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In meetings most of the day, what did I miss?

Seems like this is some of it:

Everyone out of Iraq by Christmas.  Then what.

Was Gaddafi originally shot by NATO special forces then turned over to the Libyans who killed him?

University of Iowa Poll (thanks reader Charles); who has to drop out if this is the actual result at the caucuses?:

Herman Cain  37%,
Mitt Romney at 27%,
Ron Paul at 11.5%,
Newt Gingrich at 7.7%,
Rick Perry at 5.9%,
Michele Bachmann at 3.9%
Rick Santorum at 3.1%.

No, Occupy Wall Street is not like the Tea Party, and stop saying it is.

Michele Bachman campaign staff quits in New Hampshire?.  Lights out?

Updates:  It’s on, this is the general election (h/t Patterico):


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Everyone out of Iraq by Christmas. Then what:

The Iraqi Government begging for troops to return in order to fight the insurgents by Easter.

If the actual results mirror this poll, Bachmann and Santorum should quit. Perry and Gingrich should stay in to be landing zones for Cain supporters when they bail.

Poll results and the Iowa Caucuses:

If these end up being the actual results at the Iowa Caucuses, Santorum and Bachmann will be officially finished.

Perry won’t have to drop out because he’s sitting on such a huge pile of cash, and he’s focused on South Carolina and the other Southern states.

Gingrich will have to drop out unless he places at least 3rd in in Nevada, New Hampshire and South Carolina, but then he will have to win Florida or Arizona, place at least 2nd in Michigan and place 3rd or better overall on Super-Tuesday to stay in. If he pulls this off, whomever is in 4th place at that time (Perry, Romney or Cain) will be finished because they won’t be able to raise any more money.

As I’ve said before, Paul is just too danged stubborn to quit, and he’s running his campaign on a shoestring and a piece of chewing gum, so he’ll stick around until the nominating convention.

Who can survive will depend a lot on New Hampshire and Iowa. My prediction right now though is that Cain wins Iowa, and places a strong second behind either Perry or Newt in South Carolina depending on which one gets their act together fastest. My hope is on Newt. My money is on Perry.

The University of Iowa Poll, October 29, 2007

Romney 36.2%
Guiliani 13.1%
Huckabee 12.8%
Thompson 11.4%
McCain 6.0%

On January 3, 2008 the Iowa Caucuses were held.
Mike Huckabee took the Caucus. Romney came in a distant second.

    This is largely why I think Cain is going to win Iowa.

    There are two major issues in Iowa: FairTax and Corn Subsidies.

    Corn subsidies, because it’s Iowa, and they’ve got literally tons of the stuff.

    FairTax because the Fairtax support groups have spent years ingratiating themselves into the caucus structure in order to push the FairTax as a policy.

    Cain is saying all the right things to get Iowa going in his direction. The question is, like Huckabee, will he flame out when he gets to New Hampshire or South Carolina.

      Sorry, but farmers in Iowa don’t have the time to study all the in and outs of the Fair Tax. And the 9-0-9 plan Cain said that he now has? “Empowerment” zones? What’s up with that? Americans are tired of convoluted tax systems. You pay tax on this, but not on that. yada, yada.

      Cain has been spending a week just trying to explain his stand on abortion (he’s anti-abortion but pro-choice?), he was joking about an electric fence, but not really, etc. and he is going to have to be able to give clear, concise answers and not roam all over the place.

      But you can put money on this; the higher he goes in the poll, everything he has ever said, everything he has ever done, everything he has ever even eaten, is going to come under scrutiny. What goes up, must come down.

        I read all your other comments (which are well reasoned), but you need to remember something about the FairTax supporters organizational structure. They’ve poured a lot of time, effort and money into Iowa in order to get a candidate, ANY candidate, to take their position seriously.

        It’s not that the farmers have to understand it, because the farmers care about corn subsidies (and other agricultural products). It’s the other Republican /Conservative structures which have been courted by the FairTax supporters, and where they have made inroads which the candidate needs to win in addition to the farmers.

        Cain supports moving to the FairTax proposal as a taxation system. He admits that going directly is too big a jump, so the 9-9-9 plan is supposed to be a transitional step. I can’t find the article, but he did this recently.

        Now, he did explain it badly. He should be saying the following:

        – There’s a 9% Corporate Tax. This will enhance growth of corporations by reducing their tax burden, as well as providing certainty that they will pay their fair share.

