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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 4:52 am 
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Quite a long article from the Des Moines Register.

http://caucuses.desmoinesregister.com/2011/06/16/many-huckabee-backers-yet-to-find-a-bandwagon/
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Many Huckabee backers yet to find a bandwagon
Jennifer Jacobs 12:29 AM, Jun 16, 2011

In the month since religious conservative Mike Huckabee decided against running for president again, many of his backers in Iowa have not yet latched on to their next favorite, based on interviews with more than 30 former Huckabee supporters.

The potential remains that they might scatter among multiple candidates, opening an avenue for a candidate less focused on abortion and marriage issues to win the caucuses here, some prominent Iowa social conservatives say.

If there is any trend yet among Huck fans, though, it’s a gravitation toward Minnesota’s Michele Bachmann, whose brimstone-and-fire politics have made them sit up straight in their seats and pay attention. If she were to succeed in picking up a large bloc of the state’s religious right, a group that propelled Huckabee’s 2008 Iowa caucuses victory, it would be a major boost in her effort to win here and seize momentum for contests in later states.

Of the Huckabee supporters interviewed by The Des Moines Register, the majority said they’re receptive to overtures from Bachmann, who made her bid for the White House official Monday. But most said she’s not even close to sewing up their votes in the nation’s leadoff voting contest, scheduled for Feb. 6.

Candidates have been slower to declare their bids and have logged fewer dates in Iowa than the lineup four years ago. Matching that sluggish pace, caucusgoers are not moving with any great speed to make a decision, they said.

The two other names Huckabee caucusgoers mentioned most were Pennsylvania’s Rick Santorum, a religious conservative, and Minnesota’s Tim Pawlenty, who is often cast by the mainstream media as an establishment candidate, but who works to attract both the evangelical community and fiscal conservatives in Iowa.

If the religious/social conservative vote is fractured three or more ways, a candidate who rarely strays from economic messages, such as Massachusetts’ Mitt Romney, could more easily reach a plurality.

“There’s a real risk of that,” said Carmine Boal, 55, a former state lawmaker and Huckabee backer who believes candidates need to show unwavering conviction on marriage and abortion while also talking about jobs and the economy.

Several Huckabee backers interviewed by the Register said they’re most comfortable with Bachmann, a congresswoman; Pawlenty, a former governor; and Santorum, a former U.S. senator. They’re concerned about the electability of U.S. Rep. Ron Paul of Texas and view retired Georgia businessman Herman Cain as simply untested. Newt Gingrich wasn’t mentioned, except by those who said they’ve ruled him out. Only one former Huckabee backer mentioned Romney in a positive light.

Bachmann, meanwhile, is considered a lightning bolt of a candidate who’s willing to speak her mind even if her beliefs are considered incendiary. Her law degree from Oral Roberts University, foster parenting, home schooling, anti-abortion activism and voting record prove to religious conservatives here that she’s one of them.

As a woman on a stage full of male candidates, she particularly stands out, said Dennis Goldford, a political science professor at Drake University.

“In terms of rhetoric and charisma and enthusiasm,” Goldford said, “she’s neon orange in a field of beige.”

Four years ago, Huckabee competed on a shoestring budget, won the 2008 Republican caucuses with a third of the vote, finished second in the South Carolina primary, then conceded in March to eventual nominee John McCain, a candidate religious conservatives were less than enthused with.

Iowa conservatives stood behind Huckabee for different reasons: Some said they thought he shone in a swing state with a Democratic legislature. Some were won over by his positive outlook and sense of humor. His long-standing positions against abortion and gay marriage and his history as a Baptist minister sold others.

This election cycle, Huckabee backers are talking about the economy, said former Huckabee campaign staffer Susan Geddes, a Republican from Indianola.

“It’s kind of interesting because it used to be social issues that dictated whom they chose, but I’m finding they are a lot more concerned about the economy at this point,” said Geddes, 47. “When you have no job, the economy trumps social issues to a degree.”

Huckabee’s Iowa campaign co-chairman, Danny Carroll, a former state lawmaker, said: “It’s awfully hard to see how anybody could prevail in the caucuses in February without having a good strong foundation both fiscally and socially.”

Carroll predicted both Romney and Gingrich would have an uphill battle.

Des Moines photographer Dave Davidson, one of the activists behind the Stuck on Huck grass-roots organizing effort, last week created an OmitRomney site on Facebook. He said he personally likes all the Republican contenders except Romney, but many Huck fans are drifting toward Bachmann.

