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Rick Santorum failed the debate character test

Rick Santorum failed the debate character test

Rick Santorum disqualified himself last night at the debate by his response to John King’s question to Newt about the ABC News interview with Newt’s ex-wife.

The issue was more than just another issue, whether it was the Newt-Freddie consulting, Romney’s tax returns, or Santorum’s election loss in PA.  The ABC assault on Newt embodied the heart of mainstream media bias which plagues Republicans, particularly conservative Republicans, regardless of election cycle or candidate.

Aftet Newt gave his smackdown, King turned to the other candidates on stage prodding them to go after Newt on the marital infidelity issue.  Here’s the transcript of the responses (video here) by Santorum and Mitt Romney (emphasis mine):

MR. KING: All right. As I noted — as I noted at the beginning, we have four podiums on this stage tonight, not five.

And when he exited the race this morning, Governor Perry quickly and forcefully endorsed Speaker Gingrich. And in that remark, he said that, no, Mr. Gingrich is not a perfect man. Senator Santorum, he said none of us are. And he said he believes in his Christian faith that guides him to the value of redemption. Speaker Gingrich doesn’t believe this is an issue; Governor Perry says this is not an issue. I just want to start with you, sir, and go down. Do you believe it is?

RICK SANTORUM: I’ve answered this question repeatedly throughout the course of this campaign. I am a Christian, too, and I thank God for forgiveness. But, you know, these — these are issues of our lives, and what we did in our lives are issues of character for people to consider. But the bottom line is, those are — those are things for everyone in this audience to look at, and they’re to look at me, look at what I’ve done in my private life and personal life, unfortunately.

And what I say is that this country is a very forgiving country. This — this country understands that we are all fallen. And I’m very hopeful that we will be judged by that standard and not by — by a higher one on the ultimate day. (Applause.)

MR. KING: Governor Romney?

MITT ROMNEY: John, let’s get on to the real issues, is all I’ve got to say. (Cheers, applause.)

Ron Paul went on to give an answer similar to Santorum, but since I’ve never seriously considered Paul, his answer is irrelevant to me.

Notice the difference in responses between Romney and Santorum.   It was us (Republicans)  versus them (the mainstream media), and even though the “us” was Newt, Romney chose us.

Santorum, by contrast, tried to take advantage of the situation by chosing himself over us.  I will never forget that moment, and the weakness shown by Santorum.

There may be a time and place to try to score points against Newt on marital fidelity, but that place was not on stage when the mainstream media was trying to take down one of our candidates.

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Comments

Your right on this one, Professor. Santorum panicked under pressure and took the low road.

Debate Character Test Grade: F

myveryownpointofview | January 20, 2012 at 1:59 pm

MerryCarol, I didn’t get the sense that Santorum panicked, in fact from what I’ve seen of him thus far this is how he rolls.

I got the sense he really wanted to take his answer further, and blast Newt, but managed to restrain himself – but just barely.

    Santorum’s emotions are a pendulum swinging from enthusiastic highs to combative lows. He was perceived as “angry” in his first debates and reacted by tempering his emotions in the debates that followed. His temperament adjustment was reflected in the poles leading up to NH. Now that he is slipping into SC, his emotions are swinging back to the lows again. Santorum would be a better candidate if could keep on an even keel.

    That being said, I personally like Santorum, agree with most of views, and I will vote for him if he is the nominee.

c16rocksteady | January 20, 2012 at 2:00 pm

What an upside down world we live in when character and morality no longer matter.

    They matter but no one is spotless when it comes to moral issues and politics ain’t beanball.

      JonB in reply to TeeJaw. | January 21, 2012 at 2:38 am

      Nobody knows what goes on in anyone’s marriage.

      When a marriage fails, it should be a private matter.

      For a political candidate to attempt to gain a political advantage from a failed marriage is definitely the low road.

      In my opinion, anyone that would try to take political advantage from someone’s failed marriage isn’t much of a person.

