15 January 2008

Mitt wins Michigan

The major news networks have all called the Michigan primary for Romney. Most reports show Mitt winning 39% of the vote, and McCain taking second place with 30%.

Some interesting facts about the numbers, courtesy of a poster at Cougarboard.com:

  1. Romney will likely beat McCain by the same total number of votes that McCain got in his only victory.
  2. Romney will beat Mike Huckabee by more votes than all of Huckabee's votes from all states combined.
  3. Huckabee won 34% of the vote in Iowa, McCain won 37% of the vote in New Hampshire, Romney gets 39% of the vote in Michigan. It's not likely that anyone else will get close to 39% at least until Super Tuesday.
Now, most everyone expected a Romney win in Michigan. Shoot, his dad was governor there in the 60's. Anything less than a resounding victory, which this was, would have been a disappointment.

Taking second in Iowa and New Hampshire while winning Michigan seems to indicate Romney is resonating with voters across the board.

And honestly, the only thing people have against Mitt is his faith and a label of "flip-flopper."

Someone outline where the "flip-flopping" label comes from. I'm serious, I have yet to hear a valid argument that solidifies this claim, yet everyone and their dog is throwing it out.

Should be a bumpy ride from here to September.


Abby said...

The flip-flopping label comes from Mitt's changing stance on big-ticket political issues. He has changed his views on abortion, stem-cell research, gay rights, and some say gun control. He did not change his stance on these issues somewhat, he changed them 180 degrees. While it is entirely probable that a person can change their opinion on one or two of these issues over their lifetime, it is fairly unheard of to completely change your views on all of them within a couple of years and all since the decision to run for president.

While Mitt supporters don't consider his drastic change in views on these issues strange, those who are not ardent supporters of him find it terribly convenient: he was a liberal Republican when it served him to be elected in one of the most liberal states in the nation. However, in order to get the Republicans' presidential bid, he could not run with such a left-leaning platform and win; only conservative Republicans are able to win the bid. True enough, in a matter of a couple of years he has switched from being one of the most liberal Republicans in public office to the most conservative Republican running for the presidency. That bothers people who tend to find his motivations for such transformations rather suspect.

Brandon said...

I appreciate the response, Abby. However, I need more detail. Let's tackle abortion. Romney has always felt that abortion is wrong. While the governor of Massachusetts he never sought to overturn abortion law, true, but that's because he believed it wasn't the government's place to do so. Besides, Roe v. Wade made abortion legal. What was he supposed to do?

And yet to many people, this means he was in favor of abortion, then changed his mind.

Besides, even if he had suddenly changed his views on an issue, that's not a flip flop; it's a flip. Flip-flopping is where you change your values back and forth depending on who you're speaking to or what is politically expedient. Kerry: "I voted for the war before I voted against it." Clinton voted for the war, then spent the next few years opposing it, and now wants to take credit for the success the surge is having in Iraq.

To me, this is flip-flopping.

Abby said...

You're welcome. And thank you for not attacking me because of what I said.

Romney said "I believe that abortion should be safe and legal in this country." He also said he believed "we should sustain and support Roe v. Wade." That's different than begrudgingly supporting Roe v. Wade because he thinks there's nothing he can do about it.

Your definition of flip-flopping, "where you change your values back and forth depending on who you're speaking to or what is politically expedient," is exactly what he's done, minus the last "flip." Whether he flip-flops or just flips, if he "changes his core beliefs" on major issues like these merely to gain the favor of his target constituency at the time, it's the same concept and does not make him appear honest and reliable. He makes voters worry about which major issues he's suddenly going to change his views on once he gets elected. No one believes every politician tells the truth all the time, but it's difficult to excuse blatant pandering like that. Does he have any views at all, or just what he thinks voters want him to have? Worrisome indeed.

Brandon said...

Do you have links to the Romney quotes, Abby? It's not that I think you're making it up, it's just that I like to see facts documented.

You make valid points. It's interesting to compare President Bush to Romney on issues like these. Bush is attacked for being bull-headed and not listening to his constituency. Yet if a politician does this, he's a flip-flopper. There's a fine line to walk here.

Another comparison is that Bush is criticized for being a hick who can't speak correctly, yet Romney is criticized for being too polished and slick. You can't really win in Washington.

And these concerns, in my opinion, are trumped by the fact that Mitt flat-out knows how to get things done. He has a talent for organization, delegation, and economics. I don't worry that if elected, he'll nominate pro-choice Supreme Court Justices. I don't worry that he'll suddenly embrace communism. I don't worry that he'll abolish the Second Amendment.

If you think he would, that's a good reason to vote against him.

Abby said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cFMdK0TWtks&NR=1 and http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2007/12/18/romney-shrugs-off-photo-s_n_77415.html

That's basically what I've seen. If you can provide something different, I would genuinely like to see it because I'd hate to think he's not as sturdy in his beliefs as he appears to be given all the evidence I've seen.

I've also noted the hypocricy of the American voters in general. However, I think it really comes down to this: voters want a president who is willing to admit he was wrong if a policy or decision fails or harms the country. They do not want a president who apologizes for his core beliefs depending on the latest polls and changes them as he would a policy that isn't working. If his core beliefs aren't "working" for the country, too bad. America can suck it up and not reelect him. If his policies aren't working for America, they better be changed until they do.

This is what Bush has been criticized for. He refuses to change policy, despite new evidence to suggest it isn't working. He believes people are asking him to change a core belief, which naturally no one has the right to ask someone else to change just because they don't care for it. He does not realize that his policies don't count as a his individual truths; they're only decisions that can be shifted and adjusted and no one will think him a weaker man.

Someone has every right to change their core beliefs, but those are usually things that remain constant throughout large chunks of a person's life, if not their entire life. To reportedly change several core beliefs at once, and all suspiciously when trying to get elected by folks who happen to share those new core beliefs, is not necessarily a good thing and naturally should be put under the microscope of those searching for the best candidate.