Election Watch Coverage Here: With Citizen Watchdog

Tuesday, November 6th, 2012

You can watch election coverage hosted by Tony Katz and featuring commentators and activists across the country here:

Starts at 6 pm eastern. See you then!



A Proactive Mitt Vote

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

When John McCain suspended his campaign after finally having some positive momentum post-Palin’s electrifying RNC speech, I knew it was over. It was quite possibly the dumbest political move I had ever seen and at that point, politics had been my focus for only three years.

Disheartened and discouraged, I soldiered on because Barack Obama would be, well, what he was: Bad for the economy, bad for international relations, and generally contemptuous of anyone who did not see things his way. It’s been worse than I imagined.

I joked on Twitter that I’d vote for a roasted turnip over Barack Obama.

My choice lost the GOP primary. I thought I was stuck voting for a turnip. I’ve been wrong. It has been a pleasant surprise.

Mitt Romney has shown himself to be an able, flexible, proactive campaigner. He’s had the press nearly universally against him and cheerfully plowed forward.

Strategically, Mitt is never put off by Obama’s silly mind games. The press’ obsession with Romney non-gaffes over Obama’s actual missteps has been … I’m at a loss for words. Put it this way: The press has so staked its existence on Barack Obama that it has decided to go down with the ship. No rats flee. No rats even attempt modest objectivity. And still, Mitt stays on his positive, pro-American message.

Policy wise, Mitt seems technocratic. That is, he doesn’t dislike government, per se, he dislikes how it is managed, and by golly, he’s going to do some restructuring.

Romney’s urge to reorder should comfort Democrats terrified that the business of government is going away with a Republican. President Romney sees a bureaucracy worth saving. That should inspire Dems, but no.

The Democrat position seems to be “Just as I am Lord.” Please, leave every bloated agency fat and inefficient. Keeping the agency and trimming the fat? Unthinkable.

Now, I go to the kill-the-agency-then-burn-it-in-a-fire school of government thought. I’m likely to be disappointed by Romney’s trimming of the verge.

Still, trimming is better than growing.

Here’s what’s surprised me about Mitt: I thought he was more of a nobless-oblige driven blue blood like George W. Bush. Oh, I know GW is from Texas. But underneath is a north-easterner who feels, like Obama, that the little people just can’t quite take care of themselves. It lead to many maddening policies.

Mitt is not that guy. Mitt’s midwestern sensibilities have hung on more than I thought. In addition, choosing to be a self-made man has given him confidence not only in himself but in people.

There’s an underlying lack of faith that statists have in people. They believe people incapable of self-sufficiency. Thus, laws have to be written to “protect” the citizen from himself. Mitt doesn’t seem to believe that. He has a live and let-live attitude and a firm faith in people. The attitude is refreshing.

When I get discouraged at the economic misery, I remind myself that multiple states have enjoyed quiet but quite solid turn arounds with good policy. Wisconsin and Indiana come immediately to mind. Bobby Jindal has been righting the Louisiana ship. This is happening all over America and it’s encouraging. California is a notable exception. Illinois seems to be a few disastrous steps behind.

Still, those turnarounds remind me that America is not lost. The situation is dire. There can be no doubt that whomever is elected faces some nearly impossibly difficult choices. My concern is that Barack Obama would just avoid them and his indecision would be a decision.

Mitt Romney will make the decisions. Some will be tough. They are bound to displease someone–all big decisions do, but what choice do we have? Doesn’t it feel like time is up?

So, it was easy for me to vote for Mitt Romney. Not as a defensive position, but as a positive decision. Maybe Mitt is just the man for the season. Maybe he can manage this failing state out of its bankruptcy. I say maybe not because I doubt his abilities but because the task is so formidable.

The media, left, and poll watchers seem 84% convinced that Barack Obama is a shoe-in. Or, it’s tied 48-48. 47-47. The models have Obama running away with the electoral college.

