Trunkline 2012: Wednesday’s Wit and Words from the Campaign Trail, 10/12/11

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New York Special Election Demonstrates Big Troubles for Democrats and President Obama

Bookmark and Share   In what is a sign of just how fond the American people are of his presidency, as the polls close in New York’s special election to replace disgraced former Congressman Anthony Weiner, President Obama remains as far removed from it as Anthony Weiner himself.

Under normal circumstances Democrats would be running congressional campaigns that at least try to create the impression that a sitting Democrat President is heavily involved in and supporting their candidates. This is especially the case for a congressional district that was carved out in the heart of heavily Democratic New York City and gerrymandered in a way that makes it meander through two boroughs in order to maximize election results for Democrats. Yet today, as the sun sets on the NY-9 special election, President Obama remains nowhere to be found. In fact he remains to pariah to the election.

The President’s voice has not even injected in to the special election through simple robocalls. Instead, today voters received such communication from former president Clinton and newly elected Governor Andrew Cuomo. In two separate calls made on Monday and Tuesday, both calls highlighted the New York Times’ endorsement of Democrat David Weprin over Republican Bob Turner, and focus on jobs and Social Security and try to make the TEA Party the enemy that motivates voters to come to polls and oppose by supporting David Weprin.

Cuomo’s call states:

“I’ve known David for many years, and I’ve known him to be a leader who stands up for what’s right. In Congress he’ll stand up for middle class families and he’ll fight to preserve Social Security and Medicare. David will bring jobs to New York and get our economy moving. That’s why he’s also been endorsed by the New York Times,”

Today Former President Clinton’s call states:

“The New York Times endorsed David. They support him for the same reasons I do: because he’ll stand up for the middle class, he’ll support a good program to put Americans back to work, and he’ll oppose the Tea Party plan to destroy Medicare”

But New York is not the only place with a special election to fill a vacant House seat. In many ways, today’ special elections are the last waves of the 2010 midterm election and they are about to sweep ashore the American political landscape. And much like the original tidal wave of victory that the G.O.P. rode to some of the largest gains of congressional seats in history, this last wave is expected to bring surprises and Republican gains.

In Nevada voters in the second district will be filling the vacancy created by Joe Heller’s appointment to the U.S. Senate following Senator John Ensign’s May resignation. In that special election Republican Mark Amodei looks to be a slam dunk in what was once considered a tight race but is now considered an impossibility for Democrats to pick up.

But the real story of the day is shaping up to be the special election in New York’s 9th congressional district. There, a district that as been held by Democrats since the 1920’s is about to fall into Republican hands.  And while Republicans have not recently had great success in special elections to fill vacant congressional seats in New York state, NY-9 seems ready to make up for that.

While Turner’s victory is not a sure thing, polls and the prevailing winds indicate that he is a likely winner. According to the most recent Public Policy Polling survey the race stands as follows:

  • Bob Turner (R) 47%
  • David Weprin (D) 41%
  • Christopher Hoeppner (S) 4%
  • Undecided 7%

But the story here is not merely that a Republican is about to take a seat away from Democrats that they have held for nearly a century, but rather that traditional Democrat constituencies are showing their dissatisfaction with President Obama and are sending a protest vote. Hence the reason for keeping President Obama as far away from this race as humanly possible. That story is explained by a deeper look at the most recent PPP poll of the 9th district. Republican Bob Turner has the support of as many as 29% of the Democrat vote, while Democrat David Weprin has a 58% share. Right there you can see that things are out of whack. Democrats in New York City typically back their Party nominee in numbers approaching 80% or more.

When it comes to Turner, he is receiving 83% of the Republican vote while a mere 10% support Weprin.

But some of the most startling and important stats come from the districts heavy Jewish population and those voters who consider themselves to be independent. In the case of Jewish voters, their dislike for President Obama’s policies regarding Israel seem to be so strong, that Weprin, an incumbent Democrat Assembly and orthodox Jew is hemorrhaging support from his own religious community.

Those results are as follows:

Among Jewish Voters

  • Bob Turner (R) 56%
  • David Weprin (D) 39%
  • Christopher Hoeppner (S) 2%
  • Undecided 4%

While all elections are mere snapshots of the moment, those type of numbers are the one thing that offer a sure sign of trouble for President Obama in 2012. His handling of Israel is dividing the support the Jewish support that Democrats traditionally receive a large portion of their support from.

