Patterico's Pontifications


Florida: The more things change

Filed under: 2012 Election — Karl @ 7:28 am

[Posted by Karl]

On the eve of the Florida primary, RCP’s Scott Conroy reports on increased support for Mitt Romney among the Sunshine State’s Hispanic community.  Conroy’s story is corroborated by the weekend’s Miami Herald/Mason-Dixon poll, which has this pivotal demographic breaking for Romney over Newt Gingrich by a 52-28% margin. 

This split echoes the 2008 primary in which McCain tied Romney among non-Hispanics, but won approximately 54% of the Hispanic vote.  Indeed, Rudy Giuliani was the second-place candidate for Hispanics; Romney was a distinct third.

Thus, it appears that for a second cycle, Florida Republicans will likely back the nominally establishment candidate over the nominally non-establishment candidate, due in large part to the Hispanic vote.  “Nominally” is the key term here, as the former Governor can argue he is less of the Beltway than the former Speaker of the House.  Nevertheless, perception often passes for reality in politics . Moreover, the degree to which the GOP elders have sided with Romney over Gingrich is a reality, and Newt (for all his heresies) arguably has more conservative policy achievements to claim than Romney.

Yet the similar dynamic does not produce an identical result.  For all of the grief Romney gets — much of it justified, imho — the right should take stock of where Florida and the GOP stand now when compared to 2008.  In the last cycle, East Coast moderate neocons like Jennifer Rubin was flacking for John McCain over Mitt Romney, but now flacks for Romney.  Conversely, grassroots talkers like Rush Limbaugh were backing Romney as the conservative alternative to McCain in 2008, but now back Gingrich over Romney.

If Romney wins the Florida primary as expected, some on the right will surely grumble about the party apparat having its way again.  But the apparat is arguably having to accept more conservative candidates as time goes on.


149 Responses to “Florida: The more things change”

  1. Ding!

    Karl (8cdbad)

  2. omg I had no idea Rush Limbaugh had backed Wall Street Romney

    I think what also echoes is how both Huckabee and now the Santorum have played a dandy stalking horse role to divide the nominally non-establishment candidate vote

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  3. Romney may win this thing.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  4. Yes it’s irony, in favor of the anti immigration candidate, then again we know how that worked for Whitman, don’t we.

    narciso (87e966)

  5. It was more pure McCain hate, pikachu, the kind that drove you to support Fred, who was probably the best of the bunch,

    narciso (87e966)

  6. I liked Fred right up until he took my monies and endorsed mcCain

    after that he was dead to me not unlike River Phoenix

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  7. It was Carl Cameron and the Politico desperadoes that said he wasn’t energetic enough, but McCain
    he was a pure dynamo, up until he wasn’t, funny how that works.

    narciso (87e966)

  8. I will hold my nose and vote for whoever wins.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  9. I was for Giuliani, so I’m sort of an outlier,

    narciso (87e966)

  10. The reaction if Newt pulls it out, though (possible since a lot of early voting was done when Newt was still riding the SC wave, and he’s got some home stretch improvement) will be something to see. What if the apparat fail? I hope they do kinda just to see the reaction if not on my preferences sake alone.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  11. Karl – what do you think of this – am I pipe-dreaming?

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  12. How do I know if I’m part of the “apparat”?

    If I’m asking, does that mean I’m not?

    I’ve been a Republican my whole life. I can trace my Republican credentials back to post-Civil War Texas; my grandfather was one of Silent Cal’s rural Texas postmasters (a federal patronage job) from a time when rural Texas Republicans were as rare as hen’s teeth. My dad was mayor (although it was a nonpartisan election). I was in the Young Republicans club in high school (through which I met Ron Paul at a 1974 Texas Young Republicans convention at the Dallas Hilton on Mockingbird). I stopped strategic voting in the Democratic primary back in the 1990s when the Dems stopped being competitive in state-wide races here.

    I’m not supporting Gingrich unless and until he gets the GOP nomination, and since I’ve got even more doubts about him than I do about Romney, I’ve been expressing those doubts online.

    So where’s my apparat membership card? Can I choose my own photo for the ID?

    Beldar (493372)

  13. I’ve also been expressing considerable doubts about Romney online. OMG, does that mean I’ve been blackballed from the apparat?!?

    Beldar (493372)

  14. (Because I was really counting on the extra frequent flier miles. Karl Rove promised me frequent flier miles to Cozumel.)

    Beldar (493372)

  15. I don’t understand the lady thing. I am one mostly , and I’ve never liked Mitt or Newt and I know which one is less appealing.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  16. To Beldar at 13, You are in like flynn. “Get in line for your ID”, that’s the pass-phrase.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  17. I know there was that “account hold – questionable activity” when I was among the first conservative bloggers to seriously tout Sarah Palin as a Veep nominee in 2008, months before McCain picked her. But I thought that all got worked out when McCain actually did pick her. No? Is my apparat account still suspended?

    Beldar (493372)

  18. Or maybe it was “fall in line”. I don’t know the bouncer said i wasn’t getting in at all.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  19. Well you don’t get an ‘upgrade’ for that, Beldar, I have been so dissapointed in the last three years, as apparently the truth doesn’t matter,

    narciso (87e966)

  20. Your now drumed out of the establishment.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  21. Are the primaries over yet?