      I have a very low opinion of Rick Santorum now.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to c16rocksteady. | January 20, 2012 at 2:43 pm

    Then again, “let he who is without sin…”

      Hope Change in reply to Henry Hawkins. | January 20, 2012 at 3:41 pm

      I agree, Henry Hawkins.

      He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to cast a stone.

      Newt is right that everyone of us has hard painful personal experiences or knows someone who has. Who among us has nothing to regret and nothing we wish we’d done differently.

      Newt is also right that the MSM turns this poisonous attention very selectively, in its attempt to destroy the conservative or even Republican opponents to their chosen Leftists. Conservative know they’re going to be lied about. With impunity. Only Leftists need apply. It’s a machine and it has to be stopped.

      Also, the MSM has made it harder to govern our country by giving cover to politicians who play games with the interests of the nation to bring advantages to themselves, and by creating a contentions, low-down, scurrilous, poisonous tone and atmosphere. The MSM puts their thumb on the scale every day. I applaud Newt with those SC voters!

      And as Rush said today, the MSM makes it harder to get good people to run for office. (Thanks Joy, I listened to Rush again.)

      In all honesty, and I support Newt, so of course I am favorably inclined to Newt, but the more I know about Newt’s personal experiences, the less I blame him and the more I feel that he’s done a remarkable job of trying to keep peace under difficult circumstances.

      And I read in the divorce papers that miraculously were found by our illustrious MSM — even though the most important details of Obama’s life are still a country unknown to the MSM (Ayers, cocaine, Rev. Wright church, travel to Afghanistan on what passport, transcripts, who wrote the books, the trashing of the Democrat Iowa caususses, ACORN adn voter fraud, Cloward-Piven, what does a community organizer do — the list goes on and on)

      — and– in the magically published divorce papers, I read that Newt pays this ex-wife $1,350 each month in alimony. Not child support. Alimony. It will continue unless she remarries, I would imagine. I don’t know if that’s true, but that’s what I read. And yet he and his daughters continue to declare that they will not speak against her. WSo who is the unreasonable one in this scenario? Not Newt, I don’t think.

      If it’s true that Newt offered friends to ABC from that time who would tell ABC that her accusations are not true, and ABC wasn’t interested, it is long past time for ABC to be left behind permanently as a supposed source of “news.”

      The MSM has been doing this to us, the American people, for — how long — Fifty years? Eighty years? Were the NYT, WAPO, all the networks and all the other usual suspects always the arm of the Left?

      That’s why there can be no SOPA. The internet is changing this game. Of course the Washington and Hollywood elites want to shut it down. The internet is our gateway to communication, information and freedom.

      I support Newt because he will win against Obama, which is just the BEGINNING. Our task — and it is OUR task, is to join together to restore our country to its constitutional basis.

      The federal government has only the powers actually WRITTEN in the constitution, the enumerated powers. Did your high school even remember to mention that to you? Mine didn’t. I had to learn it for myself.

      The federal government is out of control. This administration shows that the Left is now making its bid to govern through total lawlessness. We have to defeat them and then we have to move forward to a restored Constitution and renewed prosperity.

      All my very best greetings go out to you, my fellow citizens. I am so grateful to be able to communicate with you without the filter of the MSM. Let’s team up together to restore our country.

    JohnInFlorida in reply to c16rocksteady. | January 20, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    They matter, but when the alternatives are “liberty or death”, one must prioritize.

    Romney candidacy = Obama win = death of Republic.

    And so, we choose …

    Of course morals matter. But sometimes the guy with more spots in his marital past is the best candidate.

    Like our only divorced president Ronald Reagan over good family men Carter and Mondale. Or even Reagan over good family men George H. W. Bush and Howard Baker in the primaries.

    More important than spots is a changed life. Gingrich seems to have a good marriage now, and his daughters from the first marriage are classy women with good marriages who fully support him. Not a bad sign for a truly changed character.

      SDN in reply to T D. | January 21, 2012 at 2:13 am

      TD, as C S Lewis pointed out in “Screwtape Proposes A Toast”, Great Saints and Great Sinners are often made out of the same material, because in both cases they will pursue Good or Evil regardless of what others consider appropriate.