In my bones, I don’t believe this. Some states are going to be lost, no doubt. But this guaranteed result? Bah.

Vote. I feel good about my Mitt vote and you should, too.



Mitt Romney Supporters To Rick Santorum Supporters: Submit Fools

Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

Mitt’s followers are really sick of the competition. The stakes are so high, time to come together on the inspiring Mitt banner. He’s nearly flawless. Better than that, he’s awesome. Also, he’s all that we have.

All the remaining candidates, including Romney, are flawed and would be nearly fatally so if they weren’t running against such a weak president.

Times have changed. A big government Republican is not what most of the GOP, or country, want, but that’s what is before them.

None of these guys are much likable. None are trustworthy in the ways of trimming the fat of the government.

Barack Obama isn’t trustworthy about cutting government but he is likable. We may not like him, but most of America still does or really wants to.

So.

The argument that Mitt Romney is the only guy, the smartest guy, the electable guy gets wearying in the face of clear evidence that he’s imperfect and runs a kinda nasty campaign all while expecting kid-glove treatment by others. In addition, his core is so middle of the road, people don’t trust that he will do anything he says he will.

An independent, fiscally conservative friend in Michigan shared this with me after I asked who got their vote:

I did not vote. I was contemplating it on the way home and decided against it.

I had determined I would have to vote for Romney since Santorum still elicits no confidence from me. The thought of it disgusted me so much that I chose to not vote.

Primary voting has been rather suppressed everywhere. If it weren’t for the Democrats in Michigan, would turnout have been lower?

In a disastrous Obama administration, it’s difficult to fathom that people on the right are so completely disheartened.

Still, they feel about Mitt Romney the way they felt about Health Care Reform: He’s being rammed down their throats.

It makes people a little less forgiving when the Super McAwesome Candidate flubs a stupid question by a stupid reporter. Like Josh Trevino says, “The real problem with this Blunt/Romney thing is that it was eminently plausible as first reported.”

Also, Britt Hulme gets to the heart of it:

It’s that eagerness to jam Santorum and the absolute insistence by Mitt’s followers that he’s the nicest and smartest and most electable guy in the field, left that makes folks dig in their heels. If Mitt were such a stellar candidate and seemed so nice and electable, people would forgive the foibles. The problem is that he doesn’t.

Obama is so awful that a GOP turnip would get most of the bases’ vote but it’s naive to believe that folks like my independent friend will make the effort to do so. They’ll just stay home because “they all suck”.

Will the not-Mitt crowd submit? Some might. I’m afraid this acrimonious primary will make it difficult for everyone to fall in line this time.



Mitt Romney Could Have Been A Shoo-In — Updated

Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

Mitt Romney, for all the irritating inevitability story lines, could have been inevitable. Instead, he’s fighting for his life against an annoying former Senator who lost his last race by 18 points. No big loss, there. Mitt didn’t even run again, so sure he was of losing.

Mitt should already be the nominee but he’s not and the reason for that is simple: He could not throw the center right even one conservative bone. Not. One.

Wait, check that. Two bones. He pandered on illegal immigration, but that was just to get rid of Rick Perry. Remember him? Yeah, the guy who was a fiscal conservative with social conservative underpinnings and oodles of executive experience. Oh right, he had a few bad debates.

But I digress.

So we’re left with Mitt duking it out with Rick Santorum and Newt who has been quiet as of late. Or is it that the press and pundits want him gone and/or are bored of him so just refuse to engage with or talk to him?

No matter. Mitt should have this wrapped up and he doesn’t. He could have it wrapped up if only he were willing to pick one conservative idea that he likes now, liked once and has consistently liked.

Problem? There isn’t one. Even the illegal immigration stuff is undermined by his workers being illegal aliens. He’s not that offended by them, evidently.

If there was a government intervention, Mitt loved it.

He has a difficult time speaking passionately about a conservative idea because he’s worked hard at being bland and inoffensive to liberals.

