Saturday, December 16, 2006

Weekend Briefs

For those of you that want to comment on the big events of the weekend.

Friday, December 15, 2006

McCain Inc.

Bob Novak discusses what could become the inevitability of a McCain nomination based on the same factors that spurred Reagan in 80, both Bushes, and Bob Dole in 96. Here's a snippet:

" It is beginning to look like "McCain, Inc." -- that is, party regulars, corporate officials and Washington lawyers and lobbyists moving toward John McCain, the man it feared and loathed eight years ago. The GOP, abhorring competition and detesting surprises, likes to establish its presidential nominee well in advance. I first appreciated this in 1996 when Robert J. Dole's candidacy was dying after he barely won in Iowa and lost New Hampshire, Arizona and Delaware. He then won eight out of eight primaries on a single Tuesday. When I asked a Dole adviser how this happened, he said it was "Dole, Inc."

What Novak does not add is that with a super-compressed Caucus/Primary schedule this year, where somewhere between 8-12 states could come a week on the heels of New Hampshire (and definately a week after South Carolina), the ability to have this national organization will give McCain a huge advantage.

At this point only Governor Romney appears capable of staying in the ballpark with McCain when it comes to recruiting these establishment forces. What should comfort those who resist the McCain inevitability is that without a sitting President or VP in this race, it should be more wide-open than any of those were.

But if Rudy and Romney can't secure enough of the key people in those 2nd tier states, they could face a rude awakening in the 2nd wave of primaries.

Also of note in the article is Novak's report that Senate Minority Whip Trent Lott (MS) and Kansas Senator Pat Roberts with both support a McCain candidacy. Roberts notes that he has respect for fellow Kansan, Brownback but that McCain is the "right man in the right place at the right time."


Better late than never as they say..

David Yepsen reported yesterday that Steve Grubbs has signed on with Tommy Thompson's Presidential campaign.

Grubbs is the President of Victory Enterprises as played a key role in Steve Forbes caucus campaigns.

Krusty has some additional background on Grubbs.

Good pick-up for Thompson.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

The Drudge Primary

The Hotline brings up a point that we have alluded to around the Cooler a couple of times. It seems that Mitt Romney may have won one very important preseason sweepstakes, the "Drudge Primary." With all the action around the blogosphere on the Romney/Bay Windows Interview- one very notable person never mentioned it...Matt Drudge. Romney hired former BC04 Comm Director Matt Rhoades last week, bringing Drudge's closest ally with team Bush on board. We at the Cooler have thought for sometime that the conservative news gatekeeper could be hostile towards a Giuliani or McCain candidacy. We'll see if that trend continues.

If you don't think that Drudge's opinion matters, make sure to check out John Harris and Mark Halperins, "The Way to Win."
Also in the news:

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

BREAKING: DuHaime to Giuliani

Another sign that Rudy Giuliani is serious about a Presidential bid comes in the form of New Jersey's own Mike Duhaime.

Duhaime is currently the Political Director at the RNC. He will oversee the exploratory committee. Duhaime has national politcal/organizational contacts and this signing is a sure signal that Rudy is ready to get involved in the staffing Primary.

Big pick-up for Rudy.

Staffin' on up

We promise that at some point this week we'll post on something besides the Governor of Massachusettes.

Krusty reports this morning something we've been hearing around the watercooler at CCHQ for a couple weeks now. Gentry Collins, former ED of the Republican Party of Iowa and campaign manager for Doug Gross' failed Gubernatorial campaign will be taking the reins for Governor Romney here in Iowa. This is a very good move by team Romney as Collins is well respected in Iowa GOP circles. Krusty also mentions the addition of Capitol Resources that we told you about yesterday.

Romney has also bulked up his field staff with the addition of a few folks who worked with the Legislative Majority Fund this cycle. This isn't suprising given their connection to House Minority Leader Christopher Rants- a key Romney supporter.

