Thoughts on Kingdom, Church, and Grace from an American living in Hong Kong

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Iowa Caucus results: My thoughts

I popped over to The Whiskey Priest (you gotta love that name) yesterday afternoon to meet up with the "Republicans Abroad"  and watch the results of the Iowa caucus live.  (Late evening in America is lunch time here in Hong Kong)

Before the caucus began I made the prediction:

1) Romney
2) Paul
3) Santorum
4) Gingrich
5) Perry

And I was pretty close with only Santorum and Paul's places switched by 3% points.  (I also called that Perry would drop out, which by retreating to Texas he pretty much did)

There were about 30-40 guys at this lunch and we took an informal poll of who was supporting who.  Almost everyone raised their hands for Romney.  There were a couple guys for Gingrich and but none of the other candidates had any supporters among the Hong Kong Republicans.

There seems to be a consensus that people living overseas have a wider perspective and are less parochial on many issues.  Romney's fiscal and personal discipline appeal to a number of us.  He's viewed as solid as opposed to "flaky."  And more importantly, he is seen as someone who can appeal across a broader audience of voters in a general election.  Essentially, he is the best chance of beating Obama.

So, why am I not supporting the other remaining candidates:

Santorum: I think this Santorum is a genuinely nice guy who projects an authenticity that is appealing.  Having said that, I don't think "he is ready for prime time."  He is to undisciplined in his campaigning and he comes with baggage of a major senate loss in 2006 as well the feeling he is the last choice of a number of failed "conservative" options in this election.

Gingrich: He's an ideas man and sometimes he gets things right, but really doesn't know how to behave in critical situations.  He will always "go off the rails" at some point as that is who he is and what is in his nature to do.  Most people realized this as well and after a momentary surge in the polls, he finds his support base vanishing.

Paul: Ron Paul has some interesting domestic spending ideas but its his foreign policy that will keep him from EVER being President of the United States.  We have spent the last 70 years building relationships that allow the projection of American power across the globe.  He'd like to call that quits, bring home our carrier fleets, our troops in Japan and South Korea, and just hunker down around the homeland.  Yes, with the tension in the South China Sea rising NOW would be a perfect time to mothball the navy...Not!

One of the Gingrich supporters at the Whiskey Priest (can you tell I just love mentioning that name again) yesterday did indicate his support for Gingrich stemmed from his inability to back Romney because of his Mormon faith.  I must admit I had read about such people...but I had never actually met one before.

See, Hong Kong is a place where one meets all kinds of different folk.


Logan said...

I'd have to take aim with your characterization of Santorum-I find Santorum to be an overly angry individual, who comes across as hateful and over the top when he speaks. True I don't like some of his views on social issues, but it isn't just that-he strikes me as being a total pr*ck.

By contrast Sam Brownback-who has essentially the same views as Santorum-always struck me as a genuinely kind person...the contrast between the two has always seemed very sharp to me.

On a non-related note, the Whiskey Priest sounds intriguing...

Michael said...

I like what I read from a CNN anchor about some Republicans' feelings right now:

"If you put a gun to my head and say Romney or Santorum, my answer will be 'Pull the trigger'".

gabriel said...

Logan- I must admit I haven't seen all that much of Santorum and know he's pretty socially conservative (Catholic) but I had't seen the angry side of him. Maybe I will if this goes farther.

Michael- I don't get what some Republicans have against Romney. Actually, the more I see him, the more I support him. He's a Republican who got elected governor or Massachusetts...that's hard to do.

Steve H. said...

Sorry guys...that last comment was me. My son was logged in on the computer. 14 yr olds...sheesh

Bob said...

Yeah, Steve, you did that just the other day on my blog, too. I thought I had another reader, then remembered Gabriel is your son's name. I knew what you had done because my 19-year-old son, David, recently did the same thing to me!

I write about politics on occasion in my online "newspaper" column and several months ago predicted that Romney, Perry and Cain would be the last ones standing! HA! I have since given up prognosticating and just observing.

That said, I think it's gotta be Romney and think he's going to have an uphill battle. If the economy improves, even a little bit, I believe we'll have four more years of President Obama.

Steve H. said...

I agree Bob...if, on the off chance, Santorum or Gingrich get the nomination, Obama has more breathing room. If the nominee is Romney, it will come down to the economy...if things are getting positive, he's back in...if they are not, it will be Romney