Santorum was the conservative leader just a week and a half ago. He is probably seeing his dreams of the presidency evaporate and is starting to grasp at stars.

There is just no way Santorum can match Gingrich’s capacity. He says the republicans mutinied after 4 years of speaker. Santorum, did you ever get to be speaker? Ohh right, no. No constitutional leadership post. So no I don’t think he will be as effective as Gingrich. Does anyone notice that as soon as Gingrich left that the deficit came back? I don’t think that speaks well of the conspirators.

    Hope Change in reply to imfine. | January 20, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Well said, imfine.

    punfundit in reply to imfine. | January 20, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    If Gingrich was so divisive and destructive to the CWA (Contract With America) Majority, why didn’t they regain seats and retain the House after he left? Why did it take the Tea Party Movement and Town Hall Rebellions to restore a conservative/libertarian majority four years after the “post-Newt” Republican House lost it to socialist Nancy Pelosi?

Sorry, but what a stupid post. Makes no sense whatsoever.

Personally, I liked Romney’s answer best on this, move on. Not a fan of Newt, but what ABC did to him was disgusting, considering ABC and the other networks covered up for that idiot Edwards.
If repubs want to nominate Newt, and I do like it when he goes after Obama & his protecting media, I wonder if they have any idea how hard to elect Newt is. He will implode, its just a matter of when.

I’m in the ABO camp, so I’ll vote for any of repub candidates, but with Newt, there is so much material to go after him on.

    Hope Change in reply to alex. | January 20, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    alex, let’s ask exactly what does “implode” mean? That Newt will trigger an attack by the liberal media?

    We’re in a new day with the internet. The MSM can’t run the game they’re used to anymore.

    Remember Dan Rather’s “fake but true” manufactured fraudulent “documents” against G. W. Bush? Remember what happened to it? FOR THE FIRST TIME? — at least that I can think of. The internet happened to it.

    Power is returned to the People by the internet.

    Churchill said that a lie can go halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its pants. That is changing in some important ways because of the internet.

    Newt has lots of ideas. I think that is what the MSM and the Establishment Republicans are trying to use against him. But Newt isn’t trying to impose his ideas. Newt has said over and over that he prefers giving people a choice, not government mandates. The legislature would implement any ideas. So HAVING lots of ideas is a good thing.

    Was it zany for JFK to announce that the USA would get to the moon in one decade? No one knew if we could do that.

    Newt want space innovation, for example, to be entrepreneurial-based — not a big government program, not NASA. It’s clear, and Newt is well aware, that NASA is a failed model.

    It’s good that Newt can imagine that we might mine the moon someday. Maybe we can, maybe it won’t be practical. But it’s good to be able to imagine it.

    Newt is a visionary who want us all to win. He’s also a practical disciplined person who works hard and steadily toward his goals every day.

    So where would the “implosion” come from? This is the narrative the Establishment wants you to believe. The “implosion” is a NARRATIVE the MSM wants you to believe. But the internet gives you the power to find out for yourself and make up you own mind.

    Here is a link to 17 of Newt’s speeches, on the internet, if you want to find out what Newt is actually proposing.

    This is a really transforming shift, that will restore the country to the small federal government the founders had in mind, and the strong states, with freedom within the states to experiment with solving problems, and lots of prosperity to fund the newest innovators in science, medicine , engineering, manufacturing — a real sea change of improvement.

    You can find out if you watch Newt’s speeches:
    http://newtgingrich360.com/profiles/blogs/2012-victory-or-death-newt-s-speeches-links-to-17-speeches

    Wishing all the best for our country…!

Midwest Rhino | January 20, 2012 at 2:08 pm

It seemed to me Rick seemed to want it both ways. He said people do have to look at it, and have to look at him too, “unfortunately”.

Then he says, but I too want to be judged by God based on forgiveness. “We are all fallen.” (Rick being pseudo magnanimous)

So yes, people have to look at our character and be forgiving … (but Newt needs more forgiveness than I do, doesn’t he).

