Chris Wallace had some words for Gov. Romney and his campaign team: “let’s talk.” Wallace called out the Romney campaign for avoiding the media and not scheduling any one on one interviews with the former Governor of Massachusetts.

“He has not appeared on this program or any Sunday talk show since March of 2010,” Wallace said. “We invited Gov. Romney again this week, but his campaign says he’s still not ready to sit down for an interview.”

The belief is that Romney is playing it safe by avoiding interviews with the media, where many candidates trip up. I am a big Romney fan but even I can admit that I agree with Chris Wallace on this one. Romney should be out on the news waves promoting his agenda utilizing the free airtime. Cain has a very low budget campaign so he utilizes Fox News any time he can. These days, it seems like Cain has been on Fox News more than some paid contributors and even some show hosts have. These interviews are how voters get to know a candidate and determine if they think that candidate is Perry’s favorite word, authentic. Romney is not getting over the 30% hump because of this hurdle and his fear of making a mistake is costing him many opportunities to take a commanding lead. No one wants a timid leader; where there is risk, there is opportunity. Works for Capitalism, works for politics.



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The headline above is the headline of an Obama Administration press release distributed only a few minutes.

I do not care what the issue is, the attitude and actions of legislating by executive order rather than by the process established by the Constitution is wrong. The President of the United States dictating laws from his desk are the actions of just that–a dictator.

Cain fallout? Perry and the debates? Favorite Halloween candy? Likelihood you’ll end the day with a stomachache?

Today we introduce a new feature to your favorite site on politics: The Political Derby Composite Poll. This tool takes the most recent major polls and weights their results based on poll age, sample type, and margin of error. Unlike other poll compilations, this is not a simple average that one skewed poll can unduly influence, rather it is a proprietary mathematical formula that derives the percentage of voters favoring each candidate, recalculated on a daily basis as polls age.

The polls that make up the PD Composite are well-known reputable national polls who sample “likely primary voters” and “registered voters” including, but not limited to: NBC News/Wall Street Journal, Pew Research, Quinnipiac University, ABC News/Washington Post, and Rasmussen Reports.

The PD Composite will be updated in a regular post that will run at least weekly, or more often if new polling data changes results significantly. This feature will also always be available at the “Composite Poll” link at the top of the page. Going forward, the Composite Poll will also be a significant factor in determining the Power Rankings.

Now that explanations are out of the way, let’s get to the Political Derby Composite Poll standings:

Note: Click the graph to enlarge.

For simplicity’s sake, we are only showing the Composite results back to September 1, when Rick Perry was surging. From there, you can see his decline. You can also see Herman Cain’s huge increase in popularity that coincided with Perry’s late September plummet, until they converged before continuing in opposite directions. Mitt Romney has been consistent, if not seeing a slight increase in popularity, as he runs a general election campaign throughout the primary. But the trend line that may be most worth watching is that of Newt Gingrich. Newt is the only person out of the bottom of the pack since Cain that has managed to distinguish himself through the debates and pull out of a flat-line trend. We could very well see him surpassing Rick Perry before the end of the year, becoming a top three contender.

Going forward, we hope you will enjoy this additional data-driven approach to evaluating the horse race here on

Potentially damaging? Or much ado about nothing?

Rate that Ad


Filed Under Rate that Ad on Oct 28 

Corporations physically conduct the tax paying transactions, however in reality, corporations do not pay taxes, their customers do. If the tax, or regulation, for that matter, bill increases, corporations do not absorb the cost out of the goodness of their hearts, they pass the increased cost along to their customers. A simple example that has recently effected a majority of Americans is the cost of Dodd-Frank. It limits the transaction cost of using a debit card to a level below the current market rate. This is why you are seeing free checking disappear at banks or a charge being assessed to have a debit card.

In reality, corporations exist for one purpose, and one purpose alone: To make money. That is it. If a corporation were not successful in making money, any other stated purpose for its existence would be irrelevant as it would cease to exist. Now watch as the Occupy Wall Street crowd is confronted with this fact.

Politico has this sneak peek of George Will’s weekend column:

SNEAK PEEK — GEORGE WILL SLAMS MITT – Sunday’s column: “Romney, supposedly the Republican most electable next November, is a recidivist reviser of his principles who is not only becoming less electable, he might damage GOP chances of capturing the Senate: Republican successes down the ticket will depend on the energies of the tea party and other conservatives, who will be deflated by a nominee whose blurry profile in caution communicates only calculated trimming. Republicans may have found their Michael Dukakis, a technocratic Massachusetts governor who takes his bearings from ‘data’ … Has conservatism come so far, surmounting so many obstacles, to settle, at a moment of economic crisis, for THIS?”

Fish Power


Filed Under Outside the Track on Oct 27 

One of the great modern debates is just how to generate the power necessary to run this nation. The United States is literally the Saudi Arabia of coal. Chances are the power you’re using to read this post began its life as some sort of dinosaur whose life was snuffed out and whose grave was subsequently plundered by a dirty stinking filthy coal mining conglomerate. It was then hauled by a sooty diesel locomotive to a power plant were the remains of said dinosaur were subsequently pulverized and burned.

Yeah, I used to run coal trains for a living. But I digress.

Today it seems everybody wants to get on the green bandwagon. We recycle. We buy hideously expensive hybrid vehicles. We celebrate Earth Day. So maybe you’ll understand why I found this photo exposé on the demolition of a Vancouver, Washington hydro electric dam to be so surprising.

