Newslinks for Wednesday December 28, 2011Posted on 12/28/2011
VIDEO: Gingrich on Ron Paul: "His views are totally outside the mainstream of virtually every decent American". The former House Speaker says he wouldn't vote for Paul if he was the GOP candidate.
Mitt Romney in striking distance of Iowa win - Politico
- Mark Halperin says Romney's campaign has been charmed and crafty — and is now positioned to pull off a decisive Hawkeye masterstroke - TIME
- For Romney, stealth campaign brings real hopes of winning Iowa - Washington Post
- In Iowa, Romney Ignores Rivals, Targets Obama - NPR
John Hinderaker at PowerLine backs Romney: "It is time for Republicans to get serious. After flirting with just about every candidate in a large presidential field, is is time to come home to the one candidate who has the demonstrated ability to run the largest organization in the United States, the Executive Branch of the federal government; who has never been touched by the slightest taint of scandal; whose success in the private sector makes him the outsider that Republicans say they are looking for; and who has by far the best chance of beating President Obama: Mitt Romney."
- "Newt Gingrich began his closing arguments in Iowa Tuesday afternoon by challenging former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney to a 90-minute debate and comparing his experience as a champion of supply-side economics with Mr. Romney’s record as a “Massachusetts moderate.”" - WSJ
- Gingrich Spokesman: Romney is "Flirting with European socialism" - Fox
- Pro-Gingrich Super PAC: Romney is '2nd most dangerous man in America' - MSNBC
- Gingrich pledges positive ad campaign, but whacks his rivals on the campaign trail - Weekly Standard
Meanwhile, at RedState, Erick Erickson backs Gingrich over Romney: "Put simply — as Governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney moved the state left, socializing its healthcare system and doing nothing to stop gay marriage until he knew it was too late to do anything about it. As Speaker of the House of Representatives, Newt Gingrich moved the nation right with a balanced budget and welfare reform."
Jonathan S Tobin at Commentary dissents: "The argument that Gingrich — whose deviations from conservative principles over the years are too numerous to count — is more authentically conservative than Romney is unsustainable."
- "Newt Gingrich said Tuesday he wouldn't vote for Ron Paul if the Texas congressman won the 2012 GOP nomination. Speaking to CNN's Wolf Blitzer, Gingrich slammed Paul as out of line with mainstream Republican viewpoints, including his stance on Israel, Iran, and September 11." - CNN
- Republican rivals unleash broadside on Paul in Iowa - New York Times
Don't believe the mythology about Iowa, voting has tracked the national campaign - Michael Crowley for TIME
- "I want to be America's Margaret Thatcher," Bachmann said. "I want to be America's Iron Lady." - CBS
- "Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, has been touted as the sleeper candidate by none other than 2008 Iowa caucuses winner Mike Huckabee." - Fox
- The Iowa caucus will begin to thin the Republican field as those without a solid organization will become electoral roadkill - Daily Beast
- Perry sues Virginia elections board to gain ballot access - HotAir
- Perry shifts abortion views: No exception for rape, incest - LA Times | CBS
- Appealing to Evangelicals, Hopefuls Pack Religion Into Ads - New York Times
- Hispanic Susana Martinez Has Conservative Cred, High Approval Ratings... and speculation about her being a good VP choice grows - Roll Call
What should be encouraging all of the Republican candidates is the lead a generic Republican has over President Obama in the latest polls - Pete du Pont in the Wall Street Journal
Du Pont also lists the six things that most unite the GOP candidates:
- Less government spending
- Lower taxes on businesses and individuals
- Repeal of ObamaCare and Medicare reform
- Opening up energy production to the vast U.S. resources
- Free-er trade
- And finally, getting the government out of the business of picking winners and losers
One good idea each from the seven Republican presidential candidates - Ross Douthat in the New York Times
"To hear Donald Trump tell it, “millions of people” are waiting for him to make an endorsement in the Republican presidential primary. And at some point, he says, he’ll likely grace a candidate with one — that is, unless he decides to run himself as an independent." - Washington Post
The third party factor
- "For all the roller-coaster tumultuousness of the primary season, the general election promises another strange jolt: the likely presence on the ballot in all 50 states of a third-party nominee — identity, and ideology, to be determined." - Ruth Marcus in the Washington Post
- More roads lead to possible Third-Party Bid - WSJ
Obama seeks $1.2 trillion debt ceiling increase - CNN
Bill Nelson's retirement as centrist Democrat in conservative-leaning Florida increases likelihood of GOP takeover of Senate - WSJ
"Nelson is the seventh member of the Democratic Caucus to announce his retirement, and his decision means Republicans can shift resources elsewhere and spend more targeting other vulnerable Senate Democrats this cycle, including Sens. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) and Jon Tester (D-Mont.)." - The Hill
"Mr. Nelson's retirement means Republicans are closer to picking up the four seats they'll need to retake the Senate in 2012. It's also a reminder that when Democrats govern from the left, they do so at the cost of the red state Members needed to build a majority." - WSJ editorial
Roll Call has another way of seeing it: Senate Democrats Losing Least Supportive Member
And for some cold water on GOP hopes Hotline has this: "There are encouraging signs for Democrats. In the two races where the party stands a serious chance of picking up a seat -- Nevada and Massachusetts - recruiting has yielded candidates that have run solid campaigns so far. And the lack of top notch Republican gets in places like Florida, Missouri, and Pennsylvania have been an unexpected blessing for the party."
"Achieving parity with the Democrats in campaign spending would be no small feat. Yet it appears possible." - Fred Barnes in the Wall Street Journal looks at how groups like American Crossroads are countering the way union money pushed America leftwards.
National Review goes Establishment Republican - Jeffrey Lord for the American Spectator
Paul Bremer: President Obama made a serious mistake in withdrawing all American forces from Iraq
"A residual American military presence in Iraq would have helped us achieve three security goals: striking al Qaeda and Iranian terrorists still active in Iraq; helping train Iraqi security forces; and dampening tensions along the "green line," the contested demarcation between the Kurdish north and Arab south. Our withdrawal makes all three objectives more difficult to sustain." - Paul Bremer in the Wall Street Journal
And finally... Politico has a gallery of Rick Santorum's trademark turtle necks
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