As for the all independent vote that is breaking 58% for Repubican bob Turner to Weprin’s 26%.

All of these numbers come down to one thing. This election is really not between Turner and Weprin at all. As it turns out the vote is between two sentiments…………..are you happy with the way things are going or are you dissatisfied by President Obama and his liberal policies?

The answer to that question is that voters are pissed. And Democrats know it. As evident in the following numbers from the same PPP poll that has Turner ahead of Weprin, unfortunately for Weprin, it’s the President’s numbers that are driving this race

Do you approve or disapprove of President Barack Obama’s job performance?

  • Approve 31%
  • Disapprove 56%

Among Men

  • Approve 27%
  • Disapprove 63%

Among Women

  • Approve 35%
  • Disapprove 49%

Among Jewish Voters

  • Approve 26%
  • Disapprove 62%

Do you approve or disapprove of Barack Obama’s leadership on Israel?

  • Approve 30%
  • Disapprove 54%

Among Democrats

  • Approve 42%
  • Disapprove 40%

Among Republicans

  • Approve 13%
  • Disapprove 78%

Among Independents

  • Approve 13%
  • Disapprove 66%

Among Jewish Voters

  • Approve 22%
  • Disapprove 68%

How important was the issue of Israel in deciding who to vote for Congress: very important, somewhat important, or not all that important?

  • Very important 37%
  • Somewhat important 32%
  • Not all that important 29%
  • Among Jewish Voters
  • Very important 58%
  • Somewhat important 30%
  • Not all that important 11%

Insofar as the outlook for President Obama in 2012, in 2008 he won the 9th C.D. with 55% of the vote to John McCain’s 44% but when asked about the 2012 presidential election, President Obama is not yet anywhere near as strong now.

2012 Presidential Election

  • Mitt Romney 46%
  • Barack Obama 42%
  • Barack Obama 44%
  • Rick Perry 43%

Among Jewish Voters

  • Mitt Romney 52%
  • Barack Obama 38%
  • Rick Perry 47%
  • Barack Obama 43%

The voters of New York’s 9th Congressional District have not suddenly changed ideologies and gone from believing that government doesn’t do enough to believing that it does too much. They remain largely supportive of Democrat policies but in the eyes of NY Democrats, there is a disconnect between the President and liberal policies. Right now they are not blaming his ideology for failing them, they are blaming him for failing to do a good job. As such, they are taking their frustrations out on David Weprin.  Such sentiments are so much as directly stated in the following video of voters who who turned out for today’s election.

That is just one of the reasons why Democrats have not brought President Obama into this district. Apparently, they have learned from the 2010 special election to replace Ted Kennedy in the U.S. Senate. In that race President Obama was brought in to energize the base and motivate independent Massachusetts voters to turn out and vote for liberal Martha Coakley. As it turned out, they instead stayed home while the rest of angry electorate came out to support Republican Scott Brown and reject Barack Obama.

Now as we head into the 2012 election, NY-9 is showing us that if anything, that sentiment which swept Scott Brown into office has not changed and may have in fact built even more momentum.

Turnout is Critical

Republican Bob Turner can still lose this race. In fact the chances are very good that he will lose. Special elections usually come down to the Get Out the Vote operation and in that area, Weprin and Democrats have that aspect of the election wrapped up. With quite robust Democrat organizations in New York City as compared to the meager Republican organization in New York City, combined with the assistance of concentrated, organized efforts by unions, the Weprin campaign can out organize the Turner campaign. But at the same time anger is a strong motivational tool and the voters of the 9thare angry at President Obama. That could make it so that there are very few voters for Democrat GOTV efforts to drive to the polls.

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Voters Still Believe Hillary Could Take the Nomination Away from President Obama if She Challenged Him

Bookmark and Share    This past week, White House 2012 asked readers who they believed could defeat President Obama if they challenged him for the Democratic presidential nomination. Given that he has helped lead us in to the longest recession in our national history and has accomplished nothing other than expanding the size and scope of government, the question is a legitimate one but the likelihood of that happening is now nonexistent.

However, nearly 50% of WH12’s readers believe that if she chose to challenge the President for re-nomination, Hillary Clinton would be able to defeat him. That was nearly twice as many as those who believed that no one can defeat President Obama for the nomination. This was followed by 8.47% who think New York Governor Andrew Cuomo could have a shot at beating the President for the nomination.

