Earlier today, I had planned a post, forecasting a split decision tomorrow in the Alabama and Mississippi primaries, with Newt Gingrich winning the former and Rick Santorum the latter. I based this forecast on my reading of recent polls and the candidates’ performances in the recent contests in Southern (and Southern-adjacent) states.
In his native Georgia, Newt did well in rural areas, but Mitt Romney won metro Atlanta as he won the Nashville area in Tennessee and Oklahoma City in the Sooner State. Santorum beat the polling spread in Tennessee (by a considerable margin), yet didn’t match it Oklahoma. The RealClearPolitics average has Romney up narrowly over Gingrich (by 0.2) and more comfortably over Santorum in Alabama and would have him up in Missisippi had they done the average of the most recent polls–but they include only two such surveys.
The mostly dispassionate analyst Nate Silver acknowledge “that polls in these states have a pretty awful track record“; he also notes “some tendency for polls in the Deep South to understate the standing of Southern candidates, but it is not statistically significant.” His blog projects a different split decision from the one I posited:
Take a gander at this screen capture from a recent e-mail I received from the Newt Gingrich campaign:
Seems a lot of the former Speaker’s e-mails have been in this vein. Newt Gingrich, it seems, doesn’t much care for Rick Santorum. He has faulted the former Pennsylvania Senator on all matter of issues, including that latter’s advocacy of using “NASA as a massive and unending stimulus program”.
The Gingrich campaign released a video last Thursday “using Senator Santorum’s own words to highlight how his leadership in the Senate helped contribute to the abandonment by the Republican Party of core conservative principles“:
During the time Santorum was in the Senate leadership from 2001-2007, his big spending ways amounted to $1.6 trillion in budget deficits, added trillions more to an exploding federal debt, and produced zero balanced budgets.
. . . .
“Senator Santorum poses as fiscally responsible, but he’s the one who broke the bank while in Senate leadership,” said Joe DeSantis, Communications Director for Newt 2012. “During his six years in Senate leadership, Senator Santorum repeatedly comprised his principles and played the Washington game.
The former Speaker has not quite relented in his attacks on Mitt Romney; it’s just that he seems less focused on the current frontrunner than on his supposedly more conservative rival.
Could these attacks make the difference among wavering conservative voters tomorrow in Alabama and Mississippi?
About 20 minutes ago, received an e-mail from an acquaintance, parroting a liberal talking point, telling me that extremists had taken over the GOP. Not long after that, opened an e-mail providing evidence showing a much more tolerant party.
In the latter, Scott Schmidt reported that “the Republican Party of Los Angeles County and the California Republican Party” had endorsed West Hollywood small business owner Brad Torgan. . . . Torgan is only one of seventeen non-incumbent candidates for the State Assembly to receive the State Party’s nod before the June 5, 2012 election. The endorsement will be published alongside the Candidate’s name on the sample ballot sent to voters before the election.”
Oh, and Brad Torgan is gay.
And he supports the unifying small government principles which bring together most Republicans, heralding the endorsement with these word, “I will fight for limited government, fundamental freedoms and cleaning up Sacramento not because those are Republican values, but because they are what the people of the fiftieth district, and the State of California, are asking for.”
Sounds like the kind of guy I can support. And for whom I will most definitely be voting. (This is my district after all.)
Linking the latest Washington Post/ABC News Poll, headlined, Gas prices sink Obama’s ratings on economy, bring parity to race for White House, Glenn Reynolds, quips, “This is why they want people talking about birth control.” In his piece on the very same poll, Jim Geraghty challenges the conventional wisdom about Obama’s inevitability, ABC/WashPost Poll: Unstoppable Incumbent Now Trails Romney Again.
“It seems,” Ed Morrissey writes looking at the poll . . .
. . . that Obama’s dismissive advice last week that gas prices are always “spiking up” this time of year didn’t do anything to set minds at ease. Rapid gas price hikes and the resulting increase in food prices quickly erode buying power in working-class and middle-class households, which means that fewer people will have money for vacations and impulse spending in 2012.
And there we have (again) the specter of higher food prices, an increase felt more acutely by those who do the grocery shopping which, in heterosexual households, tends to be women. No wonder the Obama campaign is making “an intensified effort this week to build support among women“. Distraction, anyone?
UPDATE: Have voters comes to expect incompetence from Obama? Conflicting responses (which Geraghty noted) to the same question posed just shy of six years ago when George W. Bush was president offers a clue that they might: (more…)
George Stephanopolous may not have followed up when Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) failed to condemn Bill Maher for a slur that self-described “potty mouth” used when describing Sarah Palin, but the former Clinton staffer did at least ask his fellow partisan “whether Democrats should return” the uncouth man’s money.
The current ABCNews anchor even showed clips of Mr. Maher’s trash talk. Schumer himself may not have criticized Mr. Maher on ABC’s “This Week,” but as Madeleine Morgenstern reported, a “Schumer spokesman later told Politico he ‘thinks those comments [made by Maher] are inappropriate and wrong.'” (Wonder if Obama strategist David Axelrod would call Mr. Schumer’s manner of critique a failed “test of leadership“; he dispatched a staffer to do what he failed to do in person.) Schumer was forced to criticize the liberal entertainer.
As Rush Limbaugh himself put it, everything the Democrats
. . . hoped to accomplish this week, they’ve not accomplished. They might have 25 years ago, but they haven’t. They, on the left, are now being forced by an army of people on the right to comport themselves to the same standards that they are demanding of others, and that’s going to put a real crimp in their style. Remember, when I apologized I said one aspect of what I had done wrong was I descended to their level. And I meant to emphasize that. I descended to their level. That’s what was, among other things, wrong about it. But it was a one-time thing for me. They live there. Now they’ve been called on it.
(Via Tom Blumer via Powerline picks.) He’s right; 25 years ago, there was no conservative media to dig up and publicize videos of liberals engaging in the type of name-calling that earns excoriation for the rare conservative who stoops to that level. Stephanopolous would have been able to avoid the question.
As he built on the point cited above, Rush gives one hint about what has changed in the past 25 years: “It might have been Breitbart people, I forget who it was, with camera and microphone — and they would not condemn any of the language from any of their favorite people on the left.” (more…)
Don Surber was on a roll this past weekend. Glenn linked his must-read post on the videos linking Barack Obama to radical law professor Derrick Bell:
This video will not bring down President Obama. His sorry record of no accomplishments will. We cannot afford to live in 2008 and mope about Obama not being vetted. The job before us is to show that the last 3+ years have sucked and 4 more years of Obama — a red-blooded, true Christian American who was born in Hawaii — will suck even harder.
While over at Surber’s site, I caught up on some of his recent posts, including this critique of Rick Santorum’s organization, a piece on the record level of polar ice, an alert to an Obama campaign attack on Sarah Palin, and the video included at the end of this post.
And he post the chart “Obama used to sell the $787 billion stimulus” contrasting the unemployment rate projected when he put forward the nearly $800 billion program with the latest figures. Not only is the unemployment rate 2.3% higher than the administration forecast, but it’s even higher than the level expected “without” the “recovery plan.”
He contends the Palin ad shows that the president runs “on diversion” that the Democrat “is running for re-election as a troll.” Do hope my fellow Republicans follow the lead of another conservative blogger, Jim Hoft and focus on another Democratic attempt at diversion, illegal robocalls targeting Republican Congressmen who just happen to be on the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s (DCCC) hit list.
If the Democrats are so confident of victory this November, how come they keep trying to distract voters? (more…)