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    Who are the NERD fund donors Mr Snyder?

    Raise the curtain.

    Because The Question Needs To Be Asked

    By Kevin Rex Heine, Section News
    Posted on Tue Mar 13, 2012 at 03:50:06 PM EST
    Tags: "DELE-GATE", Bobby Schostak, Sharon Wise, Saul Anuzis, Holly Hughes, Eric Doster, Mike Cox, Bill Runco, MIGOP Credentials Committee, backroom shenanigans, disingenuous hypocrisy, Newt Gingrich, Winning Our Future, Ron Paul, Revolution, Mitt Romney, Restore Our Future, Rick Santorum, Red White and Blue Fund, behind-the-scenes collusion, convention brokerage deal, Rand Paul (all tags)

    When it comes to conspiracy theories, I tend to take the advice God gave his prophet, Isaiah:  "I'm warning you!  Don't act like these people.  Don't call something a rebellious plot, just because they do, and don't be afraid of something, just because they are.  I am the one you should fear and respect.  I am the holy God, the LORD All-Powerful!" (Isaiah 8:11-13, CEV)

    But I gotta tell you; some of the "off the radar" developments swirling around on the periphery of the Michigan Dele-Gate fiasco have me wondering just what the hell is going on behind the curtains in those back rooms.  And specifically one development has me intrigued.

    For those of you that don't pay attention to popular culture, the CBS television series "Survivor" is a reasonably popular reality show in which from sixteen to twenty strangers are isolated and stranded in the wilderness of a remote tropical location, and then compete for cash and other prizes.  Major features of the game are reward/immunity challenges, progressive eliminations, tribal councils, the ever-infamous alliances, and all manner of dirty double-dealing.  A major key to winning is generally considered to be drawing as little attention to yourself as humanly possible, and another is to make sure that those you seek to eliminate never see the knife coming . . . until it's too late to do anything about it.

    And before I start elaborating on this, let me sidebar briefly.  Way back in the days immediately following my discharge from active duty, while I was still in college, one of my classmates and I actually went to an open audition (not unlike a cattle call) for Survivor that was being held in our hometown at the time.  Neither of us made it past the first round of auditions, but at least we can claim we tried.  Anyway, back to the narrative.

    As I mentioned over the weekend, when we take an honest look at the 2012 Republican Presidential Primaries Bound Delegate Tracker (a document that I will be updating regularly), we see that there is some reason to call into question the media meme, which is being fed by the Romney camp, that the math just doesn't favor anyone who isn't Mitt Romney.  In fact, if we're to believe the Associated Press, all of these concerns that are being raised right now about Romney threaten to ultimately cripple him during the general campaign.  So, since neither Newt Gingrich nor Rick Santorum has any chance at securing the nomination, they should both step aside for the good of the party as a whole, so as to avoid further weakening Mittens and draining him of the resources he'll need to take on a heretofore-unchallenged Barack Obama.

    However, when we examine the numbers in some detail, and realize that none of the four candidates have been mathematically eliminated yet (as of this writing), and that all four candidates (including Willard) will have to run the table between now and Saturday 14 July 2012 in order to guarantee the nomination, it should come as no surprise that Drudge Report, MSNBC, and Politico are all pointing out that neither Newt nor Rick seem to have any intention of dropping out anytime soon.  (MSNBC and Politico, notably, reference a Santorum campaign memo that the Washington Post and BuzzFeed derisively refer to unconvincing, nonsense, and hard to sell.)  In all cases, the media seem to miss the reality that the point of the Gingrich and Santorum strategies isn't so much about securing a delegate majority as it is about ensuring that Romney doesn't.

    Because, as we've pointed out here before, something that likely scares the midden (actual term for a rhino dung pile) out of the milquetoast Massachusetts moderate and his team of establishment bluebloods is the very real probability of a brokered convention, because under such a scenario, known moderates tend to collapse very quickly after the first ballot.  And when we add the note that, as MSNBC's First Read points out, Romney is going to have some problems winning in either Alabama or Mississippi (which may be indicative of issues that Willard is going to have throughout the remainder of March and into April), we can see why the Restore Our Future crowd is doing everything that they can to spin the WMR coronation as inevitable.

