And it makes me wonder

English: Newt Gingrich at a political conferen...

Gingrich

“Hey, can you play, Stairway to Heaven?”

And, for the first time in a long while, I didn’t automatically change the channel.

It wasn’t like I had to break out the air guitar or anything.  Besides, it was only a short drive to the polls, and as an official “undecided” voter, I needed some background music to listen to while I was making up my mind.   Santorum or Gingrich, 6 of one … half dozen of the other.  Only thing is, I’ve wanted to vote for Gingrich for President for a long time, and this is the first opportunity I’ve had.  I’ll vote for Santorum if he gets the nomination, and I don’t feel the same way about Romney.

Over the past week, I’ve received a couple of phone calls each from Santorum and Gingrich supporters, but  easily 2 dozen Romney robo-calls.  Each call was a negative info hit about Santorum or Gingrich.  I kept remembering Barbara  Bush last week whining about all of the negative campaigning, and how it is hurting her guy Mitt — but it’s always Romney doing the negative campaigning.

There’s a sign on the wall, but she wants to be sure, cause you know sometimes words have two meanings ..

I am tired of it, too.  It got to where would just hang up on the Romney calls.  The talking heads are saying he has outspent  his competition 5 to 1, but it seems a lot more than that. Romney has been all over TV.  Gingrich has been on radio.  Santorum has been on TV, but not that often.

The big question might just be turnout.  I voted around 11 AM and was #28 on the roll.  There was no crowd at all.  Only one other voter at the poll.  If the turnout is as light as my experience indicates, the best organization will be favored, and that means Romney. .

And it makes me wonder …

My prediction for Mississippi:  Romney 39, Gingrich 30, Santorum 21, Paul 9.

Update:  Just got another robo-call from the romney campaign.  If he loses, it won’t be because he didn’t leave it on the court.

More from:  Y’all Politics;      Jxn Jambalaya

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Florida GOP Debate

Don’t look now, but Newt Gingrich just won another Republican debate. Tonight in Orlando, Florida, he was the clear winner. Newt came across as the smartest and most complete candidate in the room. He even had the best “moment” of all of the candidates.

When asked what he would do to help the country regain its confidence, Newt’s answer was a homerun. He recalled the Ronald Reagan bromide: “When your brother-in-law is out of work, you’re in a recession. When you are out of work, you’re in a depression. When Jimmy Carter’s out of work, the country will be in recovery.” Newt said the defeat of Barack Obama would be the single most important economic stimulus that the country needs.

Rick Perry lost ground tonight. So did the Massachusetts governor, who reminded me again of why I would like to punch him in the mouth. Michelle Bachman’s biggest problem is that she isn’t Sarah Palin. Ron Paul, John Huntsman, and that Johnson fellow somehow think they are running for the libertarian nomination. Sorry, but they were just on the wrong stage. Herman Cain and Rick Santorum had their opportunities, but didn’t change their also-ran status.

Unless Sarah Palin gets in the race, I’m going to have to seriously consider Newt Gingrich for the top spot.

Anyway, that’s the way I saw it. What about you?

Cringe-worthy moments … Malkin

Goin’ vertical

It’s “Vertical Day” at Mike Huckabee’s website. The former campaign website has been transformed to become the new home for Huck-PAC, and promises to endorse the candidates who will support the ideas and efforts the Huckabee campaign. And, it’s off to a great start.

“Vertical politics” relate to issues which are neither Left nor Right, but seek to lift everyone “Up”.

Here is what Governor Huckabee says about it:

If you followed my campaign for President than you may remember the first “Vertical Day” we held on September 24 of last year. On a day when many said we should have focused on our fundraising for that “all important” 3rd quarter financial report, we instead focused on the issues. I blogged about the issues, answered questions about specific issues and used video to speak to voters about issues important to our campaign. We also featured guest blog posts from key supporters of the campaign, supportive bloggers and a guest post from Newt Gingrich. We had a great time and received lots of positive feedback from supporters.

The campaign also featured a post from this blog. Cool, huh?

