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Newt Gingrich and the Birther issue

He will lose the presidency because all of us will vote him out, which is the American way of doing it.

Newt Gingrich, campaigning in Iowa, was presented a leading Birther question: doesn’t Obama have to prove his citizenship? Gingrich replied:

“No,” Gingrich said. He joked, “I thought you were going to ask me whether Donald Trump had citizenship,” referring to the attention the reality television star stirred up when he raised questions about President Obama’s birthplace, prompting the White House to release his long-form birth certificate.

“All I can report is the state of Hawaii has certified that he was born there,” Gingrich continued.

Gesturing to his wife beside him, he said, “We both were with a taxi driver one day who showed us the hospital. There is every reason to believe he is a citizen of the United States. The fact that he’s already a terrible president, we don’t have to go beyond that and try to find something beyond that.”

16 Responses to Newt Gingrich and the Birther issue

  1. avatar
    Obsolete December 31, 2011 at 2:24 pm #

    Gingrich has certainly proved time and time again that he is a terrible human being.

  2. avatar
    G December 31, 2011 at 4:24 pm #

    Good for Gingrich to not pander to the audience on this one and try to use reason to put that crazy notion down!

  3. avatar
    joyeagle3 December 31, 2011 at 10:11 pm #

    Do I vote for Gingrich now? … I’m so confused. Not really. Got my absentee ballot coming, as well as my wife and daughters … so I’ll get three votes in the critical Florida primary. I’m one of those “volatile” conservatives, who keeps changing my mind. I started off avid Michelle Bachmann fan, still like her, moved over to Herman Cain when he was still 4% nationally, wished he was still in, have been tempted by Gingrich and Perry, and if Santorum gets traction, I would happily support him … but my second vote that has moved back and forth to first all along has been Paul. See I’m happy with most any of them. If it was today in FL, I’d have to go for Paul … but fortunately we’ll get to see who is standing after the first three, and have a significant voice in the filtering process.

  4. avatar
    G December 31, 2011 at 10:38 pm #

    Happy New Year, Joyeagle!

    You might want to hold onto your ballot until after SC votes 10 days before you to see who is still left standing. Your field is in a lot of flux and with such uncertainty, IA’s results will really be important in setting the stage of who’s gaining momentum and who, if anyone drops out.

    If you can’t wait, then your 2nd choice of Ron Paul is likely a safe bet. He’s not going to drop out, so he’ll definitely still be a major factor by the time your state of FL rolls around at the end of next month. I think he’s going to overperform in both IA and NH, so expect him to be racking up serious contention delegates, despite a full-blown media and GOP establishment effort that will desperately come together to try to knee-cap him. I don’t think they’ll be able to succeed and Paul will be a factor regardless of what they throw at him.

    However, it seems that the “Conservative” alternative choices you are really focused on are the true battle that will be figured out in IA and SC…so you might want to hold on to those ballots to see who shakes out.

    In your field of 4 choices (Bachmann, Perry, Santorum and even Newt)… there will likely only be one or two still in contention come FL. IA should eliminate at least one, perhaps two…(but maybe not if all the results are closely bunched together). NH really isn’t about the Conservative choices running, so other than some slight upwards or downward “mo”, I see any of your “Conservative” options that survive IA, fighting it out in SC and that is really the next test that may or may not “winnow” that field of choices even further.

    Right now, it is not looking good for Bachmann in IA and Santorum seems to be getting his surge, but who knows what the final results will be! This one truly is more up for grabs in all 6 positions than ever before.