    Of course, should it prove to be impossible to lock down a first-ballot majority, sensible strategic planning would dictate the need for contingency preparations.  Something like this might include a means to surreptitiously pack in favorable delegates so that the opposition doesn't see the majority coming, perhaps by way of clandestine alliance.

    Speaking of which . . .

    During the three-week run-up to the Michigan primary, I had heard that there was an amazing similarity between some of the attack ads against Rick Santorum being run by Ron Paul's campaign and those being run by Mitt Romney's campaign (as well as those being run by Restore Our Future, Romney's "not coordinated" Super PAC).  I hadn't seen or heard any of the ads personally, but right after the Mesa Arts Center Debate, GreeneWave and CBS News made reference to the common narrative of the anti-Santorum attack ads used in Michigan by Ron Paul and Mitt Romney; Human Events went a step further and questioned why Paul would be running anti-Santorum negative ads in Michigan when REP had apparently abandoned Michigan.  Deseret News, the Detroit News, and U. S. News all reference a Santorum observation at the Mesa Arts Center debate, as do CBS and HE.  DetNews and U. S. News, along with the Huffington Post, pointed out that the Ron Paul "Fake" ad targets Santorum for issues that could just as easily be used to paint Romney in a bad light (utilizing talking points that are amazingly similar to some ROF mailers that I'd received), and all three along with CBS also reference an apparent informal "non-aggression" pact between REP and WMR.  Talking Points Memo took it a step further and added in observations from the Gingrich camp, which dovetails nicely with reports that I've received out of Florida concerning a curious cohesiveness between the Paul and Romney attack ads against Gingrich.

    Hmm, "ron paul and mitt romney working together," curiouser and curiouser . . .  The Daily Caller and the Los Angeles Times dig a bit deeper.

    According to Matt Lewis and Mike Memoli, not only is there an informal non-aggression pact between Romney and Paul, apparently there's also a concerted effort by the Revolution camp to target whichever not-Romney candidate is the current threat to Mitt's coronation.  The New York Times mentions that Paul actually came to Romney's defense during the South Carolina primary run-up, though I don't know how helpful it actually was given the shellacking that Willard took in the Palmetto State.  Both Times articles discuss Dr. Paul's access to formidable financial resources that he has yet to heavily spend from.

    But something else is mentioned, and it goes beyond Ron Paul seeking control of the GOP platform (because he's openly stated that he doesn't expect to win the nomination).  Considering that last month Paul's campaign sent out a strategy memo to supporters going into some detail about the delegate capture process in caucus states, which is intended to provide Paul with a second-ballot majority on the convention floor, and this strategy of convention hijacking is already being employed in Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Maine, Georgia, Nevada, and Colorado . . . given these things, it raises the question of what Paul gets out of this, besides a "seat at the table" or a potential cabinet post.

    The Restore America Now campaign site as much as admits that the whole purpose of going after either Gingrich or Romney (whomever the current anti-Romney candidate is at present) is to remind the conservative voters that there has really been only one anti-Romney in this campaign the entire time, even though the drive-by media has somehow missed this.  The hypothesis is that, once Ron Paul becomes the only anti-Romney candidate available, well, then Willard is really screwed.

    Never mind that REP is the one candidate out of the "republican final four" who is actually nigh unto mathematical elimination (like that'll slow him down any).  Ignore the reality that in the U. S. Virgin Islands, the first public contest that Paul actually won (if you count finishing in second behind "uncommitted" winning), he was only able to lock down one delegate.  Pay no attention to reports that the delegate accumulation strategy isn't working yet.  And whatever you do, please do not notice that in the Virginia Primary, where Jack Hunter's hypothesis was actually tested (because Paul and Romney were the only two candidates on the ballot), it failed . . . miserably (the term "epic fail" actually comes to mind).