        – There is a nominal 9% income tax, but if you make less than the HHS guidelines for poverty based on household size you will pay 0% income tax.

        – There is a 9% sales tax. Every household will receive a payment IN ADVANCE every month to account for spending for that household up to HHS poverty guidelines. If you’re in poverty you will pay ZERO sales tax.

        If he got behind this sort of a simple message, he will win. It needs to be straight-forward, simple to remember and easy to explain. All the empowerment zone stuff is making it too complex.

        As for his prior abortion statements, I think he’s trying not to get pigeon-holed. It will bite him, but not as badly as everybody seems to think. It’s kind of becoming the standard response in order to blunt the NAGS and L-ACLU “anti-choice” charge.

        Everything he’s done and said is going to go under scrutiny. That comes with the campaign (except in the case of Obama). Will there be some rough moments explaining some past decisions or statements? Sure. I think he’ll weather it all right.

          retire05 in reply to Chuck Skinner. | October 22, 2011 at 2:55 pm

          The problem with your “boots on the ground in Iowa” over the fair tax is that is IOWA. Not the rest of the nation. One state, perhaps, but Iowa is not representative of the nation as a whole.

          Now, you say that every person living at the poverty level, or less, will receive a check in advance to cover the 9% of their purchases that will be levied in that will be levied in sales tax. There are major problems with that senario, as well. Currently, the federal poverty level for a family of four in the contiguous lower 48 is $22,350./yr. Now, if you are in Detroit, and at poverty level, and move to Houston, your buying power increases because it only takes $19,327.00/yr to have the same buying power in Houston as $22,350./yr has in Detroit. So would that advance check be based on regional cost of living? What if I am eligible for the advance check (I guess determined by my previous annual income) but in July, I get a great job that takes me well out of the poverty level? How long does it take for those checks to stop coming? Isn’t that just an added level of bureaucracy to be dealt with? If I continue to get checks (who will monitor it?) am I going to be required to pay that money back at tax time?

          And what percent of that $22,350. is considered disposable income, since most families at that income are eligible for food stamps, subsidized housing and the EITC? And let’s say that the disposable income for a poverty level family is $800/month in Detroit. That means a check for $72.00 would be sent to them. But that same family in Houston would have greater buying power and the $72 would not cover the total 9% sales tax they would be required to pay. A huge department would have to be created to keep up with everyone’s income based on monthly, not annual, income. And where does that advance check come from? Taxpayers who are not eligible for the program. Once again, it is a redistribution of wealth scheme.

          Cain has a major problem with being able to explain 9-9-9 and 9-0-9. It is basically a “waiver” plan, with exemptions for areas that have driven out jobs and money. It is no different than Romney’s “waiver” plan for all 50 states, or Obama’s “waiver” plan for certain groups on Obamacare.

          Cain also has a problem with his “anti abortion, pro choice” responses. It should not take a week to explain yourself. A simple “I am pro-life, not pro-choice, and don’t agree with Roe v. Wade. But a POTUS has no authority to overturn SCOTUS decisions and will be required to abide by the law.” How simple is that?

          9-9-9 is a disaster and as it is examined more and more (and it will be) it could crater Cain. This recent relevation of 9-0-9 seems to be a new thing that he has come up with since his advisor, Steven Moore, said he should drop the sale tax portion of 9-9-9.

          I don’t understand your comment about “boots on the ground in Iowa” being Iowa. The FairTax supporters have chosen that as their beach-head because it’s the first in the nation place to caucus, and thus the person who wins (presumably) should have a leg up in the general election. It’s not as true as it once was, but it’s still meaningful. Plus, it allows the FairTax Supporters to say that they have momentum on their side.

          You misunderstand the fundamental nature of the prepaid rebate. There is NO eligibility requirement. EVERY household gets it regardless of income (the poor as well as the multimillionaire). Period. The concept is that no one should have to pay tax on the minimum requirements to support yourself (your family) which HHS sets nationally (although with some regional adjustments). The common misconception that only the poor receive it is WRONG. EVERYBODY gets it.

          Regional cost of living is only barely relevant. It’s handled by the federal government, and HHS Poverty guidelines are not generally adjusted for regional cost of living (AK & HI are adjusted). Either you are or you are not poor by the federal government’s standards. If you choose to move to a place where your money goes farther, good for you.

          The concept of the FairTax is that there is zero disposable income until you exceed the poverty level (as defined by HHS guidelines based on FAMILY SIZE).

