Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Robinson Ranks the Rs

Robinson Ranks the Rs

Fascinating series posted over the last 24 hours or so by Craig Robinson at TheIowaRepublican, the parti's quasi-official one-stop blog.

First posted sequentially, in countdown format, Robinson ranks the GOP presidential field in likeliness of caucus success. The top ten list is most notable for who's NOT included: Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee.

Here's the list and the "highlights", with a few of (my comments).

  • 10: Herman Cain: "Cain’s 2012 campaign will probably look more like what Alan Keyes’ campaign looked like in 1999 and 2000... If this was just about getting to ten names, Jon Huntsman would have made the list." (Morrie Taylor + Alan Keyes = Herman Cain.)

  • 9: John Thune: "Thune will have a better 'neighbor' advantage than Pawlenty or Bachmann would have from being for Minnesota because of his proximity to the most conservative part of the state... Those people get their news from South Dakota, so not only have they seen Thune’s campaign ads, but they are also kept abreast of what he’s doing." (Anyone else remember when Larry Pressler had the same idea?)

  • 8: Mitch Daniels: Here in Iowa, Daniels already has one big fan in Governor Terry Branstad..." (How fast will the denial come here?)

  • 7: Haley Barbour: "While many might discount Barbour’s chances to be the 2012 Republican nominee, it’s safe to say that most people would have ranked him ahead of several 2008 candidates like Sam Brownback, Ron Paul, Tom Tancredo, Tommy Thompson, Duncan Hunter, and even Mike Huckabee." (That's setting the bar pretty low, though my bet is Tommy Thompson is the best analogy.)

  • 6: Ron Paul: "While Paul will have to campaign hard to win a majority of the tea party activists in the state, it’s safe to say that nobody will have a more loyal and dedicated group of supporters than Ron Paul will have. " (Will run, may improve slightly on `08 support, but his people are basically indigestible for the eventual nominee.)

  • While we're in this mode, Nate Silver has a fascinating, four dimensional graph (must be seen to be believed) of who's competing with who for what niche. Ron Paul has a whole quadrant basically to himself. If the word "quadrant" even applies in four dimensional space:
    "It's time to move on to the next quadrant. Quadrant. Quadrant. Quad... It's a weird word when you think about it. Quadrant. Quaaadrant. Quad... See, now it doesn't even sound like a word. " -Dr. Heinz Doofenshmirtz

  • 5: Rick Santorum: "It’s the margin of Santorum 2006 defeat that’s going to be difficult to overcome, not that he lost. In fact, it’s probably an advantage that he is not associated with the 2007-2010 Congress that remains unpopular with the American people." (That's, um, a really creative argument.)

  • 4: Mitt Romney: "Romney is quickly becoming the Rudy Giuliani of the 2010 campaign. Skipping two of the first three states is not only a sign of weakness, but also a clear indication that Romney is once again going to morph into another version of himself. Making us all wonder who the real Mitt Romney is." (Oh, SNAP!)

  • 3: Tim Pawlenty: "Pawlenty’s problem is that he’s probably going to be a lot of people’s second choice. For that to benefit him, he needs to see some big-name candidates drop out." (See my impressions on TPaw from yesterday.) "Maybe the biggest obstacle that has come his way is..."

  • 2: Michele Bachmann: "A Bachmann run would create a perfect storm in Iowa. Bachmann is already the darling of the tea party, and TheIowaRepublican.com knows of one big tea party endorsement she would likely receive if she runs. When you combine that with Steve King’s statewide network of conservatives in the state it’s a recipe for success." (Presumably this fills the Palin niche?)

  • 1: Newt Gingrich: "as formidable of a caucus candidate as Iowans have ever seen. The combination of being a storyteller, historian, political operative, and excellent speaker make him the clear frontrunner in Iowa."

  • Newt Number One?!? Wow. Just wow.

    The exclusion of Huckabee and Palin is huge. I don't see both of them not running. And I also don't see both of them running. It comes dowm to whether Palin is motivated more by money or ego.

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