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Romney one step closer to Pawlentyville

Romney one step closer to Pawlentyville

What did I tell you just this morning.  Mitt Romney needs to take on Newt face-to-face, mano a mano, to demonstrate that Mitt is not Tim Pawlenty, someone who can dish it out through surrogates or in television interviews, but not in person.

This is a sign that Romney doesn’t want to do it, at least not one on one, Romney Declines Lincoln-Douglas Debate Against Gingrich:

With the Republican presidential primary appearing to have narrowed into a two-man contest, Human Events and Red State moved quickly to lock down a date for a Lincoln-Douglas-style debate between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich.

The two organizations went so far this past Monday as to firm up the Annenberg Theater at the Newseum in Washington as the venue on Dec. 19 after another debate originally scheduled that day was canceled. For its part, the Newseum was excited to host the pre-primary forum.

There was just one problem. While Gingrich was ready to take his place on the stage, the Romney campaign politely declined in a series of mostly e-mail exchanges.

As Joe Guerriero, publisher of Human Events and Red State, put it to RCP: “Newt was all over it, and the Romney camp basically said no. It wasn’t a harsh no, but it was a no.”

Two highly influential publications offer the two leading contenders a chance to have a wide ranging debate on the issues, and to confront each other, and one takes the opportunity while the other one declines.

I understand why Romney declines.  But it’s just another step on the road to Pawlentyville.

Update:  This Is A Genius Move By Gingrich

Newt  Gingrich has invited Jon Huntsman to engage in another long Lincoln-Douglas style debate  on December 12, in Windham New Hampshire. Newt did a similar debate with Herman Cain earlier this year. Huntsman accepted.

It’s a genius move for Gingrich, and a good one by Huntsman. Romney has declined an invitation to engage Gingrich in this kind of debate.

Newt Gingrich gets to elevate Huntsman in New Hampshire, which could hurt Mitt  Romney.

Gingrich believes that he can beat anyone in a debate and will look smarter  than any of his opponents. The more air-time he gets, the better for  him.

Mitt Romney looks like a chicken for not accepting a debate challenge with his chief rival.



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A debate on 12/19 is unlikely to get much notice; I’m not sure it would benefit Romney.

Then again, Gingrich as the nominee strikes me as profoundly stupid. I’m hoping his weak organization does him in.

I like what you did there with “Pawlentyville”.

There is a our hero Mitt in a nutshell! What a coward! He also wouldn’t do that Fox center seat show. Gutless wonderboy!

Does anyone have access to those emails that said “It wasn’t a harsh no, but … ”

Smarmy is as smarmy does.

romney clinched the nomination with the coveted murkowski endorsement

Donald Douglas | December 2, 2011 at 3:54 pm

Actually, William, I think you’re absolutely right. My thing is I just can’t stand Newt Gingrich. I written about it, and you’re linked: ‘Mitt Romney vs. Newt Gingrich’.

workingclass artist | December 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm

Well Mitt didn’t go to Iowa for the Luntz cryfest either.

Newt will crow over Mitt & folks will shrug.

Why doesn’t Newt ask Gov. Perry…I mean if Perry is so dumb it’s a slam dunk for Newt right?

Of course Perry will talk about what he’s been doing as a Three term governor of Texas and Newt can either talk about stuff he did 20 years ago or theory or how many moneymaking political operations he’s built which could be a problem.

    This one-on-one debate style is the only way to get the candidates outside of their 30 second sound bite comfort zone. Is it any wonder that most would refuse?

    What would there be to gain by winning a debate against Perry? On the other hand, a perceived loss to Perry could be quite embarrassing…

    William A. Jacobson in reply to workingclass artist. | December 2, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    Why doesn’t Gov. Perry ask Newt? I mean that seriously. Would be good to see them on stage together.

      I totally agree! And I’m still willing to keep an open mind about Perry. Bring it on!

      workingclass artist in reply to William A. Jacobson. | December 2, 2011 at 8:27 pm

      Prof. I’m assuming it’s a Newt “thingy” but It would be cool to see. I think Newt & Huntsman will have an interesting and wonky policy discussion.

      I think the contrast between Newt & Perry would be that of a policy wonk lawmaker and a plain speaking executive who started as a conservator legislator.

Mittens? Neuter?

no thank you…No More RINOS!

Perry for President 2012.

we know he’s a great candidate because the Beltway pundits and the MFM hate him.

Not that it makes a huge difference, but “mano a mano” means hand-to-hand. Unless used metaphorically – and I assume it is – it’s probably not really necessary to wrestle and win to get the nomination 😉

Would liven up them debates tho’. Perhaps Linda MacMahon’s husband could help orchestrate.