Mitt has made almost no effort to shore up the base. The calculation has been thus: Obama is such an atrocity that the Republican candidate shouldn’t offend the center, the base will do what it’s told.

That might have been true if the Republican party hadn’t already burned every bridge with the base. They didn’t just burn them though, they torched them and put conservative heads on spikes along the way. (Not sure about that? What happened to Sarah Palin couldn’t have happened if the Republican hierarchy, lead by John McCain hadn’t sat on their hands.)

The Republicans have been pushing back at the conservative base. They insulted them with No Child Left Behind and creating loads of agencies in a post-9/11 world and sealed the deal with government bailouts of banks, Wall Street, GM, and every sort of shifting money from taxpayers to irresponsible institutions and people.

And then there’s Obamacare. And Romneycare. Does this even need to be explained? Yanking the choice away from people responsible enough to buy insurance and making the responsible pay…for less.

And Romney defends it all.

If he could convincingly say that he made mistakes and give a soaring speech defending liberty and the American way, that contrast would be enough to ensure his candidacy. He’d win in a landslide.

He simply can’t do it. For months, he’s had the opportunity to speak imaginatively and passionately about America, the individual and possibility.

So, he fights for his life in the GOP primary losing to a guy who at least believes something. Santorum, is rather annoying but he at least believes the conservative rhetoric he speaks about.

Is Santorum a big-government guy? Yep. He’s G.W. Bush part deux. GOP base voters are deciding that’s better than Obama-lite.

Mitt Romney could have had it all and a lot easier, but he just can’t close the deal. He just can’t sell conservative…anything.

UPDATED:

Bethany Mandel has some advice for the Romney team:

If Romney can’t shake the perception others have of him, this will be a replay of the 2000 Gore campaign. In the summer before the 2000 election, the Washington Post reported that 65 percent of Americans thought Gore’s “stiffness” was a problem for his campaign, and the same amount of voters said the word “inspiring” did not apply to him. Leading up to the 2000 election, “Saturday Night Live‘s” number one caricature of Gore was how Romney will be portrayed if he becomes the nominee: A robot. With a public relations shop as bad as Romney’s, get ready for some reruns.

Go read the whole thing.

And, via TPM, ugh:



The Romney V. Santorum Cage Match

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum throwing down. They will cut…

Oh, who are we kidding? This is the prissiest primary slap fight anyone could imagine. When pressed, both whine. When criticized, both wear their persecution complex like a hounded high school nerd.

This primary is insufferable and has been. There shouldn’t be an enthusiasm gap in the primary, yet here we are.

What is amusing in this situation: All the die-hard defenders of both men.

I don’t get it.

Don’t you have to feel ardently about someone in order to defend their honor? Who feels passionately about these guys?

Romney feels passionately about nothing.

Santorum feels passionately about everything.

Consequently, it’s difficult to prioritize. It’s difficult to latch onto an issue and identify with either candidate.

Neither man is a bad man. In fact, they both seem to be quite good people.

They’re just throwbacks to a former GOP mentality where the government solved almost everything in not so stark contrast to liberals who were quite sure they knew how to make the world right with the government.

It’s too bad we have these men at this time. We could really use a dedicated conservative willing to articulate passionately conservative values and push forth a grand vision for a self-reliant America.

Unfortunately, we don’t have a man or woman like that still in the running.

We have Mitt and Rick.

Both men are incremental and concerned about trimming around the edges. Both men practices a big government interventionism.

But they’re conservative in practice, you say.

Yeah, so is Barack Obama. He has the high expectations, early bedtime and family man image. He has the rather boring demeanor and technospeak that puts one to sleep.

Philosophically, politically and policy-wise, though, Barack Obama wants to make the world “fair”, he wants to save those who he deems needs saving, he wants to make sure the government is nudging people in a certain direction to achieve a certain kind of behavior.

Is that very different than Romney or Santorum? Using the government to achieve big ends?

