Political Gum Hockey

Political Commentary and Humor

Mitt Wins Florida – What Does Newt Do?

First off – Mitt? Newt? Barack? And they say the US isn’t a melting pot.

Anyway, Mitt Romney is likely to win the Florida primary by a significant margin today, with Gingrich a distant second and Rick Santorum and Ron Paul barely registering.  And with the next few primaries/caucuses favoring Romney while Gingrich is short on cash (other than the bankroll one donor has given to his Super PAC), Gingrich is not in a particularly good position.

But wait. Florida lost half its delegates by breaking the rules and moving its primary up, so even though it technically is winner-take-all there is a move afoot to have the delegate count split at the convention (needless to say, that move is afooted by Gingrich supporters).  Don’t forget the Iowa delegates are not bound by the vote and going into Florida Gingrich actually has 2 more delegates than Romney.   And after April 1 all the states will be winner-take-all, so if Gingrich can get a head of steam he would theoretically have a chance to overtake Romney.

And of course Romney could implode like all the candidates before him.

So Gingrich has enough to convince himself to stay in for the long haul, assuming he can talk Santorum into dropping out and he can convince the conservative wing that he can lay a mitt on Mitt if given the finances to compete with ad buys.

Stay tuned. This could get interesting.

January 31, 2012 Posted by | Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Cain Endorses Gingrich – Romney Rejoices!

In breaking news Herman Cain is endorsing Newt Gingrich in the Republican race for the nomination.

Mitt Romney breathes a sigh of relief.  Begins preparing for the general election.

Think about it.  Herman Cain.  The man who dropped out of the race after a “lady friend” of his went public with what she claims was a 13-year affair.  The man who had several women file sexual harassment charges against him 20 years ago.  The man whose 9-9-9 plan would have raised taxes on the middle class and poor but lowered taxes on the super-rich, all while dramatically increasing the debt.  That Herman Cain has officially endorsed Newt Gingrich for the nomination.

The Newt Gingrich whose 2nd ex-wife recently accused him of asking for an “open marriage” so he could dawdle with the woman with whom he had been having an affair.

For those values voters who seem confused, let’s recap:

Gingrich’s first wife was his former high school teacher. He married her when he was 19 years old and she was 26.  One wonders when they started their relationship given Gingrich’s age.

Apparently bored with the older wife, Gingrich left her after beginning an affair with the woman who would become his 2nd wife, a woman who was 9 years younger than he.

Then, not long after she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, Gingrich divorced her to married his 3rd (and current) wife, with whom he had been carrying on an affair for some time.  This wife was 23 years younger than him and was a staffer in the House of Representatives.  So yes, Gingrich was impeaching President Clinton for having his intern escapades while Gingrich himself was actively engaging in his latest affair with a young Congressional staffer.  One has to marvel at Gingrich’s ability to compartmentalize in order to avoid impeaching himself for such blatant hypocrisy.

In any case, it does seem that Cain and Gingrich have some things in common, though it’s uncertain whether this is the reason behind Cain’s endorsement.

The net effect, of course, is, well, actually, not really that much.  After all, this is Herman Cain we’re talking about.  It’s not like an endorsement from him carries a whole lot of weight.  But it does help Mitt Romney.  Romney’s biggest problem is that he has had to cant so far to the right to get the tea party bigot vote that he has been hemorrhaging independent and moderate voters left and right (and middle).  With Cain offering to help solidify Gingrich’s extremist right vote, thus eliminating any chance of winning the primary in Florida or the caucuses in Nevada, the contrast allows Romney to start trying to track back towards the middle.

Or not.

Way to go, Herman Cain!

 

January 28, 2012 Posted by | Herman Cain, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Tea Party | , , , , | Leave a comment

President Obama’s State of the Union – All That Matters is the Mission

President Obama ends his State of the Union Address by reminding Congress that the soldiers who got bin Laden worked together to accomplish their mission.

