Friday, September 23, 2011

The not-so-something review of the FNC/Google GOP debate (UPDATES)


I, like many of you, have been following these GOP debates pretty closely, with optimism, skepticism and yes, some disappointment.  And with my inconspicuous image above (ha!), tonight's performance may leave some pining for Palin to enter the race ASAP!  But before we hear the first gasps, let me explain where I'm going with this. 

I honestly don't think this was one of the better debates, that may have been the CNN/tea party one; however, this debate will begin to solidify a few directions for voters.  Rather than go through a multitude of clips like I have in the past, instead, let's explore where this appears to be heading. 

To start, I'd like to take this moment to humbly agree with another review of the Fox News/Google GOP debate.  I believe Aaron Goldstein's American Spectator entry has pretty much nailed the results of Thursday night's performance.

In a nutshell, Romney will make gains to the detriment of Perry's underperformance(s) - I make that parenthetically plural to denote the progressive backslide from the last few debates.  In all honesty, he's not instilling the confidence that voters are wanting to see.  That's not something that I say lightly or with any satisfaction, believe me!  As Goldstein writes:

Rick Perry - As I mentioned earlier, Perry isn't an attack dog. Turning his focus on Romney didn't bring out the best in him. I thought he defended his immigration and HPV vaccine policies reasonably well although those positions might work better with independents than with the GOP and Tea Party base.

Mitt Romney - On balance, he got the better of his exchanges with Perry as he did last week in Tampa. Aside from Perry, only Herman Cain took a swipe at Romney and Romney did not respond directly to Cain. It was probably the wisest course of action. Romney did not make any serious mistakes.

However, if there might be one bright side to this, I'd also agree with Mr. Goldstein's assessment of the most likely break out candidate, who made one of the strongest impressions of the night, and that is Herman Cain.

Herman Cain - If there's any candidate who deserves more consideration from the national media, it's Cain. He struck all the right notes. You could say he performed to the nines. The audience was with him throughout the debate. Even the other candidates seemed to be with him especially when he spoke about surviving cancer and how his chances at survival would have been greatly reduced under Obamacare.

I think you'll find a fair assessment of the rest of the candidates as well, including Bachmann hanging on (not necessarily harming or helping herself).  However, with the Perry/Romney show and the potential for Cain to progress, I think Goldstein is right on the money. So with that, Perry's got some work to do without trying to out-Romney Romney, and best of luck to raisin' Cain...conservatives are rooting for ya!

Now, where does Palin fit into this, or does she at all?  Either one of two things is going to occur.  There are a few more debates scheduled before year's end, and the first primaries will start in February.  Either she will get in at the last possible moment, which some believe she may have recently alluded to when stating, "Mark my word, it is going to be an unconventional election process."  I'm still searching to see if there's an angle here that I'm not initially seeing to be somewhat of a stealth candidate within the rules for filing and final deadlines for the highest office in the land, but I'm not completely sold on her taking that direction.  The 'or' to this would be that she will supply a major endorsement to the GOP nominee, and launch a concerted groundswell of cohesion and support among the party, despite her detractors on the Left or Right, with the united goal of defeated Barack Obama and his statists hordes in 2012.  That's just my two cents...we'll see how it goes.

UPDATE: Well, we see by Saturday's FL straw poll results, Cain received more than that well deserved bump! The Hill reports:

Herman Cain pulled off a shocking upset victory in Florida’s Presidency 5 Straw Poll on Saturday. The Georgia businessman won more votes than the Republican primary's frontrunners -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney -- combined.

UPDATE II: After a few rounds of disputed polls, the latest Fox News poll provides the predictable results immediately following last Thursday's debate: Romney overtakes Perry, and Herman Cain receives a significant bump!

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