It’s time for the government to BUTT OUT. It’s time for a leader to be responsible.

On Mike Koolidge’s radio program, I asked where the candidate is who articulates (forget Reagan’s vision) but John F. Kennedy’s vision,”Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.”

Where is that guy? He’s nowhere in this primary and he’s certainly not Barack Obama.

So. We have a slap fight over trivialities for the GOP primary when we should be having a cage match over ideas and big visions.

Enthusiasm gap? It’s downright depressing.



Mitt’s Cap-N-Trade And Environment Problems

Monday, December 5th, 2011

So the blogger journalist at the WaPo in Mitt’s hip pocket points out Newt’s problems on Cap-n-Trade. And I’ll grant everyone, there’s a there there. But it’s not like the Most Favored Candidate is pristine.

Consider this from the WaPo itself (the other part of the paper not the Mitt 2012 Cheerleading section) about Mitt and global warming, “The fact that he doesn’t change his position . . . that’s the upside for us,” said one Romney adviser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak on behalf of the campaign. “He’s not going to change his mind on these issues to put his finger in the wind for what scores points with these parts of the party.”

So, like Obamacare, Mitt’s sticking with his principles…of manmade global warming.

And there’s this:

2005: Romney Endorsed Regional Cap And Trade System, Saying “This Is A Great Thing For The Commonwealth … We Can Effectively Create Incentives To Help Stimulate A Sector Of The Economy And At The Same Time Not Kill Jobs. … I’m Convinced It Is Good Business.” “Governor Mitt Romney signaled his support yesterday for a regional agreement among Northeastern states to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, despite opposition from power companies and other business interests that have been lobbying the administration against the plan. In opening remarks to a clean-energy conference in Boston, Romney said the first-of-its-kind agreement, under which Massachusetts and eight other states could be required to cut power plant emissions by 2020, will not hurt the economy, as some have charged. He argued that it would spur businesses to develop clean — and renewable-energy technology to market worldwide. ‘This is a great thing for the Commonwealth,’ Romney said, his strongest endorsement of the pact to date. ‘We can effectively create incentives to help stimulate a sector of the economy and at the same time not kill jobs.’… Romney said yesterday that he had some concerns about the agreement, known as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, but he endorsed this and other clean-energy initiatives by saying they would stimulate the development of technology that Massachusetts companies could sell to other states and countries, as the emphasis on climate change grows. ‘I’m convinced it is good business,’ Romney said.” [Boston Globe, 11/8/05>]

Bleh.

Everyone knows that Newt and Mitt bought the leftist clap-trap about the man-made part of what is also known as normal climate changes. And had Mitt gone the Pawlenty route and said, “You know what? I screwed up.” Well, I wouldn’t like it, but I would forgive it. I did Pawlenty, anyway. (What I couldn’t forgive was Pawlenty not taking Mitt out on Obamacare when he had the chance. Come. On!)

And the reason why buying this junk science was and is such a big deal is that all sorts of policy “solutions” to non-existent “problems” would cost taxpayers a lot of money. And even still, it is anyway.

We have stupid light bulbs foisted on us by stupid government regulations. We have stupid EPA regulations that are killing all sorts of potential jobs.

And the Obama administration is making it worse with folks who worked for Romney.

So, yes, Newt has a problem and so does Mitt.

Are we to pretend that these guys won’t be swayed by every wind of leftist doctrine? They’ve been swayed too much.



Meanwhile, Mitt Still Can’t Win

Monday, October 31st, 2011

In all of the Herman Cain hub-bub, George Will’s very thoughtful (and obvious) point that Mitt Romney can’t win the nomination gets lost.

For those who missed it, here’s what George Will said:

Romney, supposedly the Republican most electable next November, is a recidivist reviser of his principles who is not only becoming less electable; he might damage GOP chances of capturing the Senate. Republican successes down the ticket will depend on the energies of the Tea Party and other conservatives, who will be deflated by a nominee whose blurry profile in caution communicates only calculated trimming.

