I watch Fox News Sunday nearly every week while I'm eating my Sunday breakfast. It's what I do, and often it gives me ideas for columns which I then write while I'm digesting.
Or sometimes, not digesting.
Today is one of those NOT days. From the opening interview with White House senior advisor David Plouffe who should be Barack Obama's poster boy for obfuscation and double talk, to the discussion panel in the second half of the show that all but ignored Herman Cain's dramatic straw poll win in Florida yesterday, I was constantly reminded that Washington, D.C., insiders are pretty much what's wrong with this country.
Why? Well let me answer a question by asking a question.
Who decided that once he got into the race for the GOP presidential nomination Texas Governor Rick Perry was automatically the only person who could challenge Mitt Romney? Who determined that he would be the automatic frontrunner?
The media that's who. The media fed us a bunch of gift wrapped and pretty looking polls that said who we should be focused on, but once you looked inside there was no background information on who was polled or what they were asked. Yet those polls said we should be swooning over Perry.
So Perry got into the race, Republican voters got a good look at him and his numbers did a nose dive. I didn't know squat about the man before he entered the presidential debates but I'll tell you something … I disagree with him on immigration, border defense and his decision to approve mandatory vaccinations for teenage girls in his state by executive order.
I seriously doubt I will vote for him if he still is around during the primaries next year.
Last time around I voted for Mitt Romney and I may or may not vote for Romney again, but that will depend on whether Herman Cain, Rick Santorum and a couple of others are still in the race. And this is what really aggravated me about Fox News Sunday this week.
After a stellar performance during Thursday night's GOP debate in Orlando, Florida, Herman Cain gave a rousing speech before the Florida Straw Poll and then trounced the GOP field winning 37 percent of the vote.
This was a remarkable accomplishment considering that while he has been an excellent debater and is the only GOP candidate with an understandable and working plan for completely revamping the US tax system, like many other candidates he gets nowhere near as much face time from the media as the "frontrunners." But on Fox News Sunday his stunning victory was defined instead as a backlash against Perry, a fluke, of no significance.
This, even though Fox News touted the Florida Straw Poll for days prior as the vote that had successfully chosen the GOP nominee going all the way back to 1979. But Saturday, it was just so much ... well, you get it.
Each debate in which Perry and Romney appeared they were given center stage and most of the time to answer questions. Even though there were as many as 9 candidates in the debate it often seemed that the media only cared about two … and candidates including former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum said as much.
But all Perry and Romney have been doing is ignoring sage advice from candidate and former GOP Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich – not to give in to the media manipulation and bash each other to death – and instead have spent the last two debates bashing each other to death. So when we have other candidates who are focusing on the issues – and Cain had great answers to viewers' questions about small business and Obamacare – I think it is only natural that the voters are going to start paying attention to their answers and ignoring the alleged "front-runners."
NOTE TO PERRY AND ROMNEY CAMPAIGNS: I have not read either of your books, in hardcover or paperback, don't care to and won't after listening to you brag about them ad nauseum in the debates. I wouldn't pick them up if they were in the used books one-cent sale at my local library. Get off your books and let's hear what you plan to do for the country. OK?
Fox News Sunday panelist and conservative columnist William Kristol apparently wrote a scathing article after Thursday's debate – in which Perry stumbled repeatedly – with the one word headline YIKES! He obviously doesn't think the rest of the field is worth considering.
Kristol based his opinion on the opinions of other political operatives and campaign insiders, who told him "they want to get along with the possible nominee and the other candidates and their supporters. They don’t want to rock the boat too much." Maybe, just maybe, he should leave the beltway for places other than Manhattan, and talk to some real people for a change.
Out here in America, I see a lot of people who very much want to rock the boat. We're sick of the media telling us what the media thinks we need to hear and not one word more, we're sick of the same old crap from the same old politicians and we're sick of the media not doing its job.
How many commentators told their audiences last week that when Barack Obama stood underneath the I-71/I-74 bridge over the Ohio River from Kentucky to Cincinnati that the bridge doesn’t need repair but already is in the advanced planning stages for complete replacement that is scheduled to start in 2015? Outside of Neil Cavuto name me one. If you know of another I add the caveat they have to have said it in a voice louder than a whisper.
That bridge is obsolete, carrying double the traffic that was anticipated when it was designed in the 1950s and a massive replacement project that includes miles of rebuilt Interstate highways in both states was well in the works before Obama found out about it. Did you know that … other than reading it in the column I wrote about it last week? Ever wonder what else the media isn’t telling us?
I have a different point of view than Kristol about the debate and the straw poll. After hearing Herman Cain's comments on how to help businesses, Michelle Bachmann state the obvious about what constitutes the Fair Share the government should take from our earnings – nothing – to some excellent insights on foreign affairs and federal spending from Newt Gingrich, an admirable effort by Santorum to not be relegated to also-ran status by the media, Ron Paul's unique and accurate views on the Constitution, not to mention humor from Gary Johnson and international expertise from Jon Huntsman my one-word headline would be HOORAY.
Hooray for the GOP, hooray for the voters who are getting some real choices for a change, and hooray for the United States of America which in just over one year will have a real chance to bring ourselves back from the edge of ruin.
Yesterday in Florida a real poll was taken. And unlike the 1,000 or less people the media polls from anonymous sources, this one involved more than 2,600 people who identified themselves and spoke up. Herman Cain trounced the rest of the field because people are listening to him and liking what he has to say.
They don't make snide comments about whether his nine-nine-nine tax plan will work; they sit down and go over it the way he did and apparently they like what they see. He does after all have a degree in mathematics; how many political panelists can say that?
Are the DC pundits correct that his win was a backlash against Perry and Romney? Well, why didn't more people vote for the other candidates? Why was Ron Paul so far back in the pack? Or Rick Santorum, Jon Huntsman, Newt Gingrich and Michelle Bachmann?
I'll tell you one very real possibility. People voted for Herman Cain because they like Herman Cain.
So when we talk about polls, let's talk about real polls that involve real people who are asked one very simple question: As of today, who in the GOP field do you like the best to put up against Barack Hussein Obama in November, 2012?
Yesterday, very real people in Florida answered that question with an overwhelming vote for Herman Cain.
Sunday, September 25, 2011