My wish for my weekend at CPAC was for Romney, Newt or Santorum to win me over. Yes, I know, that was a tall order and it didn’t happen, but one of them did make it a little easier to vote for him.

Santorum was the first of the three today. He started by parading his family out onto the stage. You would think that would make him appear to be a strong family man, but it was awkward and came across as insincere. Not to mention the looks on his kids faces… The girls looked like mini-stepford wives smiling, nodding and clapping on cue. The boys just looked bored and uncomfortable. As for his speech, it wasn’t anything that I haven’t heard from him during the debates or in interviews… He’s the true Conservative, Romney is a Massachusetts moderate, he supported this and that, yadda yadda yadda. He may have had 2 standing ovations, but I didn’t feel the excitement in the room the way I did during other speeches in the last two days. Overall, I give him a C.

PD regulars know that I am not, nor have I ever been a Romney fan. Since 2007, I have said that I feel like he took a list of Conservative values, wrote a couple of speeches about each one and then regurgitated them over and over. The last 2 years at CPAC, he gave content free, red meat rich speeches (i.e. he bashed Obama instead of telling us what he believes in). This year, Romney needed to come to CPAC and lay out what he would do as President and convince us that he would actually follow through. He did just that. For the first time ever, I believed him. Yeah, I know… I’m as shocked as you are, but he seemed to have true conviction about his plans if he were to become President. Had he given more speeches like that over the last 4 years, he would be our nominee right now. Romney had 4 – 5 standing ovations and because he convinced me he believed what he said, I’ll give him an A. Full disclosure, he’d probably get an A+ if I hadn’t spent the last 5 years disliking him.

Gingrich was not true to form today, at least not his entrance. Typically, he enters the room to “Eye of the Tiger”, walks down a staircase, if one is available, and through the crowd shaking hands and kissing babies… Well, he would if any were in the audience. Today, some guy introduced Callista, Callista talked about how bad his singing and golf game are and then he walked on stage. It was quite dissappointing for those who strategically sat along the aisles where they thought he would walk. Professor Newt spoke for the first five minutes and gave us a history lesson about elections. Then super duper Conservative Newt showed up. He made promise after promise about what he would do has President and gave a great speech, most of which was related to what he would do “before Obama lands in Chicago”. The audience ate it up, but it was a little reminiscent of Obama’s State of the Union address in that it was a laundry list of empty promises, most of which probably won’t ever see the light of day. I give Newt a solid B, but only because he received the most standing ovations of the three.

I usually try to leave my bias out of my posts, but I don’t have it in me to do it this time… I don’t like any of them. However, I was glad to see that Romney laid out a clear, measurable plan for the first time and appeared sincere. I recommend that you find their speeches online, watch them for yourself and make your own decision.

I think Andrew Beitbart said it best today (watch his speech – it’s the best of the weekend). I’m slightly paraphrasing here, but he said, “There are two paths in this election: America and Occupy. If you don’t support our nominee whole heatedly, shame on you. You picked the wrong side.”