Sunday, August 14, 2011

Bachmann Wins Iowa Straw Poll; Pawlenty Ends Presidential Bid, And Palin Strategizes

Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann won the Iowa Straw Poll on Saturday, a test vote five months before the Iowa caucuses. Rep. Ron Paul came in second and Governor Tim Pawlenty finished a distant third.

The results were enough for Tim Pawlenty to call it quits.

"I wish it would have been different, but obviously the pathway forward for me doesn't really exist, so we're going to end the campaign," Pawlenty told ABC's Jake Tapper.

"I'm doing this because I love this country and I want to defeat Barack Obama because I think he's got it on the wrong course," Pawlenty said of his withdrawal, "but I don't get my identity or my sense of worth or my values or my faith from politics. I get it from my personal faith in God, and I believe in this country, I love this country, I thought I would have been a great president."

T-Paw ruled out a vice presidential nomination. "That's not something I'm even going to consider," he said. Well, at least not until someone asks him.

Pawlenty's big problem was fundraising, and with Texas governor Rick Perry getting into the race, he simply couldn't afford to keep going.

The same is probably true of the other marginal GOP candidates, John Huntsman, Herman Cain and Rick Santorum,and I expect them to drop out in the next few months.Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul have no chance whatsoever to get the nomination, but they'll stay in as long as possible just to generate attention.

While the Straw Poll has some importance,it's worth keeping in mind that we're talking about a total turnout of about 15,000 votes, so like the Iowa cauci, it's an indication more of the organization and zeal of a candidate's followers rather than their actual support.

At present, the GOP field has narrowed to Mitt Romney, Michele Bachmann, and Rick Perry. You can also include Sarah Palin if she gets in. Which , by way of an interesting sidebar, is what she was speculating about to a swarm of reporters in Iowa, when asked what kind of a campaign she'd run when and if:

“Each campaign that I’ve ever run in these 20 years of elected office have been kind of unconventional -- right, Todd? We’ve always been outspent two to one, 10 to one, five to one; never won any polls heading into election night but usually won the election. So it would be unconventional and very grass-roots. Very grass-roots. And I wouldn’t be out there looking for hires out of that political bubble that seem to result in the same old ideas, the same old talking points, the things that Americans get so sick and tired of hearing and kind of suffering through.

“You know, we want new. We want new energy. We want conviction and passion and candidness -- even if through that candidness you make mistakes and you say things like ‘the executive power in Texas is different than the executive power in Alaska.’ . . . I’m just saying that candidness, not fearing so much what the interpretation is going to be when it comes to the comments and positions you’re articulating but just speaking from the heart and saying, ‘Here’s where I think America needs to head, and here’s how I think we can turn the economy around, and here’s what I’ve done in the past to show you truly a foundation of where my beliefs come from of what works in a small town, in a state, in a big industry like oil and gas -- what is it that can be done to turn things around.’ I’ll express that and not fearing what the ramifications of the expressions would be.”

She was obviously doing a little thinking out loud about how she would run a campaign against the current field.I'd say she hasn't opted out yet at all.

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1 comment:

louielouie said...

the american people wouldn't know conviction, passion, and candidness if it hit 'em in the frikking face.
bunch of dumm masses.