Other Tidbits:

  • Governor Huckabee has begun staffing up in New Hampshire asking the former Chairman of the Manchester GOP to Chair his NH efforts. Hat tip to Race42008.
  • Eyeon08 has some follow-up on the Evangelical Media's negative reaction to the Romney story.
  • John McCain's Iowa team has added a key member of Arnold's Schwarzenegger grassroots operation to oversee ground game in the Hawkeye State.
  • The Iowa GOP candidate wins the special election in Buena Vista giving the R's 46 seats in the 100 seat House.

More on Emails

Thanks to all the folks that sent in the McCain letter. It was suprisingly innocuous. The subject line was "Will the real Mitt Romney Please Stand Up" The body of the email just included the New York Times article we linked to over the weekend. It was sent out by a couple different members of Team McCain in Iowa.

It is interesting to note that the response email sent out by the Romney folks was very long, detailed, and pointed fingers back at McCain. It goes to show how serious team Romney takes these accusations. They will be very aggressive and thorough in rebutting them as this campaign progresses. We'll keep an eye on it.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Live Blog Transcript

1:08- HDTV! Sweeeet.

1:10- It is dark in the IPTV studios isn't it? Also weird to not have an audience. Is this the first non-audience debate?

1:11- Mitt definitely colors his hair.

1:13- Alan Keyes. LMFAO. (Side note. Doesn't calling your TV show "Alan Keyes is making sense" in some way tacitly acknowledge that people think you're crazy.)

1:14 Carolyn Washburn colors her hair much more drastically than Mitt.

1:21- If you don't like our live blog, check out Jonathan Martin's.

1:22- Changed our mind. Alan Keyes is an important addition to this debate. His swaying, ducking questions, oratory. It's all perfect.

1:23- SLAM from Fred. "You're getting to be a pretty good actor actually" to Mitt

1:26- Bored by the "free statement" section. Check out what Carolyn Washburn looked like then. And then look at the TV screen. She's found the fountain of youth!! She's also the meanest moderator we've had to date.

1:29- Half an hour in. Only Fred's line stands out. So we're going to analyze ties. Huckabee, a Bushian solid light blue. McCain, Notre Dame solid gold.

1:30- Giuliani, an awful maroon and navy stripe. Who dressed him this morning? Get on that Comella! Fred with an almost as ugly blue, silver, and black stripe. Tancredo, a very preppy solid maroon. Hunter, a lighter maroon with a thin white stripe. Ron Paul with an absurdly shiny silver tie and some sort of blue/black thin stripes. Very ugly.

1:35- Whoa there is an audience. They've been quiet.

1:36- The global warming question is a total cluster. The candidates are bargaining for time!! Get a hold of your people Carolyn!

1:38- Good answer from Mitt on global warming. He's wearing a light blue tie with dots. Keyes is wearing a brown tie.

1:39- Final tie rankings, 1. Huckabee 2. McCain 3. Tancredo 4. Hunter 5. Keyes 6. Romney. 7. Thompson 8. Giuliani

1:40- Huckabee claims that its hard to believe in global warming when its cold out. Then says we need to be stewards of the earth. Trying to cut that pretty thin.

1:46- School choice, will Huckabee come clean that he opposed this in Arkansas?

1:50- Nearly an hour in. Not a single person has even tried to draw a contrast with Huckabee, the Iowa favorite, or Giuliani, the national favorite. You're running out of time fellas.

1:52- Everybody knows that Alan Keyes daughter is a lesbian and he disowned her right?

1:56- First shot at Huckabee. From Tancredo. On school curricula. zzz

2:02- Romney's going to end entitlements and illegal immigration year one. Ha.

2:04- McCain says we have a "cyberspace challenge." Too many snarky bloggers, Senator?

2:09- Martin brings up a good point. Nobody dinged Huckabee for for the NEA endorsing him.

2:12- Keyes is speaking in rhyme now

2:13- Romney makes a funny. When asked if he wants to respond to Keyes he deadpans "I'm not sure." Mitt also has a little verbal tick, he always says "Thank you" at the end of every question. Who is he thanking?