Republicans may have found their Michael Dukakis, a technocratic Massachusetts governor who takes his bearings from “data” (although there is precious little to support Romney’s idea that in-state college tuition for children of illegal immigrants is a powerful magnet for such immigrants) and who believes elections should be about (in Dukakis’s words) “competence,” not “ideology.” But what would President Romney competently do when not pondering ethanol subsidies that he forthrightly says should stop sometime before “forever”? Has conservatism come so far, surmounting so many obstacles, to settle, at a moment of economic crisis, for this?

No one wants to talk about this little detail.

Romney will do fine with some independents but 75% of his own party does not like him. This matters. This matters for volunteers, ground game and enthusiasm.

Anyway, I said this a month ago and I say it again, Mitt is a problematic candidate for Republicans and a dream for Democrats.



Mitt Romney: The New McCain

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Last night, conservative commentators Ann Coulter and Laura Ingraham made news for telling Sarah Palin, “To fish or cut bait.” A friend on Twitter said,”If Sarah Palin has lost Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter….” To which, I responded that Sarah Palin never had Coulter or Ingraham. Ann has been jonesin’ for Chris Christie–whom I would bet she doesn’t believe it’s too late for him to enter the race. Laura is predisposed to Romney.

What struck me about the talk about Sarah Palin, though, was that it really wasn’t about Sarah Palin at all.  The Ann-Laura analysis was only about Sarah Palin to the extent that Ann and Laura believe Sarah Palin, or conservatives like her, are unelectable.

Many, if not most DC conservative pundits believe that only a moderate, middle-of-the-road guy can win the election.

I disagree. In fact, I think a center-right moderate is very nearly a sure loser in the 2012 election. Specifically, I think Mitt Romney is a troubled candidate. Here’s why:

Social conservatives don’t trust Romney.
Think that’s no biggie? Social conservatives voted against John McCain in the Republican primary. They thought he was weak candidate. They found him untrustworthy. Sound familiar? Mitt Romney has flip-flopped on the abortion issue depending on what’s politically convenient. A great way to suppress turnout among social conservatives, again, is to have a weak candidate, again.

Small government types (aka Tea Party) don’t trust Romney.
They see Romneycare and flee for the hills. It’s not that they mind Massachusetts residents binding themselves with their own velvet handcuffs, it’s that they don’t like the big government impulse Mitt Romney has that would see the government as a better solution than the private sector. Over and over, the government has shown itself to be unwise stewards and yet Mitt Romney trusted the government to control a big portion of each citizen’s life. Romneycare is a failure.

Evangelicals don’t trust Romney.
I live in Texas. Don’t shoot the messenger. Many religious conservatives see the Church of Latter Day Saints as a cult. My choice after Fred Thompson in 2008 was Mitt Romney. Evangelicals? Well, they loved Mike Huckabee–who I viewed as a charlatan. No matter. People worry about a conservative winning the north. Why doesn’t anyone ever talk about Romney winning the south?

Romney as milquetoast.

John McCain refused to go negative on Barack Obama. Afraid of being cast as racist? Probably. Still hoping for fawning press? Definitely. I see the same streak of public weakness in the face of what’s going to be a brass-knuckled campaign from Romney. Now, the Romney campaign is dirty. No fear there. It’s the perception that I’m talking about. Passive aggressive, below-the-belt punching by proxies will be de riguer with a Romney campaign. Fine. That’s politics, too. This year, though, the GOP candidate needs to be willing to scrap openly with Obama. This is, of course, why people like Ann Coulter yearn for a Chris Christie candidacy. They know that the populace wants to see some fight. They want a happy warrior. Mitt Romney seems like a bland banana in contrast to a rather boring Obama.