In a sense it is worse to try to have it both ways … claim to be forgiving, while advocating that we do have to look at character (which in context is looking at a timely attack from 15 years ago, with the purpose of picking off another Republican)

Henry Hawkins | January 20, 2012 at 2:13 pm

Santorum has long positioned himself as a family values social conservative, and the request to comment on the attempted KIng gotcha plays right into that. It came at a time – the final debate two days before the SC primary – when Santorum had to make a move or likely find himself having to pull out. His call to voters to contrast Newt’s familial history with his own was half-hearted and punchless compared to pretty much anything he’s said about family values and character in the past, so I think he may have been genuinely conflicted between doing what’s right and doing what’s needed for his campaign.

I think Santorum gets out after SC and I think he now has an answer if ever asked again what one thing he’d change in his 2012 primary campaign.

scottinwisconsin | January 20, 2012 at 2:20 pm

“since I’ve never seriously considered Paul, his answer is irrelevant to me.”

He’s received more votes than Newt by far, more delegates by far, greater money contributions by far, and defends liberty and the Constitution (unlike Newt) — but you’ve never seriously considered him.

That’s why I never seriously consider your analysis of the race.

That, and the fact that YOUR candidate is an evil, despicable, new-world-order progressive, who loves Woodrow Wilson and FDR. The only difference between Newt and Obama is race and age.

Wise up. Your candidate is corrupt beyond imagination. Your relentless defense of this evil is distasteful in the extreme.

    MerryCarol in reply to scottinwisconsin. | January 20, 2012 at 2:43 pm

    Here we go again…
    Newt: Evil, despicable, corrupt

    You left out that LI commenters are all morons. /sarc/

    C’mon, Scotty, we would take you more seriously if you toned it down a bit.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to scottinwisconsin. | January 20, 2012 at 2:48 pm

    “That’s why I never seriously consider your analysis of the race.”

    Multiple posts and serial condemnations after every single Jacobson post mentioning Ron Paul say otherwise.

    Methinks the dink doth protest too much.

      scottinwisconsin in reply to Henry Hawkins. | January 20, 2012 at 2:58 pm

      He’s as objective as one of Newt’s kids. I don’t take it seriously.

      When you say the #2 vote getter and money raiser is not serious, then YOU’RE not serious.

      Mitt sucks. I get that. So does Santorum. But to then fall in love with NEWT, who can be counted on to truly FUCK US if elected president, is just nuts.

      Newt has a history that clearly demonstrates he does not believe what small government lovers believe. Newt wants LOTS of government, with NEWT in charge. He is smart enough to run the world, and wants the chance to prove it.

      We griped and griped in 2008 that people were looking at Obama, and just seeing what they wanted to see. It’s the same now with Newt. (Pay no attention to Newt sitting on the couch with Nancy…)

      Anyone who supports Newt, and ISN’T himself a new world order progress fascist monster, is simply a willing fool.

      So no, I can’t take any Newt supporter’s analysis seriously, any more than I take Juan Williams seriously. Or you.

    He’s received more votes than Newt by far

    So has Obama.

I think it’s a bit hyperbolic to suggest that this was a failed character test. He certainly could have answered better, been smarter, picked up on the bigger picture in light of the crowd’s response to Newt’s slam-dunk, but to pin that on a lack of character (particularly when the other GOP players are not particularly flush with sterling character) strikes me as a bit over the top. But then, I’m a big fan of over the top and hyperbole, you big depraved freak you. 😉

    Mary Sue in reply to Fuzzy. | January 20, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    LOL, you’re a troublemaker Fuzzy 😉

    I don’t have any love for Rick but the only thing I give him credit for in this whole fiasco is saying what he really thinks. His social-issues-as-the-road-to-fiscal-sanity message is a tough sell in our primary let alone the general. Nevertheless, he has stuck with it.

    It would have been completely disingenuous and completely out of character for him to say character doesn’t matter at that point. If he wanted to pick a shrewder more crowd pleasing path to the nomination he would have done it to help himself long before this.