“That’s a trend,” said Davidson, 42.

Carroll, too, said the Huckabee fans he knows are moving toward Bachmann more than any other candidate.

“At least in my limited circle of acquaintances,” said Carroll, 57, of Grinnell, who is unattached to any candidate at the moment.

Some were looking at Cain, “but I think they’ve kind of softened on him,” Carroll said. The turning point was when Cain said in Pella that he wouldn’t have a problem with hiring an openly gay person for his administration, he said.

The straw poll in August most likely will give guidance on the top candidate among Iowa’s religious conservatives.

In 2007, Huckabee didn’t catapult into the lead here until fall, when his efforts were buttressed by Iowans such as David Oman, a staffer for former Gov. Robert Ray.

Oman, 58, a Des Moines Republican who thinks that governors generally make the best presidents, said this election cycle he’s looking very hard at Romney, because “he has a resume chock-full of experience in business.”

Polk County Supervisor Bob Brownell, one of the few public officials to publicly endorse Huckabee four years ago, is leaning toward Pawlenty, also citing his interest in a governor with chief executive experience. “Experience needed and results appreciated,” he said.

But Huckabee supporter Randy Davis, 55, of Ottumwa doesn’t think Pawlenty, Romney or any of the others can beat Democratic President Barack Obama.

“If you remember Michael Jordan of the Chicago Bulls, you may recall for a period of time he left the NBA to pursue a baseball career in the minor leagues,” said Davis, an artist. “Everyone was depressed, because watching the Bulls play without him was torture. Watching the GOP field now is exactly like that, for me – and lots of others.”

Where Huckabee’s Iowa team has drifted

Campaign chairman Bob Vander Plaats: He said he would consider endorsing someone in the fall after the Family Leader’s presidential lecture series ends.

Campaign co-chairman Danny Carroll: He was aligned with Alabama’s Roy Moore, a religious conservative, but left that campaign about a week ago, he said.

Campaign manager Eric Woolson: He started volunteering for Pawlenty before Huckabee officially stood down. He’s now Iowa spokesman for Pawlenty, who is seen as a fiscal conservative.

Political director Wes Enos: He signed on with Bachmann before Huckabee declared his intention not to run.

Grass-roots director Susan Geddes: She has talked with Herman Cain’s campaign but hasn’t committed to working for him or anyone else, she said.

Director of coalitions Matt Reisetter: He said he is genuinely undecided, but “I think (Texas Gov.) Rick Perry is a game-changer if he gets in the race.”

Several other staffers have moved back to their home states or elsewhere, including organizational director Trainor Walsh and field coordinators Carter Wamp and Robert Kuykendall.

Former Huckabee backers’ current picks

David Oman, a staffer for former Gov. Robert Ray and vice president of Earthpark Development, is backing Romney.

Carmine Boal, who was a state lawmaker at the time and now works for Gov. Terry Branstad, is still studying the candidates and intends to endorse later, she said.

State Rep. Duane Alons, R-Hull, said that “there’s a couple, three that are a little more interesting to me,” but that he might not endorse anyone this time.

Bob Brownell, a Polk County supervisor, is backing Pawlenty.

Luana Stoltenberg, an abortion foe from the Quad Cities, is leaning toward Bachmann or Santorum.