A word about, strategy and messaging. In 2008, one of the arguments against Sarah Palin as Vice President, and the only one I saw as even mildly valid, was that Sarah Palin’s short term as Governor would undermine the experience argument with Barack Obama. No, it was not fair, because she’d been in public service for years, because she was the Vice Presidential nominee and he was the presidential nominee, etc. Still, the people who blew up that argument (namely Dems and the DC GOP Smartypants Set) are the same ones saying Mitt Romney is an awesome candidate.

Well, a Romney candidacy effectively neutralizes the single most hated legislation ever passed in the history of America. From a strategic perspective, having Romney as the nominee is just stupid. The left can say, accurately, that Obamacare was built off the Romneycare template and Romney loves (and still defends) Romneycare.

A conservative candidate, in contrast, will be able to show the differences both rhetorically and in action. Rick Perry is ideally suited to do this. Conservative policies have created a haven in Texas. The contrast to liberal policies nationwide, and in Massachusetts, is easily defined and patently obvious.

It’s conventional wisdom that a Romney campaign is a shoe-in to win in the general election. The conventional wisdom is, as it was with McCain, wrong. Mitt Romney has a deeply flawed campaign–one that counts on an awful Barack Obama, rather than a great conservative message. Again, this is reminiscent of the McCain candidacy. The “I-hate-Bush, too” wink-wink straddle wrapped in mild words for opponents and harsh words for allies does not win elections. The candidate this year will need the base to be fired up.

The base won’t be fired up with a Romney campaign. They’ll be angry at more of the same. They view the problem to be not just Democrat policies but the Republican acquiescence when faced with these policies.

A Mitt Romney candidacy would dishearten and fracture the Republican base.

Why doesn’t anyone ever talk about that?



CNN Poll: Any GOP Candidate Nearly Beats President Obama

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

This CNN poll came out with great fanfare because it put Huckabee ahead of Romney and Palin. But when all three of these folks are put up against President Obama, this is the result:

What about the hypothetical general election matchup in 2012 against President Obama?

The poll shows Obama topping Romney 53 percent to 45 percent, beating Huckabee 54 percent to 45 percent, defeating Gingrich 55 percent to 43 percent and topping Palin 55 percent to 42.

“It is important to remember that at this stage of the game, candidate matchups are largely driven by name recognition, and at least a quarter of all Americans are unfamiliar with Romney, Huckabee and Gingrich. As a result, Obama has an 8- to-12-point edge over each of them in hypothetical matchups,” adds Holland. “But in a previous CNN poll, Obama managed no better than a tie against an unnamed Republican.”

But there is something more than name recognition at work in Obama’s big lead over Palin.

“Palin is almost as well known as Obama, but the general public appears to have some doubts about what they have seen of her so far,” says Holland.

Hmmm…. Well, for being so unqualified, she’s almost neck in neck with Huckabee and Romney and that’s very interesting.

She has a couple years to demonstrate her qualifications. And if things get bad enough, her optimistic attitude might well be enough.

Hotair has more.

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What Was Wrong At The Southern Republican Leadership Conference?–UPDATED

Monday, April 12th, 2010

What a weird conference. There. I said it. The Tea Party received the biggest cheers. The Republicans bashed their own party. Attendees were optimistic and cheerful. Politicians were purposeful and focused on 2010–a marked shift from the usual perspectives at SRLC which has been a conference that gives voters a first look at potential Presidential candidates. Ron Paul’s groupies were suitably worshipful and idealistic. Mitt Romney’s posse were mission-focuses as always. But something was off.

It wasn’t the city or weather. New Orleans was more beautiful than I have ever seen it and the weather was perfect. Food? A+. Gambling? I wouldn’t know, but people had fun. A shooting did clear a friend’s restaurant, though–so it’s the same old New Orleans we know and love.

It wasn’t the venue or organization which was okay–although the scheduling was unorthodox. The speakers didn’t get going until the afternoon every day while the delegates had various brunches. It made for an excellent blogging schedule.

What simmered below the surface of the event, though, made me uneasy. And it was who didn’t attend the event that concerned me.