          Food Stamp eligibility is run by the States (even though it’s technically a federal program). The Prebate would not affect eligibility. EITC would be irrlevant: it would be ended by the FairTax (repeals all FICA taxes). Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid become a general line item in the Budget. Housing (I think) is also handled at the state level (would not affect eligibility for subsidies). As I said above, regional buying power is irrelevant to the FairTax.

          Income is irrelevant to the FairTax. EVERYBODY gets the SAME AMOUNT based on FAMILY SIZE. A family of 4 making $20,000 is going to get the same amount as a family of 4 making $200,000. If you want your money to go farther, move to somewhere with a lower cost of living index. The FEDERAL tax system shouldn’t discriminate.

          The FairTax is NOT a wealth redistribution scheme. The 9-9-9 plan isn’t either, all things considered, so long as it undoes the current inherent redistribution system currently imbedded in the system (“refundable” credits), and stops the Code from being about “encouraging” choices through tax policy (choices to buy a house, have children, make business deductions, offer fringe-benefits, etc…). If EVERYBODY is getting the same amount, it (by definition) CAN’T be a redistribution scheme.

          Cain DOES have an explanation problem, but it’s not the one everybody thinks he has. He needs to stop with the “waiver” talk and simply discuss the merits of the fact that, if you’re poor by HHS guidelines, you pay NOTHING. If you’re NOT poor by HHS guidelines, you pay 9% income tax on your income ABOVE HHS Guidelines, and you pay Sales tax on your Purchases ABOVE HHS Guidelines (Spending up to that level being paid to you IN ADVANCE).

          The Abortion thing, like I said, is becoming the standard “not-going-to-take-the-bait” response. Moving on.

          9-9-9 is not going to crater Cain (so long as he keeps it simple and stops trying to finesse it). He can’t (and won’t) drop the sales tax portion, because it’s the stepping stone to FairTax (which is ALL sales tax).

The following month, on Feb. 5, 2007 we had Super Tuesday.

John McCain took 9 states for 602 delegates
Mitt Romney took 7 states for 201 delegates
Mike Huckabee took 5 states for 152 delegates

Mitt Romney resigned his campaign on Feb. 7, 2008.

It ain’t over by a long shot.

    spartan in reply to retire05. | October 21, 2011 at 10:22 pm

    The major difference this year is the GOP is NOT going with a winner-take-all in any of the primaries. The later primaries will become more relevent. I think Cain will lose his luster the more his grab-bagging becomes exposed. I think his answer on abortion will/should be harmful to him in IA. The social conservatives are not really keen on, ‘I’m pro-life but……’ responses.
    Then again, he is much more libertarian than conservative; and always has been. I still think this race will come down to Perry and Romney; with a little Gingrich for flourish. I still think Cain has a big problem with organization and money. Perry picked up one Bachmann’s paid staffers in NH. Let’s see where the others go.
    The question will come down to how much momentum Romney will get before Perry starts hitting his stride. A big showing for Perry in IA will be a game changer.

      retire05 in reply to spartan. | October 21, 2011 at 10:51 pm

      spartan, Cain’s rise was almost as rapid as Perry’s happening in just a few weeks. That is not a good sign. I said that about Thompson when he was taking the nation by storm. He’s climbing too fast. He is going to come down just as fast.

      Cain’s rapid rise helps one person; Perry. While everyone is focusing on Cain, and Romney, Perry is doing what Perry does the best, retail politics. When you tell one of Perry’s campaign staff that you are disappointed you didn’t get to talk to Rick, and the next thing you know, Rick comes back and talks to you and answers your questions, as he did with people in Iowa, that person is going to remember that candidate who thought you were important enough to come back to.

      Everyone wants to vote for a winner. But sooner or later, you have to judge between the sizzle or the steak.

        spartan in reply to retire05. | October 21, 2011 at 11:18 pm


        I was going to respond to Chuck Skinner’s eloquent post below but you have raised many of the issues I was going to make in my response.
        Cain will not win GA, even if he gets that far. Newt will call in his IOUs from his endorsement of Governor Deal (Huckabee was another big endorser). Romney and Perry will be fighting for the rest of the political players. Cain will do well with the activist crowd but even their enthusiasm, as well as Cain’s momentum, will be tempered by the latest soundbites. Retail politics is what wins elections and Perry will do well picking up endorsements. Perry does his homework.
        On the other hand, Cain has been virtually non-existent in this area. In last year’s GA governor’s primary race, he was silent. I have no idea whether he endorsed anyone. People will remember who endorses and who are the ‘Johnny-come-latelys’. Palin will have more ‘street cred’ than local guy Cain. Palin endorsed Karen Handel, the GOP runner-up.
        This is how many states work. It is one thing to have an idea but you better have an organization and a candidate to back the idea. Cain has a lot of homework to do in 3 months, I don’t think he will get far. Local folks who know Cain are convinced he is trying to angle the VP slot. I don’t see it. A Romney nomination will lead to a Perry VP and a Perry nomination will probably lead to a Pawlenty VP.

