The Republican Primary: A Three-Way Dance?

At a town hall meeting, held in front of a little over 200 people on the campus of St. Anshelm College in New Hampshire yesterday, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney fired back at the widely-held opinion that he flip-flops on issues.  He told those in attendance that

…it’s not that every single issue I’ve looked at my entire life I’ve never changed my view on.

Why would any American ever think that Romney changes his position on hot button issues at the drop of a hat?

Well, gentle reader, the Washington Post published a very special list during the Republican primary campaign of 2008.  Here, according to them, are Romney’s top 5 flip-flops:

1. Abortion. In October 2002, campaigning for governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney said he would “preserve and protect” a woman’s right to choose. He now describes himself as an abortion opponent.

2. Gay rights. In a 1994 letter to the Log Cabin Republicans, who advocate gay rights, he said he was in favor of “gays and lesbians being able to serve openly and honestly” in the military. He now says it would be a mistake to interfere with the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

3. Gun control. Campaigning for the Senate in 1994, he said he favored strong gun laws and did not “line up with the NRA.” He joined the National Rifle Association in 2006 while pondering a presidential run, and he praised the group for “doing good things” and “supporting the right to bear arms.”

4. Campaign finance. In 1994, he advocated a spending limit on congressional elections and the abolition of political action committees. In 2002, he supported public financing of campaigns from a 10 percent tax on private fundraising. This year, he said the McCain-Feingold law limiting campaign contributions is an attack on free speech.

5. Immigration. In a November 2005 interview with the Boston Globe, he described an immigration overhaul advanced by John McCain as “reasonable.” He now denounces it as an “amnesty plan.” In December 2006, he signed an agreement authorizing state troopers to round up illegal immigrants.

When asked by a fan during yesterday’s townhall how he should respond when someone questioned him about Romney’s candidacy, the former governor quipped:

Let me give you some brass knuckles, that should help.

Then, he turned serious, taking a few swipes at Texas governor and fellow potential Republican nominee Rick Perry:

The nature of politics is that you try and find some edge to characterize your opponent and beat him over the head, and that is if you don’t have a optimistic or positive message of your own.

That’s going to happen and I understand it. It’s pretty rough and tumble and I don’t whine about that I realized that when I got into [politics].

Alluding to Perry’s web-based attack ad, Romney said:

The nice thing about writing a book is that you can read it and see what I stand for.

In the private sector, if you don’t change your view when the facts change, you’ll get fired for being stupid.

Then “Mittens”, as he’s less-than-affectionally known to Conservatives across the country, questioned whether Obama flunky David Axlerod had ever seen the movie Titanic, since Axlerod was callous enough to attempt to compare the struggles of the Obama campaign to the ill-fated ship that sank and killed more than 1,500 people:

[David Axelrod] said that the Obama campaign was going to be a ‘titanic struggle. I’m not sure he knows what that word means, I’m not sure he saw the movie.

It’s true for a lot of reasons. The captain of the ship has been inattentive, otherwise occupied or asleep for most of the voyage.

[The ship] is going to sink.

Your’s may also, Governor.

Foxnews.com reports:

Three September debates have shaken-up the race for the Republican presidential nomination. Herman Cain has jumped into the top tier. Rick Perry’s stumbled. Mitt Romney’s holding steady.

And Michele Bachmann is hitting bottom. That’s according to a Fox News poll released Wednesday.

The new poll found Cain’s support has nearly tripled among GOP primary voters to 17 percent.

That’s up from 6 percent before this month’s debates, and puts him in what is essentially a three-way tie with Perry and Romney.

Cain has benefited not only from his debate performances, but also significant media attention after winning the Florida Republican Party’s straw poll on Saturday.

Perry now garners 19 percent, a drop of 10 percentage points from a month ago. That puts Romney back in the top spot with the support of 23 percent. Last month Romney was at 22 percent.

Newt Gingrich recovered some ground and now stands at 11 percent. Ron Paul receives the backing of 6 percent now compared to 8 percent before the September debates.

Bachmann registers 3 percent support, down from 8 percent in late August and a high of 15 percent in July.

After perusing the web for the last couple of days, it seems that Herman Cain that is the “flavor of the month”.  After shocking the political pundits by winning the Florida Straw Poll, Cain stories are rage of the internet.  Tea Partiers and Reagan conservatives seem to be gravitating toward him as so-called moderate Republicans, “fiscal conservatives and even liberals operating behind “enemy lines” are pushing for Romney.

Scott Rasmussen reports that

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of Likely U.S. Voters finds that Obama earns 39% support while Cain attracts 34%. In that match-up, 14% prefer some other candidate, and 14% are undecided.

With Perry shooting himself in the foot (an apt metaphor for a Texas Governor) with his “heartless” remark in defense of giving college scholarships to children of illegal immigrants, and Romney’s slow fade, perhaps straight-shooter Herman Cain is the conservative leader Americans have been waiting for.

Then again, I think this rodeo is just getting started.  It’s not time for the Republican candidate cowboy to ride off into  the direction of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue just yet.

There may be an Annie Oakley waiting in the wings.

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One Response to The Republican Primary: A Three-Way Dance?

  1. Barb says:

    If Palin doesn’t jump in….I am working for Cain. From what I hear, I will not be alone.