Eventually, Mitt Romney is going to have to show up at an conference with other political contenders. Will he get more cheers than Newt or Sarah or Mike Pence or Rick Perry? I know he’s hoping to wait them all out, gather to himself a gagilliion dollars and be the presumptive nominee. That method worked in the past, will it work now?

Haley Barbour endorsed Charlie Crist who is miles behind Marco Rubio. Barbour was RNC chair during the 1994 revolution. Many of these old dogs are still around and enjoying power. They remember sweeping in and they don’t want to be swept out.

The recent arm wrestling being done by the NRSC and NRCC against the RNC might actually be wasted effort. If donors are by-passing all of them and funding the Rubios of the world, the party bosses might matter less even as the give full-throated endorsements to establishment candidates who have zero chance of getting elected.

One Republican said to me, “It’s like the Republicans are ten years behind the times. They’re looking for women candidates, when the voters are beyond that.”

What he meant was, the voters now, men and women, want a good candidate who follows, as Rick Perry mentioned, first principles. Gender matters little anymore. Beliefs matter most.

But first principles are inconvenient when an old-guard politician is trying to keep power and money. And so beneath a placid, optimist surface, there is struggling. The struggle would seem to be philosophical: big government Republicans against tax-assailing and small government conservatives with some Tea Party help.

Unfortunately, the struggle seems to be more base than that: who is going to man the ship when Republicans get power back in November? There are lots of Republicans angling for chairmanships and sweet deals and that seems to be a more important fight to them than fighting Democrats and a President who are trying to do to dismantle freedom and the American way.

Politics, like business, has many aging boomers who love their jobs. They don’t want to give them up. Terrified of becoming relics and irrelevant, they fight like badgers to hold on to personal power while not paying attention to what they’ll even be owning after they “win.” If the establishment Republicans rip the party apart, they may have power in a party that no longer matters. Do they recognize this reality?

Many of the old guard are suspicious of the Tea Partiers and conservatives in general. Cozying up with small government types, makes keeping a big government difficult.

Bottom line, the leadership of the party isn’t at the top anymore. The grassroots are leading, amoeba-like, toward a philosophical goal of smaller government, less taxation and more freedom. So far, no presumptive presidential candidate has taken on that mantal.

After the November mid-term elections, I expect a very wild presidential campaign. And while Mitt stuffed the ballot boxes at the Southern Republican Leadership Council, I don’t think his place as the new face of the GOP is anywhere near certain.

The Republican party will change, people will give them one last chance, because voters burned themselves with Ross Perot going third party. But if the party isn’t responsive to the base’s concern after the last two years, I’m afraid there will be a new party building and the old guard will be manning an empty ivory tower.

Tabitha Hale has more. She has a controversial take on the opening speaker who decided that the most important issue facing the nation is gay marriage.

Here are some interviews I conducted at SRLC:

Texas Governor Rick Perry Talks Texas….And A National Run? Also here.

Ted Cruz, former Texas Solicitor General who has argued many cases before the Supreme Court (and won) discusses the possible legal approaches to get rid of Obamacare. Also here.

A great Republican running against Deborah Wasserman-Schultz: Learn about Brian Reilly here.

I also got to spend 10 minutes with Herman Cain. That video is still loading, but I’ll add it to the cue.

UPDATED:

Liza over at Culture Kitchen gives me a back handed compliment and then dismisses a Rick Perry run for President because of his secession hyperbole while extolling Mitt Romney.

One word: Jobs

Texas has them. No other state comes close.

One phrase: It’s the economy stupid.

Rick Perry gets that, the Democrats don’t.

Now, Perry may have no chance to get elected, I don’t know. But please let’s not pretend that Romney doesn’t have baggage.

Can you say RomneyCare? And much as it pains me, his religion will still be a stopper for many people.

The press likes Romney way too much. Remember how they loved McCain? Yeah.