Overhyped Iowa Caucuses Underway

Update 10:30 pm: Rick Perry suspends campaign due to poor Iowa results. Newt is in 4th place, Romney and Santorum are tied for the lead. McCain will endorse Romney tomorrow in New Hampshire.

The overhyped Iowa caucuses are underway. Will Romney, Ron Paul or Santorum win?

I cared enough about the Iowa caucuses in 2008 to get credentialed, travel to Iowa and attend. Here's my live-blog of what it was like. Here's a photo of the people at the caucus I attended.

This year I find the attention on Iowa baffling and absurd. Maybe it's because it's only about Republicans. Or maybe it's because they really don't matter.

In any event, CBS is predicting a three-way race between Mitt Romney, Ron Paul and Rick Santorum.

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    Perhaps I have a touch (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 10:48:44 PM EST
    of the betting fever around here, but it's like watching a horse race (or the prelude to a horse race) in which none of the horses have any objective strengths or weaknesses.  They could all be newborn ponies for as consistent as the lead up to this has been.

    The Iowa Caucus definitely demonstrates the out of this world weirdness of the Republican Party.  The exact nature of that weirdness still eludes me.

    I think that you may be (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by Towanda on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:10:18 PM EST
    on to something, because there sure is a lot of horsesh!t in Ioway.

    They have the nature of that bird (none / 0) (#8)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:33:33 PM EST
    in the Cocoa Puffs commercials.

    God doesn't love me enough (5.00 / 3) (#25)
    by andgarden on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:22:09 AM EST
    to make Rick "Punch Line" Santorum the Republican nominee.

    I'm unwilling to even dream about it.

    Yeah, I could never get that lucky (none / 0) (#28)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:30:18 AM EST
    Be careful what you wish for, andgarden. (none / 0) (#36)
    by caseyOR on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 01:40:31 AM EST
    Santorum finished a mere 8 votes behind number one Romney.

    How embarassing for Romney... (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 08:14:15 AM EST
    beating Santorum by a few measley votes is like losing to a normal human being by a landslide.

    Not really (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 08:50:11 AM EST
    1. Santorum surged in the last week with little media attention to his words, votes, or stands on issues.  His surge was directly the result of being the last one standing after all the other crazies surged and then fell on their faces when people actually got to know them. Watch the scrutiny today in the next few days.  He too, will sink like an anchor.

    2. Until about 6 weeks ago, Romney had all but conceded Iowa.  He spent very little money and very little time there, while the other candidates were going all in. While the vote was close, he won this thing basically with one hand tied behind his back.

    Newtie's going around talking about how he's going to expose the "moderate Romney".  That may not sit well with some primary voters, but after a couple of wins at his back (New Hampshire, Romeny will sail through the nomination. Newt's "threat" to show Romney as "moderate" will only appeal to moderate and independent voters who vote in the general election.

    Romney will win... (none / 0) (#50)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:00:36 AM EST
    by default...but its still embarassing, or at least I'd be embarassed.

    How do you see South Carolina now? Jbindc (none / 0) (#51)
    by christinep on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:00:50 AM EST
    Doesn't the Republic group have to destroy politically Santorum within the next week if they are to avoid a pitched mess in Florida & Georgia? And, how do they motivate that conservative base to work for the party (grassroots et all) let alone vote for the Mitt, who got less votes in numbers this tme than four years earlier?

    Put it this way (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:14:54 AM EST
    Romney will be the nominee by Super Tuesday.

    The general ection starts the day after.


    That's actually about as i (none / 0) (#62)
    by brodie on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:02:24 AM EST
    see it.  And I've already gone on the record here a few days ago predicting Romney would have a "fairly easy time" getting the nom, which is consistent with an effective wrap up by ST.  I've already tossed that hat over the wall and now the Repubs are duty bound to follow it.

