Differentiate Governor Perry: I am the only proven smaller government, less spending conservative left in the field. Strategy for South Carolina? All remaining candidates let Romney have it with both barrells..
Now that Michelle Bachmann has exited this race, this is fact. I don’t think it was a coincidence how quickly Perry’s announcement came that he was staying in the race after Bachmann announced she was suspending her campaign. With Bachmann out, Perry can claim this mantle for himself the remainder of the race. If there is any silver lining off of last night’s disastrous result in Iowa, it certainly has to be this. Makes for some great campaign ads.
I am wondering if Perry’s stance regarding the elimination of ethanol subsidies prevented him from really getting any movement in Iowa. Romney and Santorum are clearly in favor of them. After all, he had just as much evangelical creds as Santorum. This probably tipped the scales in Santorum’s favor, along with an prominent evangelical leader giving rise to suspicion of subtly shopping an endorsement for a hefty donation. I hold Santorum innocent in this matter as he had stated that was the impression he got when this endorsement was being discussed. Ah well, politics is typically never pretty.
Time to put Romney through the wringer from all sides
If there is one candidate who needs to have a big bullseye on himself now, it is Mitt Romney. This typically happens with the frontrunner and Romney is right now. Something that has bugged me for awhile is that all the conservative candidates for the most part (exception being Newt Gingrich) have been at each other and let Mitt Romney walk by to the front with pretty much a smile on his face. Time to really air Romney’s less than stellar governorship of Massachusetts and every progressive, anti-conservative position that he has ever taken for the sake of attaining and staying in political office. Mr. Gingrich, Mr. Perry, Mr. Santorum, even Mr. Huntsman. Leave each other alone and stop fighting to be the top conservative dog. It will never be enough to beat Romney in the end and by the time there is one conservative remaining, it will be already too late. I have seen many people say that Rick Perry staying in the race helps Romney. Well of course it does, so long as Gingrich, Perry, and Santorum are at each other, fighting the wrong targets instead of hitting the very big one that they should have their sights on. The result of being focused on the wrong target allowed Romney to win Iowa without a whole lot of effort. There is the lesson we should learn from.
I have seen a lot of comments on Redstate about taking Santorum out when South Carolina rolls around. Why? He hardly has any money or organization. What’s the use? If he for some freak reason winds up with the nomination if he is let alone, it will be just that. Something completely unexpected. I agree with Santorum being a pro-union, big government conservative. That’s probably what he had to be to stay in office being from the state of Pennsylvania. But the problem with this type of northeast Republican wing is bigger government always leads to more spending. It’s fiscally disastrous from a long-term standpoint. As of today, I have to ask myself if the choice is between Santorum and Romney “Who should I choose?”, I want to put off having to make that decision until all options have been exhausted.
If Romney is going to get the nomination, he shouldn’t be allowed the privilege of cruising by conservatives whom at each other’s throats in a brawl. He should have to go through a bruising vetting just like the rest of the candidates. If he makes it through a vetting that nasty and gets the nod, he’ll be very tough for Obama to beat. Of course the Fox News stuffy political analysts and the GOP establishment will get real angry when this starts happening to Romney. They’ll say how this is useless and by battering in this fashion it will make him weaker for the general election fight against Obama. How silly of them.
Romney has shown to be very thin-skinned in some instances when he has been challenged in interviews and at times on the debate stage. Throw out all of his progressive, pragmatic dirty laundry of a record in the ads and debates and let the voters in South Carolina determine if they want Mitt Romney as the nominee. Whomever is remaining as the leading conservative candidate after the South Carolina fight? The others should throw in the towels and their backing behind who remains after South Carolina and let that remaining contender compete with Romney for winner takes all Florida. As was stated earlier, if Romney comes out of this multiple front battle as the winner with having every possible conservative bullet emptied against him, he will be much tougher skinned and far more formidable of an opponent for Obama. He should earn the nomination by having to go through a gauntlet to get it. If he survives, good for him. If he doesn’t, he isn’t presidential material. However, the end goal must be kept in mind. Kicking Barack Obama out of the White House. If Romney comes out of it, I’ll support him and he’ll even earn some respect from me.