I feel like Paul’s answer bothered me less than Sanotorum’s. Whereas Santorum made a pretty direct character attack, Paul’s answer (while still on the margin) was more of a “This line of attack doesn’t apply to me.” Less of an acceptance of King’s question and more of an appeal to people who were already bothered by Newt’s personal issues. (FWIW, I’m not bothered by them persay. In a world with 50% diviorce, significant cohabitation, and philandering presidents, I don’t care much. I figure Newt has other open areas for attacking that would do more damage anyway.)

Addressing the issue for any candidate… excuse me, every REPUBLICAN candidate:

“there is so much material to go after him on.”

If I may, Sir, you are making the silly assumption that the Democrat Party Machine and the Main Stream Press will actually limit themselves to attacking Republican Candidates with real facts. For those people, real facts and concerns are merely spice, talking points to maybe buttress a point, but not the main attack. You could come up with a ‘Deal Killer’ piece of information on a Republican candidate and it would not matter to anybody but the Republicans. The Democrat Machine will base their attacks on Republicans using their idea of the ‘not Obama’.

Step one: Decide on a desirable trait for President Obama.

Step two: Define the opposite trait.

Step three: Coordinated attack on the Republican candidate for embodying that opposite trait – *whether it is true or not!* Thus, the idea of giving Axelrod information that he can use is invalid; he’s going to make up his attacks out of whole cloth anyhow.

The only way to defeat it is to stop fighting the Democrat Party/MSM debate and start getting out your own message. You just can’t beat them logically when THEY define the logic. What really worked for Ronald Reagan was that he went above the press directly to the People in a way to which they had to repond. HE set the pace, defined the debate, and didn’t play along.

What Senator Santorum did wrong was to attempt to use the Press’ attacks as his own, thinking that by doing so he’ll be seen as the opposite of what he was attacking. I don’t give him a fail or an F… maybe a disappointing C-.

Any of the four candidates could, and probably will defeat Obama in the General. Any one of them would be a massive improvement for America. BUT TO FIX THE DARNED PROBLEMS WITH THE GOVERNMENT (remember that goal?) the Republican candidate MUST be able to go above the Press’ playbook. That is where Newt shines. That is why I support his candidacy. that is why the crowd gave him two standing O debate reactions.

Santorum answered just right for his constituency and level of experience, which is why he is behind both Romney and Gingrich.

I find things to like about Santorum but his quad-annual run for President has surely put a lot of pressure on himself and his family for not much gain. He lost his Senate re-election by almost 20 points. He angered Pennsylvania conservatives with his endorsement of Arlen Specter. Making a comeback from those things is not easy. Jumping from that to running for President has always been nuts. If he wanted to make a political comeback in politics he needed to work hard to get his Senate seat back or run for governor first. He didn’t do that because, in my view, he knows it would be hopeless. So he goes out and runs for President? He’s punishing himself and his family for so little, if anything, to be gained.

Americans are a religious people. But just as they have always rejected the idea that the parson or the priest holds all the cards on religious and moral doctrine, they will all the more so reject any politician who preaches without a license.

Santorum is running dead last in SC. He needs to do the right thing and drop out of the race. Staying in at this point only helps Romney.

Santorum came across as a whiny, self-centered jerk all night. The spotlight of scrutiny hasn’t focused on him yet, and most of the night was compare/contrast between Newt and Mitt. If either Mitt or Newt had wanted to put Santorum in his place, there was plenty of opportunity. Santorum bragged about beating Democrat incumbents, but failed to mention that he was destroyed by 18 points as the two-term incumbent. I forget who said it a few days ago, but anyone on stage last night could point out that if elected President, Santorum would do so, despite losing his home state. He’s a electoral train wreck.

This was the first debate I’ve watched this cycle, for various reasons, but I figured it’d be a memorable one, (which Newt made it by winning in Round 1) so I’m not up to speed with Santorum’s mannerisms. His constant smirk is annoying. His answers were incoherent and disjointed cliches. I can’t believe he’s still in this thing.