        As for the Tea Party folks, they are behind anyone but Romney. They know a Romney win extinguishes any and all gains the Tea Party made in 2010. I don’t think the Establishment GOP has a problem with that; hence, the political disconnect.

          retire05 in reply to spartan. | October 22, 2011 at 11:08 am

          spartan, I again agree with a lot of what you say, but there will be no Romney/Perry ticket. They truely dislike each other and Perry has been P.O.ed at Romney over the Boy Scouts/Olympics deal for quite a while. It was a definate slam at the Boys Scouts who Romney felt should allow gays in as scout leaders.

          My guess a Perry nomination will lead to a Rubio VP. I know, Rubio says “no” but that only goes so far. A Romney nomination will lead to a Christie VP. Double northeastern whammie. And, a losing ticket because it will not sit will with fly-over country who will be just as apatheic as they were about McCain.

          The northeastern states are losing delegates next year due to the census. The southern, southwestern states have picked up delegates. That could be a game changer. Voters in Florida and Texas don’t have the same concerns that voters in New York have. But it doesn’t matter. In the general election, Obama will carry New York, New Hampshire, Pennslyvania, Michigan and Massachussets. Again, the general election will depend on which way Florida goes.

          Cain has been gaining in the polls, but his fundraising is still pathetic. It seems he cannot get the big money bundlers behind him, and he can’t run a campaign without them. Romney collected $14 million in the second quarter and has already blown through over $12 million. Perry collected $17 million in 49 days, his donations went UP, not down, after the first three debates, and he still has $15 million left. Money well saved to be spend in a blitz in late December.

          When it comes to a ground game, Perry is best at it. He doesn’t play to the media like Cain, is comfortable down on the concrete with voters, unlike Romney who always seems a bit uncomfortable with the “little” people (is anyone fooled by rolled up shirt sleeves and a tie?) When Perry hit the stage with Bachmann and Santorum in Iowa, Perry had been on the grounds since that morning, stopping by every table, shaking every hand he could find, taking pictures with veterans and talking service stories to them (something he can relate to)and he was the last guy to leave when the clean-up crew came in. Bachmann stayed in her bus most of the day, Santorum was there just a brief time. And while the Iowa polls show Cain to be in the lead, there is still almost three months left and that is an eon in political terms. In 2007, Romney lead the polls in Iowa right up to the caucus itself, when Huckabee won in what was called an “upset.”

          retire05 in reply to spartan. | October 22, 2011 at 3:16 pm

          RCP Florida Presidential Primary/Oct. 25, 2007

          Guiliani – 30%
          McCain – 14%
          Romney – 12%
          Thompson – 14%

          the rest were below 10%

          McCain took Florida.

          Polls, this far out, are basically useless.

Donald Douglas | October 21, 2011 at 5:55 pm

This is graphic, but there’s new video of Gaddafi pleading with his captors to spare his life. And the rebels were debating whether they should kill him: ‘New Footage Shows Muammar Gaddafi Begging for His Life’.

Yeah, I thought it was amusing that now they’re trying to equate the Occupiers with the TEA Party.

Does that mean the OWS’ are racists? or Terrorists? or Occubaggers?

How about them being predominantly white? Or that the minorities that ARE present are Uncle toms/Tio Tomas or whatever?

This is so pathetic that even the most brain dead urban dweller on welfare and food stamps gets how lame it is.

The Underground Conservative | October 21, 2011 at 7:34 pm

If the Cocktail Party GOP is successful in rigging the game for Romney, the Democrats’ commercials will practically write themselves. It may very well be the objective to throw the election next year, in fear of actually mounting a serious campaign against a (half) black man for fear of being called “Raaaaacist!” and in hopes of putting up RINO Gov. Christie in 2016.

