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

Newt
Gingrich

Thus far, debates are the biggest story of this primary cycle. They turned Rick Perry from a front runner to a bumbling fool and lifted Newt from has-been to front runner. An interesting exercise in physics would be comparing the size of Newt's head from the first debate to the most recent. If he wins the nomination, he should give John King any job in the administration he wants.

Mitt
Romney

Not releasing his tax returns before South Carolina - or simply having a better answer to the question - may have been the biggest blunder since Gerry Ford declared "There is no Soviet domination in Eastern Europe, and there will never be under a Ford administration.” Everyone outside of the Gingrich family still believe that Romney remains better positioned for a long 50-state campaign, but the inevitability label is shredded.

Rick
Santorum

Leading up to South Carolina, Santorum was the Tim Tebow of the GOP race. He exceeded expectations in his first contest, got evangelicals excited about his chances, and was promptly crushed by a pretty boy from New England. He did beat Ron Paul in South Carolina and leads him in Florida, but Paul undoubtedly has a better plan and structure to win delegates moving forward. If he believes the nominee should be an ABR, is it time to step aside and endorse Newt?

Ron
Paul

His campaign to win the nomination is effectively over. Moving on, his objective is pile up delegates and to promote his agenda at the GOP convention. Paul has been completely shortchanged in debate speaking time, though even he admitted his speaking style for said debates isn't exactly flattering. Some think he's a Kingmaker, but many Paul supporters say it's the good doctor or nothing.

Comments

  • Anonymous

    I think Newt takes Florida and then it’s on to my state.  Most say Nevada should be a lock for Mitt (possibly because of the high percentage of Mormons in and around Clark County).

    So this is how I see the next couple of months:

    Florida – Newt
    Nevada – Mitt
    Maine – Mitt
    Colorado – Mitt
    Minnesota – Newt
    Arizona – Newt
    Michigan – Mitt
    Washington – Newt

    In conclusion: We will be in a 5-5 tie going into Super Tuesday.

    • Russ

      I love making predictions when there are no consequences if I’m wrong, so here are mine:
       
      Florida – Newt
      Nevada – Mitt
      Maine – Mitt
      Colorado – Newt
      Minnesota – Mitt
      Arizona – Newt
      Michigan – Mitt
      Washington – Mitt
       
      Mitt is up 6-4 by Super Tuesday.

  • Anonymous

    I think Newt takes Florida and then it’s on to my state.  Most say Nevada should be a lock for Mitt (possibly because of the high percentage of Mormons in and around Clark County).

    So this is how I see the next couple of months:

    Florida – Newt
    Nevada – Mitt
    Maine – Mitt
    Colorado – Mitt
    Minnesota – Newt
    Arizona – Newt
    Michigan – Mitt
    Washington – Newt

    In conclusion: We will be in a 5-5 tie going into Super Tuesday.

    • Russ

      I love making predictions when there are no consequences if I’m wrong, so here are mine:
       
      Florida – Newt
      Nevada – Mitt
      Maine – Mitt
      Colorado – Newt
      Minnesota – Mitt
      Arizona – Newt
      Michigan – Mitt
      Washington – Mitt
       
      Mitt is up 6-4 by Super Tuesday.

  • Anonymous

    Do any of us believe that Newt Gingrich actually has the personality type to limit his own power as President?

  • Anonymous

    Do any of us believe that Newt Gingrich actually has the personality type to limit his own power as President?

  • TheLogicalLeft

    Here’s a question for you Jason, do you think Santorum will drop before or after the GOP Primaries. Most polls show him single digits or low double digits. Do you think it’s feasible that Newt offers him VP to drop out? It would certainly solidify Newt’s “family values”.

    • Anonymous

      A Newt and Santorum ticket would be the most laughable GOP ticket in history. Obama would be reelected in a landslide.

      • Jason Wright, Editor

        Every now and then Rob makes so much sense I want to buy him a Coke and talk politics all day long.

