Is there time for one more surge before the Iowa caucus? The roller coaster ride that has been the GOP primary may see one last turn. Rick Santorum has seen his support triple almost overnight. Santorum has now passed Gingrich in the most recent Rasmussen Reports Iowa poll with 16% of the total vote. Romney and Paul still lead the pack with 23% each. With Gingrich’s nose dive, the anti-Romney vote is going in yet another direction. What is so interesting to me about these candidate surges is that they seem to come out of nowhere. Nothing prompted a rise in Santorum’s numbers except maybe he was just next in line to receive a bump. It is as if one man in a back room somewhere is controlling the entire primary and after he gets bored with one candidate in the spotlight, he switches to another one.

Even though every time I watch Santorum speak he looks like he has just googled his name for the very first time, I will credit the man for his resiliency when no one took him seriously. Is he a political force in the field now? Probably not. Romney or Paul will most likely win Iowa but Santorum’s social issues message seems to have finally resonated with Evangelical Iowans as they shift from Bachmann and Perry to him. He has been trying his best to unite the conservative Tea Party vote because he understands that split up, the Tea Party will not get a say in this election cycle. The spike in the polls couldn’t have come at a better time with only four days left until Iowans proceed with their first in the nation caucus. Santorum has placed all his eggs in Iowa so a top three finish may just keep him in the race. He has recently even scrambled to buy ad time in New Hampshire, a sign that Santorum is hoping to ride this upswing past Iowa.

Each hot campaign is matched with a collapsing one and Gingrich couldn’t be falling any harder. Gingrich has had to play defense on a number of controversies rather than being able to focus on his ideas oriented message, if he even has one anymore. What I mean by that statement is that Newt has done nothing the past few weeks but complain about negative ads aired against him. His lack of discipline has finally caught up to him, to no surprise to those who have worked with the former Speaker. His campaign is as organized as my little brother’s bedroom. When you take a peak into it, you won’t like what you see and Newt’s embarrassment in Virginia will not only cost him in the Commonwealth. Gingrich has been compared to and called many things but personally, I think that Gingrich is like a mystery jelly bean: you don’t know what your going to get that day but usually it’s white, sour, and often gives you a headache… not to mention those jelly beans are targeted for five year olds, perfect for Newt.

When your ego makes the Donald look like a decent person, your’e in trouble. When you can’t find 10,000 people to sign your petition in your own current home state, it’s not a good sign. When Glenn Beck singles you out as the only candidate he couldn’t vote for, something’s wrong. Newt is sinking faster than Chris Christie in the middle of the ocean and this time he won’t be able to resurrect his campaign. Santorum’s surge may be a last ditch effort by the right to find someone who can stop Romney. It may be futile, however. Romney has finally surpassed his 25% national poll ceiling, his chances for the nomination are listed at 75% on Intrade and most importantly, he regained the top spot in the Political Derby Power Rankings for the new year. On January 3rd we will get a more accurate picture of each candidates’ campaign strength.

 

Comments