Romney outperforms, but…
Yes, Mitt Romney has made history. He has become the first non-incumbent Republican to win both the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary. Next up, South Carolina, the one state with a perfect record of electing the eventual nominee. No candidate, however, has won South Carolina without first winning either Iowa or New Hampshire.
There is no denying Mitt Romney’s performance in the first two battles of this long nominating process has been impressive. Although some conservative pundits, such as Stephen Hayes and William Krystol are joining in the chorus consisting of other pundits such as James Carville claiming Romney did not have a great evening last night. It has been a very interesting nomination cycle. Not only have conservative candidates decided to attack free enterprise, but conservative pundits are parroting liberal talking points.
First, the pundits claimed Romney’s night was only adequate because he was not going to clear the threshold of 75,000 votes, about the number he received four years ago. With 95.3% of the vote tallied, Romney is currently at over 95,000 votes with 39.4%. Here is one thing to remember, a silly argument from “true conservatives” is to subtract what ever percentage Romney wins from 100 and state ” 60% of Republicans still voted against Romney.” In New Hampshire independents are allowed to vote, how many votes did Romney get from those identified as Republican? 49% in a six person field.
Pundits are trying to claim turn out has been low in both events, yet turnout exceeded the record numbers of 4 years ago. In the first two events Romney outperformed.
South Carolina will dictate what happens. Mitt Romney will be hit with everything from his opponents. Newt Gingrich is leading the pack with the attacks, followed by Rick Perry and his new catch phrase “vulture capitalism. ” Whether the attacks stick is yet to be determined. The initial reaction from most is a certain level of disdain for these two candidates who have chosen to use the same attack path as President Obama and the Occupy Wall Street crowd.
I have always maintained Mitt Romney is the best candidate and in the next 10 days he will either prove it or suffer an immense reversal of fortune. While countering the vast number of negative ads, Mitt Romney will have to endure TWO more debates, one on January 16th and the other on January 19th.
South Carolina is known for its hardcore politics. Ask McCain about what happened to him in 2000, and I am sure Mitt Romney remembers for years ago well.
There is no opponent more dangerous than the opponent making a last stand. Hang on people, the Romney voyage is going to hit some turbulence.