Problem for the Cocktail Party GOP: give Obama another term and there won’t be an America (at least one we will recognize) in 2016. The Stupid Party still does not get it. And never will.

    I don’t think so. The Cocktail Party GOP is out of touch, but not suicidal. I don’t think that they’re foolish enough to actively try to throw an election with this much momentum going into it (unless they’re more afraid of the TEA Party than of the Democrat Party).

    If they do, they’re not going to get a second shot at it, because the momentum that the TEA Partiers are generating will be crushed under the disappointment of losing. Keeping up that level of (anger, frustration, energy, pick your emotional state) for another 4 years will be just about impossible, even with Obama as a foil.

    I think that they’re trying to rig the game for Romney because they honestly (if probably incorrectly) think that he’s going to be the best candidate to beat Obama largely because they think he’ll draw in the independent voter and the Democrat base won’t be fired up to oppose him. They think that the Independent will flee and Democrat will salivate at the thought of voting against Perry or Newt.

    I’m going to be blunt: The northern old white RINO Republicans don’t know what to do with a Black Conservative. I call it the Rockefeller Republican Racism.

    They won’t vote for one even when he’s far and away the best candidate in the field (believe me, I know first hand having worked on the campaign of a well known, well liked one who had the chance to unseat a Democrat mayor of a city of 300K). We actually had polling that the white Republican over 55 would vote for our candidate until they saw a visual image of him, and then they broke away. Now keep in mind that this candidate was a former NBA Sportswear model, a successful businessman, a former city commissioner of Parks and Rec and gave freely of his time to encourage children.

    Instead, the old, white voters primary voted for a white RINO who lost BADLY to a very scandal damaged Democrat candidate. It was actually painful to see the results, because we could extrapolate the rough ages of the voting population based on where they lived in this city.

    I have not found this attitude to be present anywhere but New England.

    Herman Cain is going to find that he has Primary problems in NY, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Maine.

      I agree in part, but don’t think the Tea Party has gone away. If anything, I think they are regrouping, taking a breath, getting ready for the fight of their lives. I know that my own Tea Party is now worried about an election on Constitutional (state) amendments coming up in November.

      I do think that Cain will have problems in some states. But remember, unemployment lines are not divided by party affiliation. Just as many Indies are unemployed as Republicans or Democrats. And banks don’t poll to see party affiliation when they send out foreclosure notices.

      New York is important due to the number of delegates. NH, Vermont, Conneticut, Rhode Island and Maine, not so much. Cain is going to have to carry Florida, and I don’t think he will.

      New Hampshire will go to Romney. He has both name recognition and a home there. Iowa, it’s a toss up right now and could fall in any direction. Super Tuesday will be the telling point and it has provided surprises more than once.

        I didn’t mean to give the impression that the TEA Party had gone away. That was not my intention. More that there is dissonance between the two arms of the Republican Party (TEA Partiers and Cocktail Party GOPers). It is the local elections which will keep them involved day-to-day going forward, which is good.

Everyone out of Iraq by Christmas. Then what:

Iraq rejects US request to maintain bases after troop withdrawal…..

The Pentagon is wary of a final attack as the final pullout gets under way.

By definition, the liberals are our moral and intellectual superiors.
Observation: OWS has had instances of racism, antisemitism, barbarism, and crime.

Therefore: OWS must be like or superior to Tea Party gatherings.

As the country has become more divisive, I’ve found it interesting how much projection the left places on the right.

Real Clear Politics

South Carolina Republican Presidential Primary
RCP Average 10/11 – 10/16
Cain 31.5
Romney 22
Perry 11.0
Gingrich 7.5
Paul 6.0
Bachmann 5.5
Huntsman 1.0

Iowa Republican Presidential Caucus
RCP Average 10/3 – 10/19
Cain 28.2
Romney 22.8
Paul 10.8
Gingrich 8.4
Bachmann 8.4
Perry 7.8
Santorum 3.8
Huntsman 1.2

New Hampshire Republican Presidential Primary
RCP Average 10/2 – 10/16
Romney 40.4
Cain 18.4
Paul 10.6
Gingrich 5.8
Huntsman 4.8
Perry 4.2
Bachmann 3.8
Santorum 1.3
Johnson 0.8

Florida Republican Presidential Primary
RCP Average 9/24 – 10/16
Romney 31
Cain 29
Perry 8.3
Gingrich 8.0
Paul 4.7
Bachmann 3.8
Huntsman 1.7
Santorum 1.5