    JD (318f81)

  22. Beldar is having fun with the use of “apparat,” but I used the term just to avoid slapping readers with another hunk of political science first thing in the week. The Party Decides is what passes for a “hot” book in the field right now, and most I have seen write about it have seen this year as a major test of its thesis.

    Karl (f07e38)

  23. I can think of nothing less interesting, informative, or convincing than this talk about elites, establishment, and apparat.

    I can’t think of one voter it can possibly sway. It must feel good to say it, though, because it sure is getting a workout this primary season.

    MayBee (081489)

  24. No, JD’s the beatings will continue, till all breath is extinguished

    narciso (87e966)

  25. I heard some band made Newt stop using one of their songs or his theme music. If he wins in florida this will make a good one that even Mittarapchicks will be humming though with more sincerity.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  26. Can I denounce myself as racist?

    Democraps played the race card against Christie so they will call us all racist?

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  27. I don’t mean that as a ding against Karl, btw. He’s just reporting on what’s being said out there.

    But geez.

    MayBee (081489)

  28. the establishment thing isn’t new but it got inflamed like a hemorrhoid cause of how Romney went Full Establishment with his weirdo Bob Dole disinterment

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  29. nobody but freaking nobody was thinking hey I wonder what Bob Dole thinks about all this if he’s still alive

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  30. The beatings will continue until you kiss Romney’s ring.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  31. If nobody cares what Bob Dole has to say, do you think anybody is interested in hearing that he is “the Establishment”?

    Gladys in Peoria can’t decide who to vote for, but then she hears about “the Establishment” and boy howdy she is not going vote for that. Is that the theory?

    MayBee (081489)

  32. The PANIC though, Maybee. In every establishment quarter and plenty of New Media too.

    The CRUSH HIM crusade was just very surprising to me, as of course Newt is awful but after all, he’s not Romney

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  33. The closest thing I’ve seen to panic is Sarah Palin talking about the establishment crucifying Newt, and voting for Newt to anger a liberal.

    The talk about “establishment” just is desperate. There are forces outside our control! Your vote must be used to fight against….Jennifer Rubin!

    MayBee (081489)

  34. In Virginia, Maybee, here it’s a sore spot, as VAGOP really did engage in some establishment protectionism while whistlling and shrugging.

    And then the parade of panic was something to behold.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  35. Maybee, the backlash was horrible – and it came from the usual supsects and some unusual ones. It was concerted and weird.

    It’s as if they were homer Simpson and a spider had got near their car keys

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  36. I think the Establishment talk is shorthand for “what happened last time”

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  37. What happened last time, like with Christine O’Donnell?
    Or with John McCain, who got more votes than some other preferred, apparently non-establishment candidate?

    My guy didn’t make it through the primaries last time. I was crushed. But I managed to realize the problem was just that other people didn’t agree with me. I guess I should have realized Rudy was being held down by the Establishment.

    MayBee (081489)

  38. I am just hoping this “establishment” talk goes away for the general. We have enough real battles to fight, like media bias, Axelrod’s underhandedness, and Obama’s free campaigning/lying.

    MayBee (081489)

  39. Maybee, I think he was. I was for Rudy too.

    Not thrilled about the two we have left. I picked the one who says he’s not ROmney.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  40. well it’s also a problem of the moment moreso than in 2008 – we have this sickness where Boehner and McConnell have this sclerotic hold on congress, and it’s very hard to see how in the future anything changes with all these go along get along white boys in charge

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  41. the changes we’ve been needing being so drastic and all

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  42. I’m just not going for a dopey candidate what doesn’t act like there’s a crisis – Newt seems more likely to understand this on a profound and fundamental level than Wall Street Romney

    silly moon base aside

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  43. I agree that those elected Republicans don’t do enough.

    Talk about that, then, instead of the shadowy illumati establishment. Because that is self-satisfying but not convincing.

    MayBee (081489)

  44. is there a moon base in warcraft?

    No one tells me anything

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  45. ok no more establishment talk

    let’s talk about what’s up with Santorum that he can’t read the writing on the wall what says give it up, fringe boy

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  46. Let’s watch. I want to see what happens after florida. What if Newt should pull off an upset? What will happen next?

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  47. The polar ice caps aren’t melting.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  48. fringe boy?

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  49. just so

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  50. That isn’t what your mom said.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  51. Are the primaries over yet?
    Comment by JD — 1/30/2012 @ 8:47 am

    — Check back in about 36 hours.

    Icy (ad8d03)

  52. Let’s watch. I want to see what happens after florida. What if Newt should pull off an upset? What will happen next?
    Comment by Sarahw — 1/30/2012 @ 9:39 am

    The polar ice caps aren’t melting.
    Comment by Dohbiden — 1/30/2012 @ 9:40 am

    — Happy accidents . . . gotta love ’em.

    Icy (ad8d03)

  53. Mr. geoff makes the good point that after Florida all the contests are proportional until April so the stalking horseyness of fringe boy will recede considerably for til then

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  54. pretend that was english I’m still a little fevery

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  55. You know what will happen if Gingrich wins florida?

    Icy will have an aneurysm.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  56. Then again, change happens:

    Raw materials not being transported, prices marching upward defines Stagflation.

    People not being moved despite government subsidies follows from 51% youth unemployment, worse than Greece or Portugal.

