Welcome to the latest edition of PoliticalDerby.com's 2012 Power Rankings, the original tracking service of the race for the White House. The rankings are updated as circumstances warrant and are compiled by our Editors using wire reports, polls, campaign staffer scuttlebutt and confidential tips. The rankings may not be reprinted or quoted in any form without attribution to PoliticalDerby.com.

The GOP Horses
Power Ranking The Horse Momentum The Tip Sheet

Mitt
Romney

With each passing month, Romney looks more the part of a classic frontrunner. Pace yourself, don’t engage your competition needlessly and don’t take chances. His opponents and the media may loathe the strategy, but it’s worked - so far. Other horses took shots at Romney skipping the Ames straw poll, but will it matter? Both David Axelrod and his Stache were outraged that the “weird” Romney waited until the buzzer sounded to announce his position on the debt deal, but did actual voters notice? Whether they did or not, with the summer winding down and Rick Perry in the race, Romney’s lead is shrinking.

Michele
Bachmann

Bachmann, coming off an impressive win in Ames, finds herself gaining ground and soaking up much of the ABR (Anybody But Romney) energy. This horse had a decent summer: She knocked out Pawlenty and kept Palin off the track and on the bus. On the other hand, at her current pace, pundits predict she could pass Joe “They’re Terrorists” Biden on the gaffe scale by Labor Day. She placed Lexington and Concord in New Hampshire, called John Quincy Adams a founding father, and likened her spirit to John Wayne of Waterloo, Iowa. In fact, it was serial killer John Wayne Gacy who hailed from Waterloo. So, is Bachmann a serial killer? No. But is she a serial violator of truthiness? Time will tell.

Rick
Perry

Perry skillfully made huge headlines by avoiding the recent debate and the Ames straw poll. He's already second to Romney in some national polls and reports suggest he's raising money by the ten-gallion hat. As he bursts onto the scene, he frequently boasts that since June of 2009, Texas is home to 40 percent of all the jobs added in the United States. What he doesn’t tell you that most of those jobs were minimum wagers at Del Taco. In the end, it may boil down to this simple question: Are the party and the country ready to elect another Texan with cowboy boots and a drawl?

Ron
Paul
Paul performed very well in Ames, organizing an impressive second place finish. What has changed from his run in 2008? Not much, other than better advertising and that in 2012 he’s not running for reelection to his House seat. On the flip side, three important factors remain. He still has fantastic name recognition, the capacity to raise enough money to hang around for the long run, and that “angry old white man” mask he’s been wearing for a decade. For now he’s polling ahead of Newt, Cain, Huntsman and Santorum. Can he crack the top three or has he hit the ceiling?
5

Herman
Cain

Herman Cain has surprisingly passionate support, perhaps second only to Ron Paul, and he’s right on Paul’s hooves in the national poll averages. Could Cain’s success in early stages depend on his ability to tap into Paul’s support among college students? Herbert Hoover offered “a chicken in every pot.” Cain might pledge “a pepperoni with extra cheese in every dorm room.”

Newt
Gingrich

Newt's campaign is DOA. Or is it? His debate performance won raves and he answered the staff defection questions very well. Also, remember that pundits said John McCain's campaign was toast in 2007 when he ran into major money and organizational problems. Newt, however, has never smelled the polling numbers of Johnny Mac. Plus, by comparison, McCain's baggage could fit in the overhead bin. Newt's got a second jet in tow.
Rick
Santorum
Santorum seems custom-fit for the ultra-conservative Iowa caucuses. Why, then, has he failed to gain traction? Because you don't need your very own political junkie website to know that this race is all about the economy and the former Senator is running as the social conservative. Wrong guy, wrong race, enviable tie collection.
Jon
Huntsman
Huntsman has quickly become “The Green Lantern” of the summer race: Deep curiosity, high expectations, nice abs, big marketing budget and a complete flop with audiences. He still has time and money won’t be a problem, but he needs to bring more to the field or risk quickly becoming irrelevant. It’s wonderful that he speaks Mandarin and has an appreciation and understanding of the Chinese culture. But so does Andrew Cherng, the CEO of Panda Express.

Comments

  • JOE W

    Why is that Ron Paul folks would take a bullet for him and Romney folks would vote Perry for 10 bucks. It all can’t be just explained away as conspiracy theorys can it. I love this country and its hard working people so trust me when I tell you it would be way easier for me to say I’m a romney supporter than a paul supporter. I really am thankful for all the Paul supporters that are in the fight. Don’t get discouraged. The Platform is changing. Look what Perry just said about the Fed.

    • Red State Eddie

      “Why is that Ron Paul folks would take a bullet for him and Romney folks would vote Perry for 10 bucks.”

      Joe, that line made me LOL. That was funny!
      But it’s also true, according to Rasmussen:
      http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/elections/election_2012/election_2012_presidential_election/gop_primary_perry_29_romney_18_bachmann_13

      Enjoy this Favorable to Very Favorable ratio-

      Perry-69>39 (F to VF)
      Bachmann-71>32
      Romney-77>21

      So while Romney enjoys support, it’s not rabid like the other ones.

      But before you start humming “Hail to the Chief”, you need to see the downside for RoPaul: His unfavorable % is 45, while the other 3 are only in the 20’s. That’s hard to bring down once it’s up that high. In fact, it’s higher than Newt (43%).

      • Dodgers

        They’ll find some way to explain that (low favorables) away. That’s what they do. It’s not Paul’s fault, it’s the medias. It’s not Paul’s fault, it’s the idiots who don’t “get it.”

