Tales from the Trail

Poll shows Buddy Roemer leading Perry in New Hampshire

Remember when Rick Perry was the Republican presidential frontrunner? A new poll now shows him trailing former Louisiana Governor Buddy Roemer in New Hampshire. Though Roemer lacks an entourage of Texas Rangers mumbling into their collars and can walk the length of a Main Street in New Hampshire unrecognized, he can, it seems, still spin with the top tier candidates.

“I am encouraged by the strong support from Granite Staters” Roemer said in a press release. “We’ve held over 200 campaign stops in New Hampshire, by far the most out of any presidential candidate, and my message is resonating very well with voters here.”

Before Roemer takes his spot at the center podium at the debates next to Mitt Romney, it’s worth looking closer at the numbers (and no, Roemer hasn’t actually been invited to a debate yet). It’s true the 7News/Suffolk University poll reported Roemer tied with former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum at 2 percent and ahead of Perry, who garnered just 1 percent — the same figure as former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson. However, the poll of 400 likely primary voters had a margin of error of 4.9 percent — and it may be more instructive to look at the survey’s absolute figures.

The data show Santorum favored by seven respondents, Roemer by six, Perry by five and Johnson by three.

All four trailed Herman Cain, who was the pick of eight respondents despite the fact that he suspended his campaign a week before the poll was conducted.

Photo credit: REUTERS/Brian Frank- Buddy Roemer speaks during the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition’s Spring Event at Point of Grace Church in Waukee, Iowa, March 7, 2011.

from Political Theater:

Perry’s latest ad hypes his ‘momentum’

A month ago, after a series of poor debate performances that culminated in his infamous "oops" gaffe, Rick Perry was on the defensive. “If we’re electing a ‘debater-in-chief,’ don’t elect me,” he told Megyn Kelly on America Live on Nov. 10.

Today, by contrast, in his second new ad of the day, Perry -- who trails Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, and Newt Gingrich in Iowa -- is celebrating last Saturday's ABC News/Yahoo debate in Des Moines.

In the nearly two-minute-long video, titled 'Momentum,' Perry weaves together favorable reviews from observers including Chris Cillizza, Larry Sabato, RedState.org, and Tim Albrecht with miscellaneous Iowa-esque imagery and clips of Perry speaking at the debate.

from Political Theater:

Rick Perry promises to speak the truth in new ‘Politically Correct’ ad

Rick Perry appropriates the idea of political correctness in his latest television ad, a thirty-second video denouncing Washington as "the capital of political correctness, where double speak reigns and the truth is frowned upon.”

“You can’t say that Congressmen becoming lobbyists is a form of legal corruption," Perry says in the ad. "Or that we give aid money to countries who oppose America. Or that Washington insiders are bankrupting social security.”

Here's the video, courtesy of rickperry.org:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QzUIJVerqN4&feature=player_embedded

Credit: rickperry.org/YouTube

No jump start for Perry campaign in New Hampshire

The wheels on Rick Perry’s bus will go round and round Iowa, where he’ll make 49 stops between now and the Jan. 3 Republican presidential caucus, his campaign announced last night.

Missing from his schedule are any stops in New Hampshire or South Carolina — the two states Perry visited in August to announce his run — which will vote on Jan. 10 and Jan. 21, respectively.

The one-time Republican frontrunner had invested substantial time in both states, making 25 campaign appearances in 11 days in New Hampshire and 21 stops over nine days in South Carolina since announcing his bid, according to data compiled by the Washington Post.

from Political Theater:

New Perry ad bashes Gingrich, Romney on health care mandate

A day after releasing an incendiary ad condemning gays serving in the military and "Obama's war on religion," the Perry campaign has put out a new campaign video, this one focused on his rivals' stances on the individual mandate.

"We don't want government-mandated health care," says a voice-over in the ad:

Yet Newt Gingrich supports it.

And Mitt Romney -- he put it into law in Massachusetts.

Worse, Barack Obama forced it on the entire nation.