    So, in order to help your family’s votes “count”, I recommend at least holding off until you know who is still in the race when FL rolls around. I fully support you voting your heart and values on the candidate of your choice, but I’d hate to see you end up throwing your vote away on someone who has already dropped out by the time your ballot gets counted…

    I hope you continue to post here as those early contests play out and let us know your thoughts & impressions of the race. Thanks!

    joyeagle3:
    Do I vote for Gingrich now? … I’m so confused.Not really.Got my absentee ballot coming, as well as my wife and daughters … so I’ll get three votes in the critical Florida primary.I’m one of those “volatile” conservatives, who keeps changing my mind.I started off avid Michelle Bachmann fan, still like her, moved over to Herman Cain when he was still 4% nationally, wished he was still in, have been tempted by Gingrich and Perry, and if Santorum gets traction, I would happily support him … but my second vote that has moved back and forth to first all along has been Paul.See I’m happy with most any of them.If it was today in FL, I’d have to go for Paul … but fortunately we’ll get to see who is standing after the first three, and have a significant voice in the filtering process.

  5. avatar
    G December 31, 2011 at 10:46 pm #

    Oh and just for clarifcation…your phrasing here concerns me.

    I sure hope that you respect the Constitutional rights of your wife and daughter to cast their own ballots for the candidate of their own choice and neither impose your will on them or fill out their ballots for them.

    Please clarify your stance on this. Thank You.

    joyeagle3: Got my absentee ballot coming, as well as my wife and daughters … so I’ll get three votes in the critical Florida primary

  6. avatar
    Keith January 1, 2012 at 4:58 am #

    joyeagle3: so I’ll get three votes in the critical Florida primary

    Ever hear of the concept of “one man/woman; one vote”?

    Worry about your own vote. If you are trying to control your family’s votes, well, that is not only illegal but downright unethical and unAmerican.

  7. avatar
    joyeagle January 1, 2012 at 11:55 am #

    Happy New Year to you, G. That was good analysis … better than the talking heads or even any redundant written analysis I’ve seen. Pretty much mirrors my thoughts. I had to get an absentee ballot since I’ll be out of town for the voting day, but I wasn’t planning on committing until I have to … preferably post-South Carolina when it is narrowed. But like you said, I also expect Ron Paul to go the distance regardless, like he did last time.

    In terms of my wife’s and daughter’s vote, I mostly said that in jest, just to poke some reaction … you know: “us traditionalists get more votes since women’s suffrage, since our women are more … how shall I say … more amenable to the reason of their husbands.”

    But honestly, both my wife and daughter are independently conservative, but don’t follow the details of the primary like I do, so they would defer to my analysis and suggestion. No, I would never fill out my girl’s ballots. But they normally ask for my advice of who to support, knowing we share the same values. It’s taken quite some persuasion to convince them that Ron Paul is a good choice. My Dad and brothers and sisters (all in Florida too) are not open to Ron Paul at all. I asked each of them to do the USA Today survey to match you to the closest candidate. My brother and sister both got Perry as # 1 choice, as did I, but they got Gingrich as #2 whereas I got Ron Paul #2. My dad got Gingrich as his #1 and Bachmann #2, and he, who despises Paul, got Paul as his #3. I thought it was a fun poll. I did a similar, but not as detailed survey (didn’t give importance of an issue value) in 2008, and it tagged me for Hillary Clinton as my closest match with Ron Paul as #2. So I discounted that survey altogether.
    See, my wife and daughter aren’t as involved as much … wouldn’t take the time to take the survey. So, they would prefer to defer to my opinion. And actually, they wouldn’t ever get around to registering and getting to the pols without my encouragement.
    🙂
    Cheers,

    G:
    Oh and just for clarifcation…your phrasing here concerns me.

    I sure hope that you respect the Constitutional rights of your wife and daughter to cast their own ballots for the candidate of their own choice and neither impose your will on them or fill out their ballots for them.

    Please clarify your stance on this.Thank You.

  8. avatar
    G January 1, 2012 at 2:33 pm #

    Thanks Joyeagle! I appreciated your clarifications and additional thoughts.

    I hope you get a chance to check ou this thread, where I’ve written most of my analysis of the GOP field & Primary race, including addressing the lesser known candidates that are still worthy of attention:

    http://www.obamaconspiracy.org/2011/12/new-poll-results-most-iowa-republicans-are-idiots/

    Personally, I think the problem with most of the media and punditry is that they are too locked into certain mindsets or worldviews or rely on assuming that dynamics from the past still apply today…and therefore are simply unwilling or incapable of stepping outside their own comfort boxes and trying to look at the field and what is really happening in the current race from a fresh and unfettered perspective.