    • Stephen Meehan

      I think this is where Fringe candidates, with no real chance at nomination (on both sides) have true value. They often bring issues that are largely ignored to the forefront by advocating extreme positions on them and, in the process, make some reasonable, respectable arguments.
      The green party did this for environmental issues, which now matter to mainstream Democrats (and a number of high-profile Republicans). The Free Soil party did this for slavery; it can obviously be very, very beneficial.
      Ron Paul has done this with some issues, but he has served his purpose and now he’ll hang around and we all have to listen to his groupies keep screaming about a Revolution.

      • JOE W

        Gosh Stephen could you tell us what issues Ron has done it with. Or are you struggling with even saying it? Maybe the Fed or monitary policy or abortion or states rights to name a few. Rick Perry got his but kicked around Texas by Debra Medina. It’s no wonder he came out and screamed audit the Fed.

  • Gary Russell

    Road Runner says: “Ron Paul is the personification of the old school Republicans driving out the neoconseratives.”

    Suddenly, it all makes sense to me. I suspect that Ron Paul and Barry Goldwater are really the same person!
    Is it possible that Goldwater didn’t actually die? What if he simply went into a Witness Protection Program, got a new identity, and came back as “Ron Paul”?
    He’d be 102 years old now…looks about right, huh?

    • JOE W

      Nope Barry is definatly dead. His son however endorsed Ron Paul.

      • Gary Russell

        He also endorsed Arnold Schwarzenegger for governor.

    • Troy La Mana

      If that is the case then I’m switching my vote to Paul!

  • BrianH

    Road Runner…”This is a Revolution” LOL This aint even Prince and the Revolution!

    It is always refreshing when a Paul support, like Road Runner, will finally have nerve and guts to tell us and expose us to the true mindset of Ron Paul’s groupies…..

    Awesome! Totally Awesome!

  • Alaina

    Aboslutely correct!

    • Alaina

      That was to Stephen’s point…

  • Rob

    As much as trolls like Brian love to throw around “Crazy” for Ron Paul, West is about as crazy as they come. He’d never have a chance in hell of being elected.

  • Promise Kept

    Hey Road Runner, I agree except for the Carter off-scripted part.

    Anyway, did ya’ll hear Jerry Doyle’s rant from yesterday show? Priceless!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6nCh40Ey0Sw&feature=youtu.be

  • Road Runner

    Anyway, Ron Paul is the best thing this site has in terms of interactivity.

    Which topics get the most comments?

    There is a reason for the love/hate relationship…and it isn’t because he’s unelectiable.

    It’s because he is such a threat to something very big.

    • David Kaiser, Editor

      He’s actually pretty darn unelectable.

    • BrianH

      I have tried, no really, I have tried to take the Paul supporters seriously but every time I do they say something like Paul “its because he is such a threat to something very big.”

      Road Runner. Please believe me, the reason I think Paul is unelectable is because I think he is an utter joke. There is no conspiracy. I think the guy is beyond absurd. You can disagree with my assessment, but, please, don’t attempt to attach your own motives as to why I dislike Paul. I have posted endlessly in the PD community for years why I dislike Paul as a candidate for POTUS. Him being “a threat” has never entered my mind. You see, I would have to believe he could ever be elected POTUS before I could view him as a threat.

    • Dodgers

      Yes, he’s a threat to something big. His 9% has the other candidates trembling.

  • Road Runner

    lol…look at everyone trying desperately to diminish Ron Paul.

    Further, some of you still don’t get it.

    Ron Paul is the personification of the old school Republicans driving out the neoconseratives. Why? Because the neocons have proven themselves to be fake conservatives. The neocons have been working hand-in-hand with the progressive liberal democrats for decades. This so-called war is really just another orchestrated vehicle by the global capitalist elites to oppress working classes of various nations (including the USA).

    You think this is a horse race!?! This is a revolution! First, we drive out the fake conservatives from the Republican party. Then we take back the country from these global elites.

    THAT is what this is all about. We don’t really care much about Obama. Obama=Perry=Bush=Clinton (and frankly, the second Reagan term was all ran by the global elite). They all overspent, overtaxed, coaxed illegal immigration, got into the drug business, took away our freedoms and securities, use our soldiers as mercenaries in imperialistic wars, etc. Carter is sold as the worst president ever because he was the last president off script.

    This is about our sovereignty…about stopping NAFTA, CAFTA, North American Union, illegal immigration, etc. but mostly, this is about the end of our gullibility. Never again will we fall for the tricks of the global elite.

    Never again.

    • Joe W

      Well said! Not sure how long it will take to get most on board. Most take their marching orders from Fox on the right and CNN on the left.Its a lot to swallow and your going to get tons of flack for it but I know where you are and appreciate your sticking your neck out.

    • Stephen Meehan

      This is why Ron Paul will never get elected. You can’t get people, beyond the those already completely dedicated, on board with these claims and positions. You come off sounding like a conspiracy theorist.
      Why do Paul stories get the most comments? It’s not because he’s unelectable on a national stage (which he is), or because he’s a threat to something big (which he isn’t); it’s because Ron Paul supporters are the most vocal out there — but at the end of the day as candidates drop, he won’t add votes, other candidates will. And, while 30% (I’m being generous) looks good right now, it won’t when there are only 3 candidates left and it really won’t when there are only two and no more room for undecideds. He’ll still have 30% screaming about Revolution while the other guy (or girl) runs away with 70%.

      • BrianH

        THANK YOU, Stephen!!! I love you, man.

        You have articulated exactly the point I have obviously failed to get across in my numerous attempts.

        Paul IS NOT A LEGIT CONTENDER because he has maxed out his support! There is nobody else to pull voters from. The 9/11 Truthers, New World Order, Trilateral Commission, North American Union, Bohemian Grove conspiracy theorists are ALREADY in Paul’s camp. Its not like any other candidates supporters are going to fall into the Paul camp when their horses pull up. It is simply a numbers game and Ron Paul does not have the numbers to win this nomination.

        Again. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

      • Dodgers

        Thank goodness someone said what the 91% of republicans are thinking.