2:14- Who has bigger bags under their eyes. Ambinder thinks McCain. We think Fred. Not get a lot of sleep last night fellas?

2:15- Is Huckabee religious? Haven't noticed.

2:17- Huckabee is winning this debate right now by default.

2:18- Is it more important to be a social or fiscal conservative? Here's Mitt's chance to take a shot at Rudy or Huckabee. Will he use it??

2:19- No.

2:21- Why was Tancredo whispering in the video?

2:24- The McCain argument in a nutshell, "I can never think of a time where I have compromised my principals and I hope I never will"

2:24- Resolutions for an opponent!! Somebody take a shot!

2:26- Everybody is wimping out. Predictable.

2:30- Cooler Analysis:

Winner- Huckabee. He stayed on his religious, compassionate messaging. He didn't have to rebut any tough challenges from his opponents or from the moderator. He's the favorite.

Loser- The Des Moines Register. What a terrible debate format. Kudos to them for asking about issues besides God and gays, but besides that they get a thumbs down from the Cooler.

Other Notes- McCain was strong as he has been for a couple debates. Rudy didn't make any mistakes and handled the toughest question (disclosure) well. Romney gave some great answers, but didn't distinguish himself from Huckabee, so that's a loss for him. Keyes is a lunatic.

Thanks for joining us.

And special thanks to Andrew Sullivan and others who have linked to us. The Cooler will surpass 5000 unique visitors today alone.

She has some capitol resources

We apologize for the delay in posting this but we were trying to track down the McCain email so that we could post them both side by side. If anybody has it please forward over to the tipjar and we'll post it this afternoon.

In the meantime this email was sent out by a number of different Romney staff members over the weekend including the newly added, Nicole Schlinger. We meant to post on Nicole back around Thanksgiving but it had slipped the Cooler's collective conciousness until we received this email.

Schlinger is one of the pre-eminent fundraisers in Iowa politics. Her business, Capitol Resources, is based out of Brooklyn, Iowa (the similarities to Brooklyn, New York are striking). Schlinger is rumored to have received somewhere in the neighborhood of 250K for her services to Governor Romney.

Onto the email many of us received from Ms. Schlinger over the weekend.- Here are excerpts 0f Governor Romney's Iowa teams defense of their candidate- in their own words. The email was titled "Clarifying Gov. Romney's Support for Traditional Marriage."
Ahhh, politics on a Saturday night in December. Only in Iowa! As you may know, an article is being circulated today by supporters of Sen. John McCain as an attempt to mislead voters about Governor Mitt Romney's unwavering support for traditional marriage. In fact, his record of defending marriage is unassailable, and frankly is unmatched by any other political figure in America.

Governor Romney has NEVER supported civil unions or gay marriage -- not only has he not supported it but he has been THE champion battling to preseve traditional marriage on the frontlines. He does believe, however, that we should be a tolerant nation. America is not a punitive, mean-spirited, or bigoted country. Mitt Romney is 100% committed to a federal marriage amendment, while other possible candidates for president, including Senator John McCain, are not.

Then Schlinger goes on to list a litany of facts about Romney's record and closes with...

Thanks for taking the time to listen on a Saturday evening! As we all are, I'm still extremely disappointed about the results of the elections last month. It's easy to see why voters were fed up with months of negative ads. The circulation of this article today reminded me so much of that ... and we have to change if we are going to win!!!!
A couple of small shots at McCain and an empassioned defense of her man. Nice pick-up for team Romney. We'll try and track down the McCain email later today.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Craig Adamson Email

-----Original Message-----
From: Craig Adamson [mailto:]
Sent: Friday, December 07, 2007 7:19 PM
Subject: RE: Mitt Romney Event Linn mar High School


I am “replying to all” in hopes of appealing to as many Christians (hopefully thinking Christians) as possible. While I know several of you well, there are many of you I don’t know. Read on at your risk.