    Even worse, certain media folks are clearly prejudiced towards or against certain candidates and intentionally hoping that by pushing certain memes they can make them become self-fulfilling… there is definitely a lot of this at play this year, especially when the field is truly “unsettled” like never before..and that just makes certain folks who view themselves as “kingmakers” even more nervous…

    One thing I actually like about the dynamic truly being still open at this point is that I feel the results can truly end up “more democratic” than in situations where the end point is merely settling for supporting a pre-drawn conclusion everyone saw a mile away. I don’t mind some reasonable pruning and narrowing of the field, as long as it happens as a result of competition at the ballot box and not just following a media narrative. I always hated that by the time a Primary got to my state, the conclusion was often a foregone one.

    So I actually really like this year’s calendar & delegate allocation structure, which allows more states to truly be competitive campaining grounds and requires leading candidates to truly prove they can sustain and maintain their approval from the voters in more areas of the country in order to justify that they’ve earned the right to be the nominee.

    Likewise, I also feel it allows lesser candidates who are serious and dilligent to prove themselves, despite any media shafting they get, by being able to reach the voters directly in a good ground game and prove their merits in ballot results. So in this dynamic, a small or practically unknown campaign still has some hope to catch fire and pick up steam if it can demonstrate it can capture enough votes. Money and coverage will follow successful results regardless…so a candidate should not be ruled out by a voter that actually likes that candidate, simply because they seem like a long shot. More importantly, the scale of success for momentum is truly relative – so a true long horse race is not just about who is in first, but simply exceeding expectations in one state, thereby justifying the right to continue to grow and prove themselves in the next contest…

    Also, all campaigns have their moments of stumbling or making gaffes. I prefer when the calendar allows them a chance to get back on their feet instead of instantly be swept off the stage. Sometimes a fall can make one stronger when they stand back up, so it can be a good learning experience for a candidate.

    So yes, I may mock or tease the “circus” atmosphere of this years campaign and I may not agree with many of the GOP candidate’s views, but I can also look beyond my personal interests and view the exciting and positive aspects of this campaign dynamic and truly view an “open” contest which could have many twists and turns as a good thing for democracy and ensuring that the will of the voters drives the dynamic from state to state as this progresses, instead of just fulfilling “talking head media prophecy”… I hope that makes sense. In other words, I might go to the circus because I like to be entertained and laugh at the clowns, but when I go to the rollercoaster, I truly appreciate all of the twists and turns and loops along the way…

    joyeagle:
    Happy New Year to you, G.That was good analysis … better than the talking heads or even any redundant written analysis I’ve seen.Pretty much mirrors my thoughts.I had to get an absentee ballot since I’ll be out of town for the voting day, but I wasn’t planning on committing until I have to … preferably post-South Carolina when it is narrowed.But like you said, I also expect Ron Paul to go the distance regardless, like he did last time.

    In terms of my wife’s and daughter’s vote, I mostly said that in jest, just to poke some reaction … you know: “us traditionalists get more votes since women’s suffrage, since our women are more … how shall I say … more amenable to the reason of their husbands.”

    But honestly, both my wife and daughter are independently conservative, but don’t follow the details of the primary like I do, so they would defer to my analysis and suggestion.No, I would never fill out my girl’s ballots.But they normally ask for my advice of who to support, knowing we share the same values.It’s taken quite some persuasion to convince them that Ron Paul is a good choice.My Dad and brothers and sisters (all in Florida too) are not open to Ron Paul at all.I asked each of them to do the USA Today survey to match you to the closest candidate.My brother and sister both got Perry as # 1 choice, as did I, but they got Gingrich as #2 whereasI got Ron Paul #2.My dad got Gingrich as his #1 and Bachmann #2, and he, who despises Paul, got Paul as his #3.I thought it was a fun poll.I did a similar, but not as detailed survey (didn’t give importance of an issue value) in 2008, and it tagged me for Hillary Clinton as my closest match with Ron Paul as #2.So I discounted that survey altogether.
    See, my wife and daughter aren’t as involved as much … wouldn’t take the time to take the survey.So, they would prefer to defer to my opinion.And actually, they wouldn’t ever get around to registering and getting to the pols without my encouragement.
    Cheers,