    And they've got to be really praying that I don't manage to independently corroborate on the record what multiple family, veteran, and professional contacts in Missouri are telling me.  It seems to be that the local leadership from both the Romney and Paul campaigns are cross-organizing in certain counties, St. Louis County in particular, in an apparent attempt to affect the outcomes during the county caucuses that start on Thursday.  What's happening, so I'm being told, is that the joint effort of the WMR and REP operatives is targeting at least two congressional districts where, by working together, the three delegates to be awarded in each can be picked up by Ron Paul.

    Nope, please disregard all of that in the last two paragraphs.  What I think Restore America Now is hoping we don't figure out (and that the Campaign for Liberty never catches on to), is that their agenda may be more about restoring our future than anything else.

    But for what?  I get why Mitt Romney would enter into a Faustian bargain with Ron Paul; he's likely to need the delegates.  But why would Paul enter into an equally Faustian compact with Romney?  What does he get out of this?

    I suspect that Dr. Paul gets nothing personally from the deal.  However, if the articles that I referenced earlier from the Daily Caller and the Los Angeles Times, along with reports from Milwaukee Story and the Economic Policy Journal (on Feb 23rd), are to be taken at face value, then the Paul who'll benefit from this arrangement is none other than Ron's son, Rand . . . as Mitt's running mate.

    The Economic Policy Journal (on Feb 27th) seems to make the case that this'd be a swell arrangement.  Assuming that the delegate flip could be accomplished, we'd have a principled second chair augmenting the complete lack of principles in the nominee.  Theoretically, such a ticket would also fold the C4L crowd into the mainstream GOP voters, at least long enough to win the 2012 elections.

    And if it's as good as it looks on paper, then why aren't Ron and Mitt just saying so right now?

    First, this is a deal that the hardcore paulistas will reject . . . period.  If it were presented to them as anything other than a bargain of necessity (after REP has been obviously mathematically eliminated from the nomination but before WMR obviously locks it down, or perhaps after the third ballot at convention - when all but 12 states and territories have legally released their delegations), there would be widespread revolt in the ranks, nigh unto campaign-wide mutiny.  That, of course, would be very counter-productive.

    Second, this is Romney's contingency plan, not his primary one.  His primary objective is to lock down the 1,144 delegates needed for majority on his own, and well in advance of the national convention in Tampa.  (This way he'd have some latitude in his running mate options.)  That's why his campaign operatives are resorting to deception, disinformation, and disingenuous hypocrisy to spin the narrative that the public contests translate directly to the secured delegate count (despite what he's helping Paul do in Missouri) . . . and backroom double dealing when that doesn't work.

    Which means that the public contests aren't the ones we need to be paying attention to, but instead we should be watching like a hawk the contests that happen behind-the-scenes and/or outside the view of the media, because that's where the deals are being made . . . and unlike "Survivor," cameras aren't watching every move.

    < Justice in Michigan | Day 14 - And The Candidates Feel It >

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    An interesting piece of relevant trivia: (none / 0) (#1)
    by Kevin Rex Heine on Tue Mar 20, 2012 at 05:37:51 PM EST
    According to RNC rule 40(b):

    "Each candidate for nomination for President of the United States and Vice President of the United States shall demonstrate the support of a plurality of the delegates from each of five (5) or more states, severally, prior to the presentation of the name of that candidate for nomination."

    . . . which means that Newt, who has won in two states thus far (South Carolina and Georgia), must win a minimum of three more states (and it doesn't matter which three) in order to become eligible in a brokered/contested convention.

    Further, that means that Santorum (who legitimately won binding public contests in Oklahoma, Tennessee, Kansas, Alabama, and Mississippi) has enough states committed to him to qualify at the now-seemingly-inevitable convention floor fight.

    Romney, of course, has binding pluralities locked down in Nevada, Alaska, Massachusetts, Vermont, Virginia, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico (as well as Florida and Arizona, even if the appeals are upheld).

    Ron Paul, on the other hand, has binding pluralities locked down in . . . umm . . . nowhere that I can identify.


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