        Newt is major trouble at the top of the ticket under any circumstances, but picking a guy like Santorum would be the icing on the landslide cake. 

        • Steve M.

          So if Santorum is staying in simply for a chance at a VP nod, he needs Romney to win the nomination. This gives him even less incentive to drop (because presumably most of his votes go to Gingrich).
          Does Santorum make sense as a VP candidate with Romney? It’s very much in the vein of McCain-Palin and may help him move past that flip-flopping on the abortion issue.

          • Anonymous

            Santorum will not even be on anyone’s serious list of potential vp options. Santorum lived in Iowa for a year and as such exceeded expectations and won based on the caucus format. Since Iowa he finished where one would expect him to finish.

            Can you imagine the musical chairs that we would see from a President Gingrich? LOL every four months he would be choosing new Cabinet posts. Who with any competence would work under Newt’s Eratic leadership. This is a man who can’t keep his election team in tack. WOW!

  • TheLogicalLeft

    Here’s a question for you Jason, do you think Santorum will drop before or after the GOP Primaries. Most polls show him single digits or low double digits. Do you think it’s feasible that Newt offers him VP to drop out? It would certainly solidify Newt’s “family values”.

    • Anonymous

      A Newt and Santorum ticket would be the most laughable GOP ticket in history. Obama would be reelected in a landslide.

      • Jason Wright, Editor

        Every now and then Rob makes so much sense I want to buy him a Coke and talk politics all day long.

        Newt is major trouble at the top of the ticket under any circumstances, but picking a guy like Santorum would be the icing on the landslide cake. 

        • Steve M.

          So if Santorum is staying in simply for a chance at a VP nod, he needs Romney to win the nomination. This gives him even less incentive to drop (because presumably most of his votes go to Gingrich).
          Does Santorum make sense as a VP candidate with Romney? It’s very much in the vein of McCain-Palin and may help him move past that flip-flopping on the abortion issue.

          • Anonymous

            Santorum will not even be on anyone’s serious list of potential vp options. Santorum lived in Iowa for a year and as such exceeded expectations and won based on the caucus format. Since Iowa he finished where one would expect him to finish.

            Can you imagine the musical chairs that we would see from a President Gingrich? LOL every four months he would be choosing new Cabinet posts. Who with any competence would work under Newt’s Eratic leadership. This is a man who can’t keep his election team in tack. WOW!

  • Anonymous

    Good rankings once again. Not the way I would like to see events unfolding but it is what it is. I have to wonder if those who all of a sudden have fallen in love with Newt, for the second time, truely realize what an extremely flawed and and disaterous candidate he is. Almost everyone who has ever worked with Newt have come to the same conclusions about his flawed ability to lead. I have never met Gingrich or worked with him, so, the opinions of the many who have is something I consider when choosing my horse of choice. 

    When good Newt is home he is amazing, inspiring, and interesting. When bad Newt shows up he is eratic, destructive, and dangerous. The problem is we all know that it is only a matter of time before bad Newt rears his ugly head….resulting in an obvious reelction bid for Obama.

    In order to win in 2012 Republicans have to pull voters from the pool who supported Obama in 2008. I have yet to hear anyone explain to me how Newt does that….at all.

    But at least he is not Romney!!!

    • TheLogicalLeft

      You are all just sitting ducks. Honestly I’m bummed it’s not Romney, In a year were it’s the 99% to 1%, Obama would have ridden the populist wave to reelection. Newt works just as well though.

      Vote for Family Values! Obama 2012!

    • Gururussell

      “I have never met Gingrich or worked with him, so, the opinions of the many who have is something I consider when choosing my horse of choice.”

