Monday, August 15, 2011

What does the Ames Straw Poll mean?

The TV newsies love it, it's a straight forward, simple opinion poll that can be easily comprehended by uneducated journalists. It pops Michelle Bachmann up to the top and drove out Tim Pawlenty. It brought in Rick Perry so we cannot say it limited the field much.
It doesn't really solve the Republican's candidate problem. Michelle Bachmann is too much into wedge issues (aka "social conservatism") to appeal to the independents. Up here in the Northwoods independents are 30% or more of the registrations and control the election. Independents are very accommodating to Tea Party ideas but either don't want to get mixed up in wedge issues, or they approve of gay marriage and are pro choice. Either way, Bachmann is unlikely to attract them. Most NH Republicans just want some one to beat Obama, and that means someone who can attract the independent vote.
So far Romney, despite some baggage, looks like a good bet. We don't know much about Perry except that he has created a lot of jobs in Texas. That sounds good. The Wall St Journal ran an uncomplimentary-to-Perry op-ed on Saturday. The Journal describes a Texas state economic development fund that made a lot of grants to contributors to the Perry campaign. Clearly the Journal wishes Perry would go back to Texas.

No comments: