Monday, February 27, 2012

Keep Fucking That Chicken, Dickie!

By Carl
 
Rick Santorum, who just a week earlier held a double digit lead over Mitt Romney in national polling, has dropped back into the second spot.

(CNN) -- Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has erased a 10-point deficit against rival Rick Santorum among registered Republicans in the race for the GOP nomination, according to a new Gallup poll released Monday on the eve of the Michigan and Arizona primaries.

In the new Gallup tracking poll, 31% of respondents said they would support Romney and 26% said they favored Santorum, reversing a 36% to 26% advantage for the former Pennsylvania senator last week.

A fifteen point spread. So much for values voters and Teabaggers. Obviously, they came, they saw, they vomited.

That Santorum was even given a serious lookover by Republicans indicates the desperation the party has in coming to terms with a shifting electorate, an angry population helbent on some form of class warfare, and a modestly successful President.

Emphasis on the "modest." That Obama seems a slamdunk for re-election at a time when unemployment will remain stubbornly above 8% in time for the election and the continual sword of Damocles of a threadbare economy dangling down is ludicrous.

Until you realize that George W. Bush was in very similar straights in 2004, until the Democrats managed to shoot themselves in the foot and somehow run a circus instead of a candidate. And I mean no disrespect to John Kerry as either a candidate or a potential President. I'm saying that his handlers and the DNC in general let the Republicans dictate the tenor of the dialogue, right down to smearing a war hero as a coward.

In the absence of a credible opposition candidate (think Bill Clinton in 1992,) an incumbent holds such an amazingly strong advantage over his challenger that he could have a sex scandal AND hike taxes and still win (think Bill Clinton in 1996.) We've all heard the statistic that something on the order of 90-95% of Congresscritters win re-election despite an overall approval rating of less than 30% for Congress as a whole.

The Devil you know? Perhaps. Perhaps its just an acknowledgement that the job is difficult and so long as an officerholder does the bare minimum to keep his constituents happy, he (or she) will win their approval.

Or, more likely, it's the fact that to even run for the House of Representatives requires a massive cash outlay into the millions, depending on your district. When even local officeholders like mayors or aldermen have to advertise on television, you're looking at an unhealthy situation for democracy. It stops being about people and starts being about how much money a candidate can throw against the wall.

Which reinforces the incumbent because, you know, he can wash the hands that wash him.

So a candidate who runs on a shoestring, who wants to make a campaign about issues that matter to him, can't afford to piss off people. And Santorum did just that.

(crossposted to Simply Left Behind)

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