    People not being transported.

    On the BDI:

    “Over the course of the past month, the BDI has fallen around 65% from above 1600 to 726. Mainstream economists argue that the BDI’s fall in 2008 was a much higher percentage, and thus, a 65% drop is nothing to worry about. They fail to mention that shipping rates never recovered from the 2008 collapse, and have hovered in a sickly manner near lows reached during the initial credit bubble burst. By their logic, if the BDI was at 2, and fell to 1, this 50% drop should be shrugged off as inconsequential because it is not a substantial percentage of decline when compared to that which occurred in 2008, even though the index is standing at rock bottom.”

    Depression, change enough for ya?

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  57. Hope and change baby.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  58. ==I am just hoping this “establishment” talk goes away for the general==

    Oh lord you are so right, Maybee. Whoever is the nominee, t that point let us try to tone down the focus on internal perceptions of the “establishment” and “Republican elites” when the Dems and media are out there feverishly brandishing populism and “fairness” to voters.

    elissa (e9929d)

  59. 55. And Hai a profound cerebrovascular accident.

    NV and MI coming up promise to be Romany walkovers.

    Still FL blew half their vote moving up for Greasball.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  60. 58. Not to crush hope, 57% of the electorate will not vote Ogabe.

    75% of the malcontent racists are open to voting for Princess, at least in a two-way contest, just about 43%.

    Better hope you don’t lose any more.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  61. I am increasingly confused about who is an insider And who is an outsider. I have just downloaded Coburn’s book to get his side of the Gingrich story. A couple of years ago, I read Novak’s “Prince of Darkness,” which had lots of insider stuff and he really was negative about Gingrich. He wrote that Gingrich quickly deemphasized his work as Speaker to cash in with a book, like Hillary did but he had far more responsibility to manage. Coburn is conservative and a straight shooter so maybe I’ll learn something.

    Mike K (4c76c8)

  62. 61. FWIW, Neuter ostensibly ran three times for the House on a I’m going to shake things up, got elected the fourth time out and did just that.

    The ’94 sweep and Republican GA and SC owe as much to him as anyone.

    The GOP got horsewhipped by a talented liar shutting down government and impeaching his BJness. They lost 9 seats and the GOP h8ers nailed his azz.

    Out of the inner circle of friends Gingrich, Armey, Paxon, Boehner and DeLay, only Boehner managed to save his career. Only DeLay managed to get convicted, of money laundering.

    Not certain I can reject the Neut ‘outsider’ meme. Insiders like Coburn h8ing one, is not a black mark a priori.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  63. Mish on the Greece meltdown:

    The issue with CDS is that they were easy to write insurance against losses on sovereign defaults.

    US has about 1 Trillion USD in such swaps hinging on EU. These are written such that everyone is protected several times over on only the original collateral, the sovereign note.

    When people start redemption their will be a cascade over cross holdings.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  64. Quinnipiac:

    “Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has a 43 – 29 percent lead over former House Speaker Newt Gingrich among Republican likely voters in Florida, the nation’s first big-state presidential primary, according to Quinnipiac University poll released today. Only 7 percent are undecided, but 24 percent say they might change their mind by tomorrow’s election”

    Still fluid.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  65. Karl, you’re right that I was being playful in my teasing about the term “apparat,” but I was indeed sincere in saying I don’t know if I’m inside it or outside it.

    But what about you? Are you in it or outside it? Where’s Patterico? Michelle Malkin? Bill Kristol or Jonah Goldberg? Victor Davis Hanson? Cato or Heritage? Does that term even have a meaning, or is it just a sort of all-purpose slur/excuse?

    Thanks, too, for that link to “The Party Decides.” Obviously I haven’t read the book to see what evidence and argument in marshals to support its premise, but if the premise is as stated in the blurb you linked, I think it must be a very, very silly book, and possibly a counterproductive one.

    I, for one, want to see the Republican Party organization, and our current primary system, massively revised. I believe in democracy, but I also believe that our current mish-mashed and historically accidental structure incorporates populist elements that are, in the long run, inimical to both conservative and small-d democratic principles.

    The notion that the current four candidates are the best that the GOP or the conservative movement can produce is appalling.

    Beldar (493372)

  66. Bah, “evidence and argument in marshals” —> “evidence and arguments it marshals.” Sorry.

    Beldar (493372)

  67. How about Hugh Hewitt? He’s been a Romney guy since well before the 2008 election. Is he part of the apparat?

    Hewitt asked me guest-blog on his site after McCain picked Palin as his running mate. He never pre-approved a word I posted, never edited a word after I’d written it, and put absolutely no limit on what I might say while I had, effectively, the keys to (which at that time was drawing many tens of thousands of page views every day). So did I have, like, a temporary membership in the apparat? Or was I just a useful idiot for the apparat? What would the authors of “The Party Decides” say?

    Beldar (493372)

  68. The establishment, the fnork, the clique, is always
    more often to pull punches against the left, and
    berate the right, that is their problem whether here
    today, or across the bond, that is our complaint with it.

    narciso (87e966)

  69. I don’t understand how Newt can simultaneously be the heir to Reagan and yet the anti-apparat candidate. I don’t understand how the former Speaker of the House, third in line to the presidency, has somehow become an insurgent unless he’s actually an apostate, someone expelled from the apparat (presumably for heresy).