    • Troy La Mana

      Actually, wars are fought to prove the worthiness of the newest weapons systems. IE: Using F-117’s in Panama during Operation Just Cause.

  • Whodat

    OOOOOPS! STOP THE PRESSES! STOP THE PRESS! Unknown and unvetted L’il Ricky Perry has just vaulted over Bachmann and Romneycare by a bunch and is at 29%. AND, “other” is in 4th place at 16%. Wow! Add those together, and 45% of GOPers do notlike the previous two leaders. Well now, after all these months, Romneycare is so easily spanked by the Grand RINO from West Texas?

    Paul Ryan – PLEASE CALL YOUR OFFICE!
    Chuck Christie – you have some visitors in the lobby!

    Hurry boys. We’re dying here!

    • Whodat

      Hot n’ Direct From That Rassy Website itsownself:

      The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of Likely Republican Primary voters, taken Monday night, finds Perry with 29% support. Romney, the former Massachusetts governor who ran unsuccessfully for the GOP presidential nomination in 2008, earns 18% of the vote, while Bachmann, the Minnesota congresswoman who won the high-profile Ames Straw Poll in Iowa on Saturday, picks up 13%.

      Texas Congressman Ron Paul, who was a close second to Bachmann on Saturday, has the support of nine percent (9%) of Likely Primary Voters, followed by Georgia businessman Herman Cain at six percent (6%) and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich with five percent (5%). Rick Santorum, former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania, and ex-Utah Governor Jon Huntsman each get one percent (1%) support, while Michigan Congressman Thaddeus McCotter comes in statistically at zero.

      Sixteen percent (16%) of primary voters remain undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.) NOW THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKIN’ ABOUT!

      • Troy La Mana

        I withdraw my previous comments about the order of the rankings. I have something to be supportive about with Perry, taking down Romney.

  • Troy La Mana

    Just for grins, If West or Rubio jumped in the race tomorrow do you think Romney would stay ranked #1 for long?

    Although that scenario is highly doubtful, it raises a question. If there was a candidate that people could really get excited about would it be good enough to be The Next Man Up? Romney, I feel, is the front runner only because nobody has challenged him on the issues so he gets a free pass in the press and during the debates.

    • BrianH

      Both are too green at this point. Great guys but not ready to be POTUS on paper. A VP slot? YEP!!!

      • Troy La Mana

        I agree with you Brian and I respect West so much more for knowing that fact. What I am talking about is, if either decided to jump in, the excitement they would bring to a campaign that seems dull and boring. Romney goes around thinking it is already in the bag so he doesn’t have to engage any of the other challengers. Should one or the other jump in I feel he will lose the front-runner status quickly and would have to actually engage the voters.

  • Troy La Mana

    Paul Ryan is someone I would take an interest in should he decide to run. I’d put him in my Top Three ahead of Bachmann and Perry.

  • Promise Kept

    Ron Paul has a new ad out today. I wonder if this one will get rated?

    http://youtu.be/pChzOaIeyxY

    • Troy La Mana

      I like it but it will be ignored like his 2nd place finish at Ames.

      • Gary Russell

        His what? Where? :)

      • Promise Kept

        But did Bachmann play fair, or fast and loose? Here’s the report, you decide:
        “Headlines on FoxNews, CNN, MSNBC, and all over the web should have been “Randy Travis Wins Ames Straw Poll Edging out Ron Paul” instead of headlines which touted Congresswoman Michele Bachmann’s victory.

        Bachmann spent upwards of $1 million, paid for over 6000 tickets, paid for Grammy Award winning, country musician Randy Travis to show up, and bussed in Randy Travis fans in order to secure 152 more votes than Congressman Ron Paul. Michele Bachmann’s camp handed out flyers, which stated that in order to see the entertainment, you had to vote for her first.”

        http://www.domasjefferson.com/news/bachmann-rigged-iowa-poll-by-buying-at-least-4000-votes

        Besides all that, the content was true when the commercial was produced before the straw poll was taken, only more so now that we know this much more about her methods, eh?

        • BrianH

          Exactly. Which is why the whole straw poll thing is a bit silly and informs us of nothing.

          Hell. Lady GaGa would have won the thing had she entered.

          • Promise Kept

            Brian, I know that you’ve said before that you don’t understand the value of straw polls, but it’s one thing to plead ignorance, and a whole other thing to promote it as the standard everyone must somehow respect.
            We would not have know what Michelle Bachmann was capable and willing to do to win that poll if Ron Paul’s Iowan supporters hadn’t positioned him to win it. Now we all know better the political climate in Iowa and the rest of the country a bit better, because there are so few events like this where the candidates have the opportunity to actually spend time among the people they hope will trust their vote, and gives honest folks a chance to assess them much as they would their neighbor.
            It also gave Iowans, and the rest of us, a better working understanding of the power that too many media moguls and top-down party “leadership” folks still think they have. Oops!
            RS Eddie called you, not a troll, but “a KOOK”, and David backed away from dialog with you out of apparent frustration, but he would have probably reasoned more if you had been reasonable. I’ll leave my assessment to the jury of my peers here; which of us is running on emotions and who is offering substance. Maybe neither of us will be acquitted, but I trust that I’ve offered the better defense from what I’ve read of others so far.

            • Alaina

              I’m not sure I get your point… these straw polls test a candidate’s ability to mobilize their supporters, which Paul does very well. However, he got beat by Bachmann fair and square. Did she bring out celebrities? Sure. Is that uncommon? Aboslutely not. Could Paul (or any other candidate) have done the same thing? Of course.

              I don’t like Bachmann anymore than you do, but he was beat, as were the other 8 or so candidates that were on the ballot. That’s all there is to it.

            • BrianH

              Promise. I encourage you to bring in more of Paul’s supporters, like Road Runner, into this forum. Believe me. The more you people post the clearer it becomes to everyone just how laughable you are.

              Paul would actually be a stronger candidate if not for his supporters.

              Viva , la Revolucion!!!!!!!!!!

            • BrianH

              Honestly. It disturbs that so many intelligent level headed contributors to the PD forum are willing to even engage the Paul supporters in legitimate political analysis or are willing to just not engage you at all.

              I respect and understand their frustrations, but, its time to lay this crap to rest. When I supported Pawlenty I gave my reasons. I tried to explain why he would be a good candidate. I tried to explain why I thought he would be a strong general election candidate. But, I never adopted conspiracies for why his campaign was a failure. I didn’t use every blog topic to drink the T-Paw Kool-aid.

              The Paul people have now monopolized this blog like they do every other blog. I’ll admit it. I apparently I am the only one KOOKY enough to continue to try to call you people out for your absurdities. Others in this blog, obviously smarter than I, have long since stopped engaging you people. I respect them for that.

  • Liz

    Ron Paul got downright crazy at that debate. I think he knows he’s runing out of election cycles. Rick Perry is racing to the top. I find him interesting, the veneer is All-American but the mish-mash of bizarre policy and the fact he’s an Al Gore supporter at heart is unnerving to say the least. Bachmann is beautiful but high stress and inexperienced in ways I think are critical this cycle. Gingrich is a great talker, but looks sloppy and is a bit arrogant. It’s still Romney.

    • BrianH

      People forget that when Al Gore ran in 1988 we was not the LOON he has become over the last decade. Gore in the 1980’s was a southern conservative Democrat.

      • Troy La Mana

        The operative word here is “Democrat”. Nuff said.

  • Jerry Fulton

    I’m not crazy about any of the horses in the race right now. I could and would wholeheartedly support Paul Ryan. I’m telling you people as a Texan, Rick Perry will lose the whole thing because he lets his mouth overload him. He’s stupid! Karl Rove will kill the Perry candidacy very soon. Mark my word.

    • Gary Russell

      Gimme some examples…

      • Gary Russell

        Of his “mouth overloads” and his stupidity.
        Especially any that are greater than those of Romney, Bachmann (who I like, but seems to have a lot of “mouth overload” issues), or our beloved Obama.

        • Alaina

          Gary – Check out Drudge… It was all over the headlines yesterday. When he said “mouth overloads”, I believe his was referring to Perry’s cursing… Not gaffe that you hear from Bachmann or Biden. Perry has one of the dirtiest mouths on the planet.

          • Gary Russell

            Alaina, I read that, but it isn’t talking about cursing (cussin’)…it is talking about his comments concerning the Fed.
            I don’t see a problem with his comments about the Fed.
            I found it humorous that this quote was included:

            “When you say those things in the Lone Star State (Texas), you look colorful. When you say these things on a national stage … it’s going to come back and get you,” said Ford O’Connell, an advisor on Republican John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign.

            “You’ve got to be more like James Bond and less like Rambo,” he said.

            If being more like James Bond is what got McCain defeated in a landslide, and being more like Rambo is what people accused Reagan of being, I’ll take Rambo any day.

        • Gary Russell

          Love this response from Perry:

          “Yesterday, the President said I needed to watch what I say. I just want to respond back, if I may. Mr. President, actions speak louder than words. My actions as Governor are helping create jobs in this country. The President’s actions are killing jobs,” GOP presidential candidate Rick Perry said at a breakfast on Wednesday morning.

      • jerry fulton (rjlf)

        Gary… It is not so much what Perry says than how he says it. His mannerisms and animation when speaking makes it obvious that this man is not the sharpest knife in the drawer. It is obvious that his speeches are well prepared by his keepers. He is just like a puppet. He is smirky and arrogant. Had he had just one major opponent in 2006, he would not be governor today. He was elected with only 39% of the vote, and that was because he had three major opponents in the general election who split the rest of the vote. Kay Bailey Hutchison was too moderate to beat him in 2010, but I am convinced that an ultra-conservative could beat Perry hands down in a two person race. Teachers hate Perry. Those who work in our foster care system don’t like him. College presidents wish he would go away. He was even stupid enough to sign an executive order requiring girls to receive a vacination for STDs. As it turns out, the manufacturer of the vacination has Perry is there hip pocket. Our governor is as crooked as they come. And yes, Alaina, he does have one of the dirtiest mouths on the planet. Yet, he is such a fine Christian. Yeah. Give me a break!

        • Gary Russell

          Jerry,
          I still can’t find anything anywhere that discusses Perry having a filthy mouth. I’m not disagreeing with y’all, I’m just trying to find some confirmation.
          If it is as bad as y’all say, I would be concerned about that.

          • Jerry Fulton

            Gary… In a search engine, enter “Adios Mofo Rick Perry.” you can hear him for yourself.

            Another thing about Perry is that while the governor’s mansion is being renovated he is living in a $10,000 per month mansion at taxpayers’ expense. When his opponents brought it up in the last election, he just smirked and said, “if that’s the best you got bring it on.” He is living in the lap of luxury while our educational system is having to make major budget cuts.

            Don’t get too excited about Gov. Good Hair. Once the country gets to know him like we Texans know him, he will quickly decline in the polls. He’s no good!

            • Gary Russell

              Thanks, Jerry.
              Watched the vid.
              Don’t get me wrong, I don’t go around calling folks “mofo” myself…but seriously, is this it? I was afraid that there would be multiple examples of him cussin’ like a sailor.
              This was a) once; b) 6 years ago; c) an “aside”, supposedly off-mike.
              None of those is an excuse to say it, but they make it fairly small potatos (or potatoes, Mr. Quayle)in my book.
              Plus, he apologized the next day!
              Compare that to Biden’s “big f—-in’ deal” or even Cheney’s “major league a–hole” slips, and it pales in comparison.
              I am actually going to be quite relieved if this is the worst that he has said!