  9. avatar
    G January 1, 2012 at 2:43 pm #

    I hope you continue to pop in here, before and after each of these state contests takes place… I’ll be chiming in with my analysis of the situation and what impact I see to the dynamics & would love to hear the steady thoughts & feedback from you & others as it all plays out as well…

    joyeagle: Happy New Year to you, G. That was good analysis … better than the talking heads or even any redundant written analysis I’ve seen. Pretty much mirrors my thoughts. I had to get an absentee ballot since I’ll be out of town for the voting day, but I wasn’t planning on committing until I have to … preferably post-South Carolina when it is narrowed. But like you said, I also expect Ron Paul to go the distance regardless, like he did last time.

  10. avatar
    joyeagle January 1, 2012 at 3:24 pm #

    Oh, I will. Thanks. I come in here regularly and read up, don’t often comment anymore, as often I just don’t have anything to add … as well as being busier with landing a job again. But I have been a political junkie for a long time, and enjoy the process about as well as results.
    I also prefer the change in the nominating process, with proportional votes for all of the contests prior to April, and then winner take all afterwards. I do wonder if there will be less winnowed out early because of that … although there is still the money drying up factor after a few “less than expected” contests.
    Oh … so I just followed your link and read most of the previous chain. Very interesting, thanks for sharing that with me. I LOVE your predictions for IA … I hope you are right! I think you might be pretty close too … we’ll just have to see how much of a surge Santorum gets the next two days and … I think at this point the big wild cards are Gingrich/Perry (hardest to predict).

    Your analysis of Roemer’s campaign and stand reminded me of my hopes and participation in Keyes run in 2008. He was all about the election system is broke, and we got to run the campaign differently–the media controls too much. But you can only garner support within the reality that you are given. You can’t change the system before winning.

    G:
    I hope you continue to pop in here, before and after each of these state contests takes place… I’ll be chiming in with my analysis of the situation and what impact I see to the dynamics & would love to hear the steady thoughts & feedback from you & others as it all plays out as well…

  11. avatar
    Majority Will January 1, 2012 at 4:55 pm #

    Gingrich Plummets in Polls as Voters Start Remembering Who He Is

    (excerpt) According to a new poll released today, Mr. Gingrich fared especially poorly among voters who agreed with the statement, “Wait a minute, that guy? He was an enormous dick.”

    “Newt Gingrich has got to do something fast to keep people from remembering who he is,” pollster Logsdon said. “He might try growing a moustache or wearing an eye patch, but that might be too little, too late.”

    On the ground in Iowa, Gingrich campaign strategists are working overtime to confront the challenge posed by voters remembering who he is, aides to the former House Speaker said today.

    According to one campaign source, the Gingrich campaign has begun seeking the support of people with mental disorders and other memory issues that make it hard for them to retain basic information.*

    “The problem is, most of those people are currently running for President,” the source said.

    (source of satire: http://www.borowitzreport.com/)

    (*Too bad that foaming birthers, with the attention span of a fruit fly, would be ideal.)

  12. avatar
    G January 1, 2012 at 5:24 pm #

    Thanks Joyeagle! Good luck with your new job too!

    I completely concur with many of your points, especially those I’ve bolded in your text below. Gingrich & Perry are definitely the hardest to predict! I think Santorum’s late burst of momentum is real here…as well as Bachmann’s last minute collapse. So if any winnowing happens out of IA, I suspect it will be Bachmann and then we’ll have to wait until after SC for more from that set of contenders…but who knows! I’ll enjoy seeing the actual results no matter how they play out and how close or far off base I am in my guesses… At least IA will give me a baseline to try to better assess the dynamics going into NH & SC and therefore what will remain for FL to decide after that.