    Romney spent more than 10million dollars (none / 0) (#53)
    by loveed on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:10:26 AM EST
    plus he did worse than in 2008. Beating Santurom by 8 points is worse than losing. He spent more money than all the other candidates combined.
     Santourum was really the only candidate to vistit all 91 counties.
     I will say this again. It will be Huntsman.

    8 votes, not points; and 99 counties (none / 0) (#56)
    by Farmboy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:21:52 AM EST
    But yeah, Romney took a serious hit last night by spending five years running for president, and doing worse at the polls.

    Somebody needs to hook a generator to the Romney PR staff, 'cause there's gonna be some serious spinning between now and New Hampshire.


    Best (5.00 / 2) (#39)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 06:16:21 AM EST
    line about the IA caucus that I've read:

    James Carville: "There is one screaming, huge story here tonight and that is these Republicans just don't want to vote for Mitt Romney. I mean it's like you're trying to give a dog a pill. They keep spitting it up. Now, they're going to eat the pill, 'cause Romney's going to eventually be the nominee, but...

    The headlines that write themselves (5.00 / 2) (#54)
    by Yman on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:14:32 AM EST
    "Romney finishes on top, with Santorum right on his behind" ...

    I know I shouldn't laugh, but... (none / 0) (#60)
    by sj on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:51:01 AM EST

    Off topic: Obama is recess appointing (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by Farmboy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:48:07 AM EST
    Richard Cordray later today. (grabs popcorn; waits for GOP reaction)

    Get the smelling salts too (none / 0) (#78)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 04:09:55 PM EST
    I'm about to hit the floor

    pretty cool (none / 0) (#79)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 04:12:36 PM EST
    I talked about the split screen with him on one side and Romney and McCain on the other this afternoon.   pretty cool.

    the wing nuts are already hitting the fainting couch.  its a god damn constitutional crisis.


    Another good take on the campaign and (5.00 / 3) (#67)
    by Anne on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:27:11 AM EST
    the coming election, from Matt Taibbi at Rolling Stone:

    In fact, this 2012 race may be the most meaningless national election campaign we've ever had. If the presidential race normally captivates the public as a dramatic and angry ideological battle pitting one impassioned half of society against the other, this year's race feels like something else entirely.

    In the wake of the Tea Party, the Occupy movement, and a dozen or more episodes of real rebellion on the streets, in the legislatures of cities and towns, and in state and federal courthouses, this presidential race now feels like a banal bureaucratic sideshow to the real event - the real event being a looming confrontation between huge masses of disaffected citizens on both sides of the aisle, and a corrupt and increasingly ideologically bankrupt political establishment, represented in large part by the two parties dominating this race.

    There follows a highlight of the recent decision in Montana that reinstated that state's ban on direct spending on campaigns by corporations - did anyone actually hear the media mention this amidst their breathless coverage of the playground-battle-in-the-sandbox that is the Iowa caucuses? - and setting up the inevitable Supreme Court challenge to Citizens United, and goes on to discuss the role that big corporate money plays in the election process.

    Taibbi goes on:

    The reason 2012 feels so empty now is that voters on both sides of the aisle are not just tired of this state of affairs, they are disgusted by it. They want a chance to choose their own leaders and they want full control over policy, not just a partial say. There are a few challenges to this state of affairs within the electoral process - as much as I disagree with Paul about many things, I do think his campaign is a real outlet for these complaints - but everyone knows that in the end, once the primaries are finished, we're going to be left with one 1%-approved stooge taking on another.

    Most likely, it'll be Mitt Romney versus Barack Obama, meaning the voters' choices in the midst of a massive global economic crisis brought on in large part by corruption in the financial services industry will be a private equity parasite who has been a lifelong champion of the Gordon Gekko Greed-is-Good ethos (Romney), versus a paper progressive who in 2008 took, by himself, more money from Wall Street than any two previous presidential candidates, and in the four years since has showered Wall Street with bailouts while failing to push even one successful corruption prosecution (Obama).