Henry Hawkins | December 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm

Gingrich is displaying the kind of chess playing politics he learned in congress, the sort of maneuvering it will take to defeat Obama in the general when things will get very, very ugly. Gingrich is a consummate political infighter. If Mitt can’t handle Brett Baier and won’t go one on one with Newt, how are we supposed to believe he’d take on Obama?

RE: Perry. I love the guy on paper, and knew little of him till he jumped in, but since then…. what the ? I can’t put my finger on it, but there’s something wrong there. I hear and believe Texans and others who support him so strongly, but every time I see/hear Perry it’s either a rather banal ‘okay’ thing, no help, no harm, or he stumbles all over his own brain and tongue. I could easily support the guy, but he’s got to show me he’s been off the ranch in a tie before.

    workingclass artist in reply to Henry Hawkins. | December 2, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    @Henry Hawkins

    Perry is a regular guy. He’s not a lawyer but he’s been a successful conservator legislator (He started as a budget pitbull grilling bureaucrats)

    He’s not an “intellectual” but he has an evolved conservative philosophy and a commonsense approach.

    Basically he’s an Aggie & a very effective Governing executive of a large complex state.
    He’s plain spoken because he’s from West Texas & isn’t verbose.

    He’s very different than George W. Bush.

When I was an L.A. Rams fan as a boy, I used to dread playoff games when Chuck Knox was the coach. He always played not to lose … which worked pretty well during the regular season. But in the playoffs when the players are pumped and playing over their heads … it never worked. The Rams won five straight NFC West titles and always lost in the playoffs. Playing not to lose always costs you. The other team is going to catch fire at some time … and if you’re trying not to catch fire … just eke out a victory … you lose in the playoffs.

Mitt Romney is the L.A. Rams under Coach Knox. Does pretty well during the season … nice and steady … and then when the real big game comes … always seems to lose.

LukeHandCool (who can’t watch more than a few minutes of football nowadays … that’s for childhood … life is too short to be a spectator).

    Henry Hawkins in reply to LukeHandCool. | December 2, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    I grew up in Detroit. ‘Nuff said about pro football. *sigh*

      JimMtnViewCaUSA in reply to Henry Hawkins. | December 2, 2011 at 5:19 pm

      Never forget 1962 T’giving Lions/Packers.
      That said, the memorable moments were few …

        Henry Hawkins in reply to JimMtnViewCaUSA. | December 2, 2011 at 6:04 pm

        The Detroit Lions haven’t won the championship since the year I was born – and I’m nearing retirement. I know things look different this year, with the emergence of young Mr. Stafford, et al, but you can never underestimate the ability of William Clay Ford to do something to sabotage his own team. Again.

        On the other hand, I went to school on an ice hockey scholarship and I always have my Red Wings.

      LukeHandCool in reply to Henry Hawkins. | December 2, 2011 at 6:55 pm

      Haven’t seen “Paper Lion” since I saw it in the movie theater as a boy. Might just rent it. I believe Alex Karras was in it.

        Henry Hawkins in reply to LukeHandCool. | December 2, 2011 at 10:02 pm

        George Plimpton vehicle. Yes on Karras, plus Earl Morrall, Dick LeBeau, Night Train Lane, Wayne Walker… and that’s the extent of my memory.

          Henry Hawkins in reply to Henry Hawkins. | December 2, 2011 at 10:03 pm

          Er, those players were with the Lions during Plimpton’s gig. Karras was in the movie though, and I think Lions QB Milt Plum was as well.

    In all fairness, those Rams teams simply ran up against better teams in the Vikings and Cowboys.

thers probably a reason romne looks like a chicken. also huntsmans ideas aint that bad he just needs to lose the attitude

Seriously. If you were Mitt, would you want to debate Newt? Nothing to gain and everything to lose.

While he’s at, he should decline all long distance running challenges from Geoffrey Mutai*

*Geoffrey Mutai was the winner of the 2011 NYC marathon if you aren’t a running geek.

    iowan2 in reply to Andy. | December 2, 2011 at 5:35 pm

    Thats a good analogy, If you’re going to be considered the best distance runner in the world, you’re going to have to show up and compete against those that think they are your superior. To refuse to compete on the same courses because you might loose shows you’re not ready to be the best.

    I think the electorate gets the quality of leadership they deserve. If Romney fears any foe, he’s not for me. I like Romney, and would vote for him. But in the primary, he gets no consideration, if he refuses to advance his vision for America. If he doesn’t believe enough in his own vision, why would I buy in?