    I definitely enjoy the process…except that I don’t like the aspect of dishonest “spin” or shameless “pandering” at all. It simply goes against my values. I prefer candidates who simply are willing to be themselves and own up to their own records and defend their own beliefs. So in those regards, I have a lot more respect for a Ron Paul or Rick Santorum and how they campaign and answer questions, because I appreciate their sincerity and being up front about where they stand. I don’t have to agree with their positions to admire their honesty. I think it is actually easier for people with different views to actually get along and even find common ground when they know where each other truly stand and what really matters to them and why. So I highly value a sense of being able to “trust” a candidate is who they say they are.

    I think others in this cycle have done a fairly good job of limiting their pandering reasonably well and owning up to their core positions: Buddy Roemer, Jon Huntsman, Gary Johnson and Fred Karver all have earned respect from me for being willing to stand up for their positions and issues, especially when they are often outside of the “mainstream” of current GOP dogma.

    On the other side of equation, I pragmatically accept that a certain amount of pandering is just going to happen in politics, due to the nature of the political pressures of politics in trying to win over voters…

    However, shameless pandering and flip-flopping and then outright denying it when caught…now that really disgusts me. Sadly, I think this cycle has also seen that end of the spectrum break hypocrisy records too.

    Newt Gingrich has been really flagrant at this and could have held the record if it wasn’t for Mitt Romney! I mean, the only thing Mitt is consistent on is talking out of both sides of his mouth at once! Never have I seen someone who so clearly stands for absolutely nothing at all except wanting to be elected. He has no core and no backbone and I put him as the least reliable and trustworthy of the entire bunch. Now Newt, he definitely has a spine…and I just see his actions as a result of Newt’s ego and megalomania.

    But Romney – the biggest empty suit I’ve ever seen! The more I’ve seen of his campaign, the less impressed I am. I think Obama will be lucky if the “default” of Romney holds true and that Romney will turn out to be much less competitive a choice than “conventional wisdom” would have you believe. I think he’s a “paper tiger” with a “glass jaw” and it’s hard to engender passion for a bland, untrustworthy candidate who stands for nothing, has a fairly weak and contradictory record that is easy to use against him and whose social skills range from extremely awkward and inappropriate failed attempts at lame humor and a peevish and lazy attitude of entitled arrogance that too easily seeps through his plastic fa§ade. I say he has a “glass jaw” because I sense that he won’t hold up well in his reactions, once he’s actually faced with someone seriously going after and challenging his statements and record. We’ve already seen signs of that in how he poorly handled minor pushback from Perry in debates or Brett Baier in the Fox interview. There is simply no excuse for a candidate who has been running for 5 years straight and has been on the national stage this long to have that much difficulty maintaining their composure at the slightest provocation. I just don’t see him being able to weather an extended pile-on of scrutiny & criticism very well. He might be able to sail through the GOP contests with limited push-back (an advantage of being the assumed “de facto” nominee – the establishment and media go easy on him and other candidates fear confronting him to hard and thus, being taken out of “VP consideration”). But the general election is an entirely different thing and a coddled weathervane candidate with a fragile ego and poor charisma is going to wither and blunder under sustained and focused attack.

    joyeagle:
    Oh, I will. Thanks. I come in here regularly and read up, don’t often comment anymore, as often I just don’t have anything to add … as well as being busier with landing a job again. But I have been a political junkie for a long time, and enjoy the process about as well as results.

    I also prefer the change in the nominating process, with proportional votes for all of the contests prior to April, and then winner take all afterwards. I do wonder if there will be less winnowed out early because of that … although there is still the money drying up factor after a few “less than expected” contests.
    Oh … so I just followed your link and read most of the previous chain. Very interesting, thanks for sharing that with me. I LOVE your predictions for IA … I hope you are right! I think you might be pretty close too … we’ll just have to see how much of a surge Santorum gets the next two days and … I think at this point the big wild cards are Gingrich/Perry (hardest to predict).