    There are obvious, even significant differences between Obama and someone like Mitt Romney, particularly on social issues, but no matter how Obama markets himself this time around, a choice between these two will not in any way represent a choice between "change" and the status quo. This is a choice between two different versions of the status quo, and everyone knows it.

    The whole thing is well worth a read, even if, by the time you finish reading it, you want to reach for the vodka bottle - and even if it is only breakfast-time where you are...

    Taibbi, as he usually does, (5.00 / 2) (#68)
    by Edger on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:41:31 AM EST
    is too plain spoken, makes too much sense, and tells too much of the truth for most of the world to listen to him.

    And that is not by any means a criticism of him.

    People could do little better for themselves than just reading Taibbi and Pierce, while throwing their tv's out the window.

    Here's Matt talking with Laura Flanders in October 2009....

    "We could have paid off every single sub-prime mortgage in this country - the total amount of sub-prime mortgages outstanding at the beginning of this crisis was 1.4 trillion dollars [...] we could've paid of every existing mortgage, sub-prime or not, for about 12 trillion dollars."

    Instead we gave, you know, roughly 18-20 trillion dollars to these banks, so that they could recover themselves or give themselves bonuses..."

    I have been so busy (none / 0) (#1)
    by loveed on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 09:57:05 PM EST
    hardly anytime to post. Peace,hope,and faith for the year to come.

     I find the republicans caucus interesting. They vote and go home. No whittling down to the top three. A lot fairer than the dems.
     I still think it will be Huntsman. It's his turn(lol). No seriously, Rick Santorum, Romney may lose to Rick Santorum. Romney limps into New Hampshire.
     There are seven large news papers in New Hampshire. Huntsman has been endorsed by 4. Newt 1, Romney 1. Huntsman is in third place. He has held over 150 events.
     So far the caucus is going my way. A wounded Romney and a wounded Paul. Both predicted they would win. Romney might pull this out,but he's wounded. And he has pissed off Newt.
     The best part? The media has no clue who the winner is.

    it's Huntsman's turn to be (none / 0) (#2)
    by The Addams Family on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 10:41:34 PM EST
    the GOP "frontrunner" in the "anyone but Romney" primary circus

    but it's not Huntsman's turn to be the GOP nominee

    it's Romney's turn to be the nominee, just like it was McCain's turn in 2008 - nobody liked McCain either, but he got the nomination - that's just the way the GOP rolls

    got to love your single-minded determination, though!


    The voters don't like Romney (none / 0) (#4)
    by loveed on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 10:58:58 PM EST
    When will the media ands the old guard get the message?
     Huntsman will be the nominee, because he is the most qualified.

    the most qualified didn't matter (5.00 / 3) (#9)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:33:58 PM EST
    to voters in the 2008 Democratic primaries. It remains to be seen whether staying out of Iowa hurts Huntsman. He also has little name recognition anywhere.

    Who knew Cain? (none / 0) (#16)
    by loveed on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:54:18 PM EST
     The reason I left the Dem. party, the people picked  the best candidate, the leadership picked Obama.
     The repubs. primary voters will not accept Romney.The dems. accepted Obama.

    Huntsman is near last place (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by shoephone on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:37:43 PM EST
    with a grand total of... 734 votes, at .6%. He even trails far behind Bachman, his next nearest competitor, who has 6031 votes.

    Why anyone would think Huntsman is going anywhere but back home is beyond comprehension.


    Huntsman never campaign in Iowa (none / 0) (#19)
    by loveed on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:10:38 AM EST
    The ONLY place he campaigned is NH (none / 0) (#30)
    by shoephone on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:38:32 AM EST
    He bet the store on the Granite State. And he won't come in higher than third, and that's if he's really, really lucky. He would have to pull a strong second to make any waves at all; as of Dec 13, he was still polling 4th place. Romney was always going to do well there, and now Santorum has huge momentum going into NH. Further, Huntsman has virtually no operation in the south.

    Perry dropping out? (none / 0) (#5)
    by loveed on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:04:54 PM EST
    going back to Texas.