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Keep it PG please, and if it gets too intellectual, we reserve the right to mock you.

An oft-heard mantra these days from the Left is that we’ve got to reduce the disparity of income between the rich and the lower and middle classes. The “rich” simply make too much more money than the rest of us and that gap has to be reduced.

Mark Thoma, writing in the Fiscal Times, recently penned an article entitled, “Why US should spread the wealth,” that suited MSN’s philosophy closely enough to be linked from their homepage.

“We hear that raising taxes is unfair and that tax increases will harm economic growth. But there’s nothing unfair about correcting the maldistribution of income that we’ve seen in recent decades, or about making sure the burden from paying taxes is more equitable than it is now.”
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While reports are surfacing that Herman Cain has hired the Smoking Man as his national spokesman, FOX News is reporting the the organization ACORN evolved into is a driving force behind the Occupy Wall Street movement.

The former New York office for ACORN, the disbanded community activist group, is playing a key role in the self-proclaimed “leaderless” Occupy Wall Street movement, organizing “guerrilla” protest events and hiring door-to-door canvassers to collect money under the banner of various causes while spending it on protest-related activities….

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Rate that Ad


Filed Under Rate that Ad on Oct 26 

A guest submission from Rochelle Edvalson

Chuck Raasch put into words what all the pundits are thinking: Romney is the GOP’s back-up prom date. Okay, maybe, but why? In terms of electability, intelligence and ability no one disputes his credentials. He’s not exciting, but he is reliable. And he doesn’t make many mistakes, so he’s annoying to the press, who would like a good soundbite.
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As evidenced in yesterday’s Rate that Ad post, PD regulars have a history of going off-topic. We have a few trusty readers capable of turning a post about Newt Gingrich’s fundraising into a debate over Krabby Patties and Spongebob’s cholesterol.

In this open thread, feel free to debate anything imaginable. Post links, share stories or ads the editors have missed. You can even dissect Spongebob’s health history.

The basic rules still apply. Keep it PG and be civil.


That’s all I have to say.


I’d like the Cain folks on here to ‘splain this one to me, because I just don’t get it.

Perhaps he was a fan of this Mike Gravel ad from 2008?

Rick Perry has outlined today what some entities are referring to as a “flat tax”, but nothing could be further from the truth. In reality, Perry’s plan is intended to gain the attention and fervor of Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 plan while at the same time appeasing multiple groups.

The plan starts with giving Americans a choice between a new, flat tax rate of 20% or their current income tax rate. The new flat tax preserves mortgage interest, charitable and state and local tax exemptions for families earning less than $500,000 annually, and it increases the standard deduction to $12,500 for individuals and dependents.

In other words, if you are part of the 47 percent of Americans who pay no federal income taxes today, you still won’t pay any income taxes. Everyone whose effective tax rate is higher than 20 percent would take this option, which includes most of the top 20 percent of income earners and very few others. Additionally, every high income earner using the mortgage interest tax credit on a multi-million dollar jumbo loan will continue to benefit and drive the effective 20 percent no-so-flat tax rate down.

In other words, this plan would actually be a disaster for revenues and this is where Perry’s plan only begins to stumble.
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Welcome to the latest edition of'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

The GOP Horses
Power Ranking The Horse Momentum The Tip Sheet


Despite his most criticized debate performance to date, Romney increasingly exudes an aura of inevitability. He is suddenly contending in Iowa, a state he’d reportedly written off like an ugly cousin to her prettier pal, New Hampshire. If Romney wins IA and NH, it’s race over.

2 Herman

Cain leads some state polls and recently won the Nevada straw poll. However, he’s approaching Bachmann territory on the gaffe scale and probably needs to sort out his own apples and oranges before trying to explain them on camera. The next 30 days will determine if he’s a legitimate threat, or the latest dream horse to flash and fade.


Perry was aggressive and engaged in the last debate and, for the first time, looked like he came to fight. But was the swagger too much? His slide on the track seems to have slowed and he’s steadied before hitting the Bachmann basement. Perry now looks to retread candidate Steve Forbes for a new push from an economic plan to compete with the notoriety received by Herman Cain’s 9-9-9.

Newt is still the 2012 ideas man and he’s sole handedly the reason to watch the debates. Yes, he’s on the rise, but Newt is also still as likely to win the nomination as Huntsman, which is a nice way of saying he won’t.


Paul has the firmest ceiling of any horse in the race. On the one hand he’s consistent, on the other he’s completely incapable of changing anyone’s mind. It’s worth noting that he outspent most of the horses in Q3 and still hasn’t seen any movement in his numbers.


Bachmann's fast-fade has just gone supersonic with the mass resignation of her New Hampshire staff. Bachmann is now putting all her hay into Iowa, a state where she clings to fifth place over Perry. Could she still win there? Yes. Will she make it to Iowa? Probably not.
Santorum clings to the hope that the economy will suddenly go all Lazarus on America, creating an opening as the top social conservative in the race. Someone might whisper in his ear that if the economy miraculously pulls itself off the mat, Obama will take credit and easily win reelection. Sure, Santorum has a path to something, but it's not a nomination, it's a talk show.
Huntsman is so far behind the other horses, he's beginning to make Gary Johnson look viable. Every candidate but Huntsman has something to offer the republican party. Even Santorum, the closest horse, has solid social conservative creds. All Huntsman ostensibly brings to the field is Mandarin fluency, something also available through Rosetta Stone. Could there be a surge? Yes, a surge in the number of unemployment claims listing "Huntsman for President" as their most recent employer.