The actual results were:

Interestingly, unbeknownst to WH12, Public Policy Polling recently took a survey of Democrat primary voters in South Carolina which asked;

“If the Democratic candidates for President in 2016 were Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, Andrew Cuomo, Russ Feingold, Kirsten Gillibrand, Deval Patrick, Brian Schweitzer, and Mark Warner, who would you vote for?”

The results of that poll were as follows:

  1. Hillary Clinton 57%
  2. Joe Biden 23%
  3. Andrew Cuomo 5%
  4. Deval Patrick 2%
  5. Russ Feingold 1%
  6. Mark Warner 1%
  7. Kirsten Gillibrand 0%
  8. Brian Schweitzer 0%
  9. Someone else/Undecided 11%

When asked the same question without Hillary in the field, respondents gave the first place nod to Andrew Cuomo but by a margin significanty smaller than Hillary:

  1. Andrew Cuomo 15%
  2. Mark Warner 8%
  3. Russ Feingold 7%
  4. Deval Patrick 4%
  5. Kirsten Gillibrand 3%
  6. Brian Schweitzer 2%
  7. Someone else/Undecided 61%

The way I see it though,  it won’t matter who Democrats run in 2016, they will lose to the second term bid of the Republican President we elect in 2012.  And if by chance the G.O.P. screws 2012 up, it still won’t matter who Democrats run in 2016, because they will not be able to defeat Marco Rubio, the man who in that scenario will undoubtedly be the Republican nominee.

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Huntsman’s Hurting

Bookmark and Share    According to a new Public Policy Polling survey of Utah Republican primary voters, despite once having record approval numbers as Governor of Utah, Jon Huntsman can now only muster the support of 10% of his state’s Republican vote in the race for the G.O.P.’s presidential nomination.

Furthermore; according to the poll, among Utah Republican primary voters, Huntsman has a 46% disapproval rating and only a 43% approval rating. And when it comes to the Republican base vote in Utah, among those who consider themselves to be very conservative, PPP describes Huntsman as a “pariah” to them. Conservative Republicans give their former Governor a 29% approval rating while 61% give him a negative rating.

In a head-to-head match up of the still evolving Republican presidential field in Utah, PPP finds Mitt Romney with 63% of the Republican vote compared to Huntsman with 10%, Michele Bachmann with 6%, Sarah Palin with 5%, Herman Cain, Rick Perry, and Ron Paul at 4%, Newt Gingrich at 3%, and Tim Pawlenty at 1%.

While this poll is far from conclusive, it is darn good evidence of just how elusive the Republican nomination is likely be for Jon Huntsman.

Given the influential Mormon demographic of Utah, this particular poll largely reflects how protective Mormons are of Romney. Among LDS members, inactivity within the community is heavily frowned upon. Romney is quite active within the LDS, especially compared to Huntsman who has been in China for two years. The poll also reflects a general lack of appreciation for Jon Huntsman’s willingness to join the Obama Administration. This is especially the problem among conservative Republicans. And therein lies the bulk of the evidence which leads one to conclude that Huntsman might have been better off either remaining the Governor of Utah or staying on as President Obama’s Ambassador to China.

A Republican presidential contender who has a 61% disapproval rating among conservatives, especially in the state they governed, is not likely to win over enough of the Republican base vote in a Republican primary.

The results of this recent PPP poll seem to suggest that Huntsman might have a better shot at winning the liberal, ….. eh….I mean Democrat…… nomination for President than he does the Republican presidential nomination. As for Mitt Romney, this survey proves that he has a lock on the Mormon vote, which is no big deal, but he has yet to prove that he can assure himself the same lock on the conservative base vote that he will need to win the nomination by the time the national convention is held in Tampa. The relatively meteoric rise in the polls of Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and the fact that many conservatives are sitting on their hands until Texas Governor Rick Perry makes a decision, is evidence of that doubt about Romney.

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For Republicans, There Are No Favorite Sons or Daughters Except for One ……Gary Johnson

Bookmark and Share  Public Policy Polling, a left leaning outfit, has put out some interesting results from a survey of how well the Republican presidential contenders are liked by the voters in their own states. The surprising winner here is former two term, New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson. The losers ………3 term Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and former 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin.

If one intends to run for national office, it is often taken for granted that the state they come from, supports them. In 1980, President Jimmy Carter only won 6 states and the District of Columbia. Fortunately for him, two of those states were his home state of Georgia and his Vice President’s home state of Minnesota. In 1984, Carter’s Vice President, Walter Mondale, was the Democrat presidential nominee and aside from the District of Columbia, the only state that he carried was Minnesota ….…..his home state.

