Mitt Romney, seeing disaster unfolding in South Carolina, spent much of the past week trying to mitigate the damage by pretending he cared more about the Nevada caucus than the SC primary. Don't buy it.
Romney has been working on winning South Carolina since at least August, 2004, when he opened a state political action committee there (Commonwealth PAC South Carolina).
The picket line, that is. He'll do Jay Leno tonight, on the eve of the South Carolina and Nevada votes.
There's outrage on the conservative blogosphere over Jonah Goldberg's appearance on The Daily Show last night (mostly on Goldberg's home base, National Review Online). For those blissfully unaware, pseudo-intellectual conservative Goldberg has written a new book arguing -- I kid you not -- that liberal American politics and European fascism are one and the same thing.
The Associated Press's Glen Johnson is a terrific political reporter, as everyone in this state presumably knows. He's been on the Mitt Romney trail for a while now (and much missed locally), and has written some pretty tough, negative pieces on the former Massachusetts Gov.Well, at a press avail today, Romney tried touting that he has no lobbyists "running" his campaign -- part of his newfound anti-Washington populism message.
I recently wrote that you should look to upcoming California polls to judge the dynamics of the Democratic Presidential race going forward. Well, a new CNN/LA Times/Politico poll of the Sunshine State [Correction: Golden State, duh. But it gets a lot of sunshine, right?]. says that Clinton maintains a solid lead there over Obama, 47% to 31%.
McClatchy/MSNBC poll in Michigan has Romney ahead with 30%, leading McCain (22%) and Huckabee (17%).
Detroit Free Press poll is very similar: Romney 27%; McCain 22%; Huckabee 16%.
--Detroit News reports on a new poll showing Tuesday's Michigan primary a statistical dead heat between Mitt Romney and John McCain, with Mike Huckabee trailing. That's the best news Romney's had in a while; other polls (Mitchell Interactive, American Research Group) have McCain ahead there.
--The State, the biggest and most important newspaper in South Carolina, endorses John McCain
This has long been in the rumor/feeler stages, but today the AP reports that Jim Ogonowski really will run for US Senate against John Kerry.
Ogo turned out to not be a very good candidate when he ran for Congress last year in a special election, losing by a solid margin to Niki Tsongas. He didn't raise much money, never gained a strong debating presence, and couldn't seem to translate his personal story into a campaign theme.
The other candidates, in their effort to destroy Mitt Romney, have decided it's time for the next phase of their strategy: ignoring him. They went after each other far more than in previous debates -- Fred Thompson aggressively pounded at Mike Huckabee, while John McCain and Rudy Giuliani pointed out a few "contrasts" between them -- but left Romney alone.