              • Jerry Fulton

                Oh course this is not it Gary. You asked for an example. Perry uses vile language on a regular basis. Alaina backs me up on this. And you might not think so but I believe calling someone (microphone on or off) what Perry called the reporter is as bad as it gets. As for Biden and Cheney using similar language…shame on them too, but then Biden or Cheney are not running for president. Furthermore, if either of them ran I wouldn’t vote for them either. Perry is lying about his Christianity, his record as governor, Texas educational system and job growth in Texas. He is in the hip pockets of lobbyists, and he has used the office of governor for his own selfish gain. Perry has held elective office most of his life, yet he is a multimillionaire today. Where did that money come from? Follow your nose. If you like Gov. Good Hair that’s your right, just remember I tried to tell you.

  • Dodgers

    Ryan? Is everyone out of their mind? He’s got zero experience outside of writing a few bills. Granted, people say he’s smart, but republicans took aim at Obama for his lack of experience, how can we nominate someone like this?

    Bachmann? Same story, but worse.

    Cain? Same.

    Let’s at least narrow it to names with experience and a few battle scars. Romney, Perry, Paul, Huntsman, Newt. We can argue among those four.

    • Dodgers

      Five, I went back and added Huntsman, at least he has a resume befitting a presidential candidate.

    • Alaina

      I can get onboard with Bachmann not having any experience.
      Ryan, yeah… but I’ll defend him because somewhere along the way, he learned a heck of a lot about Finance and has a better command of it than just about anyone else on the Hill. Plus, the guy has the guts to be the first to create a DETAILED plan and put it out there for all to scrutinize.
      Cain… absolutely can’t agree. He may not have political experience, but the guy has a heck of a lot more executive experience than any one of the other candidates.

    • BrianH

      Not a bad point, Dodgers. There is no question that being governor is a great stepping stone for POTUS.

      However, in that case of Paul Ryan, he has been more of an informed leader as much as anyone. Intelligence, articulation, and guts is what he has. I think toe to toe with Obama Ryan would clean up the floor with Obama’s stammering style.

      I agree with you overall, but in the case of Paul Ryan I will take my chances.

    • JE

      Romney, Perry, Paul, Huntsman and Newt?
      I agree with the point on the lack of experience but i reiterate my previous point that this is Perry vs. Romney unless something drastic happens. I like paul but he is too old and poorly presents. No one knows huntsman nationally and he has nothing to get traction…and he was an obama appointed ambassador. Newt is known nationally so i really dont see his numbers getting much better.
      Paul Ryan has a great future…but too yound and inexperienced this round. In a debate vs Obama ron paul would look like the cryptkeeper (much like mccain did) and paul ryan would look like mikey from the life cereal commercials.

  • Joe

    I knew i could get you to say it.

  • Troy La Mana

    I’d move Paul and Cain up a spot and move Perry below them.

    Once the electorate realizes that Perry is nothing but a RINO, who used to be a Democrat in ’84 and worked on Al Gore campaign in ’88, they will drop him like a overfilled diaper.

    • David Kaiser, Editor

      Troy, you’ve been here a while, try to keep up with how we do things.

      The Rankings are a current snapshot, meaning its how we see things here and now. You may or may not be right in terms of how the voters will see Rick Perry, but right now, based on the polls, the media, and the overall picture, that’s where he belongs.

      Time will tell where he actually finishes.

      • Troy La Mana

        I know that but I think that being less then a week on the campaign trail garners a ranking that high. The MSM is talking about him only because he is new to the race. Let’s see where he winds up in a couple of weeks.

    • Red State Eddie

      Troy – I had a mullet in 1988 – yet nobody is condemning me today for that fashion disaster of 23 years ago. There is such a thing as growth, change, and maturation. It’s not like Perry went from being a Repub to a Dimocrat for 20 years, then flip-flopped a few years ago. I wouldn’t go skating on that thin ice anytime soon.

      • BrianH
        • Red State Eddie

          Business on top, party in the back. There ya go.

          But in all honesty, mine looked more like Macguyver’s. http://www.randomlinkage.com/?p=378

          BTW, the ladies loved it…

      • Alaina

        I’ll go skating on that ice… Perry may call himself a Conservative, but he governs like a moderate at best. He can call himself whatever he wants, but actions are what matter and the man is no Conservative. And I truly believe he is a crook.

        • Red State Eddie

          You can certainly bring in more relevant and recent stuff that matters. I just thought that castigating him for things he did in 1988 was a little extreme and weak.

          • Gary Russell

            I agree, RSE.
            I still say it is comparable to Reagan’s early days as a Democrat.
            I’d say that turned out pretty well for the GOP (and America),

          • Troy La Mana

            It’s just the tip of the iceberg with Perry.

            It may have been a long time ago but, c’mon man, Al Gore????

            I’ll listen to the Texans on this board over any pundits or Establishment types.

            I haven’t changed, I’ve been a Republican my entire voting life. Perry may not be as bad as Romney but he isn’t even in my top 5.

          • Alaina

            It might be extreme and weak had Perry spent the last 20+ years acting like a Conservative rather than just calling himself that, but the fact of the matter is that he did not and his affinity toward Democratic policies often shows.

    • Jacosta

      Troy…get out of the past – people DO change, convert, learn, and accept new/other ideas! Nobody will ever take you serious, like myself, if this is your only rhetoric – that “once a…, always a…”!

      • Alaina

        If Perry had changed, his past wouldn’t matter, but he hasn’t.

  • Alaina

    I’m all for Paul Ryan! I could get excited about this election cycle if he chose to run.

    On a separate note, what’s with “The Green Lantern” bash? Ryan Reynolds for 2 hours as a super hero… you just can’t go wrong with that!

