One of the Republican weaknesses is that we rely too much on consultants and too much on talking points, and we don’t rely enough on actually knowing things.Newt Gingrich • In an interview with David Brody. Not quite sure what the political calculus is here, as admitting publicly that your entire party doesn’t know what it’s talking about is rarely good politics. However, not “actually knowing things” would seem to be a disqualifying factor for someone running for president, so Newt’s obviously exempting himself from this assessment. source (via • follow)
It’s time for Michelle [sic] Bachmann to go.Tea party training group American Majority’s president, Ned Ryun • Offering up an assessment of the GOP candidate for president. Ryun doesn’t seem too pleased with Bachmann’s campaign thus far, claiming that she “has ridden her tea party credentials from obscurity to a national platform like no other.” With a wide reach — the group is active in seven states and trains thousands of budding activists — the group could prove dangerous to her presidential run. Even though Bachmann’s campaign manager claimed in response that Ryun is a Rick Perry supporter (Ryun denies the endorsement), American Majority has not endorsed any candidate, saying they “don’t care which one of the personalities wins, as long as they’re conservative.” We’re assuming they’d prefer if the winner wasn’t Bachmann, however. source (via • follow)
curiousontheroad said: Do these polls mean anything at this time? We haven’t even had the first primary yet, and last election season polls were notoriously unreliable. And what’s the margin of error on this one? Aren’t Romney and Cain just statistically tied?
mdt says: Well, Trump was once at 26%. Perry has been as high as 29%. Bachmann hit 30% a while back. All meaningless. These polls don’t equate well to measuring the dynamics of the primaries. Cain hasn’t visited Iowa since the straw poll. He’ll collapse.
» SFB says: Ok, let’s be fair. It’s still early, and the lead has changed many times already. Look at this less as a barometer of who’s going to be president and more as a barometer of focus: We’re going to hear a lot from Cain at the next debate and in the press as a result of this. The secret for him will be to actually keep it up and build upon his polling, which Mitt has done well. And to the margin-of-error-question, the PPP poll has a margin of error of 4.5 percent, meaning that, in this poll, he’s straight-up ahead. The NBC News/WSJ poll, however, has a plus/minus of 5.35 percent, which means that in that one, they’re statistically tied. Ultimately, though, even considering that, he essentially was a non-entity two months ago, so this is a significant jump. — Ernie @ SFB
A top staffer to Eric Cantor is leaving the House majority leader’s office to launch a Super PAC aimed at raising Cantor’s national profile, sources told Influence Alley. The PAC will be run by Cantor’s deputy chief of staff John Murray and would give Cantor a vehicle he could use to run for vice president …Sources: Cantor Launching Super PAC To Position for VP - Influence Alley (via brooklynmutt)
» All aboard the Cain Train! Republicans in North Carolina, Nebraska, and West Virginia want Herman Cain as their nominee—he leads all of his opponents in a new PPP poll. A Washington Post/ABC poll released today showed Cain tied with Perry for second nationally, and two polls last week also showed evidence of Cain Fever sweeping the nation. This seems to be at the expense of Rick Perry, who’s collapsing just as fast as Cain is rising (in North Carolina alone, more than half of his supporters have abandoned him, and a Fox News poll last week showed him losing ten points in a month). Romney is still the (perpetually-endangered) frontrunner, but there’s a plausible argument to be made that Cain is now in the top-tier of candidates. Of course, the same thing was once said of both Donald Trump and Michele Bachmann, so take that as you will.
I was at the debate, in the audience on the right hand side about halfway back. The person who booed was just a few rows in front of us. The booing got an immediate and angry reaction from nearly everyone sitting around him, who hissed and shushed at him. Lots of loud gasps, ‘Shhhh!’ ‘No!’ ‘Shut up, you idiot!’ etc.Blogger Sarah Rumpf • Discussing what actually happened during last night’s debate, during the infamous Rick Santorum/gay soldier question. We’d like to proudly note that our writer Chris managed to get this right the first time, rather than claiming the entire crowd was booing. Rumpf explains how the spare booing managed to echo through the room so effectively, and then denounces it. “There may be different opinions among Republicans about gays in the military,” she says, “but booing a soldier is not acceptable, and all but one or two people in a crowd of thousands knew that.” (thanks Dave Weigel) source (via • follow)