Will Congress do their jobs?  Or will they sacrifice America to play politics?

“This nation is great because we work together as a team.”

As long as we do this, the state of our union will always be strong.

President Obama’s SOTU speech tonight.  He ends it with a reaffirmation of America.  And a challenge to Congress to remember that they work for us. Not themselves.

A full transcript of the prepared speech can be found here on the CNN site.

The section below is the last few paragraphs of the speech, and the part to which I allude above:

“Which brings me back to where I began. Those of us who’ve been sent here to serve can learn from the service of our troops. When you put on that uniform, it doesn’t matter if you’re black or white; Asian or Latino; conservative or liberal; rich or poor; gay or straight. When you’re marching into battle, you look out for the person next to you, or the mission fails. When you’re in the thick of the fight, you rise or fall as one unit, serving one Nation, leaving no one behind.

One of my proudest possessions is the flag that the SEAL Team took with them on the mission to get bin Laden. On it are each of their names. Some may be Democrats. Some may be Republicans. But that doesn’t matter. Just like it didn’t matter that day in the Situation Room, when I sat next to Bob Gates — a man who was George Bush’s defense secretary; and Hillary Clinton, a woman who ran against me for president.

All that mattered that day was the mission. No one thought about politics. No one thought about themselves. One of the young men involved in the raid later told me that he didn’t deserve credit for the mission. It only succeeded, he said, because every single member of that unit did their job — the pilot who landed the helicopter that spun out of control; the translator who kept others from entering the compound; the troops who separated the women and children from the fight; the SEALs who charged up the stairs. More than that, the mission only succeeded because every member of that unit trusted each other — because you can’t charge up those stairs, into darkness and danger, unless you know that there’s someone behind you, watching your back.

So it is with America. Each time I look at that flag, I’m reminded that our destiny is stitched together like those 50 stars and those 13 stripes. No one built this country on their own. This Nation is great because we built it together. This Nation is great because we worked as a team. This Nation is great because we get each other’s backs. And if we hold fast to that truth, in this moment of trial, there is no challenge too great; no mission too hard. As long as we’re joined in common purpose, as long as we maintain our common resolve, our journey moves forward, our future is hopeful, and the state of our Union will always be strong.

Thank you, God bless you, and may God bless the United States of America.”

January 24, 2012 Posted by | 2012, Barack Obama, SOTU | , , , | 2 Comments

Rick Perry Drops Out – Romney Heads to the Cayman Islands!

Tea party savior of last week Rick Perry is dropping out of the Republican primary race after being ignored in New Hampshire (and most other places).  His departure won’t change much as the three individual people who would have voted for him in South Carolina will probably split their votes between the other tea party flavors left unlicked.

But his departure does demonstrate one thing that is incredibly important – the tea party begged him to jump into the race because they thought everyone else was woefully insufficient.  That didn’t stop them for raising those same others up on a pedestal in succession, the pedestal from which they fell face first into the mud once people started paying attention to what they had to say.  Think Yertle the Turtle and you get the idea.   Spaalaaaat.

This is who the tea party picks – Michele Bachmann (out), Donald Trump (not ever in, but the tea party begged the tycoon buffoon to run), Herman Cain (out and hiding from several women, think The Eagles), and, well, you get it.  Throw in Sarah Palin and you have some of the most unaccomplished “leaders” in America.

Which gets us to Mitt Romney.  PGH will have more on him later, but the latest news from Mr. $374,000 is “not very much” for speaking fees (plus millions of dollars in other income taxed at only 15%) is that he’s a poster child for how the super-rich get to hide much of their income from US taxation by popping it off to a beach resort in the Cayman Islands.

Oh, and he actually pulled back his hand that he had outstretched to the person speaking to him when he found out the person was “undocumented.”  Ooh, cooties.

More to come.