Iowans who caucused for Huckabee
WENDY VAN WYK, 45, a home-schooling mother who lives in rural Pella: “I’m pretty wide open, but Michele Bachmann interests me. … Just her conservatism, that she hasn’t wavered from that and she doesn’t water it down. She’s pretty single-minded in that. She’s doing a good job in Iowa of getting her emails out, so her name is familiar to me. And she seems fresh to me.”
CURT VAN WYK, 45, of rural Pella: “Bachmann is able to communicate really well.”
JACQUELINE BAUGH, a home-schooling mother from Mount Pleasant: “I don’t think the Republican Party has brought forth a viable candidate. … I like Sarah Palin and everything, but I cannot see her as president.”
TRAVIS JOHNSON, 33, a paramedic who lives in Mount Pleasant: “There’s so many and none of them have distinguished themselves. Mitt Romney doesn’t do it for me. But I’m certainly interested in Pawlenty. And Michele Bachmann, too, is intriguing.”
KATY BINDEL, 27, a home-schooling mother from Des Moines: “Michele Bachmann is really interesting to me. I think she’s the freshest face and that’s nice. The other people (Romney and Gingrich), they’ve been in and they’ve had their chance to do things and they haven’t effected change. … Santorum seems totally arrogant. Pawlenty, I’m not very familiar with, but I’ve read his book. Cain, I’ve started to hear some rumblings about him, and I hear it’s good. I’d just need to hear more before I lean one way or another. Ron Paul, I don’t think he can win.”
TYLER BINDEL, 31, a systems administrator from Des Moines: “I haven’t even looked at them all right now. We really wanted Huckabee to run. We agreed with his ideas on the economy, and we agreed with his ideas on education, and we agreed with his family values.”
MARK CHRISTOPHERSEN, 54, a Belle Plaine resident who does over-the-road trucking in the housing industry: “I don’t like Romney. … I liked the old Gingrich, but I don’t like the new one. I think his brightest days are behind him. I liked the ‘Contract with America’ Gingrich. I don’t know much about Pawlenty. I’d like to see Sarah Palin run. I like Bachmann. She’s one of the few people with the chutzpah to really take it to them.”
THERESA CHRISTOPHERSEN, 48, a home-schooling mother from Belle Plaine: “I would, too (like to see Palin run), or Michele Bachmann. I like Michele Bachmann’s views on cutting back on federal spending. … It’s the economy. We’re a single-income family, and every time I go to the grocery store, the prices are a little higher, and he hasn’t gotten a raise in four years.”
TODD SAFFELL, 38, of Bloomfield: “I’m completely undecided. There’s no one I like yet. I haven’t seen anybody yet who has separated themselves. I’m looking for someone who’s going to be a viable candidate as opposed to a 2- or 3-percenter.”
BEV SCHIRZ, 39, a Leighton mother who home-schools her children: “Michele Bachmann. She’s very smart. She’s very articulate, and she believes the same things I do. … I think she would really stand for what she believes in and not be pushed around.”
MATT ROELFS, 36, a self-employed landscaper and roofer from Ackley: “Pawlenty. He’s a born-again Christian. A lot of people say he’s got clinkers in his record, but he fesses up to them. I also like Rick Santorum. Rick is Catholic and he seems honest to me. … But Pawlenty seems to come across with more compassion and Santorum is more, ‘This is what I believe. Get on board or go away.’ Pawlenty draws in more people. That’s what Republicans need because they come across as uncompassionate and arrogant.”
AARON GUNSAULUS, 40, minister of the Newton Christian Reformed Church: “I’m still not committed to anybody. But no one could get my support if they’re not 100 percent pro-life and 100 percent on the marriage issue, that marriage is by definition one man and one woman. … And I’m looking for someone who’s honest, who’s constitutional and who can admit a mistake – because they will all make them.”
DANIEL ASHBY, 29, of St. Charles: “I don’t believe Mitt Romney’s conservative credentials. That senator from Pennsylvania? (Santorum.) He seemed like he agreed with most of my viewpoints and I agreed with his, but I haven’t read up on him yet. Sarah Palin, she’d have to do some extensive image changing and prove she has substance. We feel she has the same values as we do … but not the thoughtfulness to be president.”
RICHARD CHASE, 45, an Indianola resident and software development manager: “I’m looking at people, but I haven’t picked a favorite yet. I know a few I probably wouldn’t support. Mitt Romney. He just doesn’t support the values I believe in. … I wouldn’t be a big (Rudy) Giuliani supporter either. And Newt Gingrich, no. … They’re more established politicians than what I’d call grass-roots.”
ANNISSA CHASE, 43, an Indianola home-schooling mom who has one son in the Air Force: “We like Michele Bachmann. … We wouldn’t have automatically followed (Huckabee) this time. For us, every election’s a wipe-the-board-and-start-over-again.”

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 12:52 pm 
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I feel this same way. After the first debate I was all for potentially backing Cain.

After the new hamshire debate, I have shifted toward Bachmann.

I worry about her electability though.

Do you think it is actually possible for her to beat obama in a general election?

Can she win the independents?

Will a Huck and Palin endorsement make her President?

Who would she pick for a VP? Could she pick Mike?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 1:33 pm 
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californiaforhuck wrote:
I feel this same way. After the first debate I was all for potentially backing Cain.

After the new hamshire debate, I have shifted toward Bachmann.

I worry about her electability though.