    These terms — “establishment,” “apparat,” whatever — need some Venn diagrams with labeled data points. But I think the resulting diagram is quickly going to look like quantum mechanics in action, with things transforming as soon as they’re observed, and with mutually exclusive categories simultaneously applying to the same particle. These terms just don’t seem to me to be very useful in describing what’s going on now.

    Beldar (493372)

  70. Well let’s consider how any real reform, stopped to a crawl, when Hastert came in, the consequences have been noted by the likes of Schweitzer,Abramoff was allowed to run riot, drawing in Ney and thanks to that rattlesnake Ronnie Earle, Tom Delay.

    narciso (87e966)

  71. Exactly Tom Delay is a far-lefty.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  72. these days you can define the perhaps mythical establishment as “not-base” if that helps

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  73. “…some band made Newt stop using one of their songs or his theme music…”

    This has gotten so bad on both sides of the aisle, that I wouldn’t be surprised if in the next IP bill, the pols specifically exempt the use of music in a political campaign from royalty/copyright protection issues; and it will serve the “artists” right.

    AD-RtR/OS! (b8ab92)

  74. Only DeLay managed to get convicted, of money laundering.

    Only because a Democrat DA with a vendetta cooked up a cock-and-bull story that he had to try three times before he convince a grand jury of, and then somehow managed to pull an incredibly stupid jury at trial.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  75. To this day I don’t understand how Delay didn’t get a directed acquittal.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)

  76. Exactly millhouse.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  77. but I was indeed sincere in saying I don’t know if I’m inside it or outside it.

    Heh. It’s rather like determining if one is inside or outside of the Matrix…

    It’s interesting to see how easily conservative core principles get muddied up and lost in all the swirling spill of endless semantics and terminology. I guess that keeps us from focusing too closely on the fact that once again, we are forced to settle in this election.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  78. If we had any principles Newtered Gingrich and Mittless Protection would not have decided to run.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  79. I guess that keeps us from focusing too closely on the fact that once again, we are forced to settle in this election.

    Guilty as charged, here. I can worry less about Newt’s considerable baggage when I focus on how provably liberal Mitt “Tax” Romney is.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  80. I don’t understand how Newt can simultaneously be […]

    It’s a beggars can’t be choosy thing.

    I think Newt has the potential to be a mediocre president, but that is the best Romney or Santorum would be (no offense to Santorum’s supporters… he actually is a good man, but he is not ready for this and he’s wrong on policy).

    Newt also has the potential to be a very good president. Will he be? I don’t know, but I think we’ll find out.

    Suffice it to say that with the mess the GOP is in right now, none of these guys deserves passionate support. All of them have serious problems.

    It is damn lucky for the GOP that there isn’t a credible third party right now. I am ready for one to show up.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  81. Mr. Feet, which am I? Not-base? Or base?

    ‘Cause I don’t know, any more than I know whether I’m part of the apparat or the elite or the establishment.

    Seems like I ought to fit in one category and not more — unless the categories are a load of meaningless crap, or I’m just really weird.

    I’m open to that possibility too.

    Beldar (493372)

  82. I think base means that one will pull the lever irrespective of the nominee. So you might could be base.

    I was base until very recently and now I think it’s likely I’ll watch the returns on Tuesday night in November not having cast a vote for the office of the presidency.

    What people don’t get in their analyses I don’t think is how pitch-perfect an exact replica this fiasco is of the 2008 follies.

    It’s not engaging I’d rather watch those stupid Star Wars prequels in 3-D.


    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  83. To be more clear there is a profound sense of ennui pattering about on its little cat feet what’s not getting the weight it deserves.

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  84. No base, means principles over the person, issues and ideas, not blind support because the apparat tells you so.

    narciso (87e966)

  85. yeah I thought about that Mr. narciso but once the base defects it’s not the base anymore is it no it’s not

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  86. It’s not engaging I’d rather watch those stupid Star Wars prequels in 3-D.

    What in the hell were they thinking? The Phantom Menace again?

    Come to think of it, feets, what are you thinking?

    Voting against Obama in favor of a *clone of Obama* would be justified because it’s a statement of voter rejection of the breaches of the US Constitution. They have repeatedly failed. Failed to pass a budget. Sent guns into the hands of the bad guys. Passed laws against the country’s wishes.

    There’s a long list of substantial problems.

    If we are stupid enough to nominate Romney, even if I think he will be exactly like Obama on ideology (and I don’t think that), I will vote against Obama anyway.

    What worries me… and to be honest also interests me, is the possibility of a third party if the GOP proves it just will not be the solution that must be found. Sure, that means another four years for Obama, but it also could lead to the demise of the greatest obstacle to conservative reform, with is the GOP establishment rather than the democrats. Liberals are going to exist, organically, but we don’t have much reason to have a GOP that isn’t conservative. Lately it seems like that’s the main problem with our system. They just won’t function.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  87. Lucas is on a trek to prove South Park right, remember the episode, when they put Ewoks into Raiders, What was bracing today was I went to see the “Iron Lady’ which I highly recommend there was someone who valued ideas over mere party, in part that’s why they through her overboard ultimately,
    even though she was right about the EU, she led the party through three victories.

    narciso (87e966)

  88. Racist Mormonists. John McCain said so. Do it.

    JD (48f69a)

  89. You’re probably right about me, Mr. Feet, because I’ll again vote for the GOP nominee in the general election, whoever he may be. (In Houston, we vote on those big computer screens that are sort of like a brain-damaged Kindle, not a touch-screen but something with a dial and push-buttons below the screen.)