    Who'd a thunk it? (none / 0) (#7)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:31:29 PM EST
    I knew Santorum was unelectable, but I never suspected that Romney was this unelectable too :)  The Anti-Romney wins Iowa?  The Republican base is crazy as fuke, just completely bat$hit.  The bat$hit will not find someone who will beat Obama, not ever.  And in my twisted little soul, a tiny sprite is laughing because won't it be a God Damned stunner when they discover that the black guy....he is better than all of them AGAIN.

    A caked was baked when we the people elected a black President, and I have a few simple pleasures as all of this goes down.  One of those pleasures is watching crazy ice that cake now for another four years.  And I want to give every crazy a turn at it, and please keep those cameras rolling and those blogs snagging headlines and blockquoting all this gorgeous Republican verbiage for posterity.

    So deep w/i the Obama critic is (none / 0) (#10)
    by oculus on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:34:32 PM EST
    an Obama supporter, given the alternatives?  good.  

    With who Iowa is putting up as their (none / 0) (#15)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:47:16 PM EST
    trophy, yeah...I'm an Obama supporter full throttle :)  There is an undercurrent of veiled racism powering up factions of the Republican base and party too right now.  They have not provided a candidate they are willing to support who can compete with Obama though intellectually.  I know that some say Romney can but I don't believe that one bit. And Obama will win again, and perhaps some laws of American Conservative human nature can be challenged again and fall out of fashion.  I can handle that.

    please lets keep (none / 0) (#11)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:34:41 PM EST
    race out of the discussion.

    You think that race doesn't matter (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:38:27 PM EST
    to Iowa Republican voters?  I do, and I find it stunning that Santorum said what he said about Obama being black and Iowa loved him more for it.

    Also that thing that Santorum (5.00 / 2) (#17)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:00:25 AM EST
    said about how he didn't want to give money to black people.....as if only black people get public assistance and food stamps.  That one was over the moon, but Republican Iowa loved him for it.

    I think Iowa has demonstrated (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 07:56:38 AM EST
    how many Republicans feel about Obama on a skin deep level that goes clear to their bone.  I can't believe Rick Santorum said the things about being black that he said and then Iowans put him up on their pedestal like that.  In a sane world it would have killed him at the polls, in a humane just world it would have finished him.  Instead of being nauseated, 25% of Iowa Republicans celebrated him.

    I think you've pointed out the critical difference (5.00 / 3) (#46)
    by Farmboy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 08:37:17 AM EST
    I've been noticing that the media kept comparing Iowa GOP demographics to national demographics, which makes no sense except to highlight the "Iowa is non-represpresentative" cliche. The Iowa GOP is a self-selected subset. The only valid comparisons are to other similar self-selected subsets, or to the larger self-selected set as a whole.

    However, if you compare the makeup of the Iowa GOP caucus attendees from last night to the makeup of the national GOP you expose how non-mainstream the GOP has become. Almost exclusively white, mostly conservative, mostly middle aged, half birthers, half tea partiers - the Iowa GOP is a nicely representative snapshot of the national party.

    That's why Santorum, Romney, and the others trotted out their race and class dog-whistles: they know that this was a warm up round for the national contest.


    They will lose big in the end (none / 0) (#48)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 08:52:40 AM EST
    Indies won't vote in racist scum in this day and age, mostly because it is okay for me use the word racist and then follow it immediately with the word scum.

    Sure they will (5.00 / 2) (#49)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 08:54:20 AM EST
    If they don't have jobs and can't pay their mortgages.

    Not what I see (none / 0) (#52)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:02:05 AM EST
    The Republicans have no plan, they have thwarted giving the people relief on purpose.  If you are really hurting, the Republican party has made things worse for you and they aren't standing up there saying that they will do anything different.  They are preaching even more hate and blame the impoverished, they did it to themselves.

    Because neither party is helping, that is why the OWS movement continues to grow.  But when it comes down to who has done some things to try and help, that is Obama and Democrats.