But such favorite son or daughter results are not always the case.

In 1972, Democrat South Dakota Senator George McGovern won his Party’s presidential nomination, but in the presidential election, McGovern’s state of South Dakota voted for Richard Nixon.

And look at Al Gore in 2000.

The man had once represented Tennessee in the U. S. Senate and that same seat was once held by his own father. Yet in the infamous 2000 presidential election, Tennessee voted for George W. Bush. Had Gore been able to win his own state, the result in Florida, the state that was governed by G.W.’s brother at the time, would not have mattered.

So being the favorite son or daughter of your state is not just a good thing, sometimes it is a must.

Yet the PPP survey shows that only one candidate has a higher favorability rating than unfavorable rating. That is the understated, underdog of the 2012 presidential field ….. Gary Johnson. And not only is he the only one with a higher favorable to unfavorable rating, his favorability numbers are dramatically higher than his unfavorable numbers. Twelve percentage points higher to be exact. As seen in the graph from PPP below, 32% of New Mexico voters have an unfavorable opinion of their former Governor and 44% have a favorable opinion of him. Compare this to Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachman who’s unfavorable number among Minnesota voters is 26% higher than her favorable numbers, 33% favorable 59% unfavorable, and Sarah Palin who among Alaska voters stands at 33% favorable to 58% unfavorable.

What accounts for Bachmann’s bad numbers in her state is the fact that she is a national conservative voice from a relatively conservative district in an otherwise liberal state. What accounts for Palin’s bad numbers in Alaska is not quite as obvious. But much of it could be due to the fact that Alaskan’s who once gave Palin favorable ratings that were the highest of any Governor in nation, were very disappointed and angered by her decision to resign midway through her term in office. Another factor is overexposure and the disruption of  life in the state that came with Palin’s sudden rise to national and international fame. On the flip-side, part of the reason for Gary Johnson’s still high positive numbers from New Mexico voters, may come from his lack of attention.

Johnson is a rather mild mannered, understated man. He was elected Governor as an outsider with no prior political experience, did a good job with no scandals or media circus scrutinizing his every move, and went on to win a second term that went much the same way. Since leaving office, unlike Palin, Johnson, stayed out of the fray avoided controversy and allowed his last impression among New Mexico voters to be a lasting impression. Those are some reasons that account for why he still is more liked than disliked.

Unfortunately, while these numbers show that Johnson could probably do well in his state’s Republican presidential primary, it does not look like Johnson will do that well elsewhere. It’s a shame too. With New Mexico being a swing state, it could be critical to reaching the magical number needed to reach the electoral vote required to win the presidency . Of course nothing is to say that President Obama has a much higher approval rating than any of those mentioned in most of these states. Still, it would be encouraging to know that you could count on your own state. The only potential Republican nominees that we should legitimately expect to lose their own state in the general election would be Mitt Romney in the case of liberal Massachusetts, and if he really was delusional enough to run again, Rudy Giuliani in adark blue New York state.

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2012 Presidential Polling: Romney and Huckabee Tied in New Jersey

Bookmark and Share Public Policy Polling, a largely Democrat operation, has released New Jersey poll numbers for the evolving field of Republican presidential candidates. The survey of 400 usual Republican primary voters unites the results of several previous independent polls of Iowa and New Hampshire Republican voters which give Huckabee the lead in Iowa and Romney the lead in the Granite State. PPPs New Jersey survey has Huckabee and Romney tied at 18% each. Not too far behind them are Newt Gingrich with 15% and Sarah Palin with 14%.

The poll proves that the early energy and buzz is behind the former Massachusetts governor and former Arkansas governor but it also demonstrates that neither have a firm hold on that energy as many voters are still interested in other prospects.

A further breakdown of the poll provides Mitt Romney with additional evidence of his biggest reason for not being the clear frontrunner for the 2012 Republican nomination is his inability to consolidate the trust and support of conservatives, the G.O.P.s base. Among those New Jersey Republicans polled who consider themselves conservative, Romney finds himself with a 64% favorable to 19% unfavorable rating, a net positive of 45%. But Mike Huckabee has a net positive favorable of 58 with 70% having a favorable opinion of him and only 12% having an unfavorable opinion. Adding to the bad news for Romney among the base of the Party is the fact that both former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and former Republican Vice Presidential nominee and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin also have better favorable ratings among conservatives than Romney.

Romneys favorable ratings as they relate to Huckabee, Gingrich and Palin, come from New Jersey Republicans who describe themselves as moderates.

These results come on the heels of a dinner meeting that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie had with Mitt Romney on Monday evening at Drumthwacket, the New Jersey Governors Mansion which Chris Chritie has chosen not to live in, but is used by the Governor for offical events.

New Jerseys Republican presidential primary will take place in March and it is a winner-take-all contest that sends 50 delegates to the Republican National Convention.

See the complete results and breakdown below:

  1. Mike Huckabee / Mitt Romney 18%
  2. Newt Gingrich 15%
  3. Sarah Palin 14%
  4. Ron Paul 8%
  5. Tim Pawlenty 4%
  6. Mitch Daniels 3%
  7. John Thune 2%
  8. Someone else/Undecided 19%

Among Conservatives

  • Mike Huckabee 21%
  • Newt Gingrich 17%
  • Sarah Palin 16%
  • Mitt Romney 14%
  • Ron Paul 5%
  • Tim Pawlenty 5%
  • Mitch Daniels 4%
  • John Thune 2%
  • Someone else/Undecided 16%

Among Moderates

  • Mitt Romney 24%
  • Mike Huckabee 13%
  • Ron Paul 12%
  • Sarah Palin 11%
  • Newt Gingrich 10%
  • Mitch Daniels 2%
  • John Thune 2%
  • Tim Pawlenty 2%
  • Someone else/Undecided 24%

Among Men

  • Mike Huckabee 20%
  • Sarah Palin 18%
  • Mitt Romney 15%
  • Newt Gingrich 14%
  • Ron Paul 9%
  • Tim Pawlenty 4%
  • Mitch Daniels 3%
  • John Thune 2%
  • Someone else/Undecided 16%

Among Women

  • Mitt Romney 23%
  • Newt Gingrich 16%
  • Mike Huckabee 16%
  • Sarah Palin 9%
  • Ron Paul 6%
  • Mitch Daniels 3%
  • Tim Pawlenty 3%
  • John Thune 2%
  • Someone else/Undecided 22%

Favorable / Unfavorable {Net}

  • Mike Huckabee 61% / 17% {+44%}
  • Mitt Romney 60% / 20% {+40%}
  • Newt Gingrich 54% / 25% {+29%}
  • Sarah Palin 58% / 33% {+25%}

Among Conservatives

  • Mike Huckabee 70% / 12% {+58%}
  • Newt Gingrich 68% / 15% {+53%}
  • Sarah Palin 72% / 21% {+51%}
  • Mitt Romney 64% / 19% {+45%}
Among Moderates
  • Mitt Romney 53% / 21% {+32%}
  • Mike Huckabee 47% / 24% {+23%}
  • Newt Gingrich 34% / 37% {-3%}
  • Sarah Palin 38% / 48% {-10%}
Among Men
  • Mike Huckabee 61% / 22% {+39%}
  • Mitt Romney 60% / 25% {+35%}
  • Sarah Palin 62% / 29% {+33%}
  • Newt Gingrich 58% / 25% {+33%}
Among Women
  • Mike Huckabee 61% / 12% {+49%}
  • Mitt Romney 61% / 14% {+47%}
  • Newt Gingrich 49% / 24% {+25%}
  • Sarah Palin 53% / 37% {+16%}

Survey of 400 usual Republican primary voters was conducted January 6-9, 2011. The margin of error is +/- 4.9 percentage points. Political ideology: 60% Conservative; 38% Moderate; 2% Liberal.

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To Run or Not To Run? That is the Question

Bookmark and Share Now that the midterm elections have ended and the results indicate that Republican are back off the ropes, the jockeying for position between Republicans who want to run for President in 2012 has begun in earnest and a crowded field it will be.

While Tim Pawlenty, the soon to be former Governor of Minnesota will be releasing his own book in January of 2011 and using the excuse of book tour as reason to traverse the nation, he currently has paid staffers on the ground, organizing things for him in New Hampshire. So he’s running.

Even though no one is talking about it, former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson is crisscrossing America on a shoe string budget and he is running.

