Santorum Surging Because People Like Him

The latest Public Policy Poll shows Santorum surging—big time. 

RickSantorumInVest

Santorum is most appealing to conservatives—from Evangelicals to Tea Partiers:

Santorum is now completely dominating with several key segments of the electorate, especially the most right leaning parts of the party. With those describing themselves as 'very conservative,' he's now winning a majority of voters at 53% to 20% for Gingrich and 15% for Romney.  Santorum gets a majority with Tea Party voters as well at 51% to 24% for Gingrich and 12% for Romney. And with Evangelicals he falls just short of a majority with 45% to 21% for Gingrich and 18% for Romney.

The reason for Santorum’s lead is likeability. Sixty-four percent of Republicans view Senator Santorum favorably—far more than any other candidate.

Mitt Romney’s attack machine, though, is about to aim its distortion guns at the former Senator. Mitt won’t offer a vision, so he’s adopted a slash-and-burn strategy in hopes of driving people to despise his opponents. That strategy might win the nomination, but I fail to see how it will win the election.

Mitt Romney’s Resume Cover Letter

There are some things you just don’t say in a cover letter—or on the campaign trail. A self-aggrandizing cover letter from an NYU undergrad to some Wall Street banks has the whole financial world laughing. The kid’s naïve hubris and ignorance of what employers look for in a candidate earned him public humiliation on an internet scale.   Here’s just a sample of the kid’s self-promotion:

That semester I achieved a 3.93, and in the same time I managed to bench double my bodyweight and do 35 pull-ups

(Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/how-a-tenacious-summer-analyst-applicant-got-laughed-at-by-goldman-morgan-and-everyone-else-on-wall-street-2012-2#ixzz1loTZYiIe)

Mitt Romney should be even more embarrassed. He’s a lot older and, theoretically, wiser, you know.

mitt-romney-tsa

After Rick Santorum destroyed the establishment’s plastic candidate of choice, Romney’s spokesman gave a remarkably idiotic reason to support Romney: Money and infrastructure.

The reason Romney won’t beat Obama and shouldn’t win the GOP nomination is his hubris and his inability to think like a human being. Romney is the reason that Republican voter turnout is abysmal and why Democrats are now more enthusiastic about voting than Republicans are.

The republic’s greatest threat since the British army of 1812 now sits in the White House.  In 2009 and 2010, the Tea Party resuscitated a comatose GOP and won back the House.  Since then, the inept, elitist, and self-serving Republican establishment has reasserted its thumb-laden hands, chosen an elitist candidate, and killed enthusiasm among those who actually get out the vote and win elections—the conservative grass roots.

If Romney and his elitist Republican friends manage to give Obama four more years to destroy this country, the GOP, not Obama, will face the angry mobs of America’s 60% conservative base.

Who Won the New Hampshire Republican Debate?

 

It depends on how you score. Rick-Santorum

I see three scoring scenarios:

  1. Best conservative performance
  2. Best electability performance
  3. Best positional performance

Conservative performance is pretty clear: whose answers appeal to conservatives?  (Does not mean conservatives believed the candidate meant what he said.) This is not Tea Party scoring, either. I’m not limiting my evaluation to the 3 core Tea Party principles of Constitutionally limited government, free markets, and fiscal responsibility.  This is broader conservatism.

Electability performance means the candidate appealed to general election voters. This doesn’t meant centrist—it means not scaring the crap out of people who aren’t politics wonks. (That’s most voters, by the way.)

Positional performance means the candidate did what what he had to do based one his current standings in he nomination process.

On conservative performance, I have to go with:

  1. Santorum
  2. Perry
  3. Gingrich / Romney

Electability

  1. Santorum
  2. Gingrich
  3. Romney

Positional

  1. Romney
  2. Santorum
  3. Gingrich

If we give 3 points for first place, 2 for second, and 1 for third, we get this composite ranking:

  1. Santorum: 8 points
  2. Gingrich:  6 points
  3. Romney:  5 points

What does it all mean? 

Santorum should move up a bit in the polls before the New Hampshire primary, but not enough to win.  He needed Romney to finish out of the top 3 in this debate. 

Gingrich needed to pull Romney out of the top 3 and get closer to Santorum than he did.  This hurt Newt.

Romney improved his chances, but he didn’t close the deal.  The longer he lets Santorum and Gingrich stay in the game, the more vulnerable his lead becomes.

BREAKING: Santorum Pulls Away with 13-Vote Lead

That’s with 88 percent of the counting complete.

The bigger story: Romney’s underperforming his 2008 results in key counties.  Santorum outperforming Huckabee in 2008. 

iowa-caucus-results

What does it all mean? 

Conservatives and libertarians dominate the caucuses. 

Romney is the choice of the Republican establishment. The cronies poured millions into his campaign even before he declared himself a conservative.  He’s won endorsements from just about every big name general election loser include Bob Dole and George H.W. Bush. (UPDATE: McCain to endorse Romney tomorrow.)

Yet Romney garnered only 25 percent of the Iowa caucuses (as of this posting). Rick Santorum, an afterthought two weeks ago, leads Romney by 13 votes. Ron Paul is in third with 21 percent. The Professor and Mary Ann and the rest, not so good.

So 75 percent want a non-establishment Republican candidate.

Every candidate except Romney is non-establishment in the voters’ eyes, no matter how you might evaluate their ideologies.

All this means that if the race were between Romney and two non-establishment candidates, Romney would lose.

That’s good news for the GOP and for the  country.

For the GOP because establishment Republicans have a weak record against liberal Democrats in the general.

Good for America because the GOP establishment is largely responsible for Republican loses in 2006 and 2008. And, of course, because the most important mission of a generation is changing who occupies the White House this year.

P.S.  You might hear a lot about the 17th Amendment and Cloture between now and South Carolina.