Wednesday, December 14, 2011

GOP 2012: The long view

Nate Silver weighs in today to tell us the GOP Iowa race is wide open. Whether or not this will redefine the race in way that creates a clear frontrunner for the big prize remains a matter of much speculation.

Certainly, Team Obama is hoping for a long and muddled contest. Axelrod frames it in way that validates my pet theory.
“The longer this race goes, the more you’re going to see these Republican candidates try to mortgage the general election to try and win the primary campaign,” said David Axelrod, the chief strategist for the president’s re-election campaign.

“The longer the race,” Mr. Axelrod said, “the harder it will be to scramble back.”
Meanwhile, Chris Christie hosted a million dollar fundraiser for Willard the other night. Christie gathered some 500 illuminaries of the Jersey GOP and told the media "he expects the primary process to be a 'long slog' that won’t be determined by the first few states to hold contests."

And Christie sang Willard's praises to the assembled donors.
“As you’ve watched Gov. Romney perform over the last number of months in the many debates that our Republican presidential candidates have participated in, the things that are constant in Gov. Romney’s performances are things that will be constants in his presidency,” Christie added, listing the character traits Romney possesses including: maturity, intelligence, thoughtfulness, honesty, “and he has the integrity of his principles."

“That’s the kind of leader we need in the Oval Office," he said. "We do not need a Chicago ward politician in the Oval Office.”
Of course, this is exactly the same rhetoric he might use if he was running for President.

Sure, the "is Christie really running for VP" cocktail chatter is the latest insider parlor game and maybe that's really what's happening. But so far, I've seen nothing Christie is saying on the stump for Willard that would come back to hurt him if he found himself suddenly drafted this summer. [Graphic via Gothamist]

[More posts daily at the Detroit News.]

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