I am not telling you or anyone on the list that I’m a better Christian than you, or anything of the sort. I’m a sinner just like everyone. Perhaps I’m even worse? I would ask you NAME REMOVED please reconsider your interest in supporting Mitt Romney –SPECIFICALLY.

Please do not “sell” your Christian values for the “possibility” -that is right- the possibility of a candidate that seems more electible than another. That is a fallacy that far too many “educated” voters have convinced themselves is true over the years. Vote for a leader who espouses your values and has a history of maintaining those values on a daily basis –not just for the day and for the TV camera. Can you look in the mirror, or can you look in the direction of God and tell Him, “I know I tell everyone that my Christian values are important, but I’m going to ignore those values because I think this person can win.” I believe that is very short-sighted. What if you prayed and prayed and prayed for a strong Christian candidate to appear, and God made him appear warts and all. Are you now not willing to vote for him because he doesn’t “seem” to be electible? Would you feel you did the right thing for voting for a candidate who you thought was more electible, but shared none of your social convictions? How would you reconcile that with God? Can you?

While no candidates are perfect people, nor are they perfect candidates, I challenge everyone to search their own heart on this matter and see if they can spot the candidates who are secular humanists, pro-abortion, pro gay rights (including gay marriage) and tax and spenders. There are several “front-running” candidates who are socially liberal and fiscally conservative. That’s great. But let’s back up a second. They are socially liberal. Are you socially liberal? If they weren’t fiscally conservative, would you vote for them? So why ignore what is important in hopes they will also remain true to their supposed fiscal responsibility? If your values don’t have to be bought, then for goodness sake, what happens when you are presented with an ethical dilemma related to money?

Several of these candidates who have changed their stances repeatedly (some continue to do so) on their views of abortion, gun control, taxes, religion, etc. Do you suppose their message to NY and Massachusetts voters is different than the messages we are hearing here? Some people will say anything to be your next president. Saying anything doesn’t mean anything. Mitt Romney was specifically quoted in today’s CR Gazette (12/7/07), “Americans tire of those who would jettison their beliefs, even to gain the world.”

WHAT??!!??? Perhaps I’m reading into that statement too much, but isn’t he running for president to serve us? Or is he running to “gain the world?” I’ve never heard a candidate refer to the presidency that way. Additionally, he seems to be quite hypocritical –especially in regards to is strong support of “a woman’s right to choose” and now is suddenly anti-abortion, except that States (not the Fed Gov’t) should have the ability to decide the issue on a state by state basis. Soooo you are for pro-choice???

I fear that you will be very disappointed in your affiliation with this particular candidate in the end. You can find numerous reasons if you take the time to look. The guy is handsome. But do we need a handsome president? He has enough money to buy the presidency. Do we want someone to buy our country?? Or do we need someone with the ability to lead and who has some philosophical and moral convictions? While it is a smaller issue in relation to the others, let us not dance around the issue of religion either (as Mitt will have to do throughout his run). Don’t allow yourself to be “scared into being inclusive.” If you are discriminating on the issue of abortion, you can discriminate on any number of reasons. Religious conviction may not be ‘politically correct’ but it doesn’t mean you cannot use it to decide. If that is important to you.

Would any of you support an avowed atheist for president? Do you think religion, especially Christianity, is being marginalized by ACLU and other organizations? If so than you would be piling on to vote in a Mormon. Mormonism is a cult. In case I didn’t type it clearly enough… Mormonism is a cult. I won’t vote for Mitt Romney for numerous other reasons, but based on my knowledge of Mormonism, I would not trust him as my president as he might be fooled into believing most anything. How could he possibly be trusted to negotiate with Islamic radicals? He might believe Muslim and Mormons are the same, just like he tries to pass off Mormons as Christians. The Mormon Church is extremely wealthy and extremely secretive. But that is information for another time. Additionally, the LDS religion is sexist, racist, and the Church president is considered both a prophet (on the same level as Jesus) and ultimately the authority for God on earth. Mitt would be going against Mormon doctrine and risks ex-communication if he didn’t take orders from his Church. An ex-communicated Mormon loses their salvation. So either he is willing to be one of “those who would jettison their beliefs, even to gain the world” or he is just one of those people willing to forego his own personal salvation to be president of the United States? Would you choose to be President or choose Christ as your Savior? I’m just asking a simple question. I know “UR4JC”. Sorry, couldn’t resist that play on words.