  • BrianH

    Without a doubt, if Ryan gets in I will be wagering heavy on that horse. Besides, my endorsement would elevate his campaign and put him over the top. We all see how well my endorsement worked out for T-Paw.

    Paul Ryan is a serious man and a man of serious substance. He has led the charge for fiscal responsibility and had the nerve to put it on paper. Nobody in the current field, or possibly in the nation, can articulate the message Paul Ryan has led on better than Paul Ryan. If fact, I think he almost has a responsibility to run.

    Ryan has said in the past that his efforts are needed in Congress. I didn’t understand it then I and surly don’t now. He is the de facto leader of the Republican agenda and should therefor be the de facto leader of the Republican Party.

    Run Paul Run!!! Run Paul Run!!!

    …no! damn it! Not you Ron Paul! The other Paul! The smart one!

    • Red State Eddie

      RE: Your prognosticating. In that case, Brian-forget Paul (Ryan) & go for (Ron) Paul – please!! You could be the best thing going for ending Ron Paul’s quest!

      • BrianH

        I am the kiss of death for any campaign, my friend! Take my donations at your own risk.

        Win Ron Paul Win! Win Ron Paul Win!

        • Joe

          Yes, My work is done here boys Brian H has converted. We can all relax now.

        • Promise Kept

          You may have that effect candidates who agree with you, Brian, but I don’t think you could plant one on the Paul campaign in a way that anyone would believe,…yet.

  • BrianH

    Nice job on he rankings,

  • Chester

    I like the rankings but would put Perry ahead of Bachmann. It is Perry who is shrinking Romney’s lead not Bachmann. He is making inroads in Iowa, and does not have to win Iowa to remain viable (because he can easily get SC). Bachmann NEEDS to win Iowa or its game over. Not so, for Romneybot and Perry.

  • Red State Eddie

    NEWSFLASH: Paul Ryan is considering a run. If he was to say yes for sure, he’s my #1 guy right at the top. That would throw the whole derby into a melee. I’d love it!

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/ryan-president_590273.html

    • JE

      Not a chance…at his announcement the MSM would show him throwing grandma off the cliff and then they would show pictures of ron paul with his name by them and say it was an accident…you know…easy to get ron paul and paul ryan confused. lol.
      Pick perry or romney, hold your nose and hope they beat obama.

      • Red State Eddie

        See, I think Paul Ryan is the kind of candidate the Ron Paul people could endorse (while not activating their gag reflexes) if they could not have Ron Paul.

        OK Paulites, let’s all sing it now: “If you can’t be…with the one you love, honey, love the one you’re with…love the one you’re with. Doo-doo-doo-doo-doo-doo-doo-doo..”

        I could be wrong, but my hunch is that he’d be the right messenger for the message that RP’s been saying…without the crazy uncle ad-libs that put a buzzkill on his prospects.

        • Whodat

          Sure is good to see you again, RSE! How ya been? Welcome home. Missed you and old Jacosta, too

          • Red State Eddie

            Right back at ya’, you old salty sea dog!

          • Jacosta

            Whodat…thanks for the bro-love dude! High-five!

        • JOE W

          I just figured it out. You know who you guys remind me of? The Seagulls in Finding Nemo. Kinda all flocked together going Mine,mine,mine,mine. Brack The Matrix!

          • Dodgers

            Typical, isn’t it? The unreported fact about Paul supporters is that they are incredibly self-righteous and condescending. Their snobbish notion of being more pure and more dedicated is sickening to many mainstream republicans I know. The constant whining about not getting enough media? Enough.

            Paul’s greatest hurdle to legitimacy isn’t Paul, it’s Paul’s supporters.

            • BrianH

              I have never been a Dodger fan, until now!

          • David Kaiser, Editor

            Settle down Joe!

          • Red State Eddie

            Surely you ARE talking about Ron Paul supporters, right JoeW? Mine-mine-mine sounds an aweful lot like Ron-Ron-Ron.

          • Joe W

            How is that not funny. For the love of Pete ( notice I didn’t say God for fear of alarming you atheist) I was just making a little Joke and the ole sesative meter shot through the roof. I didn’t even say anything about Ron Paul. LOL I do apologies to anyone who likened themselve to a Seagull on Finding Nemo. I love Mitt Romneybot he is the best man. There ias that better?

            • BrianH

              Actually, Joe. I thought your Nemo comment was a funny line.

        • BrianH

          Quite frankly, RSE, you give them way too much credit. They too much enjoy being “victims” and “purists”. They too much enjoy being on the outskirts of the political mainstream and they love disrupting the process. They will not support Paul Ryan. They will try to take credit for Paul Ryan and they will spend each endless moment trying to convince the world that Paul Ryan is a RINO and not a conservative.

          The media needs to STOP playing their game!! Because they are foolish enough to believe Ron Paul is capable of being President does not mean the media and skilled political pundits have an obligation to legitimize their claim.

          Frankly. Paul being at #4 in the rankings is also a joke, and a polite nod to his supporters. The truth is that there is NOT one horse in this filed who not beat Ron Paul by 25 points if it ever became a two horse field. Not one. To pretend otherwise to simply appease their tantrums and whining is absurd.

          • David Kaiser, Editor

            It seems we come full circle in our agree/disagree relationship Brian.

            I understand that you, personally, are not a fan of Ron Paul and his supporters. I get you don’t believe he’s remotely relevant.

            But take a step back for a minute and look what he’s accomplished. He’s got a solid base of followers (as much as you like or dislike them), he’s a proven fundraiser, he’s built a modicum of name recognition and he came within a couple hundred votes of winning the Ames poll.

            No “fringe” candidate does this.

            I’m not saying he’s the favorite to win the nomination, but to say he has zero chance and that he’s a fringe candidate is just stubborn at this point.

