Rod Dreher says that the battle to define American conservatism is at a stalemate. Like conservatives in Britain and Canada, there is an identity crisis in the veins of the American right. “The GOP establishment is completely given over to economic theories, including anti-tax orthodoxy, that might have made sense in 1980, but which are inadequate to deal with the problems we have now.”
With all of the hawkish talk on Iran in the GOP debates, Mitt Romney is clearly demonstrating his own brand of foolishness, Daniel Larison says — particularly when it comes to the possibility of a nuclear-capable Iran. And Larison expects that a second term for Obama would bring no better foreign policy forward.
There isn’t much reason to expect that Obama’s second term would be substantively better on foreign policy than his first term was. If he was “checkmated” in the first term, he will continue to be stymied in the second. Even if neoconservative critics cannot or will not acknowledge it, administration policy towards Iran has become increasingly confrontational, and almost everything that distinguished Obama on foreign policy has disappeared.
National Journal is reporting that Ron Paul is now considered a front-runner in Iowa, following the latest poll conducted for Bloomberg News. The race is now a four-way dead heat between Paul, Herman Cain, Mitt Romney, and Newt Gingrich. “In Iowa, it’s long been a two-person race between Romney and someone else,” said J. Ann Selzer, whose company conducted the poll for Bloomberg. “It is now a four-person race between Romney and three someone elses.”
Despite positive poll numbers in Iowa, controversy continues around the CBS/National Journal debate last Saturday in South Carolina. The Bachmann campaign remains outraged about a leaked e-mail from CBS, which alludes to limiting the candidate’s speaking time during the debate.
Bachmann asserts that the media is attempting to pick the Republican nominee for the 2012 race. Ron Paul, who is consistently polling at respectable numbers, was given just one minute and thirty seconds of speaking time on Saturday, according to several bloggers who calculated total speaking time. Michelle Bachmann was given three minutes and fifteen seconds of speaking time; Perry, Romney, Gingrich, Cain, and Santorum all received between five and eight minutes of speaking time. Mediate’s analysis of the transcript seems to back those numbers up.
Meanwhile, Santorum is at the back of the pack, usually hovering around two percent.