January 19, 2012 Posted by | Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Republican, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, Tea Party | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Huntsman Begins Run for 2016 – Romney Wins 2012 Republican Nomination

Jon Huntsman will officially announce on Monday that he is dropping out of the race for the 2012 Republican nomination for President and immediately beginning his run for the 2016 nomination.  Word from those “in the know” of his campaign suggest that he will probably not phrase it quite like that tomorrow, instead opting for the usual boring “doing it for the good of the party” speech.  But we all can read the writing on the bathroom wall, folks.  Do you really think we aren’t paying attention?  Jon Huntsman – 2016!!

In any case, Huntsman is pretty much in a bind.  He surprised everyone by taking Show (as in Win, Place and Show) in the New Hampshire primary, falling a mere 2 light years short of Romney’s first place total and a couple of clicks behind the chief “Not-Romney-of-the-Week” Ron Paul (standing in for his son, Rand Paul).  Notwithstanding this spectacular finish after spending only most of his life there the last few months, Huntsman faces the usual problem for thoughtful, honest candidates – no one wants to give him money to continue.  So Huntsman is showing how smart he is by leaving while sane people think highly of him, thus leaving a positive memory for when he officially starts running for the 2016 nomination.  Of course his unofficial 2016 candidacy starts today, but he does have to make a show of supporting his current party until it is safe to disappear (which should be less than a week). After that he’ll likely spend his time building his network.

So all of this means that Romney will win the South Carolina primary, something that he would have done anyway given that even South Carolina won’t vote for Perry, Santorum or Gingrich enough to jeopardize their “always vote for the nominee” pride day.  And then Romney will win Florida.  And then no one will care whether the other states even bother to vote since Romney will already be pivoting to try to make everything he has said to cater to the extremist tea party disappear from the collective memories of independents and other not crazy people.

From his speech, January 16, 2012:  “This race has degenerated into an onslaught of negative and personal attacks not worthy of the American people.”

And of course, that is from Republicans since he’s talking about the Republican primary race.

Fasten your seatbelts, it’s going to be a bumpy night! *

* All About Eve (1950) starring Bette Davis

January 15, 2012 Posted by | Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney, Primary, Tea Party | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New Hampshire Primary Shocker!

Romney wins!

Oh, that’s not a shock? My bad.

So even though they are still counting the votes as I write this, Romney has been projected the winner of the New Hampshire Republican party primary, just a couple of light clicks after winning in Iowa (if you can call an 8 vote – not 8%, 8 vote – margin a win).  Did someone say inevitable? Did someone say this months ago? Maybe a year ago?

Oh wait, there is a New Hampshire shocker to report – yep, Ron Paul will come in second!  Yes, that Ron Paul.

The reason for Paul’s surge in New Hampshire (and Iowa) are obviously due to his insightful and visionary ideas for the future greatness of America.  Oops, check that.  Mistook him for someone else.  No, Paul did well in Iowa and even better in New Hampshire because all the rest of the tea party nuts had already had their day on the artificial pedestal the tea party created for them.  Palin, Trump, Bachmann, Perry, Cain, Gingrich, and Santorum all got their jet pack in the, umm, on their back and flew into the heavens…only to get the vapors and collapse back to Earth as soon as they spoke when people might actually be listening.  So that left Paul.  Who has been there all the time saying the same thing over and over (though not always taking the credit/blame for what he’s said in the past).  Ron Paul was ignored then, and when this “last man not stuck up on a pole to be eaten alive by the crows” falls back to Earth he’ll go back to being ignored again.  Of course, he will immediately be reincarnated as Rand Paul.  Wonderful.

Which leaves Jon Huntsman.  Huntsman made a name for himself this weekend and not only raised his standing to a third place finish in New Hampshire but put himself into the position of “the next white guy in line” for 2016.  Watch this space for more on Jon Huntsman after Romney officially wins the Republican nomination for 2012.  Of course, the 2016 countdown clock for Huntsman can’t start until after the November 2012 election, you know, just in case.