            I get that you aren’t a fan, but really, separate the personal dislike from the situation. He may not win, but he is certainly involved in the discussion and assuming he doesn’t win the nomination, the winner will have it in their best interest to at least sit down with him.

            • BrianH

              I actually agree with you on most respects here.

              But, I am not critiquing Paul’s candidacy based on emotions. What I am saying is that I agree that it is absolutely AMAZING what Paul has done. A man who has said absurd things and associated himself with absurd people has been able to create a cultish following that is willing to donate their money and their time to elevating their hero to legitimate status. But, it has not worked, and here is why.

              If Ron Paul had 20% of the GOP i his back pocket he would still have 80% of them who likely never vite for him. There is not one horse in this field that most likely voters would not vote for over Ron Paul. Yes, the opposition support is spread out to other candidates because their are so many other options and those options have not been able to create their cultish following. But, I believe, as I have said before, that Ron Paul has what he has and at this point is not going to pull voters from the other horses. I bet not 5 T-Paw supporters have moved to the Ron Paul camp. If Newt bails there will not be 5 of his supporters who will go from Newt to Paul. My argument, based on substance and not emotion, is that I believe Paul has what he has and will not strengthen his position. As horses spit the bit their supporters will go elsewhere except toward Paul. If they cared about the issues Paul cares about they would already be in his camp.

            • BrianH

              David. Just a quick thought. If Paul were in a match race with ANY other horse in the field which horse in this filed does Ron Paul beat?

              I would put Thaddeus McCotter over Ron Paul in a match race.

              • BrianH

                Paul is able to show well at this point because he has a solid base in a crowded watered down field. As the filed diminishes it will not help Paul but will help other horses.

                Just my analysis.

              • David Kaiser, Editor

                We’ll agree to disagree here Brian. I just don’t think you are being objective, but to preclude another one of our drop down, drag out kerfluffles, I’ll just bow out!

              • BrianH

                Kaiser. I understand your logic and respect what you have said. You and I are simply interpreting his support differently.

              • Promise Kept

                Brian, I’ll do my best to keep up with your substance-over-emotion ratio, but since you’ve set the bar as high as you have, well, please be patient with my feeble attempt.

                Since this thread is about the Power Rankings snap shot, and since the Iowa Straw Poll is a very recent, tangible measure of physical folks casting ballots, (however purchased and plied they might have been by the hometown girl); let’s crunch a few unemotional numbers and test your theory out a little.

                Since T-Paw dropped out, I wondered how many of the decided votes for lesser scoring candidates would it take to beat Ron Paul. Check it out: Santorum, + Cain, + Perry, + Romney, and + Gingrich totals= 4717 That’s all five below T-Paw COMBINED! Oh, we even recognize a few of those names above Paul’s here at the PD. Yeah, I know Romney and Perry didn’t “campaign” there, but it is fair to point this out with that disclaimer, eh?
                I know that each offers different perspectives of the candidates, obviously, but isn’t it a fair question to ask, Brian; do you really believe the increase in Ron Paul’s numbers in the last Iowa Straw Poll and this one, is because a roving band of Ron Paul gypsies migrated to Iowa and are now in migration to the next straw poll event?

              • BrianH

                “do you really believe the increase in Ron Paul’s numbers in the last Iowa Straw Poll and this one, is because a roving band of Ron Paul gypsies migrated to Iowa and are now in migration to the next straw poll event?”

                Yes.

                First of al the straw poll is a complete joke, not just for Paw but for anybody. The entire process is designed to see who can rig and entice people who just got off the marry-go-round to sit in their tent and cast a vote.

    • JE

      RSE,
      Welcome back, by the way. But as a fan of Paul Ryan, how well do you know his stances? He claims fiscal conservancy but he voted for TARP. Where does he stand on anything else? Yes, i know his roadmap but he has changed it a couple of times. Any other reason to support him? Just asking because at this point i would love to find someone i could SUPPORT…you know with a campaign of something specific besides ‘vote for me cause i’m not barack obama’

      • Red State Eddie

        JE – Good to see you’re still kicking the keyboard around as well. I will be the first to admit I have a man-crush on Paul Ryan, not because I am just a few years older (and thus he would be technically a Gen-Xer gunning for the White House), but because he is a passionate, articulated wonk. First the passion: when Obama was in his hey day, spouting all his meaninless drivel (and everyone lapping it up), Ryan was the one who led the countercharge against him when he held that “grand” discussion on health care and budgeting back in 2009. Sources say Ryan spanked him with reality-based #’s and ideas, but the Big-O had everyone so mesmerized, nobody caught on to how bad it was. On top of that, he’s been on places like Morning Joe, holding his own very well against the usual suspects – very articulate & clear. He is also gifted fiscally with a brain that can figure out how (using real numbers, not catchy slogans) to erase the deficit & debt and get us on track to balance the budget within 10 years. Here’s his plan: http://www.roadmap.republicans.budget.house.gov/
        Nobody in DC has come up with a plan with actual #’s even close to what he designed to answer the issues. He’s from Wisconsin, a plain speaking regular guy who loves public policy. I feel he’s more real than any of the other contestants out there right now. He’s half Ron Paul’s age, he’s as # savvy as Michelle Bachmann, he’s polite (unlike Perry), and can hold his own against Romney’s business chops. That’s just off the top of my head with little research. But I would be a big cheerleader if he decides to jump in. I believe in him, which is a hard thing to say these days.

        • JE

          Any concerns about his support of TARP which contributed to our current deficit mess? Any concerns about the numerous reviews that show his roadmap wont clear up the mess? I have looked at the guy and i am intrigued but he has alot of blanks that need to be filled in and he has no executive experience to show he can implement his great ideas. Not than i am against him…again, i would love to find someone in the field to support that has a chance at the nom.

