November 29, 2011 Republican Presidential Update

Since it is political season and a great libertarian happens to be running for president, I am spending a little more time than usual on here discussing politics, rather than purely economic and investment issues.  With that said, here is a little report card on what is happening.

Herman Cain is just about done.  A woman has come out saying that Cain had an affair with her for 13 years.  While Cain originally denied it, his lawyer was a little less convincing with his statement.  The latest report is that Cain is reassessing his run for the presidency.  By the time you read this post, perhaps he will be done.

As I have said several times before, Cain is a jerk and he is a moron.  People could not see the first part about him before.  They were starting to see that he wasn't that bright.  Just watch this video on his discussion about abortion with John Stossel.

Rick Santorum has no chance, and for good reason.

Jon Huntsman has almost no chance.  If Romney weren't in this race, he might have a shot as the establishment favorite.  But I just don't see Huntsman going anywhere right now.  I am not 100% writing him off, but I am 99% writing him off at this point.

The same can be said for Michele Bachmann.  I am mostly writing her off at this point.  While I despise her foreign policy, I understand that many Republicans do not.  She can also be quite articulate on economic matters.  The problem for her is that people don't think she can beat Obama.  She doesn't have as much money as the other top candidates and she can't seem to get people excited the way she did 6 months ago.

That leaves four people: Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, and Ron Paul.

Perry keeps sticking his foot in his mouth over and over again.  He also sounds too much like Bush (the accent).  I think people want to like him, but they don't think anyone else will.  While I think Perry is a fraud and he was exposed early on in the debates for his big government policies on several things, he is still going to have an appeal to many Republicans.  He still has a lot of money.  While he is down, I am not counting him out yet.  If Newt implodes, we may see Perry surge again.

I still think there is a good chance Newt will implode.  He is a good debater.  He is good at fooling people.  But with the internet, there are certain things he can't hide.  He is also questioned by conservatives for his past personal history.  He is also divisive, much like Hillary on the other side.

Romney is the establishment candidate.  He is a pure politician.  He will say whatever it takes to get elected.  He does not have the personal problems that some of the other candidates have.  He is a Mormon, but that will only bother a small number of religious conservatives in the primaries.  He has not been able to break above 25%.  So-called conservatives like Sean Hannity are hedging their bets.  They are not coming out against Romney.  They are being nice to him in anticipation that they will have to support him if he becomes the nominee.

Then there is Ron Paul.  He is polling quite well in Iowa.  He has to get at least second place (or within a percentage point of second place) to still have a shot at the Republican nomination.  Actually, he really almost needs to win Iowa to get the momentum and the recognition.  He needs to keep talking about foreign policy.  As Tom Woods has said, nobody is going to be tricked into voting for Ron Paul.  He needs to articulate his position the best he can and hope that he changes enough minds to give himself a chance.  The good news is that he has quite a bit of money and his supporters are very dedicated.  His poll numbers may or may not go up, but they will not likely go down.

Paul is not running for re-election in Congress.  He can focus most of his attention on this race.  He can stay in it until the end.  I still don't know if he can win, but he is sure making things interesting.