So we’re on to South Carolina, where Romney has the support of SC Governor Nikki Haley.  Then there is Florida, though by that time Perry and Santorum and maybe even Gingrich could have dropped out of the race and it will be an anointing rather than a primary.  Which should make the other 46 states wonder why they are going through the expense of holding primaries in the first place.

Then the fun begins – the tea party gets to show us all whether they actually have the principles they keep telling us…cough…that they have, or will the tea party vote for the guy they have been actively despising and calling all sorts of mean and nasty names?  And those are the Republicans doing this.

January 10, 2012 Posted by | Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Republican, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, Tea Party | , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Huntsman Shows Class, Romney Shows He is a Corporate Raider Who Puts Himself Before Country

Jon Huntsman has a new campaign ad out today in New Hampshire.  It’s called:

Country First

The short video shows Huntsman responding to Mitt Romney during this weekend’s debates.  Romney attacked Huntsman for…serving his country.  Yes, Romney actually attacked a fellow Republican for putting his country first and not playing partisan politics.  Romney made it clear he is more interested in his own wealth and power than what is best for his country.

Huntsman shows what America is supposed to be. Country First. Mitt Romney shows what he is – Romney first. Party first. Damn the country, I want mine first. That attitude is reflective of his time at Bain Capital – the goal wasn’t to save businesses, it was to make money for the investors. And if that meant laying off workers and dismantling the company, so be it. They were unimportant to Romney – all that mattered was that Bain Capital and the individual wealthy investors made money.

And that is a very very sad commentary on what Mitt Romney represents.

See the video below:

January 9, 2012 Posted by | Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney, Primary, Republican | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Romney and a few non-Romneys Debate in New Hampshire – Winner Takes All! Film at 11!

Team Romney goes into tonight’s Republican primary debate with a ridiculously insurmountable double digit lead in the polls.  So Team Anti-Romney has one last chance to knock Romney from the thrown before Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary.

Actually there are two chances since there is also a debate Sunday morning, but the timing is such that it’s really one debate split into two parts, presumably to capture both the asocial people with no Saturday night dates and those who don’t go to church on Sunday morning, so we can think of it as a last chance for the Anti-Romney forces to get noticed.

So watch tonight for whether anyone remembers Reagan’s 11th commandment (thou shalt not speak ill of fellow Republicans). Forget that Reagan and everyone else broke that commandment, and a few others, so many times that it became nothing but a meaningless platitude.  In any case, more than likely it will be all hands on Romney.  After all, the only way anyone stays in the race is to knock Romney down a peg or two or maybe three so that they have a chance for a comeback.  You can betcha the Gingrich, Santorum, Perry, Paul and Huntsman camps have been digging sharpened bamboo-spiked tiger traps for Romney all week.  I almost expect camouflage face paint (not so much for Paul, as he really wouldn’t carry that look off too well).  So expect all the non-Romneys to go for the severe wounding (metaphorically speaking) in New Hampshire, then the (equally metaphorically speaking) kill in South Carolina.

The South Carolina whose Governor has backed Romney.

You see where this going, right?

Anyway, it really doesn’t matter what they say tonight since no one is really listening and the words are political pomposity anyway.  What matters is whether Romney comes out of the debates inspiring pundits to think “The Coronation of Napoleon” or “Le Mort de Marat.”

Depending on that result, the tea party will have to decide whether to prostrate themselves in utter hypocrisy to support the nominee, or actually stand for the principles they claim to have.

January 7, 2012 Posted by | Mitt Romney, Primary, Republican, Tea Party | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bachmann to Drop Out of Republican Race – Tea Party Kills Another One

Michele Bachmann will drop out of the race for the Republican nomination for President.  After winning the Iowa straw poll, thus vaulting her to the front of the pack for 15 minutes, Bachmann came in last in the Iowa caucuses on Tuesday.