  • Alaina

    I would have put Perry above Bachmann… I just don’t see her winning the nomination. Not that I’m happy about this, but Rasmussen just announced their post-Perry entry poll and he’s 11% above Romney. Again… not happy… I could live a happy life if I never had to hear from the top 4 again. A girl can dream…

    • rjlf

      I’m with you Alaina! I don’t think Bachmann is going to get past Iowa. She is a populist and populists don’t win elections. As a Texan, I hope the GOP will see the real Rick Perry for the foul-mouth, lying, goofball he really is before it’s too late. His little stunt in Houston didn’t impress me. You can’t cuss like the devil and be a devoted Christian at the same time. Furthermore, he might have led the way for McDonald’s to hire a bigger crew, but the real jobs are just not here. Also, we can’t remember the $11 to $18 billion shortfall that caused the legislature to have to cut education to balance the budget. I think he is running for president because his true colors are showing and he knows that a true conservative will soon boot him out of the governor’s office — good hair and all! KBH was just not conservative enough or we’d be calling her Governor today.

    • JE

      Agreed. If they werent in Iowa, Bachman would not be even a consideration. Unless something drastic happens this is Perry vs. Romney. Both make me cringe for different reasons, but they are the republican party as it currently exists and they both have been governors (executive experience) which is going to be a prerequisite for the nominee to raise major cash from bundlers.
      I like Ron Paul on most of his stances but no matter how good the message, you cannot win without the proper messenger in todays time.
      Below number 4…the biggest question is which horse goes to the glue factory first.
      Cain has good points but no political experience which is a major mark (see current whitehouse occupant), Gingrich is a smart guy in the professor department, not so bright in the social life department…Santorum is definitely wrong guy at the wrong time…and huntsman, to quote john stewart, came in second among mormons in the straw poll and if all his supporters were in a restaurant at once the firemarshall would be ok with that.

  • Red State Eddie

    While the #’s are sequential, the gap between them is not equal. Once you’re past #4, there’s a hugh dropoff in terms of popularity, funding, messaging, and overall momentum. I’d argue that there are significant ‘anchors’ up thru #4 that will keep them there.

    Perry has the biggest upside potential, while Bachmann’s is slightly less but still possible.

    I think we’ll only have 4 candidates at the most by Iowa (Feb ’12)

  • http://scottslant.blogspot.com/ Scott A. Robinson

    1-4 are dead on. Odds of the others making it to the homestretch are 1000:1. Even so, I like Newt #5, based on his debate performance, Cain #6 because he isn’t as bad as the two below him. Santorum and Huntsman should just take their bat and their ball and go home.

    • http://www.politicalderby.com/ Jason Wright, Editor

      It’s very, very close. But I disagree about Newt being at #5 instead of Cain. Cain’s averages are slightly higher, even though his name ID is lower. Cain isn’t going to win the nomination, but he has a lot of room to grow.

      Newt’s name ID is almost as high as Lady Gaga’s and he’s in single digits. Oh, and the baggage, can’t forget the baggage.

  • Promise Kept

    I’m pleased to see that you’ve taken, a clearer, “snap shot of where the horses are on the track”, that actually has all named candidates this time.

    It did look just a bit Photoshopped having two non-committed horses ahead of Ron Paul last time. And, oh yeah, how about that Minnesota Gov.,…Tim…something, something? You remember him better than me, I’m sure.

    Speaking of memory, have you seen John Stewart’s hilarious take about this glaring inconsistency in the media coverage of the aftermath in Ames? It’s poor video quality, but going viral anyway!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QO93P6uz9t8

    • http://scottslant.blogspot.com/ Scott A. Robinson

      There is a clean version of your video on the Daily Show website.

      • Promise Kept

        Thanks for the tip, Scott. I hadn’t checked there. I’ll only comment on Jason’s “angry old man” casting of Dr. Paul to say that we are all trying to come to terms with the throws of a global economic crisis such as the world has NEVER dealt with before. If you had you finger on the pulse of this critical-care patient, and you didn’t rally your skills and passions to try and save that life, you wouldn’t be a good doctor, would you?

        • http://www.politicalderby.com/ Jason Wright, Editor

          PK, that’s a perception that you simply can’t argue. He turns 76 in a few days and would be 77 on election day. He speaks like an angry old man who’s fed up.

          I’m certainly not arguing that he has no reason to be angry, some find that passion and “mad as hell” spirit very appealing. I’m simply saying that the perception is what it is.

          • http://www.politicalderby.com/ Jason Wright, Editor

            PS to PK: We did decide to try this model, which essentially eliminates only Palin at this point. But there’s no doubt she’d be ahead of Paul if she were official. (it’s highly doubtful she runs, imo)

          • Promise Kept

            I wasn’t arguing against your perception, because there are portions of his speeches were anger is part of a healthy interaction that connects well with an informed audience. It is also telling when anger is the only thing some folks choose to hear in their favorite soundbites, because the rest of us recognize that for the most part, Paul is more of an optimistic realist who happens to get, “mad as hell”, only as much as seems appropriate to an expanding number of folks.
            Whether it’s to a college auditorium full of future leadership, or grilling Ben Bernanke, I have only heard him offering a clear thinking, passionate example of the kind of light and heat that has worked well in both settings, imho.

  • Whodat

    Yep. Yah nailed it pretty close. I might put Santorum ahead of Newtie, but then I would put some folks showing rigor mortis ahead of Newtie. And, Cain? Maybe if we remember how far it is from #3 to #5, it seems O.K. Let’s go ahead and give the GONG to Huntsman; “Outah hear, yah liberal doo-fuss!”

    • http://www.politicalderby.com/ Jason Wright, Editor

      No doubt about it. There’s the top three, Ron Paul in the middle, and a gaggle of goop. Rick could arguably be ahead of Cain, but national averages have Cain at almost 6% and Rick at 2%.