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  • November 14, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    I was pleased to see Michael Barbaro's big New York Times story yesterday about Romney's record at Bain -- because I've been looking for an excuse to trot out one of my favorite Mitt anecdotes, which remains sadly overlooked.

    The story comes from the Boston Globe's seven-part 2007 series on the life of Romney. In Part 3, William Bain tells Romney that he and the Bain partners have chosen him to head a new spinoff company, Bain Capital:

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  • November 04, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    I generally don't bother criticizing Andrew C. McCarthy, who as I have previously written is, for reasons beyond my ken, treated by movement conservatives as an eminent thought leader rather than an embarassment to be hidden from proper society. But I'll do so today as a hook to talk about what I think is a potential danger for the GOP in this Herman Cain sexual harassment story.

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  • November 02, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    In this week's issue of the Boston Phoenix -- in print tomorrow, online now -- I analyze Mitt Romney's contributions and find that three-quarters of his high-dollar donors from 2007 have deserted him in his second run.

    In fact, of those who gave a large contribution in the first week of that first Presidential campaign -- those you would imagine to be his strongest supporters -- only 40% have contributed to him this year.

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  • November 02, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner made it official this morning, setting the state's Presidential primary for January 10. That's one week after the Iowa caucuses, and will be followed by South Carolina on Jan. 21, then Florida, Nevada, and the rest of the pack.

    The final shakeout of the scheduling dance is, in my opinion, to reinforce what I've said all along: Iowa's religious conservatives will be a huge key to the GOP nomination.

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  • November 01, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    I have suggested for a long time that Mitt Romney could have a problem in the 2012 election cycle with his connections to the world of high finance. It's not just his own personal history with Bain Capital, but his close connections with people who make a lot of money by moving around large sums of money. Ever since the big collapse of 2008, such people are not exactly well-loved by the American people.

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  • October 10, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    Mitt Romney really cares a lot about illegal immigrants, when it gives him an opening against his chief political rival. He's pounding away at the issue lately, because Texas Governor Rick Perry, much like Texas Governor George W. Bush before him, has a relatively squishy record on harsh treatment of the undocmented. Likewise, four years ago Romney hammered on the topic furiously against US Senator John McCain, co-author of failed legislation dubbed "amnesty lite" by conservatives.

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  • October 06, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    There weren't a whole lot of big-money institutional Republican types disappointed by Sarah Palin's announcement that she will not seek the Presidency in 2012. But there were reportedly quite a few of those folks trying to lure Chris Christie into the race.

    What I haven't seen much of is the suggestion that this may have a little something to do with the GOP's problem on gay rights.

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  • September 23, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    "Jesse Wood" asks:

    What do you think this weeks New Hampshire polls mean for Jon Huntsman?

    Nothing, and everything. Nothing for winning the nomination, which he has no chance of doing, and everything for his odds of preserving his campaign through the New Hampshire primary.

    The poll, conducted by our friends at Suffolk U for WHDH, has the previously pulseless Huntsman leaping to a third-place 10% among likely Granite State GOP primary voters.

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  • September 22, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    Capital punishment has been back in the news lately, first with the Presidential-debate-audience applause for Texas Governor Rick Perry's lengthy record of allowing executions, and then in the protests over last night's execution of Troy Davis. I will post later on the broader issues sparked by the Davis case, but first I want to use the opportunity to note Mitt Romney's intriguing history on the issue -- and to suggest a question that I would like to see posed to him at tonight's debate.

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  • September 19, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    I did not actually see the Floyd Mayweather-Victor Ortiz fight Saturday, but I know a good political metaphor.

    According to reports, Mayweather was leading the bout through the early rounds. An increasingly desparate Ortiz began trying to head-butt Mayweather, eventually connecting. The referee stopped the action to take a point away from Ortiz for the dirty move, at which point Ortiz made a grand show of conciliation, repeatedly reaching out to hug Mayweather -- and was still doing so when the ref called time in, at which point Mayweather took advantage of Ortiz's open arms to clock him twice, knocking him out.

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  • September 13, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    Mitt Romney and Rick Perry have something in common as campaigners: they are both much better on offense than defense. Perry, as both New Guy and Frontrunner, is naturally getting targeted these days, not just by Mitt but also by the various candidates striving for relevance. I thought Perry was so-so handling that in last night's debate; not good, but not bad enough to send people fleeing for the exits.

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  • September 07, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    As I always say, to judge a candidate's performance you need to consider what they were trying to accomplish. Tonight was the start of what will surely be a series of engagements in which Mitt Romney and Rick Perry battle for the Republican Presidential nomination. As I see it: Republican voters probably like Perry better, but may think that Romney is the better bet against Obama.

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  • August 24, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    Let's take a moment to appreciate how wise I was when I wrote back in April:

    Romney's best hope of winning the nomination may actually be... to patiently stay the course as he falls from the front-runner's perch, working and waiting for the voters to come back to him....

    To voters, front-runners are the steady girlfriend they leave to play the field.

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  • August 04, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    As I mentioned in my previous post, I have a theory about who's behind the mysterious "W Swann LLC" entity that contributed $1 million to the pro-Romney Super PAC Restore Our Future. Since A) I am sensing that the calls I made are not likely to lead to a quick confirmation, and B) I have too many other things to do before my upcoming vacation, I've decided I'll just blurt out my purely speculative theory, and let someone else try to verify or disprove it.

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  • August 04, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    When the pro-Mitt Romney "Super-PAC" Restore Our Future reported to the FEC in late July, there were a few mysteries among the big-money contributions -- but none bigger than "W Spann LLC," which contributed $1 million on April 28. There seemed to be no such company. The address given, 590 Madison Ave. in New York, is a large office tower with many occupants -- including wealthy hedge funds.

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