Posts Tagged ‘Mitt Romney’

Political Presentation: It’s How That You Do it

January 2, 2012

As I watched Rick Santorum speaking in Iowa on CNN – refreshingly in long form which gave me a good chance to observe his communicating technique – I had to reflect on presentation, how he said what he said.

First of all, he is good. He can communicate in a natural, conversational, reasonably sounding style, with body language to match. He is much more likable than most of the other Republicans campaigning in Iowa. Likeability is an important factor. It’s a major reason that Barrack Obama is President of the United States. I have even heard some Republicans say they like him as a person, just not as a president.

However, as I listen to what former Senator Santorum was actually saying, I realized beneath his veneer of family values warmth, which puts him in good stead with the Christian right, and probably will help him considerably in South Carolina, is an ideologue who wants America to stay on a course to create an empire, and to stay militarily aggressive.

He put Ron Paul in the same boat with President Obama when it comes to staying at war. He accuses the president of pulling back from military involvement. He said all this in a very reasonable talking-over-the-backyard-fence-to-a-neighbor style. But, the message I got is he is a pro-military-industrial-complex, mega-defense-spending candidate.

He accused President Obama of taking America on an anti-empire course, and said we need to observe the dissolution of the world-dominating British Empire when it became more interested in domestic welfare than empire. That told me that he wants an even larger American Empire. To do that a country does have to maintain a huge military machine and use it to control and expand its empire.

What I can’t understand is why he is just emerging as a candidate to be seriously considered. Why do the polls show him now ahead of New Ginghrich? What’s going to happen in South Carolina where he is being touted as a strong contender because of his Christian right credentials? Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich says he, not Santorum, is going to win in South Carolina. After seeing what is now happening in Iowa, I’m not so sure Newt is right.

Both of them have a big problem. They don’t have the organization or the money that former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney or Congressman Ron Paul has. They also have another big problem. Are they electable?  Satisfying the Republican right-wing Christian fundamentalist base is one thing. Overcoming a newly energized, well-financed and organized, accomplished debater Barrack Obama, is quite another.

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Cain’s Fifteen Minutes are Over, but Not Newt’s

December 3, 2011

State Sen. Josh McKoon on C-SPAN

After Columbus State Senator Josh McKoon made his rousing speech for Cain on C-Span at the Cain political rally in Atlanta,  Herman Cain suspended his campaign.  No, I’m sure it  had nothing to do with Josh’s remarks. More about Josh in a moment.

Herman Cain on C-SPAN

Cain dropped out, he said,  because of the distractions  and pain to him, his wife and his family that were caused by what he called false statements about him.  He blamed the media and politcians for his troubles.  

He didn’t say the statements were about his alleged sexual adventures with some women other than his wife, but everyone knew what he was talking about when he said he was at peace with himself, that his wife and family were also at peace.

As I watched Cain’s rally-turned-rout, I had to reflect how much Georgia has played a lead role in national politics since Jimmy Carter was elected president. In the Republican presidential primary we had two Georgians making national headlines as their poll numbers put them on top. One of them, Newt Gingrich, had already reached a pinnacle of national power when he became Georgia’s first Speaker of the U.S. House.

Newt wasn’t born in Georgia, and he doesn’t live in the state now. He was born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; he and his third wife live in McLean, Virginia, though he comes back to Georgia. He has spoken in Columbus a couple of times in recent years. I read where he gets $60,000 per speech. Wonder if he got that much when he spoke in Columbus. And,  he did graduate from Baker High School in Columbus, and Emory in Atlanta, and was elected as a Georgia Representative to the U.S. House six times, and was a Georgian when he was Speaker of the House.

Cain was born in Memphis, Tennessee, but grew up in Atlanta where he was educated, married, and still resides.  He and I have something in common. We both worked at WSB in Atlanta. He had his talk show until recently. I did the morning newscasts and some DJ work a very long time ago.

How do I  feel about the suspension of his campaign?  I don’t think could have handled the office of president.  999 is not enough. You have to have a clue about places like Libya where the U.S. military is involved.  And leading the free world isn’t exactly the same as running Godfather’s Pizza.  No, he doesn’t, in my view, have the intellect or grasp of foreign affairs that President Obama does.  As far as the sex mess, he certainly isn’t alone in that area.  It just happened to come out before, not after he was elected. Works better for the candidate when it’s after.

Newt? Well, he is quite intelligent and an adept politician, and definitely has a way with words.  He had his sex scandals, too, but he isn’t letting that stop him. And, he can really be nasty when he wants to, which is a lot of the time.  Nasty, though, seems to appeal to a lot of voters. But, would he really be good for the country? Can he rise above partisan politics and do what’s best for the common good?  He is credited with starting the egregious partisanship that has been gridlocking Congress for a number of years now.

Is he electable?  With his personal and political baggage I don’t see how, but as H.L Mencken said, “No one in this world … has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people. Nor has anyone ever lost public office hereby.” (Thanks to Mike Nichols for that quote.) 

Now, about my good Republican friend Josh McKoon.  Knowing that Cain was probably going to pull out, I was really somewhat surprised when I heard him make his stem-winder speech  about  everyone getting on the Cain train, that he is the man to get the country out of the economic mess it is in.  I would have thought Josh would have been more likely to support Newt.  Wonder if he will now.

Cain says he is out of the race, but not out of the fight. He will continue to air his views on his website, he says. Welcome to the club. There are millions of us bloggers.

Chair of U.S. House Homeland Security Committee Comes to Columbus

November 25, 2008

  It’s only a few days before voters go to the polls to decide an election that is being watched by the nation, and the parade of political celebrities continues in the state when Congressman Bennie Thompson,  chair of the Homeland Security Committee in the U.S. House comes to Columbus to campaign for Jim Martin, the Democratic candidate for the Senate seat held by Sen. Saxby Chambliss. Rep. Thompson will be joined by 2nd District U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop for an appearance at Democratic Campaign Headquarters on Macon Road at 5:15 p.m. , Tuesday, November 25.

Rep. Dennis Thompson, (Dem) Mississippi, Chair, U.S. Homeland Security Committee (Official photo)

Rep. Dennis Thompson, (Dem) Mississippi, Chair, U.S. Homeland Security Committee (Official photo)

  Former Vice President Al Gore came to Atlanta Sunday to campaign for Martin. According to the Atlanta Hournal-Constitution he said of Chambliss, “It’s time for him to go. The Bush-Cheney-Chambliss philosophy has been tried and has not only found out to be wanting, it has been found out to be a catastrophe.” Before Gore, Former President Bill Clinton came to Atlanta to add his support for Martin.

  Sen. John McCain has also been in Georgia campaigning for Chambliss, and President-elect Obama made a radio commercial that is being played on Atlanta stations asking for Georgians to return to the polls Tuesday to support Martin.

Mitt Romney website)

Mitt Romney, Former Governor of Mass. (Courtesy: Mitt Romney website)

  Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney was in Atlanta Friday campaigning for Sen. Chambliss, urging Georgians to keep the two-party system alive in Washington by sending Chambliss back again. If Chambliss loses in Georgia and Sen. Norm Coleman loses in Minnesota, where votes are still being recounted, Democrats will have a 60-vote filibuster proof Senate.  That’s why the stakes are so high next Tuesday when Georgians decide the runoff election between Martin and Chambliss.