    I gotta say, though, this is re-validating my whole impression of that Democratic meme that George W. Bush was simultaneously dumb as a post and an evil mastermind inducing sixty-five million Americans to vote against their own self-interests. Because I’m not supporting Gingrich or Santorum or Paul right now, which must mean that Karl Rove is controlling my brain even without frequent flier miles.

    Of course the MIA label from this campaign season is “maverick.” I’m waiting for Mitt to make up the big campaign posters, “Mitt the Mavericky Massachusetts Maverick Guy.” That way I’ll know he’s the establishment candidate.

    Beldar (493372)

  90. Mr. Dustin I just don’t have a lot of interest in voting for an R that’s not particularly interested in winning a mandate to do something what will help our poor pitiful little country.

    Gingrich balanced the budget once.

    And that’s really the thing what recommends him.

    But these douchebags don’t want to talk about balancing the budget they want to yammer about immigrants and abortion and moon bases and the self-evident fact that Obama is a violent economy raper.


    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  91. I would vote for George W. in a heartbeat, as long as he threw Rove under the bus.

    But yeah you can stick a fork in “maverick.”

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  92. Dubya has practically put himself into witness protection for this whole primary campaign season. If the “establishment” is desperate to sink Newt, and if the “establishment” is so powerful, then why isn’t Dubya out pimping for Mitt?

    Oh, wait. I know. Even though he led the GOP to two consecutive presidential victories, Dubya isn’t part of the establishment. (Just his dad and Karl Rove.)

    I’ll tell you who I’d like to see an endorsement from: Laura Bush. Not that that’s gonna happen. Wouldn’t be prudent, and Laura is even more prudent than her father-in-law.

    Beldar (493372)

  93. BTW, I also discount to nearly zero Newt’s claim to have balanced the budget. What balanced the budget, briefly, was the increased tax revenue driven by productivity gains in our overall economy as it absorbed and promulgated, down to the corner store level, the computer revolution that began in the 1960s and 1970s. Bill Gates had more to do with that than Newt Gingrich or Bill Clinton either one.

    Beldar (493372)

  94. That was more likely Raines early Enron accounting,
    but for a time there was a balanced budget,

    narciso (87e966)

  95. And balancing the budget in the 1990s was easy compared to our current and looming budget problems, with the double-barrel insolvency guaranteed by the application of basic arithmetic to Social Security and Medicare as the Baby Boomers qualify. The only plausible scenario for dealing with those problems is from the same guy Gingrich stabbed in the back in April by accusing him of right-wing social engineering. Pah, it makes me want to expectorate just recalling that.

    Beldar (493372)

  96. why isn’t Dubya out pimping for Mitt?

    I don’t even know if that would help Mitt, but it’s an interesting point.

    I don’t think Dubya would do something he didn’t personally believe was right. That’s reason enough not to endorse anyone, sadly.

    BTW, I also discount to nearly zero Newt’s claim to have balanced the budget.

    While it’s true, of course, that prosperity needed to pay for the government in the late 1990s came from anywhere but congress, it’s also true that Newt and others fought a difficult battle including a government shutdown and no small amount of media bias.

    Of course, Mitt also saw greatly increased tax revenue, but grew government at about the same pace, leaving about the same deficit (papered over as a budget gap, somehow).

    Even with Newt’s problems, it’s not a difficult decision.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  97. I get that parties require a measure of loyalty not merely to survive but to accomplish anything at all.

    I also get that they have a certain right to pursue their secular interests.

    But ours is a representative republic and while not designed as a two party system, it seems to work that way and has been hard wired over time to do so more perfectly with subsequent law.

    And perhaps 40% of the electorate feels disenfranchised, regardless of any objective measure.

    Reagan ran in 1968 on that premise, it’s nothing new. The party entrenched in power devotes its energy exclusively to survival, and service is ignored. The same is true of the members in pursuing their self interest.

    So how does one change a system which like with McCain-Feingold makes populist reforms to stack the deck for the entrenched?

    Vote the bums out, of course. So ABO is manifestly not our only priority. And once we are certain of achieving divided government, it can conceivably drop from preeminence.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  98. balancing the budget in the 1990s was easy compared to our current and looming budget problems,

    Such as Romneycare. We’re $20 billion further away just from that one thing.

    And Obamacare? And social security, which Mitt campaigned to preserve?

    The only plausible scenario for dealing with those problems is from the same guy Gingrich stabbed in the back

    True. what a jackass.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  99. “Some of these criticisms may be appropriate and some of them may be overstated or miss the mark. But to pretend the criticisms of Gingrich — expressed in varying degrees by commentators like George Will, Charles Krauthammer, Charles Murray, Michael Gerson, Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, Bob Tyrrell, Pat Buchanan, Mona Charen, Mark Steyn, Michael Medved, Hugh Hewitt, Bill Bennett, Karl Rove, Ramesh Ponnuru, Rich Lowry, Elliott Abrams, John Podhoretz, John Hinderaker, Jennifer Rubin, Ross Douthat, David Brooks, Yuval Levin, and the editorial writers at the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Examiner, to say nothing of a slew of conservative members/former members of Congress who worked with Gingrich in the 1990s –are rooted in their fear of “genuine change” is simply not credible.”