Mitt gave the right answer and my respect for him went up a notch or two for not taking the bait. Santorum is too opportunistic, stupid, desperate, or some combination of all three to avoid the bait. He greedily feasted on the chance to flaunt his holiness.

Santorum’s final answer was terrible and classless, as well, but he did one thing right. He asked people to vote for him. Nobody else did, if I recall accurately. It’s a small thing, but it’s important to ask people to vote for you.

As for the LSM acting like they are “vetting” the candidate.

Where the hell were they in 2008? Oh yes, campaigning for that marxist in the WH, and taking down anyone who wasn’t Obama, and oh yes, that included Hillary Clinton — who I campaigned for.
Santorum seems like a whiny man most of the time & looked that way in the debate — he seems too santimounous most of the time. Romney I like but he needs to fight back, doesn’t realise the LSM is not a nonpartisan press, Paul, his fiscal policy I like, but then goes off the deep end on foreign policy.

ABO. Whoever can kick out that fraud in Nomvember should be the repub candidate. I’m only one independent voter, and I say ABO!

http://www.hillaryis44.org/2012/01/19/the-death-match-thunderdome-debate-and-draft-hillary-new-hampshire-results/

I didn’t take it that way, I had the feeling he was obliquely referring to the whole abortion/dead child mess a bit ago and reminding us nobody is perfect and that Newt HAD come clean.
in a way I thought he was bolstering Newt for owning up to it.
I could be wrong but I think possibly his inflection may be what made you think this.

I’m not clear on what Santorum did that was wrong, let alone “disqualifying.” Santorum simply signaled to the audience that he does not approve of Newt’s marital infidelities (do you?) and thinks it has at least some bearing on the issue of Newt’s character (don’t you?). Why is that not a legitimate distinction to draw between him and Newt?

The fact that the media may be trying to exploit Newt’s problems with his ex-wife doesn’t mean that the candidates owe it Newt, or to the GOP, to pretend they don’t care about infidelity or don’t think it’s relevant to the issue of personal character.

I could see the point of expecting Santorum to circle the wagons for Newt if he were innocent in all this and was clearly being wrongly accused. But I thought Newt’s marital infidelities were basically a matter of public record at this point. Why does Santorum have to defend him, or even stand by in silence when the media (not inappropriately) bring up the issue?

I don’t think John King was being unfair at all in asking about this. However, even if the media were being unfair in handling the issue, that shouldn’t take the issue off the table completely.

If we found out tomorrow that Mitt Romney once knifed a homeless guy over a bottle of liquor, and the media went ballistic over that story, would that mean the other candidates couldn’t reference the stabbing as part of a “character” attack on Mitt?

    Midwest Rhino in reply to Conrad. | January 20, 2012 at 9:30 pm

    The questioner asked about whether it is still an issue. Forgiveness of something from 15 years ago for a Christian (which Rick seemed to be portraying), should mean it is over … no reason to bring it back up.

    From even a strategic view, what good did it do Santorum to say yes it was an issue? It only made him look vindictive, (as he seemed all night). The dirt had already been thrown repeatedly. Mitt took the smart path … he didn’t dirty his own hands with what the “hit men” had already done nationally.

    If he wanted to say past history mattered, it should have been after a vigorous attack on the underhanded tactics of dragging out the ex-wife and showcasing her unbalanced rant, two days before the important vote.

I agree totally with you Prof.,Santorum has never been my first choice although I’ve never closed the door on him until that moment he spewed his pious rant against Newt with the help of John King … he sure left a sour taste in my mouth !!!

As the cycle progresses we’re seeing what people really think is important. We can all say we’re conservative but there are many shades of that.

I was impressed that Romney passed on a chance to pile on Newt while Santorum just couldn’t. I find Santorum a little too pious for my taste. Have to admit that I’m another one who cares not what Ron Paul says – wouldn’t vote for him even under the ABO rule.

    scottinwisconsin in reply to katiejane. | January 20, 2012 at 3:56 pm

    “As the cycle progresses we’re seeing what people really think is important. We can all say we’re conservative but there are many shades of that … I’m another one who cares not what Ron Paul says – wouldn’t vote for him even under the ABO rule.”