Today’s event also invites readers to submit there own ideas to some pretty serious challenges facing our nation:

-How would you control spending in Washington?

-How would you make America energy independent?

-What would you do to improve our education system?

-What would you do to improve our health care system?

-What sort of tax reform do you think America needs to boost our economy?

-What steps would you take to promote conservation and good stewardship of the environment?

Weighty issues, indeed. Here is where I would begin on the economy/tax reform/business ethics question…..

President Bush is catching some flak for saying that the core of our economic problem is that “Wall Street got drunk.” I think there is a lot of truth in that very blunt assessment. And, within that assessment lies the key to possibly fixing the problem.

Derivative investments, with their lack of transparency, and lack of a consistent method for fair valuation are a ticking bomb which threatens to wreck our economic system. Here is what I propose to begin getting back on the right track.

Tie executive compensation directly to the derivative investments held within that company’s asset portfolio. Compensation over and above $1,000,000 per year must be paid out in the form of these financial products, as valued on the company’s most recent 10-K. In addition, instead of granting incentive-based stock options in company stock, require that companies first use their existing portfolio of derivatives.

The way I see it is, if these “financial products” are good enough to invest the hard-earned stockholder’s equity in, then they’re good enough to pay the top execs with. Oh yeah, and those multi-million dollar severance packages? You guessed it. Forget paying those out in cash. Pay them out in “financial products” instead.

Obviously, the derivatives problem is not going to go away overnight. But, I’ll wager that if the top execs understand that the gravy train is over, and their own compensation will be directly affected by dabbling in these disasters, then they will begin to address the underlying challenges of transparency and valuation.

Sound too simplistic? Well, sometimes the simplest solutions are the best.

For more solutions, click on over to Huck-PAC

Later, y’all.
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The Republican King of Lobbyist Bundlers

John McCain. Surprised?

Public Citizen reported that the number of campaign cash “Bundlers” employed by John McCain is greater than any other Republican candidate: more than anyone in the race other than John Edwards.

McCain also enjoys the dubious distinction of employing more “Lobbyist Bundlers” than any other candidate – in fact, more than the entire Democratic field combined. In this crowded field of candidates from both parties, 115 Lobbyist Bundlers ply their trade for the candidates. 32 of the 115 work for….. John McCain

His signature issue in 2000 was getting the money out of politics. Does anyone else find it just a bit ironic, that the man who wrote the rules for reforming the campaign finance laws would be able to so skillfully take advantage of the fundraising possibilities in McCain-Feingold? See for yourself.

WaPo’s Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and John Solomon present an interesting take, “Unlikely Ties to K Street.”

In addition to receiving campaign cash, McCain relies heavily on K-Street for campaign guidance as well.

Here is an excerpt:

McCain’s campaign has also been guided by lobbyists. Davis, the campaign manager, is a former lobbyist who represented major telecommunications companies. The campaign’s senior adviser is Charles R. Black Jr., chairman of BKSH & Associates, which represents drug companies, an oil company, an automaker, a telecommunications company, defense contractors and the steel industry, among others.

Former congressman Tom Loeffler (R-Tex.) was brought in to shore up the campaign’s finances and operations. Yet he maintains his day job as chairman of the Loeffler Group, whose clients include oil, auto and telecommunications companies, as well as a tobacco firm and an airline.

Other occasional McCain advisers include lobbyists Timothy P. McKone of AT&T, Robert S. Aiken of Phoenix-based Pinnacle West Capital, John W. Timmons of the Cormac Group and John Green of Ogilvy Government Relations. Also at Ogilvy is a major McCain fundraiser, Wayne L. Berman.

Their firms’ clients have been a significant source of contributions to McCain’s campaign.

Newt Gingrich says, “John McCain is an American hero: a unique character in his own right.”

Certainly he earned our respect as an Aviator, a POW, and the longevity of service as a “maverick” lawmaker, however, “American Hero” may be a bit of a stretch.

But, his actions with re-writing of the campaign finance laws, and then using them to his advantage make “a unique character in his own right,” a spot-on evaluation of the senator.

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