    – Peter Wehner

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  100. Third parties are a sure way for Obama to cruise to victory.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  101. “The real foundation, the most important part of this, is individual rights, responsibilities, and expectations of behavior. … We believe that there should be must-carry, that everybody should have health insurance, or if you’re an absolute libertarian, we would allow you to post a bond, but we would not allow people to be “free riders” failing to insure themselves and then showing up in the emergency room with no means of payment. If you have must carry, then the insurance companies have told us that we can have must-issue, and you will therefore have a system in which you don’t have to worry about cherry-picking and maneuvering. … This is the kind of general model we will be advocating.”

    – Newt Gingrich

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  102. “prawn of arab loins”

    The kind of thing a bigot would say.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  103. 98. “Gingrich stabbed in the back in April by accusing him of right-wing social engineering”

    And, exactly, what did he mean by ‘social engineering’?

    Balancing the budget over 50 years maintaining a mandated safety net? How long does it take for a given implementation to be undone for another specious purpose when there is no money?

    And, thinking as conservatives, what is the proper purpose and scope of government. To save us from ourselves?

    Conservatives assume a realistic estimate of mankind, a very limited view of our potential as creatures and motivation to mere self-interest, that nonetheless directs us to regard government warily as a necessary evil.

    We are not, however, smarter than liberals.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  104. he’s fundamental
    and he’s real agitated
    coyote ugly

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  105. I agree Mr. Beldar that Newt’s responsibility for balancing the budget is negligible but I think once in office he’d want to burnish those accolades.

    He’s vain like that.

    But he’s vain in so many other ways as well you really never know what he’s apt to burnish.

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  106. he’s a flea-bit peanut monkey
    all his friends are junkies
    but that’s not rilly true

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  107. Gary, the fact is that Ryan went out on a limb with a plausible serious reform, and that deserved some credit. Everyone always has those ‘I would do this instead’ comments, and that’s how such reforms always fail, but at minimum conservatives owed Ryan a tone of support when explaining their differences.

    Newt does have a pattern of this kind of thing.

    Compared to Mitt “free abortion” Romney, the choice isn’t too hard for me, but none of these guys deserves passionate loyalty.

    In fact, I think the main fanatic is difficult to distinguish from a moby.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  108. He’s so vain
    he prolly thinks this campaign’s all about him

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  109. greasy flatulent
    the sad little coyote
    shed a tear for Rick

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  110. Dubya has practically put himself into witness protection for this whole primary campaign season. If the “establishment” is desperate to sink Newt, and if the “establishment” is so powerful, then why isn’t Dubya out pimping for Mitt?

    My impression of Bush, post-presidency, is that he revels in living the life of a private citizen. Perhaps the “establishment” approached him and he declined to make any public declaration. I don’t have the impression that he has any intention or desire to be a tool of the GOP in any way, seemingly content to keep his views/support of candidates, private.

    Another thing, perhaps he knows more keenly than anyone that his public endorsement of a candidate might be a negative – the Blame Bush meme would be resurrected and his candidate of choice saddled with it.

    Of course, he made it clear, he was enjoying his privacy,

    “After selling this book, I’m heading back underground,” the 43rd president told NBC’s Matt Lauer while promoting his memoir, “Decision Points.”

    Dana (4eca6e)

  111. _____________________________________________

    but it also could lead to the demise of the greatest obstacle to conservative reform, with is the GOP establishment rather than the democrats.

    My take is that the system is only as non-liberal — or truly conservative — as a large portion of the electorate wants it to be, or is willing for it to be. Because there are so many squishes and leftwingers amongst the American populace (including even within factions of the Republican Party), they deserve far more blame for what we often end up with than what the “establishment” per se is pining for or not.

    And no way can many people in this country ever be characterized as of the right, or even center, when they foolishly gave the nod to a blatantly “goddamn America” ultra-liberal in 2008. That’s still evident today when many of them continue to give Jeremiah Wright’s former buddy more benefit of the doubt than they’re giving to Gingrich, Santorum, Palin, etc, etc.

    For an example of a reverse version of this, observe what has been happening in Egypt. Over there, a large percentage of its electorate has clearly been in the tank for fundamentalist Muslims versus what Egypt’s establishment (likely aligned with a Mubarak instead of a Muslim Brotherhood) would be more comfortable with. So Egyptian voters are pushing their society — and most of its politicians within it — to the right. So if that society has to be criticized for getting too cozy with pro-Sharia-law politicians and policies, the blame lies squarely with its population.

    and Laura is even more prudent than her father-in-law.

    If by “prudent” you mean ideologically squishy, or a person who has pockets of liberalism embedded in his or her mind, then, yep, Bush’s wife is prudent.

    Mark (31bbb6)

  112. Gingrich and Romney are jackalopes.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  113. What bothers me about addressing entitlements first is two-fold:

    It allows the feckless to just proceed on their merry way, because touching entitlements is politically infeasible, by design.

    And two, were it actually acheived, and to the degree it is successful, it frees up resources for more counter productive and useless programs, social engineering, if you will, which is the heart of the predicament that entitlements represent.

