Last week, CNN reported that leading Iowa social conservatives were secretly meeting to determine who to endorse and coalesce around to avoid a Romney nomination. The thinking is that to avoid a splintered vote in Iowa, leaving a path to victory for Romney, the Newt, Cain and Perry supporters must unite behind a single Romney-slayer-candidate. This candidate must be a winner and someone that will go on to take South Carolina, Florida and beyond.
The unified endorsement has been delayed for the time being. This is good. The landscape needs another two weeks to let Newt fizzle out, and Rick Perry may be the last man standing.
The Newt attacks have already begun. He made a $100 million dollars lobbying the past few years. He may be full of ideas but he is also white, rich, old, fat and arrogant. White, rich, old, fat and arrogant aren’t going to beat a young, handsome and confident Obama. And Newt doesn’t have the kind of support at the grassroots level that it takes to ignore independents.
Cain did well by signing the Susan B. Anthony pro-life pledge last week and releasing a six minute video explaining 9-9-9, but he still hasn’t put forth affirmative evidence proving that any of his sexual harassment accusers were being dishonest. Until he does that, he is a ticking time bomb and cannot be handed the keys to the kingdom.
Perry, is the only guy left that has gotten himself together after running his campaign into the ground. Since gaffegate 2011, he has had strong debate performances, and reminded social conservatives, war hawks and fiscal conservatives why he is their guy. He has released an optional flat tax, discussed privatized social security and essentially pledged to go to war with Iran. We may not agree with everything Perry stands for, but this is a guy that fits the bill in every category, save immigration.
Many conservatives have realized that a type of earned amnesty for illegals is the way to go. Perry shouldn’t be penalized for working to find a solution for Texas problems. In the end, heresy on one issue is better than heresy on all the issues (his name rhymes with Ritt Momney). More importantly, an articulate Perry is not going to be taken down for $100 million in lobbying efforts or marital infidelity. He is someone that if he is able to articulate conservative views, will create a stark contrast with President Obama. This is the jobs governor for heaven’s sake.
And one more thing, right now, Rick Perry is the only one that has the money to win Iowa in 35 days.
Iowa conservative know what to do next.