NAME REMOVED, I know you well enough to call you a friend and I think you know how much I respect your ideas and abilities. You’ve also helped challenge me in my faith and my conservatism. If you didn’t know how much I respect you, now you do. I respect you A LOT. If I cannot dissuade you, then we may have to agree to disagree. That’s okay.

Thank you for asking me to help out, but I must decline. I will ACTIVELY be campaigning AGAINST Mr. Romney. I feel confident with a closer examination, a man who supports Aid to Women and who walks with Christ every day will come to a different conclusion on who to support as our next president.

Hope that helps you or someone else you know in their decision making process. If nothing else, pray for me to actually know what I’m talking about for a change.


Craig Adamson CRPS, PRP


Adamson Financial Planning


Marion, IA XXXXX


-----Original Message-----
Sent: Thursday, December 06, 2007 1:53 PM
Subject: Mitt Romney Event Linn mar High School

Hi all:

Like many of you, I have struggled with who to support in the upcoming caucus. I am starting to lean pretty strongly toward Mitt Romney based on his overall package of conservative values both socially and fiscally.

I have been asked to host a table at an upcoming Romney event next Wednesday at 5:45 at Linn mar High School.

I’m inviting all of you to join me. (I’m not sure even if you all have the same political leanings I do)

If you are or might be interested, please respond to this email, and I’ll get you details in the next few days.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

And I'll drink more booze than him too!

Governor Romney got blasted by the East Coast establishment media this weekend on his statements regarding gay marriage. The timing of these articles is largely due to Romney's support for adding a Constitutional Amendment to define marriage to Massachusettes law. Romney's vociferous support for this legislation in the waning days of his Governorship has raised questions amongst members of the Gang of 500 mostly due to its rather convenient timing. The amendment would be on the ballot November, 2008.

First the Boston Globe-Worker takes aim at the Guvnah on Friday morning with this article. The Globe-Worker references an interview Romney did with the gay newspaper Bay Windows in 1994. In the article Romney says, "People of integrity don't force their beliefs on others, they make sure that others can live by different beliefs they may have." The article then points to comments made recently by Romney in South Carolina that attacks gay couples that want to have children.

The article does fairly point out that Romney never voiced support for gay marriage in the 1994 interview even though his tone is markedly different. You can read the orginal interview for yourself here.

The New Moscow Times then weighed in yesterday. The Times has dug up a letter from Romney to the Log Cabin Republicans asking for their endorsement in his 1994 Senate race against Ted Kennedy. In the letter Romney is quoted as saying:

“For some voters, it might be enough to simply match my opponent’s record in this area, but I believe we can and must do better. If we are to achieve the goals we share, we must make equality for gays and lesbians a mainstream concern. My opponent cannot do this. I can and will.”

Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council also gives his two cents calling the revelations, "disturbing."

For Governor Romney it's important that he addresses these issues in December 2006, not December 2007. Because wanting to outdo Ted Kennedy on gay rights certainly is something he will want to avoid in the days leading up to the Iowa Caucus.

Update: Here's the Globe's follow-up on the log-cabin letter.

  • Caucus Coolerisms
  • The Cooler Line

    Mike Huckabee 10-9
    Mitt Romney 3-1
    Fred Thompson 9-1
    John McCain 9-1
    Rudy Giuliani 12-1
    Ron Paul 12-1
    Duncan Hunter 98-1
    The Cooler line is an exclusive creation of Caucus Cooler and will be updated as the political environment changes.
    It is an unscientific assessment of the Iowa Caucus (not the Presidential race as a whole) from an insiders view at the given time. The line IS NOW mathematically accurate but is NOT intended for gambling purposes. Information may only be reproduced with credit to the Caucus Cooler.