    The Department of Education, for example, is $100 Billion per year in extortion, to grease the skids of Federal power, and in turn State power over the local community.

    By no means chicken feed, it corrupts America, and isn’t that old, Carter or Nixon, I forget. This is conceivably harder than taking away the entitlement, the revenues for which, were systematically stolen from day one, as the cash flow to create more government.

    Fine entitlements need reform, but be careful that after you’ve reamed your own azz you do something about taking the broomhandle out of government’s hands.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  114. Gingrich in 2009: We need a must-carry law on health insurance!

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  115. He is utterly unaware of how offensive his disconnect with the average American is.*

    I feel that way about Mitt too but it goes way way deeper than just his money. It’s the sense that being elected president would just be a really nice thing for Mitt. Just a real neat thing to happen. A nice little cherry on his sundae. But to what end?

    Will the Tea Party remain engaged in a party led by Romney, Boehner, and McConnell?

    We can already foretell with a great degree of confidence that the midterms of a Romney administration will see a swarm of Rs promising to stand up to Romney. Now what sense does that make?

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  116. Mark (#114 — 1/30/2012 @ 7:59 pm): With due respect, I don’t need you to explain my words or reinterpret them.

    If you want to disagree with what I’ve said about Laura Bush, that’s your prerogative. Please don’t pretend that my words are any part of that, however. Thanks for your future courtesies in this regard.

    Beldar (493372)

  117. And no way can many people in this country ever be characterized as of the right, or even center, when they foolishly gave the nod to a blatantly “goddamn America” ultra-liberal in 2008. That’s still evident today when many of them continue to give Jeremiah Wright’s former buddy more benefit of the doubt than they’re giving to Gingrich, Santorum, Palin, etc, etc.

    Sure, that’s pretty damn clear. We’re way over the edge of what would seem reasonable. I still am shocked Obama won.

    even many establishment democrats insisted he was just too far and totally unelectable, citing polls and making cases very, very similar to what is said today in Romney’s favor.

    The guy is a radical, yet he’s totally electable right now.


    Because a lot of Americans will vote themselves benefits at the expense not only of the taxpayers, but of their own kids and grandkids. That’s what Romney knows when his campaign bashes folks for “killing” an entitlement.

    Since that’s a given, there must be a political group of liberals fighting to keep the spending and the entitlements preserved or expanding. But I think there also must be a group of conservatives fighting to never increase the debt ceiling, reform the entitlements, and pay for what we’re taking NOW instead of leaving a huge mess for our kids to suffer with. And the GOP seems to be standing in the place where I’d want the conservative group to be, so I see that as quite a central problem.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  118. We can already foretell with a great degree of confidence that the midterms of a Romney administration will see a swarm of Rs promising to stand up to Romney. Now what sense does that make?

    Comment by happyfeet

    Very well said.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  119. happyCarnac?

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  120. I adore Laura Bush she’s the class act all others are measured by.

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  121. “But he’s vain in so many other ways as well you really never know what he’s apt to burnish.”

    Mr. Feets – By numerous accounts, I think Mr. Newt would be burnishing some additional bimbo eruptions should he be nominated, but you never know about those things.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  122. accusations fly
    coyote buys his ticket
    loser bus… AGAIN

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  123. 110. Again, Ryan is a loyal reformer, proposing incremental reform, and Gingrich a reformer who is getting nailed on not being loyal enough.

    I don’t mind someone saying they prefer Ryan’s method to Gingrich, what I have no respect for, is thinking the loyalist is the hero or saint for that reason.

    No, the reformer gets pride of place, the loyalist is pragmatism not altruism. Romney and McCain are scoundrels, loyal as they may be, there is nothing good to be said for them.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  124. Actually, on second thought (after my comment at #119), Mark: Objection withdrawn. Say what you want. That’s your right, and I can make up my own mind whether you’re sufficiently civil to be worth engaging in conversation, and as the intellectual property lawyers like to say, there’s no realistic likelihood of confusion; no one’s likely to think you speak for me, even if you’re mangling or mocking something I’ve written. Cheers.

    Beldar (493372)

  125. _____________________________________________

    is that he revels in living the life of a private citizen

    Until Jimmy Carter changed the unspoken etiquette that ex-presidents are seen (if even that) but not heard, Bush Jr actually can be characterized as merely following proper procedure. And good for him.

    Hardly surprising that modern-day liberals like big-mouth Jimmah and scroungy Bill Clinton have shredded tradition and etiquette. They’ve dumbed down so many aspects of society, so the post-presidencies of such liberals are par for the course. But as bad as they are, I hate to think how much worse the current guy now in the White House will be when he’s playing the role of ex-president. I envision something like Jesse Jackson (or Al Sharpton), Hugo Chavez and Evita Peron all rolled into one, with a bit of Michael Moore, Oprah Winfrey and George Soros to boot.