In 2006 Romney decided not to risk a run for a second term as governor, so I’m disappointed but not surprised that he’s dodging Gingrich.

Henry Hawkins | December 2, 2011 at 6:17 pm

Mitt ran for office three times and lost twice.

Despite the fact he’s been running since 2007, has an immense organization set up, has a huge campaign fund, name recognition as good as anyone in the field, and the establishment GOP and media referring him to him as the ‘inevitable’ nominee for months and months now, he still could not get above the 20-25% the establishment GOP represents, cannot gain traction, and in serial fashion finds himself behind the competition, currently way behind Gingrich. Check out the Hot Air poll results of voters who are essentially the same as LI readers/commenters. Now, a spinmeister might suggest this shows his resilience, but few would buy that. Basically, he’s an also-ran except for the brief time span between a frontrunner’s implosion and the voters’ glance around for a new candidate, soon after which Mitt slides back down the list.

It’s kind of like we need to travel from NYC to LA and are trying to find the best way to get there: private jet, airline, train, car, etc. In this analogy Romney is a Greyhound bus – serviceable, but far from the first or best choice, and basically our backup choice if nothing better can be found.

Newt is using these debate offers to hide his real problems. Newt gets to play Professor and slap down the “ignorant” while he doesn’t have to face the really hard questions on immigration board amnesty ( Newt calls it “a path to legality”), government intervention to solve global warming, (Newt says, “sitting on the couch wth Pelosi was a mistake”,) what about the actual global warming Newt? and then Newts infideilites and his Fannie and Freddie Mae lovefests all get ignored until the General when the MSM will smack him down. He’s using debates as cover, he’s the consummate inside-the-beltway-politican.
No-one left in the GOP field should debate him. Make Newt play on a different field and answer the hard questions. We already have style over substance with the slick debater in the whie House currently.

Is it November of 2012 yet?

I used to hate newt from the 1990’s, I was a clinton voter and supporter.

If Newt is the nominee, count me as someone who will be donating to him and heck I’ll even campaign for him just to get that moron in the WH kicked out nov’ 2012.

ABO. Apparently the dems aka MSM thinks independents won’t vote for Newt, I’m an independent voter, a ex-dem, I’ll vote for Romney, or Newt. I don’t know who I’ll support but whoever I see as the best, stronger candidate to kick out Barry next novemeber gets my vote, and oh yea that includes the Newtster, who I used to run to find my remote when he was on TV so I could change the change in the 90’s.

[…] here’s commentary from the man behind the title for this post… Two highly influential publications offer the two leading contenders a chance to have a wide […]

One of the things that concerns me is that it is early December and the GOP nomination appears to be a two-man race. Between two establishment candidates trying ever-so-hard to convince us that the other guy is the establishment contest.

Not a single primary vote has been cast or counted and our choice is between a liberal GOP former governor and a former Speaker of the House who has frequently offered up conservative ideas but rarely implemented any of them when he was in control of the levers of power.

2012 is nearly here and we seem to find ourselves with the GOP establishment and MSM having picked our candidates before the first vote was recorded. Frankly, I smell a rat…

TeaPartyPatriot4ever | December 3, 2011 at 1:41 am

What does this say about Romney.. exactly.. This says that the candidate Mr Romney, hasn’t the skill, knowledge, expertise, and confidence, to debate on Newt, one on one.. How can he be expected to lead the Nation as President, if he’s too afraid, and doesn’t even have the courage to debate a competitive candidate, one on one..

What it also says about Mr. Romney, besides being afraid, is that he has no integrity, and is a political coward. Mr Romney is absolutely not qualified to be the U.S. President. No one wants an ill qualified political coward, as the U.S. President, especially not as a Republican.

Ronald Reagan was never afraid to take on any one, in any debate, let alone on a one on one exchange..

Romney makes a Patriotic Conservative want to puke with disgust.. Can you imagine as a Romney supporter, besides having to swallow that issue of Romney’s implementation of his beloved forced mandated State Socialized Healthcare Medicine program- Ronmneycare, which he refuses to admit was wrong in so many ways, then says he will repeal Obamacare if elected, even though Romneycare and Obamacare, are both the same thing.. You just gotta love his hypocrisy and lies.. as he thinks he’s cute, and no one will question him on it.. He couldn’t even take a few questions from Brett Baier, a Fox News Host, the other day, and Brett was rather light on him.. and he still whined about it..

These are the facts, and the fact of the matter is, Romney is a political coward, who is scared to debate Newt, one on one..

Now, try swallowing that, as a Romney Republican Primary voter.. and if the individual Primary voter does vote for Romney, they will be issued nose plugs, so they won’t have to smell the stink of their own vote..