Bachmann, of course, was the tea party darling once it became obvious that Sarah Palin wasn’t going to run (which was about 6 to 9 months before she officially said she wasn’t going to run).

After killing Bachmann by jumping to Rick Perry, the tea party ultimately killed Perry as well.  And Trump. And Gingrich. And Cain. [Not necessarily in that order]  And now they will kill Santorum.  It’s clear, the tea party kills.  [Needless to say, my use of the word “kill” is metaphorical, not literal.  Jeesh.]

So with Romney eking out an 8 vote “win” over Rick Santorum, it’s on to New Hampshire where the dynamics are a bit different than Iowa.  More on that later.

So Bye Bye Bachmann.  Good thing you didn’t give up your day job (paycheck, she actually didn’t do much in her day job in 2011…or for that matter, during her entire Congressional career).  So good luck with running for reelection – I’m sure Minnesotans will be happy to sign you up for another term.

[UPDATED: I wrote the article above before Bachmann went on TV to make an announcement.  She has now made if official.  As Politico reports: “Last night, the people in Iowa spoke with a very clear voice, and so I have decided to step aside.”  Given that she only got 5% of the votes in Iowa it’s unclear that her departure will result in much help to other candidates, but most likely the few people who would have voted for her will lean towards Rick Santorum (Perry will be out shortly too, so he won’t get them).]

January 4, 2012 Posted by | Iowa caucuses, Iowa straw poll, Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Tea Party | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Why the Tea Party Hates Romney – And Why They Will Continue to Hate Romney After Iowa Hands Him the GOP Nomination

Dateline Tuesday, January 3rd, the year 2012.  The Headline: Romney Wins GOP Nomination in Iowa!!

Gotta laugh.

Mitt Romney, after dissing Iowa for nearly a year, floods the state with money in the last week and wins the Iowa caucuses.  And the tea party hates it.  Because they hate Romney.

Of course, the votes haven’t been counted yet and Rick Santorum or Ron Paul or a player to be named later could actually have more caucus votes than Romney, but all that is just the gooey technical stuff that really doesn’t mean anything.  Whether Romney comes in “first” or “second” or even “third” is unimportant.  What is important is that he will beat previous expectations, which will ensure his win in New Hampshire and propel him through the remaining two or three states that would have mattered in selecting the Republican nominee. [One must wonder why the other 45+ states even bother with the expense given that the nominee is pretty much “the next old white guy in line” for the Republicans every single time.]

In any case, it has been instructive to watch determined Iowans scurry about hoping to have a real live candidate give them some previously rehearsed boilerplate already given dozens of times to other Iowans who thought it was original for them too.  One thing is clear – the tea party hates Mitt Romney. They have actively tried to destroy him and have been desperately trying to find the “Anyone But Romney” (ABR) candidate…to the point of leaping from Bachmann to Trump (yeah, that Trump) to Perry to Cain to Gingrich to Paul and now to Santorum. Seriously, those people. In an actual election year.

So the last laugh will be on the tea party.

After desperately dissing Romney, now they will have to decide if they want to vote for him…knowing that Romney would dump the tea party the second the votes were counted because, well, because Romney knows that tea party hypocrites have damaged this country and that he, i.e., Romney, would actually have to govern it.

And Romney isn’t so stupid as to actually screw up our country just to please some birthers and bigots in the tea party.  Not when he would be caught holding the bag.

And that is why the tea party will show they are not only anti-middle class extortionists for the rich, they are also hypocrites.

The interesting thing will be to see how Romney tries to kiss up to the tea party during the actual election process while not scaring the bejeesus berries out of the Independent vote.  I’m picturing some high wire balancing reminiscent of the Flying Wallendas.  Of course, many of them fell to their deaths.

Happy New Year! 2012 promises to be a very good year.

January 2, 2012 Posted by | 2012, Birthers, Iowa caucuses, Mitt Romney, Republican, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, Tea Party | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments