If you only read the blurbs on various websites about which candidate said the wrong thing, or something controversial, or showed up drunk, forgot the voting age, who we at war with, or some other key fact...you would be missing one of the bright lights that the trained eye gravitates toward immediately as you get to key stages of a campaign.
Thank God for places like Politico.com.
Politico, Drudge, Huffington Post and a thousand others all give a reader their meat and potatoes. But, unless you're reading about something a candidate did or said, or something like the allegations against the gone but not forgotten, Herman Cain...only Politico, I believe gives you the daily schedule of events for each candidate. Having both run campaigns and traveled with others, when you're three or so weeks away from the election, or in this case, the first round of primaries and caucuses...your media buy tells the world about how much love you're still getting from your backers...and you're daily schedule is an equally good indicator of whether there are any voters left who still want to shake your hand...or, how you really feel about your chances.
Wednesday, Rick Perry's suicidal anti-gay ad blanketed the air waves in Iowa. Thursday, he spent at three low value events in South Carolina, which include a press conference, dinner at a diner, and mid-day at a retirement community. Today...he's taking the day off.
On the day after Perry's media blitz hit Iowa, the Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, an ultra conservative Mormon, gave Sen. Rick Sanatarium the highest ranking endorsement of his make believe campaign, at least publicly proclaiming Senator Randle McMurphy Sanatarium to be the candidate most entitled to the support of the Reactionary Christian Right. Tricky Ricky responded by unveiling his new campaign slogan..."RED RUM...RED RUM!"
This tells me a few things about Iowa that none of the articles on any of those other websites would have the time to get into. Rick Perry has more dollars in his war chest, than live brain cells. Yes, South Carolina is near in time to Iowa. Yes, no serious candidate can completely pass on any early state. Mitt Romney's delayed reaction Iowa campaign effort, after pledging to blow off the state, is evidence of a serious shift in his own outlook on his own world...More on this tomorrow.
Back to Perry...After showing up drunk to an event in New Hampshire, and later publicly berating a New Hampshire college student and doing his best to make the kid look like the fool, and then ignoring the advice of his own staff and releasing perhaps one of the more ridiculous TV ads I've seen since Mike Dukakis is a tank...Perry realized that follow up, in-state (Iowa) following the huge ad buy would be about as irrational as oh, say...the Secretary of Agriculture endorsing any character ever played on-screen by Jack Nicholson. Yes, the South Carolina events were likely scheduled well in advance. However, if Perry truly believed his Iowa ad buy was anything other than grasping at toothpicks floating in 40 weight motor oil...he would be doing not three, but thirty appearances in Iowa, and have multiple church officials lined up in advance to come on board. Translation...Perry may have the funds to continue on after South Carolina...and according to at least one expert on the republican side, who I trust, he may get one more serious look as others shake out of the bunch, but...even that opinion was expressed prior to the media backlash associated with the Iowa anti-gay ad.
My call...Perry has lost the conservative Christian vote in Iowa to at Least Sanatarium, probably Botchmann, and maybe even Newtie. Worse yet...he had to outspend them to do it. Perry probably finishes no better than 5th in Iowa, 4th in New Hampshire, and if he loses to Senator Charlie Manson in either...he could get every vote in South Carolina and it won't save him
Meanwhile, Pope Santorum is changing his name to Joseph Smith, IX and taking his Mormon endorsement to four Iowa events, including an appearance before presumably educated college students...who will also see Ron Paul on the same campus later in the day. (Never follow a kid or an animal act...ALWAYS follow a lunatic. Kudos to your scheduler, Ron.) Santorum is still polling below all but Jon Huntsman in Iowa...who really has blown the state off.
My call...Senator I'm Sure as HELL not a Uniter, can't win Iowa, and could never win the nomination. He couldn't even win his last senatorial election in his home Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, but...he doesn't have to. El Rickbo isn't in it to win it, and never has been. The job market is tough even for ex-US Senators at the moment, and as long as he can pay the mortgage out of campaign contributions, and spread a message of hate to those parts of 'Merika where Faux Christianity and Batshit Crazy live across a very narrow street from one another...Santorum will go just psycho enough to eek out another couple weeks on the trail. On the other hand, this "gentleman" who methink doth protest jesssssssssst a little too much on the whole gay issue, could be the driving force behind the exodus of Mrs. Botchmann, and maybe even Bush the Third.
Additional calls, re: Iowa...
Jon Huntsman decided to forfeit Iowa. He'll finish last. But, that isn't the point when it comes to Huntsman. If you won't compete in Iowa because it is to conservative for your message to be understood...how on earth will you compete in that grand bastion of reason, rationality and understanding that we like to call, "The Solid South"? Yes, an ex-Governor of California who spent 12 years turning the Party of Lincoln into the Party of Stalin...didn't have to tawk liiiiike Rick Perry to win the south...because the south had been with that ex-Gov. for those same 12 years. However, when you're already running 2nd Mormon in at best, a one Mormon race...well, that be an elephant of a whole nutha-culla.
More on why Jon Huntsman is in the race in the days ahead.
As for Mrs. Botchmann...even though this blog drifts back and forth between humor and complete serious political commentary, even the humor MUST be fact-based. In my ind, this means that any candidate that I make any call on, in any primary or caucus..MUST have at LEAST a legitimate understanding of something/ANYTHING to do with the process, the office, the Constitution, statutes, regulations and common law associated with the operation and management of the Office of the most powerful individual in the free world.
Since...in many, if not most other civilized nations, Mrs. Botchmann would be deemed ineligible to dip her thumb in blue or purple ink on election day, due to the fact that she lives in a world where both of her thumbs and her head are parked in a place where no self-respecting body part would ever take up permanent residence...I simply refuse to further degrade, or rather Trumpalinize the Office of the Presidency by even suggesting that her presence on scene is anything other than a communist plot designed to bring down our form of government. As such, no call will be made. Mrs. Botchmann's abysmal book sales, sub-zero checking account balance and loss of even her home-grown teabaggers, make her one event Friday both easy to appreciate, and serve as a much needed and more than welcome suggestion that there is a limit to the current state of degradation of our society.
Tomorrow...a breakdown of the Iowa Contenders, and a call on the order of finish...more than three weeks from C-Day.