When All Else Fails, Move Up the Primaries

When I break for lunch at my 9 to 5 job, I go out to my car with whatever is in my lunchbox and spend my time clicking between Rush Limbaugh and Laura Ingraham on the car stereo. Yesterday, I got my money’s worth.

During a capitalism break on Rush’s program, I tuned into Laura’s show, and heard the familiar Southern drawl of my state’s (Mississippi) Governor, Haley Barbour.

The word has been out for years that Barbour is a member of the Republican Elite, so, what I heard yesterday was quite a surprise:

If this election is where it ought to be, and that is a referendum on how President Obama is doing, Republicans are going to win. If Herman Cain is our nominee against Barack Obama, I think he’ll sweep the south.

I think if it were today my wife would vote for Herman Cain. One of my sons, I have grown children, you know, from the first day said ‘Dad, do you know Herman Cain?’ I said sure, I’ve known him since I was Chairman. He said “Man, I like him, I like what he says,” and that is one of his great strengths Laura. He is likable. He does not give you the impression that he is full of himself, but rather than he is a straight-talkin’ person who, will tell you, he call it like he sees them. He’s not trying to sugar coat anything and at the same time he is not trying to be shrill and a chest beater. He’s a straight talker and I think that makes him very, very attractive to people.

Herman Cain?  But Governor, your friends in the Republican Elite are trying to ram Mitt Romney down our collective throats.  Just ask Rush Limbaugh:

Romney is not a conservative. He’s not, folks. You can argue with me all day long on that, but he isn’t. What he has going for him is that he’s not Obama and that he is doing incredibly well in the debates because he’s done it a long time.

…. I’m not personally ready to settle on anybody yet — and I know that neither are most of you, and I also know that most of you do not want this over now, before we’ve even had a single primary! All we’ve had are straw votes. You know that the Republican establishment’s trying to nail this down and end it.

And Republican candidate Rick Santorum is not exactly thrilled about the situation:

Republican Presidential Candidate Rick Santorum is speaking out against his fellow GOP Presidential Candidates who he accuses of trying to frontload the primary schedule. In an interview for ABC News’ “Subway Series with Jonathon Karl” Santorum described the early primaries and caucuses as “a travesty.”

“This is clearly Mitt Romney and Rick Perry I’m sure, who are very interested in running the clock out and trying to get this vote out as quickly as possible because they’re in a position right now where they have resources and name recognition and the shorter the time frame the less opportunity for other candidates to come up and catch them from behind,” said Santorum.

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney successful lobbied Nevada Republicans to break Republican National Committee Rules and move up their states caucus. On Wednesday, the Nevada GOP announced the state’s caucus will be held on January 14.

Former Nevada Gov. Bob List told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that “Romney’s people were pushing for us to move into January.” However, List said that’s not why the final date was chosen.

According to the latest polls, Romney is a front-runner in the Nevada caucus. Winning Nevada in mid-January could help offset a lost in one of the other early states.

Florida’s GOP recently voted to move that state’s primary to January 31. As more states seek earlier primaries, it becomes increasingly difficult for an outside candidate to compete. A 2012 hopeful like Santorum, with relatively little campaign cash and organizational capacity compared to the top tier candidates, will have little chance to compete. (Sticking up for the traditional early primary states can’t hurt his chances their, either).

New Hampshire and Iowa are considering holding their primary elections and caucuses in December. Santorum is concerned that a caucus the day after Christmas would have a negative impact on the holiday season.

Santorum firmly believes that Christmas is a time to be focused “on the birth of our savior” and not on” someone’s political games that could help them get elected.”

“It undermines the elections by having this very important decision as to who our nominee will be, being done over a period of time when the American public is legitimately distracted from these types of activities,” said Santorum.

By moving the primaries forward, Romney and the Republican Elite are trying to secure the presidential nomination for him as soon as possible, before the rest of Republicans figure out what Governor Barbour has, and what Rush Limbaugh and a lot of us already know:

Mitt Romney is not a Conservative.

And since the majority of Americans are conservative in political ideology, the longer Romney campaigns, the worse his chances for the nomination will be.

I guess familiarity really does breed contempt.

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