Herman Cain's poll numbers have been falling over the last month and especially the last few days. Part of this is based on his 9-9-9 plan, part based on his treatment of women, and part based on voters getting board with him as the flavor of the month (see Trump, Bachmann, Perry). The newest flavor of the month is turning out to be Speaker Gingrich. Unlike Trump, Bachmann, and Cain, Gingrich is a credible candidate who could do the job as president. Unlike Perry, Gingrich is a great at the debates.
The truth of the matter is that no has more to benefit than Gingrich from Cain's free-fall. A media feeding frenzy is taking place against him, and he continues to leak blood and make it worse. When he was asked about his problems at the last debate, he responded in a completely stupid manner. As a first step, he should have acknowledged that it was a fair question and told the crowd that he appreciated the oppertunity to speak to this issue that concerns votesr. He should have talked about how women should feel safe at work and that this was a serious issue worthy of him to answer. He then could have denied the charges. However, that is not what he did. In every way possible, he dimminished the situation and never once even addressed the question. An easy answer would have been to say, "I thank you for the question. It is a valid one because the charges that were laid against me by these ladies are serious. If they were true, I would have no business running in this race. It is completely unacceptable for someone who seeks to be president to be a womanizer. That said, these charges are not true. It is very hard for anyone to prove that something that did not happen many years ago, did not happen. Unfortunatly, we live in a society where there are too many lawsuits. Over 75% of doctors will face a malpractice suite over their carreer. CEOs and business leaders often face these types of charges because the decisions that we make affect people's lives, and because people who want something for nothing target wealthy individuals to sue -- because that is where the money is. These charges are false. There is no way to describe something that didn't happen beyond that it didn't happen." Cain did not respond that way. He has attacked the women, attacked Perry, and consistantly avoided, attacked, and been dismissive of people who question him about it. He is acting like a man who is guilty, not one who is innocent. As long as he acts this way, he will continue to alienate women and some men also.
With Cain's free-fall starting, those voters need somewhere to go. Some will probably return to Perry. These are already not Romney, Paul, or Huntsman voters. These are voters who are looking for a non-Romney alternative, and Gingrich is the only man left standing to fill that space. Santorum is too low in the polls. Bachmann already had her turn and flubbed it. Gingrich, meanwhile, is a good alternative for these voters. Why?
1- Cain voters care alot about how well a candidate does in a debate, and less about what a candidate's credentials are. Gingrich did great in debate and is viable in that regard.
2- Cain voters have been able to forgive a number of Cain flubbs, and are likely to do the same for Gingrich's challenges.
3- Gingrich made a number of mistakes -- big ones -- but has lived up to them. That is a stark contrast to Cain. Gingrich messed-up, admited it, and appears to have really changed. He appears to regret his mistakes and sees the pain they cause others. Cain is the opposit. He is attacking the ones he hurt, and is completely dissmissive of the harm he does. Cain settled 2 chargest by paying off the women -- that means the Cain actually did do something that is not only wrong, but illegal. Else why pay them each a year salary? As more comes out, the difference bewteen how Gingrich handles his failures and Cain handles his will be more and more stark.
4- Gingrich has run a positive campaign. He has been sort of the adult in the room. Respectfull of others, and has done well.
5- Gingrich can raise money. He has not done so thus far, but if he pulls into the lead he will be able to raise significant money and compete.
6- Gingrich knows how to run a national election. He won the congress for the GOP from 1994 - 2006, and is probably the most able canidate to bring forth the conservative message.
7- Gingrich has the experience to actually do the job. He was not a governor, but he knows how to opperate at the federal level. A president will need to be able to work with RINOs and Democrats inorder to balance the budget -- something Gingrich has done. Gingrich balanced the budget durnig the 1990s, and turn large deficits into surpluses. He did so without the draconian practices that Romney, Perry, and Paul are suggesting, but with good government. He also managed to pass items like the Government Performance and Results Act, civil service reforms, improvements to government, and greatly reduced the cost of government by running it more like a business. Right now, Obama is doing the opposit. Obama is running the government in the exact opposit way as Gingrich did. Obama is raising regulations, Gingrich cut them. Obama is hiring alot of new federal workers who are lower-paid and less competent. Gingrich cut the size of government, cut layers of burocracy, and hired competent better-paid people who could actually do their jobs well. In the end, Gingrich turned government into something that was smaller, less repressive, more competent, and worked better. Obama is doing the opposit. Look at healthcare reform. Also, let's not forget that Gingrich did get welfare reform passed, and even a tax-cut passed and signed by President Clinton. Gingrich got stuff done with a divided government. Both making government more conservative and making it smaller and more effecient. Infact, when Gingrich was Speaker of the House, government spending rose by a smaller amount than when either Bush was in office. Gingrich can bring about small government that is smart, effective, and will not place undue burdons on people.
8- Gingrich beats Obama. Romney's strength is that Romney is percieved as able to defeat Obama. There is some debate over this. In the case of Gingrich, I think he would blow Obama away.
How will Gingrich's rise take place:
1- Cain will fall to single digits
2- Perry will rise, taking a portion of that
3- Gingrich will get about 2/3 of Cain supporters who leave Cain
4- Gingrich wins Iowa, South Carolina, FL, and gets into a 2 man race of Gingrich, Romney, an Paul.
5. Gingrich wins a direct race against Romney (with Paul there too).
- Gingrich appears to have no actual staff on-the-ground in Iowa. It will be hard for him to win without boots on the ground
-Gingrich lacks the $$ of Romney or Perry
-Gingrich does well in debates, but there is more to getting elected than debates
-Gingrich has some baggage, and is far from the perfect candidate
-Gingrich has a history of messing things up every now and then