  13. avatar
    G January 1, 2012 at 5:26 pm #

    ROTFLMAO! Now that is satire at its finest!

    Majority Will:
    Gingrich Plummets in Polls as Voters Start Remembering Who He Is

    (excerpt) According to a new poll released today, Mr. Gingrich fared especially poorly among voters who agreed with the statement, “Wait a minute, that guy?He was an enormous dick.”

    “Newt Gingrich has got to do something fast to keep people from remembering who he is,” pollster Logsdon said.“He might try growing a moustache or wearing an eye patch, but that might be too little, too late.”

    On the ground in Iowa, Gingrich campaign strategists are working overtime to confront the challenge posed by voters remembering who he is, aides to the former House Speaker said today.

    According to one campaign source, the Gingrich campaign has begun seeking the support of people with mental disorders and other memory issues that make it hard for them to retain basic information.*

    “The problem is, most of those people are currently running for President,” the source said.

    (source of satire: http://www.borowitzreport.com/)

    (*Too bad that foaming birthers, with the attention span of a fruit fly, would be ideal.)

  14. avatar
    G January 1, 2012 at 5:45 pm #

    It is still possible for the early state contests to allow lesser hopefuls under the radar to spark onto a bigger stage, especially in a year when many folks are not completely happy with the options in front of them. NH is a good platform for this to germinate, so I’m hoping that some of the barely known but legitimate minor candidates (those simply burdened by not having the media and money connections to give them prominence) will see their noble ground work efforts bear some fruit and at least make a “blip” in the votes significant to warrant some media attention and the hope to be taken more seriously.

    In particular, I think Vern Wuensche and Christopher Hill deserve being given a serious look and having their voices known and heard by GOP voters. Just under them, I also appreciate the committed effort that newcomers L. John Davis Jr. , Mark Callahan and Jeff Lawman are putting into their campaigns…although they still have a learning curve. Whether any of them can make even a small difference this cycle or simply can pay-off by raising their profile and experience for the future, I am rooting for all of them to do as best they can and would love to see them reach beyond the level of just “statistical noise”.

    http://fredkarger.com/
    http://www.buddyroemer.com/
    http://www.johndavisforpresident.org/
    http://hill2012.com/
    http://voteforvern.com/
    http://www.MarkCallahan.net
    http://jefflawman.com/

    Historically, if any of them could obtain even one half of one percent in any state contest – that truly should mean something and help raise their profile. When you study voting patterns, you see that even joke candidates and Mickey Mouse write-ins always receive a certain number of votes. So a minor and unknown candidate has to simply prove himself credible by being able to show that he can rise significantly above the statistical noise of random protest voting. On average, the statistical “noise” level is about 0.02 percent and sometimes as high as 0.1 percent. So therefore, a half-of a percent for a generally “unknown” would be quite noteworthy and deserves further attention. This applies to Roemer & Karger as well, although I would raise their bar to needing at least a full 1%.

    The rest of the many candidates out there who have merely “filed” and put up websites… I don’t take them seriously at all. If they can’t understand that they have no profile and regardless of their budget limitations, need to put in some actual “ground game” effort to reach voters in person in the early states, then I don’t consider them to actually be running. Just playing a vanity fantasy game to stoke their own egos. Anyone who thinks they are serious but didn’t put in the effort to get on NH’s ballot (one of the easiest to apply for) *and* didn’t also make an effort to show up there… well, they’ve just demonstrated that they don’t have a clue of how this process works and therefore are unfit for consideration of such serious office.

    joyeagle:

    Your analysis of Roemer’s campaign and stand reminded me of my hopes and participation in Keyes run in 2008. He was all about the election system is broke, and we got to run the campaign differently–the media controls too much. But you can only garner support within the reality that you are given. You can’t change the system before winning.

  15. avatar
    Rickey January 1, 2012 at 5:51 pm #

    To me the most fascinating thing about the Republican race is how every candidate who has risen to the top has quickly (seemingly almost overnight) been shot down.

