock ticks down to the beginning the race for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012 one thing has become apparent — Iowa has become the number one stop on the list of potential candidates and it’s large base of evangelical conservative voters has become the prize.

History has shown that the Christian wing of the GOP has been an important group for those seeking a primary victory not only in Iowa, but throughout the country. Recent polling has also shown that the early favorites are the candidates that have garnered much of the support of the evangelicals. Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who won in Iowa in 2008, leads the polling there again largely backed by his Christian following. Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican VP candidate, has also polled near the top as of late and also holds a large following of conservatives who identify themselves as evangelicals. Former MA Governor Mitt Romney, although of the Mormon faith, has been at or near the top of almost every poll due in part to voters who see him as a religious candidate.

A few of the lesser known potential candidates have been on the trail giving speeches intended to define their social conservative/religious stances as well. Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty recently spoke at a lecture series in Iowa put on by the socially-conservative group Family Leader and referred to himself as a “devout, but approachable, Christian,” in a speech in which he touted his opposition to abortion rights, same-sex marriage and the recent repeal of the military’s DADT policy.

Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, an avid pro-lifer, has also been traveling frequently to Iowa and is well known for his faith and socially-conservative stances such as opposition to same-sex marriage and pro-family value positions. Santorum recently named a team to head his PAC in Iowa, a signal to some that his announcement is merely a formality.

A recent CNN poll that can be seen in a recent post right here on White House 2012 shows that Mike Huckabee has a small lead over Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney with 21%, 19% and 18% respectively. If Huckabee decides to keep his lucrative media ventures and stay out of the race, the evangelical voters that follow him will be up for grabs. If the CNN poll is anywhere near accurate that could bode well for Palin who should be able to pick up a few of them if she herself decides to give up television and the speech circuit for a presidential bid. If Palin doesn’t run either, with the decision by Mike Pence to sit out already in the bag, the large and powerful Christian wing of the GOP could be up for grabs potentially propelling a lesser known candidate to the forefront in Iowa and the national scene as well.

Time will only tell who is in and who is out but one thing is for certain: The courtship for Iowa’s socially-conservative Christians has begun.

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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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