    I used to think that someone like Huntsman could be a problem for Obama but you can see what his chances of being the nominee are.  Ron Paul has in the past been original in his ideas and the things he fights for, but he fights for nobody who is currently disenfranchised.  He says it is sort of their own fault too :)


    Iowa GOP caucus votes, not "Iowans." (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by oculus on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:11:58 AM EST
    Too general.  

    MT (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by CoralGables on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:42:55 AM EST
    don't tar Iowa by a caucus vote. There are over 3 million people in Iowa and only 30 thousand votes each went to the winner and second place finishers. It's early and my math may be off, but 96& of Iowa has nothing to do with the GOP caucus.

    Pee Wee was good (none / 0) (#14)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Jan 03, 2012 at 11:41:18 PM EST
    IMHO he was really very good.  impressive.  the contrast in tone and sincerity between him and mr 1% could really not be more stark.
    I dont think he can beat Obama but I really think mr 1% has a big problem.  a really big problem.  possibly a bigger problem than Newt could ever have been.

    Tomorrow you will learn things about (none / 0) (#18)
    by loveed on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:07:59 AM EST
    Santorum. He hates gay people, the state paid for his children home schooling.He lost his last election by 16 points.
     Romney have nothing to fear from Santorum. But Newt is pissed, and very angry. He promises to destroy Romney.

    I don't know much about Republican (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:12:56 AM EST
    primary behavior predictions, particularly this insane primary, but Newt is pi$$ed.  He is just flat out can't see straight on fire.  He wants to hurt someone badly.  It can be seen in all of his mannerisms and his carriage.

    oh yeah (none / 0) (#23)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:14:19 AM EST
    he basically said tonight that he is going to destroy Romney for Santorum.  do not under estimate his ability to do that.  I cant wait till saturday.

    Petards are hoisting all around Newt. (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by caseyOR on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 01:30:42 AM EST
    The ugly soul-sucking politics of personal destruction, an area in which Newt has always excelled, has bitten him on the @ss, and Newt is not happy.

    I guess I'm going to have to buy a popcorn popper. This Republican primary season is going to be an epic melodrama, replete with ever-changing alliances and bloody grudge settling and the knives, oh my, so many knives aiming at fellow Republican backs.

    Yes, my fellow citizens, sadly this will be the best election season that excessive amounts of corporate money can buy.

    And the nation's founders wept.


    Newt is declaring his intent to (none / 0) (#42)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 08:01:45 AM EST
    "destroy" a fellow Republican.  Where are other Conservative yacking heads this morning?  Nobody has conjured up the ghost of Ronald Reagan yet that I have seen.  I thought all good Reagan Republicans weren't supposed to go for each others jugulars and make public threats to each other like Newt is doing?  I thought they were the party of base unity.

    you have to sit back (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by CoralGables on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:46:58 AM EST
    and see it for what it is. It's not two fellow Republicans going after each other. It's a newt going after a chameleon. And in this case the chameleon struck first.

    Shoot (none / 0) (#27)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:29:45 AM EST
    I missed that.  I saw you mentioned it in another thread too but didn't know if you being literal, so I haven't seen it yet.  We were watching him walk around in front of the cameras earlier and both of us thought wow....that guy wants to kill something.  A ticked Newt is a scary Newt.

    Remember (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 07:41:59 AM EST
    The story about when the Santorums had a stillborn child and they brought the dead baby home from the hospital so the other kids could hold it?  That's gonna come back out..  

    Seriously, the party will shut Newt down as well as anybody else who thinks they will destroy Romney.  Santorum lost his own Senate seat by 16 points - you think the party is gonna let him make any more headway just to eventually lose while damaging their inevitable nominee??

    Not gonna happen.


    we are talking about a republican primary (none / 0) (#20)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:11:28 AM EST
    everyone knows he hates gay people.  no one cares about his home schooled kids.

    Romney has plenty to fear from Santorum and you could see in his eyes he knows it.

    and the fact that the old guy who lost last time is limping up to NH to endorse Romney tomorrow is not going to help him.  I actually think it will do just the opposite.