    So I guess we know what “shade” of conservative YOU are.

    Better to have a fascist dictator (Obama) than a small-government, liberty-loving, constitution-defender.

    So what you care most about is the Empire. If we can’t have the Empire, what’s the point?

    Obama will give you the thrill/illusion of ruling the world. Paul wants us to focus on Defense, not paying for 900 bases in 130 countries.

    So you tell yourself you want freedom and limited government. But you’ll give that up (Obama) as long as we get to keep the empire.

    Time for some reflection, friend. The empire is simply a tool the elites use to rob us of our treasure and liberty. Al Qaeda under every bed, so they need to molest your grandma at the mall.

    And you’re buying it by the bushel.

    Show me another empire that ended well. All I see coming and bankruptcy and fascism.

      Troll

      Sorry – I’m not joining you in the attic looking for the enemy in every dust mite and spider hole. Paul is the rights Dennis Kucinich – but I don’t recall Kucinich’s fanboys being so rabid.

        punfundit in reply to katiejane. | January 20, 2012 at 4:15 pm

        I’m thinking closer to Ralph Nader.

          Hope Change in reply to punfundit. | January 20, 2012 at 4:55 pm

          punfindit – were the Ralph Nader supporters rabid?

          Maybe I didn’t encounter them up close and personal, as it were, as I do when I see the Ron Paul supporters’ comments on Newt’s YouTube videos, for example.

          Vulgar, disrespectful, vicious, unreasonable, rigid, spiteful, dishonest, slanderous — how they imagine they are helping their candidate is a mystery to me.

          If I were considering supporting Ron Paul, the quality of his supporters would convince me to stay away.

          Although I do agree with Ron Paul about the Federal Reserve and some states’ rights issues. Some of his opinions are sound, IMO.

          As to his foreign policy opinions, WOULD THAT HIS OPINIONS WERE TRUE, IT WOULD SOLVE EVERYTHING. Leave them alone, they’ll leave us alone. That is a total nonstarter. That is absurd. I wish it were true. I would love for it to be true. But it’s not.

          — And I don’t think he can work well with others.

          Ron Paul is not a leader, except to leaderless anarchist types. All due respect, they are not equipped to lead our country.

          Hope Change in reply to punfundit. | January 20, 2012 at 4:57 pm

          I’m sorry, were we talking about Ralph Nader? I’m afraid I digressed.

          punfundit in reply to punfundit. | January 20, 2012 at 4:59 pm

          @Hope Change

          🙂

          dmacleo in reply to punfundit. | January 20, 2012 at 5:18 pm

          Ron KuciNader

      BannedbytheGuardian in reply to scottinwisconsin. | January 20, 2012 at 6:09 pm

      Scott . The British Empire ended very well . Today it is an organisation of 54 nations that covers over 2 billion people.

      From Canada to Ghana to India to Australia to Malaysia there exists a band of humanity with a shared history & goals that agree to abide by a set of principles .

      As testament to the model the formerly French & Portuguese colonies of Rwanda & Mozambique applied to join & re accepted.

      Perhaps the USA could apply in time for the Golden super jubilee celebs in 2013. Queen Elizabeth racks up 60 years !

      Also t is easier to win medals at the Comonwealth Games than the Olympics.

        BannedbytheGuardian in reply to BannedbytheGuardian. | January 20, 2012 at 8:19 pm

        Hehe boohoo o the dislike LOl.

        For you I would like to point out that 12 /54 nations are in North America.

        (My mistake Rwanda was a Belgium colony with massive French interference. It is the origin of the famous line “Is there anybody here who has been raped & speaks English ” ?

      Empire? If we were an Empire those bases wouldn’t be leased, wouldn’t be cost centers they’d be sources of profit from taxes on the locals. Every one of those bases is leased from the local host country and is not forced upon them.

