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Santorum Picks Up On Romney-Paul Arrangement

1:40 pm in Uncategorized by Phoenix Woman

Six weeks ago, back when Romney seemed ascendant, Jon Walker commented that Mitt Romney would do well to be very, very nice to Ron Paul, as Paul holds Romney’s fate in his hands:

With Mitt Romney now on a glide path to the Republican Party’s nomination, there is one thing that could completely doom his chances of becoming President and that is Ron Paul. Paul’s dedicated base might not be large enough for him to win the nomination, but it is large enough to destroy Romney’s hopes in the general.

A week later, the Washington Post reported on the friendship — and de facto alliance — between Mitt Romney and Ron Paul:

The remaining candidates in the winnowed Republican presidential field are attacking one another with abandon, each day bringing fresh headlines of accusations and outrage.

But Mitt Romney and Ron Paul haven’t laid a hand on each other.

They never do.

[...]

Romney’s aides are “quietly in touch with Ron Paul,” according to a Republican adviser who is in contact with the Romney campaign and spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss its internal thinking. The two campaigns have coordinated on minor things, the adviser said — even small details, such as staggering the timing of each candidate’s appearance on television the night of the New Hampshire primary for maximum effect.

One advantage for Romney is that Paul’s presence in the race helps keep the GOP electorate fractured. But there is also a growing recognition that the congressman plans to stay in the contest over the long term — and that accommodating him and his supporters could help unify Republican voters in the general election against President Obama.

“Ron Paul wants a presence at the convention,” the adviser said — and Romney, if he is the nominee, would grant it.

Of course Romney would grant it. As Jon Walker said six weeks ago:

If I were Romney I might even consider using the excuse of “reaching out to Paul’s base for the sake of party unity” as a convenient way to justify tacking to the left after basically securing the nomination.

And now, this week, Rick Santorum’s finally picked up on all of this:

Asked at a Tea Party rally here why former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Rep. Ron Paul of Texas seemed to be ganging up on Santorum during Wednesday’s debate in Arizona, the former senator from Pennsylvania quipped, “Yeah, look, I didn’t know we picked president and vice president before the election.

“The coordination that I felt at that debate was pretty clear,” he said. “I felt like messages were being slipped behind my chair. It’s pretty remarkable that in 20 debates, Ron Paul never attacked Mitt Romney.”

Frankly, I’ve been astonished that Santorum didn’t start publicly addressing this before this week just passed.

More on the Romney-Paul arrangement — or “bromance” — in the video above.

If GOP Base Voters Aren’t Racists, Why Did Gingrich Win South Carolina?

5:26 pm in Uncategorized by Phoenix Woman

The Republicans get really ticked off when anyone suggests that they play the race card. Oh, do they get ticked off. I knew Michael Steele was doomed as Republican National Committee Chair, despite setting up a year which saw the GOP pick up several statehouses along with the US House of Representatives, when he dared say what everyone knows but won’t admit: That the racist-as-all-get-out Southern Strategy was not, as Republicans like to claim, abandoned when Nixon left the White House in disgrace, but in fact has been in use for over four decades.

But of course, racism is at the heart of the modern Republican Party, especially in South Carolina. Newt Gingrich knows this very well, which is why he picked a fight with the NAACP a week before the South Carolina primary — and then, to rub more salt into black wounds under the guise of “outreach”, visited an African Methodist Episcopal church in Columbia, South Carolina. The pictures and footage of Gingrich daring to repeat his race-baiting at the AME church were all over the local South Carolina media, effectively ringing a dinner bell to the racists who (thanks to nearly half a century of the GOP’s use of the Southern Strategy) make up a non-trivial part of the national Republican base and the lion’s share of the Palmetto State GOP’s base; while Republican turnout in Iowa and New Hampshire wasn’t especially higher this year than in 2008, GOP turnout in South Carolina was up by a full third over 2008 — and Gingrich was the beneficiary of that boost in turnout.

It is Gingrich’s skill at playing to a racist base, a skill honed in his years representing Georgia’s Sixth Congressional District, that has taken what many commentators proclaimed was a sure nomination win for Romney and created the prospect of a brokered convention, if not an outright Gingrich win before the convention is held.

UPDATE: Here’s another big fat hint that this has to do with race-baiting. Remember how the evangelicals were all lining up behind Rick Santorum, who was expected to do really well in South Carolina? Well, Santorum didn’t do all that well in South Carolina, and I suspect it was because of his recently touting his support for the Martin Luther King voting rights bill. This, coupled with Gingrich’s doing his calculated race-baiting against the NAACP, likely led many of Santorum’s backers into the arms of Newt, as well as stirring up for Newt some of the base voters who’d been contemplating sitting this one out.

UPDATE 2: Note that Gingrich likes to call Obama “the food stamp president”. This, combined with the “food stamp” smear he directed against the NAACP, is quite telling. Wonder how long it is before he shows up at an AME church in Florida to tick off the parishioners in the name of “outreach” and throw some more racist fodder to the white GOP base?

Gutshot Tim Pawlenty Leaves Minnesota Bleeding: Justice System Edition

7:33 am in Uncategorized by Phoenix Woman

Ho-hum. Another day, another story on how Governor Gutshot’s leaving Minnesota bleeding and alone deep in the woods:

Galen Robinson has devoted much of his quiet legal career to taking on landlords who don’t return deposits and lenders who target low-income people who are in a financial bind.

On Monday, the legal aid attorney known for his trademark ponytail will aim a little higher — a state Supreme Court showdown with lawyers for Gov. Tim Pawlenty, whom Robinson is suing over unilateral cuts to a state nutrition program for the ailing poor.

Robinson and his small legal team are challenging a signature political move of Pawlenty’s, that, if the challenge succeeds, could dial back the governor’s budget-cutting authority and lay down a bolder line between legislative and executive powers.

Here’s the deal: In the run-up for his 2012 presidential bid (and as a continuation of the same behaviors adopted when he was tongue-polishing John McCain’s shoes in the hope of getting onto the 2008 ticket), our illustrious governor has been cheerfully and dictatorially taking an ax to what remains of the wonderful infrastructure that made Minnesota the envy of America when I was a child. And he’s doing this even as he plays cash-skimming games with the "Support Our Troops" license plate fees that would have got him impeached if he weren’t a Republican.

As the Robinson lawsuit hints, the deliberate wrecking of what makes Minnesota work may well be most dangerous where the state’s legal entities are concerned. How badly has GOP presidential wannabee Tim Pawlenty messed with Minnesota’s judicial system during his time as absentee governor of the state? His own former best buddy and partner in the now-defunct Rider Bennett law firm, Eric Magnuson — the guy he made Chief Justice of the state Supreme Court just two years ago — is now one of his biggest public enemies, stepping down from the court in June after having spent most of his time on the court fighting with Gutshot over the slashing budget cuts Pawlenty instituted in Minnesota’s justice system.

Pray for us — we have a Republican governor who thinks he can be president come 2012. Until he’s finally out of the governor’s mansion for good, there’s no limit to the harm he can do in the chase for Republican primary voters.