    I agree about McCain (none / 0) (#26)
    by loveed on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:23:54 AM EST
    The Homeschooling if you have time look it up. Cost the state of Pennsylvania a lot of money.
     Tomorrow will be a new day for Mr Santorum. The hit job is on the way.If Huntsman is smart he will stay out of this fight.

     McCain will just remind everyone he lost.


    I dont disbelieve you about the money (none / 0) (#32)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:48:51 AM EST
    I just think in the current scheme of things, think the photo of Romney and Bain with money falling out of every orifice, it is pretty small potatoes and that Pee Wee is as close to squeaky clean as they are going to get this cycle.

    no (none / 0) (#75)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 03:06:37 PM EST
    I said he was as close as they are going to get this cycle.  and I still think to the republican mind he is cleaner than Romney.  by a lot.

    and btw (none / 0) (#21)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:12:48 AM EST
    are you seriously saying that Pee Wees tiny bit of baggage is in any way comparable to Romneys box car load?

    also (none / 0) (#24)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:19:56 AM EST
    Perry is getting out.  Bachman will be out in a few days.  that support is going to go to Santorum.

    he is going to be the conservative they finally coalesce behind.  simply because it is now him or Romney.  and the second biggest headline out of tonight is that 75% voted against Romney.

    NH is going to be very interesting.  I say Pee Wee is going to give mr 1% a run for his money.

    speaking of money.  he did this with no money.  NONE.


    Santorum (none / 0) (#29)
    by The Addams Family on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:32:00 AM EST
    is either peaking now or is about to peak, & then his "moment," too, will be over

    so Santorum tied Romney in effing Iowa? color me highly unimpressed

    assuming that the GOP does not intend to throw the 2012 election, the party has no interest in energizing the Democratic base with the likes of batsh!t crazy, rattlesnake-mean, Teabagging Rick Santorum

    Romney will be the nominee


    they already know they are going to lose (none / 0) (#31)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:45:07 AM EST
    the question they will answer in the next few weeks is if they want to go down with some dignity or if they want to vote for a guy they despise who are also know will lose.

    I never believed that when the republican party is careening harder to the right than pretty much any time in my life they would settle for a mushy milqetoast like Romney.  I still dont.  the establishment is going to try really hard to shove him down their throats but I think the Obama hating tea party gag reflex is just going to be to great.


    november 2012 is a long way off (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by The Addams Family on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:54:02 AM EST
    if the unemployment rate doesn't come down soon & stay down till then, Obama is in no way a shoo-in for a 2nd term

    Romney is competitive against Obama, which is why Romney will be the nominee


    I think the big wheels of the party (none / 0) (#43)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 08:08:21 AM EST
    are forcing Romney down the party's throat whether they want him or not.  Santorum is not electable in the general election now because of the things he said about black people in Iowa (and that's probably just one item he's stumping that makes him unelectable).  Those things said are not going away.  The big power in the Republican party will not stand for a Santorum nomination.  Watching Romney's speech from last night right now, he isn't making one dumb move.  He even congratulated Santorum on his "win".  He knows what is going to go down.

    I just this moment wondered... (none / 0) (#59)
    by sj on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:50:33 AM EST
    Who are the big wheels of the party these days?

    John McCain? (none / 0) (#77)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 04:07:57 PM EST
    that is clearly their plan (none / 0) (#76)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 03:13:29 PM EST
    but its so transparent.  if I was them I would be chaffing at their hubris.  and I believe they are.

    I can just imagine them watching the spectacle with the old "moderate" guy who lost last year today with Romney.  I could almost hear them grinding their teeth.

    and Romneys plasticity is starting to really wear thin.  you just look at him and you know he will say or do anything and that he has no core.  he is an empty suit.  and I contrast that to Santorums performance last night, which IMO was pretty amazing, and I just see storm clouds.  he may still be the nominee but I am starting to wonder if I cant see an "electability" argument for Santorum that is just as persuasive - which is not very persuasive - as the one for Romney.  last night he didnt talk much about moral issues.  at least for Santorum.  he is the only rebublican who has ever had anything like a populist message and hitting it last night was very smart.