      Glad to hear that, Brian.  Consider Bill McCollum’s opinion below (from Newsmax):”Former Congressman and Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum tells Newsmax that Newt Gingrich is the best nominee Republicans can choose to run against President Obama and predicts that Gingrich not only will win the GOP nomination, but the general election in November.McCollum served in the U.S. House from 1981 to 2001, and became Attorney General of the Sunshine State in 2007, leaving the post to run unsuccessfully for governor in 2010. As Attorney General he spearheaded the efforts by several states to challenge the legality of Obamacare, a challenge that the Supreme Court will rule on in the coming months.In an exclusive interview with NewsmaxTV, McCollum explains why he is strongly backing Gingrich for the Republican nomination.“I’ve known Newt for a long time,” he says. “I served with him in Congress. I was in House Republican leadership before we took the majority in 1994 with him. I know we wouldn’t have taken that majority, we wouldn’t have had the Contract with America, we wouldn’t have had welfare reform or a balanced budget if it weren’t for Newt Gingrich.“So I’ve seen his leadership first hand, and I believe he has the leadership skills, knowledge and vision to be a very good president, and he is the most articulate about the conservative positions of any of the Republican candidates.“I think he will be the best nominee we can produce to debate President Obama, to campaign against him, to make the case and win the election in November.”

      • Anonymous

        Even a blind squierel finds a “nutter” every now and then….. 

  • Anonymous

    Good rankings once again. Not the way I would like to see events unfolding but it is what it is. I have to wonder if those who all of a sudden have fallen in love with Newt, for the second time, truely realize what an extremely flawed and and disaterous candidate he is. Almost everyone who has ever worked with Newt have come to the same conclusions about his flawed ability to lead. I have never met Gingrich or worked with him, so, the opinions of the many who have is something I consider when choosing my horse of choice. 

    When good Newt is home he is amazing, inspiring, and interesting. When bad Newt shows up he is eratic, destructive, and dangerous. The problem is we all know that it is only a matter of time before bad Newt rears his ugly head….resulting in an obvious reelction bid for Obama.

    In order to win in 2012 Republicans have to pull voters from the pool who supported Obama in 2008. I have yet to hear anyone explain to me how Newt does that….at all.

    But at least he is not Romney!!!

    • TheLogicalLeft

      You are all just sitting ducks. Honestly I’m bummed it’s not Romney, In a year were it’s the 99% to 1%, Obama would have ridden the populist wave to reelection. Newt works just as well though.

      Vote for Family Values! Obama 2012!

    • Gururussell

      “I have never met Gingrich or worked with him, so, the opinions of the many who have is something I consider when choosing my horse of choice.”

      Glad to hear that, Brian.  Consider Bill McCollum’s opinion below (from Newsmax):”Former Congressman and Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum tells Newsmax that Newt Gingrich is the best nominee Republicans can choose to run against President Obama and predicts that Gingrich not only will win the GOP nomination, but the general election in November.McCollum served in the U.S. House from 1981 to 2001, and became Attorney General of the Sunshine State in 2007, leaving the post to run unsuccessfully for governor in 2010. As Attorney General he spearheaded the efforts by several states to challenge the legality of Obamacare, a challenge that the Supreme Court will rule on in the coming months.In an exclusive interview with NewsmaxTV, McCollum explains why he is strongly backing Gingrich for the Republican nomination.“I’ve known Newt for a long time,” he says. “I served with him in Congress. I was in House Republican leadership before we took the majority in 1994 with him. I know we wouldn’t have taken that majority, we wouldn’t have had the Contract with America, we wouldn’t have had welfare reform or a balanced budget if it weren’t for Newt Gingrich.“So I’ve seen his leadership first hand, and I believe he has the leadership skills, knowledge and vision to be a very good president, and he is the most articulate about the conservative positions of any of the Republican candidates.“I think he will be the best nominee we can produce to debate President Obama, to campaign against him, to make the case and win the election in November.”

      • Anonymous

        Even a blind squierel finds a “nutter” every now and then….. 

  • dw

    Bummer… l was looking forward to the different horse pics.

  • dw

    Bummer… l was looking forward to the different horse pics.

  • Gururussell

    The Santorum/Tebow comparison was sweet.  Good job!

  • Gururussell

    The Santorum/Tebow comparison was sweet.  Good job!