    Bachmann was the hot candidate after the Iowa straw poll, then it was Rick Perry (it was only three months ago that Perry was on the cover of Time!), then Herman Cain, and then Gingrich. Now they are saying that Santorum has the momentum, which apparently means that he will crash and burn soon.

  16. avatar
    G January 1, 2012 at 6:34 pm #

    It will be interesting to see if the boom/bust cycle continues or if it changes, due to finally having “points being put on the board” with actual votes taking place once we hit Jan 3rd.

    I think that changes the dynamic significantly. The thing about the boom and busts so far is that one could continue to afford to limp along and hope to slowly regain, as there was little at stake in simply hoping that they could come back at some time.

    If you look at the full cycle, Gingrich actually got a bit of attention and a “mini boom” when he was first “announcing that he would announce” that he would enter the race. Then he had the first major collapse right out the gate – due to several major gaffes and most of his staff abandoning his campaign. Cain had a little “mini boom” after his perfomance in the 1st debate back in May as well. But that faded once Bachmann became the story by entering the race and debates in the next month…. and her star faded when the crowds jumped to the next “buzz” hope to enter, Rick Perry.

    Tim Pawlenty & Thaddeus McCotter dropped out because they simply couldn’t generate any real interest at all and ran out of cash.

    That’s the real killer and what will really be the decision point for many of the “drop outs” we see going forward – at what point is a candidate faced with taking on major debt in order to continue forward?

    After Perry’s fall, Cain was the next hope. It really was the debacle of his handling all of the past revelations and allegations of dealings with women in his past that did him in.

    So Newt became the next boom and target for further scrutity. His quick fall really has to do with a large and successful negative ad campaign by his opponents and their PACs in IA and other prominent places in the news, which have brought many of his weaknesses and contradictory or controversial positions into sharp focus.

    Then the attention went to Paul – who also has had a bit of a boom and bust, under further scrutiny… but he was achieving a slow, steady rise behind the scenes for quite some time…and his situation is unique and different from the others, so a negative campaign against him is unlikely to cause an actual “bust”, but only attempt to damper the extent to which he can further broaden his appeal.

    So yes, it looks like now Santorum is getting a turn…and in terms of timing, this is the best time to be on the rise and get a surge – in the last week before the first election. Enough time to rise significantly in polls and opinion and have the “momentum” of “viability” argument in the Caucus. Also, it leaves very little time and room for opponents criticism or scrutiny to wear his support down.

    If he does well and gets a good vote total, campaign money and attention will definitely flow his way and boost not only his chances but ability to stay in the contest longer and to be competitive while doing so. Also, he seems to be a fairly open and consistent in his positions, so other than attack ads pointing out that he takes an extreme hard-right POV on issues and Santorum openly admitting that is true… he doesn’t have the kind of vulnerability to charges of hypocricy or changed positions that can be so damaging to other candidates in this race.

    So, these latest two to get the “boom” spotlight are a bit different – they are very consistent in their positions and open about them. So I don’t see a “bust” happening for either Paul or Santorum under the same way that “spotlight” scrutiny hurt the prior “boom” recipients… and much of the dynamic will now shift to performance in each of these state contests and being able to raise new money and campaign structure to support living to compete another day…

    I certainly expect some surprise swings to continue as things progress, but I think the main dynamic in play so far of searching for a “Not Romney” will be forced to congeal and “settle” between options that remain standing as the actual state contests serve to let the voters winnow the field.

    (Not to say that a candidate can’t or won’t still self-destruct on their own… just simply that the power to shape the race finally shifts to the voters, where it belongs.)

    Rickey:
    To me the most fascinating thing about the Republican race is how every candidate who has risen to the top has quickly (seemingly almost overnight) been shot down.

    Bachmann was the hot candidate after the Iowa straw poll, then it was Rick Perry (it was only three months ago that Perry was on the cover of Time!), then Herman Cain, and then Gingrich. Now they are saying that Santorum has the momentum, which apparently means that he will crash and burn soon.