School hasn't started in most parts of the U.S. It's barely August, and Halloween Candy has been in the store for weeks already. School supplies have been out longer. In a matter of just a few days, we'll be seeing CHRISTMAS products hauled out of storage.-- Typical in this nation. BUT -- We are assaulted constantly with politics. And now, the "Season" begins IN EARNEST...in the State of Iowa...and it kicks off what looks to be a very odd campaign for the G.O.P. I'm waiting to see if any D.F.L. member has the guts (or balls) to challenge the current "Moron-in-chief." I'm not banking on it. But the purpose of this post isn't to berate the D.F.L.
The AMES, IOWA straw poll is history. Two people I expected to be running, 2 I hoped would be -- those 4 are nowhere to be seen. They do not have much time to get into the game. If they do not announce by November 1st, at the absolute latest, they may as wall hang up the "boxing gloves" for another 4 years. There simply won't be time to raise the money need, or establish the organization required.
1. Congresswoman Michele Bachmann
2. Congressman Ron Paul
3. Governor Tim Pawlenty
4. Senator Rick Santorum
5. Herman Cain
6. Governor Rick Perry
7. Governor Mitt Romney
8. Speaker Newt Gingrich
9. Governor Jon Huntsman
10. Congressman Thad McCotter
NOTE, ALSO: Sarah Palin was not on the Ballot. But, then again, neither was Rick Perry.
But what does this poll really MEAN? Does it really establish a "front-runner"? Is there any significance AT ALL?
As I see it, this poll is nothing. It is a beauty contest, nothing more. It is a non-binding straw poll. Granted, even the caucuses are that right up until the state conventions. The "Winner take All" idea in the primaries is outdated, and I am not sure it works anymore, if it ever did.
I feel the Ms. Bachmann, with all due respect, is too far "Right". I'm not sure what to make of
Ron Paul. Governor Pawlenty is Proven, but needs more recognition and organization.
Santorum is really not that well known. CAIN? A wild card thrown into the race. PERRY, recognition, proven -- but with a very late start. But the write-in campaign proved strong. This candidate may be a contender.
The others -- Romney, Gingrich, McCotter, Huntsman -- they may as well drop out right now. Their showings were worse than Perry's, who only had a write-in campaign, and that wasn't his own doing!
If Palin, Rice, Powell, Patreaus are going to enter the race, they must do so NOW.
I fear Bachmann is a novelty. Cain may be an oddity. Pawlenty and Perry may actually have the best shots.
But IS THERE any meaning in this poll? It's not binding. The "Tea Party" is out in full force for Paul and Bachmann. Pawlenty's 3rd place finish holds promise, but 13%, and being defeated by a greater than 2 to 1 margin is not promising.
Right now, Iowa is in the spotlight. But that spotlight is a 15 watt bulb. or maybe it's just a candle. It is said "It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness." But this candle is leading us to a big unknown. We can't see the potholes, traps and landmines in our way.
Down the road a ways (February or March of 2012) this straw poll may have blown out the Straw-man candidates. Or it may have led us into a trap.
Ames, Iowa straw poll: Impact minimal, significance undetermined, a likely mirage to be ferreted out by March, 2012 -- AS I SEE IT!