    OMG! Romney wins Iowa by the (none / 0) (#35)
    by caseyOR on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 01:39:35 AM EST
    strikingly small margin of 8 votes. That's right, Mitt, who has been campaigning for president since the day he dropped out of the 2008 campaign, managed to garner only 8 votes more than the sewer sludge named Rick Santorum.

    I guess it's true, no one outside of his immediate family actually likes Mitt.

    Ha ha, Newt is on MSNBC right (none / 0) (#44)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 08:10:06 AM EST
    now and he keeps calling himself a Reagan Conservative.  Not publicly threatening to work until you drop to destroy Mitt for Santorum you aren't Newt :)

    Coverage on Current TV (none / 0) (#58)
    by brodie on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:49:28 AM EST
    Overall pretty good though I had to miss the normally interesting analysis of Lawrence O'Donnell on Msnbc.

    The good:  Fresh faces, seeing Al Gore talk at length about politics.  Jennifer Granholm making some astute observations at times contra her boss Al Gore.  Ben Mankiewicz and the bearded guy sitting next to him who had some witty remarks and the guy next to him who was consistly humorous.  The smart black prof from Brown University who is an improvement over the black prof from Tulane on Msnbc (Melissa Something-Something), the Obama cheerleader.

    The bad:  The clumsy physical placement on set of the various commentators.  The unfortunate optics of the sole black pundit sitting by herself in the back and mostly being asked to comment on racial matters.  Technical glitches.  Too small graphics showing vote count, at least on my 27-inch screen.  Host Cinq Ungar rah rahing for Ron Paul to win.  Coverage ended too early:  I expect it to continue until all votes are counted, as they did on Msnbc and CNN, and for the victory speeches.

    Newt (none / 0) (#61)
    by CST on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 09:53:35 AM EST
    "pledged to remain in the race and challenge Mr Romney, "a Massachusetts moderate".

    "We are not going to go out and run nasty ads," said Mr Gingrich, who finished fourth.

    "But I do reserve the right to tell the truth. And if the truth seems negative that may be more of a comment on his record than it is about politics."

    Popcorn time.

    Romney has to be thrilled (none / 0) (#63)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:04:34 AM EST
    Newt is imploding before our eyes and looking like a whiny loser, Paul is never going to be a serious candidate, and his only "credible" threat is Rick Santorum - a loon with no personality and who is about to enter the media buzzsaw.

    Romney must be giggling like a schoolgirl.


    Newt is not competition (none / 0) (#64)
    by CST on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:09:37 AM EST
    but I doubt Romney is "thrilled" that he is going to have a rabid dog coming after him.

    No doubt he will be the nominee.  But not before taking some serious hits.


    Too (none / 0) (#71)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:52:39 AM EST
    bad the hits aren't coming from someone besides Newt though. Really, if I were in Romney's place, I would be more worried about hits coming from someone like Santorum than a nut like Gingrich who's not only a nut but can be viewed as a loser to boot and probably not many people are going to care what a loser/whacko like Newt has to say.

    Why not? (none / 0) (#72)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 11:55:13 AM EST
    The more Newt begs fir attention, the less serious people take hom andvthe more "normal" Mitt looks in comparison.

    Very appealing to middle of the road voters when he distances himself from the Newtster.


    I think you are making an (none / 0) (#73)
    by CST on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 12:24:41 PM EST
    assumption that there is nothing "there" there.

    I wouldn't be so sure.


    Looks like Newt (none / 0) (#66)
    by brodie on Wed Jan 04, 2012 at 10:14:25 AM EST
    is angry enough to be this year's Jerry Brown of 1992 futilely lobbing grenades for a long time at the inevitable nominee Romney-Clinton.