Despite the fact that the G.O.P. took the majority in the House, Indiana Congressman Mike Pence gave up an influential leadership post that is just to die for if you’re looking for power. Yet Mike Pence made it clear that he will be too busy to take on a leadership responsibility in the new House. What will he busy with? His campaign for President.

Mitt Romney stays away from the question and when he can’t avoid it, he answers “it’s too early to talk about the next presidential election”. But as his PAC, Free and Strong America, raises more money than any other candidate’s PAC, Romney most certainly is running. Further evidence of this is Romeny’s attempts to retool his image and give the impression that he understands middle class America.  Hence the shopping trips to Wal-Mart, that he often casually mentions in his speeches. And then there are all those excursions that takes while  flying everywhere in coach instead of first class. With his money, why else would anyone want to be sitting cramped with us folks, when they can be eating full course dinners and sipping champagne in first class?

As I said, he’s running.

The day after the midterm elections, former Senator Rick Santorum traveled to New Hampshire to attend their storied Politics and Eggs breakfast where he stated “We have some real choices to make, and of course, New Hampshire has a disproportionate say in that choice, that’s why I’m here.”

He’s running.

Santorum is not the only one to trek on up to the Granite State. To date between 9 potential candidates, there has been a total of 32 visits there.

Haley Barbour – 3 trips, 3 days
Newt Gingrich – 2 trips, 2 days
Gary Johnson -3 trips, 8 days
George Pataki – 3 trips, 3 days
Tim Pawlenty – 5 trips, 5 days
Mike Pence – 1 trip, 1 day
David Petraeus – 1 trip, 1 day
Mitt Romney – 8 trips, 9 days
Rick Santorum – 6 trips, 6 days

What I find most interesting so far, is who hasn’t been to New Hampshire.

Sarah Palin has been allover the map, but she has not made any grand entrance into the home of the Live Free or Die residents. But the fact that Sarah hasn’t been there, does nott tell us anything. It could either mean that she has no plans to run or that she is in fact considering it but does’nt want to let on by making the hints that such a trip would make.

Other notably absent, often mentioned names include Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee. Daniels and Huckabee could be playing the same game that Palin may be playing and Huckabee may truly be undecided. After a hardened criminal that Huckabee had given clemency, went and slaughtered several Washington State police officers, his momentum may have come to a standstill.

No matter what, at this point in time, although people like Mitt Romney have dedicated the last two years of their life to running in 2012, no one has given up to do so then Mike Pence. He could have had maintained a truly powerful leadership position as Republican Chairman, especially being in the majority come 2011 but as he stated when he declined to run again for the job. Now that we have restored a Republican majority to the House of Representatives and I have fulfilled my commitment to the Republican Conference, my family and I have begun to look to the future. That future is a run for President, something that will be all the more difficult if the popular Governor from his state, Mitch Daniels, also decides to run. But perhaps Mike Pence knows something that we do not, which is that although Mitch Daniels has never said never to the presidency, he might just not being doing it in 2012.

One thing is for sure though, and that is that the race is on, the positioning has begun and in no time at all the first punches in the Republican presidential primary will soon be thrown.

In the mean time, as relayed by TalkingPointMemo.com, a collection of polls by the Democrat polling service Public Policy Polling released the following breakdown of the shaping potential field of Republican contenders in several states.

Early 2012 Presidential Polls, State by State

No matter how scientific PPP may claim these polls to be, the only thing they do right now is give a good indication of who has more name recognition. But they are still poor examples of national sentiment. Besides PPP did not even mention mention people like Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour and former Pennsylvania Rick Santorum in their survey. Still, some of these polls do show the construction of base of support for some that is directly related to the foundation that their previous 2012 campaigns built and which has made some voters loyal to one candidate or another, not merely because of name ID, but for what they stand for. Such is the case in Nevada, Florida, New Hampshire and Connecticut with Mitt Romney and with Huckabee in the Southern states. Nevertheless, these results do give us a cloudy glimpse of the picture and the tough task ahead of some more than others.

In the meantime, everyone is watching closely, how the Republicans lead in the House of Representatives and how the larger size Republican minority in the Senate works with them. Potential Republican presidential contenders are hoping that they lead as they promised and offer America less spending, less government and more freedom. If not they may have to work much harder than they want on polishing up their outsider image and run more like a TEA Party candidate than a Republican candidate. For now it looks like we are on track to pushing the agenda we ran on.  If that is the case, expect a crowded field of candidates who will be trying to lay claim to the conservative revival that put House Republicans back into power.

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