Showdown in Dixie

Well, the Romney Express was forced to make an unscheduled stop with the recent developments of Rick Santorum awarded victory in Iowa after the absentee ballots were counted.   With Rick Perry dropping out, we are down to four (Romney, Santorum, Gingrich, and Paul).

Another debate last night still shows Romney as a frontrunner, but the express is not rolling at full speed.  Mitt Romney is wealthy and successful.  He should never apologize for that; there are two types of Americans, those who are wealthy and successful and those who aspire to be.  Mitt’s tragic flaw is he has difficulty expressing his ideas to the middle class, the so-called ninety-nine and comes across as insensitive to the have-nots.  No one should force him to disclose his tax returns (when running for office, his father released twelve years worth), but why not, if it will help.  Of course it is going to show a large income with loopholes showing a lower than expected tax rate, but if guys like us want to achieve that kind of wealth, we would want someone who can lead by example.  You can argue for changing to the flat tax for which I am a staunch supporter, but you have to live with the way things are until the change is implemented.  If he were not a rich man, would he be able to run for president?

Gingrich was lambasted right off the top with respect to the ABC News interview with his ex-wife and lost his temper with moderator John King (CNN) for starting the debate that way.  One’s personal life should never be a factor in choosing our leaders, but in a free society, it is impossible to ensure no one will.  As much as I was not thrilled with that first question, it was better for the moderator ask it up front and absorb the negativity than for someone in the audience or on Twitter to bring it up without control over tact.

Ron Paul is Ron Paul.  Once again, light a candle for Rick Santorum.  I see him as the twenty-first century Ronald Reagan and should be given a chance.  He needs to be more assertive at debates, especially now that his three opponents are of significantly higher profile.  When he speaks, he should use the words I and me less often and show he believes what he believes as it benefits others.  Romney and Gingrich have greater financial resources to stay in the race longer.  The clock is ticking for Rick Santorum.  I can only speculate that South Carolina governor Nikki Haley’s choice to endorse Romney in spite of the fact that she is a tea bagger was largely based on Mitt’s performance in Iowa and New Hampshire and that if the correction in Iowa came earlier, she would have gone a different direction.

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