      Our Network of bases allows us to project force globally when necessary to defense/uphold our interests. Without them we would be hard-pressed to react quickly to threats and to assist our allies and dependents. The Navy helps but if they were out there on their own they would have a difficult time meeting the logistical requirements of any missions that come up. We don’t have a significant amount of cargo that can be delivered to an aircraft carrier via air for example. Each of those is a floating city and only one ship in the battlegroup that goes with it.

      Not having the ability to force the center of mass into the the opposing party’s territory means it will be forced upon us which means fighting in our territory on our soil. This is not a desirable thing. The ability of the military to move and fight world-wide at short notice should be upheld and funded, the consequence of not doing so could be grave indeed.

      Steve

    raven in reply to katiejane. | January 20, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    “I was impressed that Romney passed on a chance to pile on Newt…”

    I wouldn’t be. Open confrontation has never been Romney’s game. He’ll return to his bearded attacks.

Henry Hawkins | January 20, 2012 at 4:40 pm

The best way to get others to back your candidate? Attack them, call them names, and generally make an ass of yourself.

I wonder if there’s an algorithm that could tell us how many votes Scott has cost the Paul campaign?

RexGrossmanSpiral | January 20, 2012 at 5:01 pm

Santorum is a sanctimonious vanity candidate, plain and simple.

Professor, look deep into your soul and see if your conscience can really say it’s alright to cheat on 2 wives? Santorum gave an honest answer and was true to his moral values. As social Conservatives we are called upon to live a life that is based on strong family values and fidelity. Do you remember that Herman Cain was chased out of the race on suspicion that he was having an affair with a woman? There should be no double standard. No-one forced Newt to marry those women, no-one forced him to cheat on them, he did that himself. He is not a suitable figurehead for social Conservatives. If you want to make excuses about his electability , or your concerns are only as a fiscal conservative then go ahead. I will not cover-up his actions, nor will I excuse them. Newt supposedly converted to Catholicism when he married wife number 3. In the Catholic church he never would have been allowed to divorce 1 or 2, wasn’t it expedient for him that wives 1 & 2 were married outside of the Catholic church. Do not attack Santorum for telling the truth. If everyone is willing to elect a serial adulterer, why not call Herman Cain (who was not proven to have had an affair) and tell him, not to worry Herb, come on back into the race?

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to damocles. | January 20, 2012 at 6:20 pm

    Santorum may have difficult questions over his Congressional Angel sponsorship of Sandusky.

    The interval between Grand Jury & trial is in his favour but the charge of paedophile enabler may not be on the cards.

    janitor in reply to damocles. | January 20, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    At the risk of being dissed for blaming the little victim women. It’s also not OK to be a 25-year-old teacher and date your 16-year-old student. It’s also not OK to be a gold digger or political groupie who goes after a married man with kids. I don’t believe that these women deserved to expect much better. If it’s true that wife 2 cleaned out his house and split in 1987, perhaps Gingrich deserves some credit for not having dumped her then. Perhaps #3 is the one he was supposed to marry. Other people have no right to judge.

Excellently put. To that point: Rick Santorum owes Michele Bachmann an apology: http://www.politijim.com/2012/01/santorum-owes-michele-bachmann-apology.html

And – Rick Santorum has some serious blind spots in believing he somehow is a “true” conservative – http://www.politijim.com/2012/01/rebuttal-to-santorum-being-true-anti.html

[…] Jacobson thinks Rick Santorum has disqualified himself through his response to John King’s question about Newt Gingrich’s marital […]

If one focuses on another’s failures and ignores the successes, who on Earth would pass muster? It is not the places we’ve been that define us so much as the path we are on – our trajectory.

Saint Jimmuh of Plains lusted in his heart. Ronald Reagan was once divorced. While at ESPN, Keith Olbermann kept ugly goats and KY in his office. It is not for us to conjecture why. The oceans are bountiful, yes, but also chock full of whale shit.

[…] Interesting take on the whole Newt vs media exchange and what it says about Romney and Santorum. I will begrudgingly give Romney some credit. […]

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