Mitt Romney easily won the New Hampshire Republican primary with 40% of the vote, making the former Massachusetts governor 2-for-2 in the race for the GOP presidential nomination, with only 48 more states to go.
A combination of tough campaigning, appealing to moderate New Hampshirans, and not being Newt Gingrich led Romney to almost doubling the second place showing by Texas representative Ron Paul (23%).
The still-unknown Guy From Utah surged from a miserable last-place finish in Iowa to the third spot with a respectable 17%, probably because ultra-conservative wunderkind Rick Santorum is not only far too right-wing to appeal to New Hampshirites, but is still dogged by subconscious associations with anal sex.
Former House Speaker Newt “I Don’t Need No Stinking Ethics” Gingrich took a fourth place finish with 10% of the New Hampsharean vote. Gingrich complained that once again negative campaigning hurt him – although this time it was his negative campaigning against Romney that did him in, plus the fact he is just slightly to the right of Genghis Khan.
In fifth place, Santorum still out-polled Texas Governor Rick Perry with 9% to Perry’s 1%. Perry is not expected to pout and threaten to go back to Texas and hold his breath as he did after Iowa, since he knew he would do terrible with moderate New Hampshireens.
The remaining candidates in the race for the Republican presidential nomination took to the stage in New Hampshire Saturday for a debate sponsored by ABC News. The questions came from Diane Sawyer, George Stephanopoulos, and some local guy with a phony announcer voice.
MITT ROMNEY: Romney is thoroughly enjoying being the front runner, but painfully aware that Rick Santorum is nipping at his heels. However, Romney seems confident, probably because his last name doesn’t make people think of anal sex. If Romney could wipe that stupid “waiting for my turn” grin off his face, and perhaps regulate his speech so he doesn’t sound like an over-eager school kid who knows the answer, he would actually be an attractive, plastic, run-of-the-mill candidate.
RICK SANTORUM: Santorum smiled for the first time since 2010. His face had visible cracks in it. He jousted with both Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul as he tried to downplay his lack of business experience and play up his experience as a Washington insider – which is probably not the best strategy to have.
RON PAUL: Paul stuck to his usual game plan: chip away at the others staid, old-school ideas while promoting his libertarian agenda as something fresh, and make incendiary accusations about his rivals and watch them trip all over themselves trying to respond. Unfortunately for Paul his libertarian ideas are about as fresh as a month-old dead catfish, and his Cliff Claven know-it-all attitude is starting to wear thin.
NEWT GINGRICH: Took some shots at Santorum and Romney, but mainly stayed with his strengths: sounding as if he actually knows what he’s talking about even if he really obviously doesn’t. Although his analysis of the mid-east situation was pretty realistic, his views on social issues and economics are prehistoric.
RICK PERRY: Perry made a lame attempt to mimic Gingrich’s obvious pandering to the religious right, as he said some inane b.s. about President Obama’s “war on Christianity”. Perry then took the big step and announced the end of his campaign when he said as President he would send troops back to Iraq. Game over. Thanks for playing.
GUY FROM UTAH: Whoever this guy is he seems to know a lot about China – which seems really suspicious. I mean he can even speak Chinese. He may be a spy.
We also learned that George Stephanopoulos can ask some pretty dumb hypothetical questions about candidates views on situations that don’t exist. Also Diane Sawyer has a fairly smarmy kindergarten teacher mannerism when asking a question, as if she doesn’t want anyone on the stage to feel any anxiety about having to answer.
In a case of fairly strange bedfellows, CNN and the Tea Party Express put on a GOP debate at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa. Texas Governor Rick Perry is ahead in the polls, and the other candidates took every opportunity to criticize him for his statements about Social Security and his record in Texas. Only Newt Gingrich stayed above the fray as he continued his campaign to seem like the “nice” candidate who refuses to spar with other Republicans.
When called on his support of a law requiring prepubescent girls to be immunized against the human papilloma virus, a sexually transmitted disease that can lead to cervical cancer, Perry responded “I will always err on the side of human life – and since I may have unprotected sex with some of these girls in the near future, my life needs to be protected.” Michele Bachmann pointed-out that one of Perry’s aides was associated with a pharmaceutical company that made a profit from the legislation, but Perry had a ready response to the allegation of influence peddling: “That was part of my jobs plan – that’s how we create jobs by helping companies expand into new markets like prepubescent girls.”
The audience applauded Ron Paul when he said the economy would improve if we didn’t spend trillions of dollars on foreign wars. The crowd seemed to like the idea of saving money. But Paul drew derisive boos when he tried to make the case that terrorism is a result of arrogant American foreign policies instead of a rabid and unreasoning hatred of Americans because we’re so free, good, and pure, as Rick Santorum insisted.
Businessman Herman Cain said very little because moderator Wolf Blitzer didn’t ask him any questions. Blitzer tried to send some questions Cain’s way, but every time he did members of the Tea Party audience brandished nooses and buckets of hot tar.
After the debate a poll showed that most voters thought Rick Perry was a plastic department store dummy that can talk, while Mitt Romney drew the most votes for “inflatable life raft”. As usual Ron Paul took the prize for “most incoherent”, while The Guy From Utah and Rick Santorum tied for “who are those guys, anyway?”. Candidates Bachmann and Gingrich were in their usual tie for “most difficult to see behind the podium”.
Michele Bachmann has won the first of the nation’s unofficial, non-binding, wholly trivial campaign contests by taking the Iowa Straw Poll with 4,823 votes, just edging-out Ron Paul’s 4,671 votes. Tim Pawlenty came in third with 2,293 votes, making him an unbelievable loser when you consider who beat him.
Pizza magnate Herman Cain ran fourth with 1,456 votes, while Mitt Romney placed sixth with 567 votes, coming-in behind Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s 718 votes as a write-in candidate who wasn’t even on the ballot. Newt Gingrich placed a disappointing eighth, getting slightly fewer votes than a pile of petrified ox dung that managed to beat him despite doing no active campaigning.
The Guy From Utah didn’t take part in the Straw Poll. Rick Santorum received a single vote, reportedly from the pile of ox dung.
Here a few tidbits of information we picked up from the latest GOP debate in Iowa:
RON PAUL lives in an alternate universe where all problems can be solved by reforming monetary policy and returning to the gold standard.
MICHELE BACHMANN takes so long to pee it made her late getting back to the stage after a commercial break.
MITT ROMNEY apparently thinks “the way the economy works” is you shut-down factories and make sure your state is 47th out of 50 in job creation.
TIM PAWLENTY likes to fight with short women and instead of raising taxes likes to create “fees”.
HERMAN CAIN wants the country to have “high fences” AND “wide open doors”, apparently making the fences unnecessary.
NEWT GINGRICH won’t answer “gotcha questions” like why did all your campaign staff quit and what are your foreign policy views, and thinks the crowd is bellowing “NEWT” when they are actually booing.
GUY FROM UTAH owns a company that created 10,000 jobs…in China.
RICK SANTORUM’s toupee causes me to have epileptic fits whenever his face is on-screen – and apparently has the same effect on Bret Baier because he never asked him anything.