Rick Perry? He'll repeal it, starting day one.

The video cuts to Perry, walking through the same scenic outdoor background as yesterday's ad (though wearing a different jacket), who tells viewers he's an "outsider" and "won't let the big government liberals ruin this country."

Check out the ad, via rickperry.org, below. And be sure to catch his spin-and-grin at the 0:26 mark:

RickPerry.com reroutes visitors to Ron Paul’s 2012 site

By Karen Brooks

Update, 6:30pm ET: RickPerry.com is no longer sending visitors to ronpaul2012.com.

Original post:

It’s common knowledge that Texas Gov. Rick Perry has plenty of campaign money – the question is, would he be willing to let go of about $50,000 of it in the name of cyber politics?

Critics of Perry and fans of fellow GOP presidential candidate Congressman Ron Paul are laughing this week over the fact that www.RickPerry.com redirects visitors to Paul’s campaign website.

from Political Theater:

Rick Perry denounces “Obama’s war on religion” in new TV ad

Governor Rick Perry accuses President Obama of leading a "war on religion" in his latest ad, a thirty second spot airing in Iowa that also condemns gays serving openly the military and regulations on school prayer.

“I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m a Christian,” says Perry, who is polling at around 11 percent in Iowa according to a NYT/CBS poll released yesterday.

"But you don’t need to be in the pew every Sunday to know that there’s something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military, but our kids can’t openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school."

Conservatives bash Obama for gay rights stand

Conservative groups and Republican White House hopeful Rick Perry wasted no time in panning the Obama administration for its move on Tuesday to stand up for gay rights abroad – the first-ever U.S. government strategy to tackle LGBT human rights abuses worldwide.

In an seven-point executive order on Tuesday, Obama told U.S. diplomats and foreign aid workers to do more to advance rights of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgendered persons abroad – a move that promotes U.S. human rights policies and speaks to a key Democratic constituency at home.

“I am deeply concerned by the violence and discrimination targeting LGBT persons around the world…No country should deny people their rights because of who they love, which is why we must stand up for the rights of gays and lesbians everywhere,” Obama said in the memo, which will be published in the Federal Register. “I am directing all agencies engaged abroad to ensure that U.S. diplomacy and foreign assistance promote and protect the human rights of LGBT persons.”

Highlights from the GOP Thanksgiving Family Forum

YouTube Preview Image

Six of the Republican presidential candidates met at the First Federated Church in Des Moines, Iowa, last night for a dinnertime “family discussion” at the Thanksgiving Family Forum. Gathered around a wooden table garnished with a centerpiece of artificial pumpkins, moderator Frank Luntz asked Michelle Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, and Rick Santorum about their views on social issues, morality, personal responsibility, and God. Neither of the two Mormon candidates, Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman, were in attendance. Here are some of the most memorable moments:

1. Gingrich tells OWS: “Go get a job — right after you take a bath.”

Asked about the role of personal responsibility in society, Gingrich quoted John Smith (of Pocahontas fame): “In 1607 in the first English speaking permanent colony, [Smith said] to the aristocrats who had paid their way and didn’t want to work: ‘If you don’t work, you won’t eat.’”

The same principle, he said, should apply to Occupy Wall Street protesters, all of whom “start with a premise that we all owe them everything.”

from Political Theater:

Five must-see moments from the GOP foreign policy debate

The Republican presidential candidates assembled in Spartanburg, South Carolina, last night for a primary debate, the first to focus entirely on foreign policy and national security. In a dialogue that spanned assorted geopolitical challenges -- including Iran's quest for nuclear weapons, America's strategic relationship with Pakistan, and trade with China -- the eight Republicans outlined the approaches they would take to diplomacy if elected head of state. Here are five of the most notable exchanges:

1. Is torture acceptable under any circumstances? And is water boarding torture?

"I served on an aircraft carrier during the Vietnam War," wrote a veteran in a question submitted via email that was posed to the candidates. "I believe that torture is always wrong in all cases. What is your stance on torture?"