    Mark (31bbb6)

  126. I adore Laura Bush she’s the class act all others are measured by.

    Comment by happyfeet — 1/30/2012 @ 8:06 pm

    I completely agree, happyfeet. She fairly defines grace.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  127. steel plate in head and
    coyote’s ACME® Magnet
    makes for one sad mutt

    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  128. Romney and McCain are scoundrels, loyal as they may be, there is nothing good to be said for them… certainly by gulrud


    Colonel Haiku (16032d)

  129. Mr. daley Newt is … how to say… he’s almost a recognizable, and recognizably flawed, tv character.

    But part of the role he’s taken is that it’s very hard for anyone to see Mr. Newt as the guy who gets the girl, or even fancying himself the guy who gets the girl. And he’s the furthest thing from Clintonesque imaginable.

    He’s sort of a cherubic Gerard Depardieu.

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  130. McCain never seems to understand that his wrong policies (re; interrogations, budget policy, the
    Near East,) are reasons to take issue with him.

    narciso (87e966)

  131. ___________________________________________

    If you want to disagree with what I’ve said about Laura Bush

    Beldar, so what do you believe are her innate, gut instincts? I recall reading that she was nudging her husband to be touchy-feely about the idea of same-sex marriage. Now, of course, that alone doesn’t make her or anyone else a flaming liberal—after all, Patterico is a big softie about SSM, and I wouldn’t call him a leftist. But in general terms, when a person deems that such a basic, fundamental pillar of culture (ie, marriage) can now be twisted and turned, it’s not too much of a stretch to theorize that he or she will be far too easygoing about stretching socio-political boundaries in other ways.

    BTW, both of the leading Republicans don’t mind the idea of government forcing people to buy health insurance.

    America (and the Western World too) in the 21st century is awash in liberal sentiments, liberal biases.

    Mark (31bbb6)

  132. Romneybots are desperate.

    Gingrichbots are too.

    Dohbiden (ef98f0)

  133. “He’s sort of a cherubic Gerard Depardieu.”

    Mr. Feets – Gerard is pretty cherubic himself these days.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  134. Shark Jumping Contest in Aisle 3.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  135. There is such a thing as being civil, Mark, Mexico
    has been under the PAN for a dozen years, Argentina
    may be irreversible, in part thanks to QE 2,( thanks
    Ben,) the most interesting was this establishment deal in Italy, where they chose to hold off elections for a time.

    narciso (87e966)

  136. Balancing the Budget…
    With all of the sincerity and honesty residing within the Halls of Congress, I’m surprised that every Budget isn’t “balanced”.
    Yes, they “balanced” four consecutive budgets, and then promptly passed supplemental spending appropriations that drove each and every one over the brink into the red.
    How can I say that?
    Easy, I just looked at the end-of-fiscal-year reports by Treasury that showed that at no time during the last thirty + years did the National Debt decline at the conclusion of a Fiscal Year.
    So, they draw up a fantasy that says: Look at me, I’m a Balanced Budget.
    Then, it’s Spend, Spend, Spend, till her Daddy takes the T-Bird away – except Daddy is a prime enabler, and never does.

    BTW, narciso, PAN has elected the last two El Presidente’s, but I don’t think they ever had control of the “Congress” in all that time.

    AD-RtR/OS! (c544cc)

  137. Shhh . . . Kevin is scanning the wireless, looking for that “Palin endorses Newt” breaking news flash . . . . .

    Icy (ad8d03)

  138. I’m glad I finally saw an article that articulates exactly what has evolved without reverting back on a candidate’s stances 20 years ago. Romney, on all the major issues is a conservative. There are more people that believe him this time around than the last time and Romney WAS the conservative candidate endorsed by Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, and Mark Levin in the last primary. This time around Romney is even further right than he was the last time and the “establishment” supports him. So aren’t a lot of rank and file voters for a plethora of reasons. G.H.W Bush,Dole, G.W. Bush, and then McCain. Romney is to the right of all of them when we look at what they believed at the time they got the nomination. Voters are starting to get that now… finally.

    Dave B (982f20)

  139. Axiomatic it is that a humble ham sandwich could beat Urkel.

    Shame we’ve only bulgar wheat gruel in the cupboard.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  140. ” Romney WAS the conservative candidate endorsed by Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, and Mark Levin in the last primary.”

    Against McVain and Huckster. Context.

    Any way you slice and dice ’em, the omelet is a mouthful of merde.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  141. 139. But every budget over the past 1000 days has been balanced.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  142. I haven’t listened to Rush in a long time, but he’s on fire today.

    Rush seems to think Romney is a liar today, btw, so if Rush’s word means something to you… well…

    In reality, it means nothing, right? It’s just a confirmation bias thing?

    If you’re saying free abortion, free healthcare for illegals, a penalizing gun tax, huge tax increases, and spending such as Romneycare (which is ridiculously high) are conservative, well, I guess you really should vote for Romney.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  143. 133. But he moved the discussion forward. Now Dear Leader avoids torture with Predators and sharing classified info with Gitmo detainees.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  144. 145. I do hold the ABO simplisme against Rush.

    And the fact he’s a Republican.

    OTOH, I could trust myself in a bestball foursome with Rush and a 5-Iron in my hand. First Duffer? I’d hang fer sure.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  145. I do hold the ABO simplisme against Rush.

    Nobody’s perfect!

    He is very good today. Not that I listen to him often, so maybe he’s always this good?

    Dustin (401f3a)

  146. 148. Oh, I agree Dusty. Rush is the best. The Hope of Amerikkka taxi is shut down today for RSV and I’m missing my fix.

    Thanks for the play by play, please ignore my attempt at humour.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

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