Do you think it is actually possible for her to beat obama in a general election?

Can she win the independents?

Will a Huck and Palin endorsement make her President?

Who would she pick for a VP? Could she pick Mike?


I feel the same way. I like Bachmann, but it remains to be seen how broad her appeal is. I tend to lean toward thinking it's not very broad; the Tea Party leadership role alone might be enough to turn off the indies we need. Also, when was the last time someone went from the House to the White House?

Plus, the media will try to impalin (impale + Palin 8) ) her. They're probably drawing up Couric-esque questions as we speak. She'd have to hit home runs in that sort of hostile media setting in order to be viable generally.

_________________
THE TIMES are nightfall, look, their light grows less;
The times are winter, watch, a world undone:
They waste, they wither worse; they as they run
Or bring more or more blazon man’s distress.
And I not help. Nor word now of success:
All is from wreck, here, there, to rescue one—
Work which to see scarce so much as begun
Makes welcome death, does dear forgetfulness.
Or what is else? There is your world within.
There rid the dragons, root out there the sin.
Your will is law in that small commonweal…
G.M. Hopkins.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 3:41 pm 
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No thank you. I'd rather walk than ride the band wagon.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 5:23 pm 
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A Bachmann primary win would indicate that both parties have embraced style, a flashing white smile, and red meat rhetoric as the primary qualifiers for a nominee. The web-roots and Moveon did much to propel someone terribly unqualified to the office of President. The conservative web-roots and talk radio have the same power.

Bachmann served 6 years in the state Legislature. During that time she rose to a leadership position and then had that leadership position taken away by her Caucus.

She has now served 5 years in the Congress. She sought and was denied a leadership position after the 2010 elections.

She has almost no executive experience in the private or public sectors.

This is not the resume of someone qualified to be President. If it were a Dem's resume, we would all say so.

The nation faces huge problems and we will need someone capable of crafting actual viable solutions. Perhaps she can. She has no history of having done so to date. For me "hope" is not a plan.

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Post by Southern Doc has received Likes: 2 Grant, QuoVadisAnima
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 7:40 pm 
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Im with Randy...none of them holds a candle to Governor Huckabee and I can't even think of backing anyone else right now.....I feel exactly as he said he does, depressed with these candidates and not at all enthused about the upcoming election.



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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 7:49 pm 
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Southern Doc wrote:
A Bachmann primary win would indicate that both parties have embraced style, a flashing white smile, and red meat rhetoric as the primary qualifiers for a nominee. The web-roots and Moveon did much to propel someone terribly unqualified to the office of President. The conservative web-roots and talk radio have the same power.

Bachman served 6 years in the state Legislature. During that time she rose to a leadership position and then had that leadership position taken away by her Caucus.

She has now served 5 years in the Congress. She sought and was denied a leadship position after the 2010 elections.

She has almost no executive experience in the private or public sectors.

This is not the resume of someone qualified to be President. If it were a Dem's resume, we would all say so.

The nation faces huge problems and we will need someone capable of crafting actual viable solutions. Perhaps she can. She has no history of having done so to date. For me "hope" is not a plan.


Yeah, you're absolutely right. I think my recent Bachmann enthusiasm is attributable to some extent to the fact that she exceeded my expectations in the debate. Not quite a good reason to support someone. :lol:

_________________
THE TIMES are nightfall, look, their light grows less;
The times are winter, watch, a world undone:
They waste, they wither worse; they as they run
Or bring more or more blazon man’s distress.
And I not help. Nor word now of success:
All is from wreck, here, there, to rescue one—
Work which to see scarce so much as begun
Makes welcome death, does dear forgetfulness.
Or what is else? There is your world within.
There rid the dragons, root out there the sin.
Your will is law in that small commonweal…
G.M. Hopkins.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 9:18 pm 
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The thing that makes conservatives look like idiots is when they gripe about Obama's qualifications but yet are willing to lift up someone like Bachmann for POTUS. I cringe to write this but even with quitting Palin has more executive experience then Bachmann. I am not under-cutting her value and worth as a GOP congresswoman but for the highest office in the land? No way. The tea party has been famous for giving us those "outsider" candidates which has turned out to be just another word for "unqualified" and they have been proven to lose to the left in general elections. I believe that in the end, however, inexperience will be exposed and conservatives will be smart enough to say "no thanks."

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Post by Iowans Rock Liked by: QuoVadisAnima
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