Political Gum Hockey

Political Commentary and Humor

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).]

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

PGH Quick Take – Tim is Out!

Tim Pawlenty has officially withdrawn from the race for the Republican nomination.  As I noted in my Tim is In! post, Pawlenty had to pretty much win the Iowa straw poll to have a chance.  And he didn’t.  In fact, he came in so far back in third place as to make people forget that Newt Gingrich barely even registered in voter’s minds.

So this morning, Pawlenty announced his withdrawal on the “This Week” program on ABC.  And as the Washington Post notes online this morning, the Democrats were quick to put Pawlenty’s loss in perspective:

Brad Woodhouse, communications director for the Democratic National Committee said, said the poll results were an example of how out of touch the GOP is with the rest of the country.

“A former two-term Governor of a neighboring state, a social conservative, a person who on paper should be everything Republicans should consider in a candidate for president, was run out of the race because he wasn’t extreme enough,” Woodhouse said in a statement.

Woodhouse went further in explaining how extreme the Republican party has become as hostage to the tea party:

“In the past 72 hours we’ve seen all the GOP candidates swear allegiance to the Tea Party in a debate, the national front runner refer to ‘corporations as people,’ the two most extreme candidates in the field – Tea Party favorites – come out on top of the Iowa Straw poll and someone once considered among the leading candidates for the nomination drop out of the race because he was not extreme or vitriolic enough for the Tea Party which now owns and operates the GOP,” Woodhouse said. “But, while protecting tax breaks for the wealthy and big oil while proposing to end Medicare, slash Social Security and pile additional burdens on the middle class might win plaudits with the Tea Party, it’s not remotely what the American people are looking for.”

So with Pawlenty out, the path forward is paved on the choice between three people.  Mitt Romney is the establishment candidate (the “next in line”).  Michele Bachmann is the ultra-right wing tea party candidate (complete with hypocrisy of chastising the stimulus law and chiding government subsidies while begging for stimulus funds and taking government subsidies).  And Rick Perry, who is trying to be both establishment and tea party, and probably ending up being the worst of both.

And we still have 6 months before the first primary voting.  Fun.

August 14, 2011 Posted by | Iowa straw poll, Tea Party, Tim Pawlenty | , , , , | Leave a comment

And the Iowa Tea Party Republican Straw Poll Winner is…Barack Obama

Yes, Barack Obama won the Republican straw poll in Iowa tonight.  A stunning show of support for a sitting Democratic President in a Republican-only poll of various supporters of straws.

Huh?

Technically, the straw poll was won by Michele Bachmann with 29% of the vote, with perennial candidate Ron Paul nipping at her high heels with 28% and Tim Pawlenty ensuring that he will not be taken as a serious candidate based on his 14% of the straw poll vote.  Ex-Pennsylvania something-or-other Rick Santorum got 10% and anti-Islam bigot Herman Cain came in with 9%.  Anyone else on the ballot really doesn’t matter.  Of course, only Romney and Perry matter anyway, but neither was there.

But in the end it was President Obama that won the poll.  Given that Iowa decided to cast all of their votes toward tea party people known for 1) factual inaccuracy, 2) bigotry, 3) extreme right wing social hypocrisy, and 4) more than a wee bit of early onset (figurative) insanity, things are looking up for Obama to get reelected.

Of course, the real Iowa caucuses aren’t for six months so there is a chance that things could change dramatically by then.  And then there is the New Hampshire primary, where people tend to be more Independent and less extreme.  Following that and another skewed right state of South Carolina (where walking the Appalachian trail and “we had sex” rumors have become the talk of the town).  And then the real states get to vote.  So perhaps the GOP will decide they want to win the election before then, but clearly they aren’t there yet.

Until the GOP decides whether they want to be the party of responsible adults (no signs of that yet) or the party of “I am not a witch” and Koch-funded “the poor should pay for tax breaks for the rich to hide more of  their money from taxation,” the country has a choice between President Obama or the nut house.

The jury is still out on which choice we will make.

August 13, 2011 Posted by | Barack Obama, Iowa straw poll | , , , , , , | Leave a comment