Gingrich support “collapses” in Iowa; Ron Paul in the lead — for now

I don’t know how often I’ll be posting about the national elections, but I’m fascinated by the waxing and waning fortunes of the candidates in the GOP field. As others’ poll numbers rise and then fall, there’s Romney hovering steadily.

Now there’s this from Public Policy Polling: Paul takes lead as Gingrich collapses in Iowa. A snippet:

Newt Gingrich’s campaign is rapidly imploding, and Ron Paul has now taken the lead in Iowa. He’s at 23% to 20% for Mitt Romney, 14% for Gingrich, 10% each for Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann, and Rick Perry, 4% for Jon Huntsman, and 2% for Gary Johnson.

Gingrich has now seen a big drop in his Iowa standing two weeks in a row. His share of the vote has gone from 27% to 22% to 14%. And there’s been a large drop in his personal favorability numbers as well from +31 (62/31) to +12 (52/40) to now -1 (46/47). Negative ads over the last few weeks have really chipped away at Gingrich’s image as being a strong conservative- now only 36% of voters believe that he has ‘strong principles,’ while 43% think he does not.

Gary Johnson?

Anyway, FiveThirtyEight also now finds Paul in the lead, largely on the basis of this PPP poll.

If Paul really does look to be the winner in Iowa and to be more competitive, the national media and the national electorate will take a closer look at him. And that will be bad news for Dr. Paul, as he is forced again to explain the frequently racist and homophobic statements in newsletters published under his name. See The Company Ron Paul Keeps in The Weekly Standard, which includes:

“Order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks,” read a typical article from the June 1992 “Special Issue on Racial Terrorism,” a supplement to the Ron Paul Political Report. Racial apocalypse was the most persistent theme of the newsletters; a 1990 issue warned of “The Coming Race War,” and an article the following year about disturbances in the Adams Morgan neighborhood of Washington, D.C., was entitled “Animals Take Over the D.C. Zoo.” Paul alleged that Martin Luther King Jr., “the world-class philanderer who beat up his paramours,” had also “seduced underage girls and boys.” The man who would later proclaim King a “hero” attacked Ronald Reagan for signing legislation creating the federal holiday in his name, complaining, “We can thank him for our annual Hate Whitey Day.”

No conspiracy theory was too outlandish for Paul’s endorsement. One newsletter reported on the heretofore unknown phenomenon of “Needlin’,” in which “gangs of black girls between the ages of 12 and 14” roamed the streets of New York and injected white women with possibly HIV-infected syringes. Another newsletter warned that “the AIDS patient” should not be allowed to eat in restaurants because “AIDS can be transmitted by saliva,” a strange claim for a physician to make.

Paul has claimed that he didn’t even know what was actually written in his own newsletters, but there’s no chance that a candidate with statements like this in his past — and with a host of economic ideas that are far outside mainstream economic thinking — could win a general election.

Meanwhile, in other interesting news from Iowa, the Des Moines Register endorsed Mitt Romney.

5 comments for “Gingrich support “collapses” in Iowa; Ron Paul in the lead — for now

  1. sarah ginsberg
    December 20, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    What statements in his past lead you to believe he is responsible for these words? You honestly think a man in his position would approve of what was written? The linked article is rife with flagrant and utter lies.

    But way to pick up the old debunked corporate media distortions and run with them. The status quo is terrified to actually confront real issues with a man that bases his philosophy on principle…one that doesn’t have anything to do with races or groups, but with individuals. But keep championing the mainstream Keynesians as their “economic thinking” sends us into social cataclysm.

    Does Mr. Morris listen to all the cool bands you like and write about?

    • bill dawers
      December 20, 2011 at 3:45 pm

      The newsletters came out under his name for about a decade. I’m sure we’ll get more details on that timeline from a variety of media sources as people take a closer look at them. Check out this piece from The Atlantic today:

      If Dr. Paul doesn’t come up with some credible ways to explain these statements, his popularity will plummet even among his diehard supporters. That’s my prediction.

  2. sarah ginsberg
    December 20, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    so let’s say ron paul is a bigoted racist…his voting record, all the speeches he’s given the last 30 years are all totally opposed to his own beliefs. let’s say paul is a racist…but then contrast that fact with the racist “war on drugs” and the racist justice system that sends minorities to prison decidedly more often and for much longer than whites. Where does he exercise all this racism. The racist Ron Paul would put an end to systematic racism…he must be “batshit insane” like the neocons say since he acts against his conscience so often.

    Kirchick manufactured the hit piece 4 years that rehashed this 20 year old nonsense. He never wrote them, didn’t know about them until years after they were written, since he was practicing medicine full time and there was an independent, paid editor managing it… and he speaks nothing like that. More importantly, while those may have been an issue before they were debunked when he was returning to Congress and people didn’t know him, he has been in the public eye for 22 years now, and his record and extensive library and youtube font of appearances and speeches are entirely unblemished by anything remotely approaching racism.

    i’m sorry, but his supporters are going nowhere. When you base your philosophy on the nonaggression principle then from there the bright, vast and everlasting lights of reason take over. It cannot be reasoned by any of Ron Paul’s supporters that racism is acceptable, therefore Ron Paul’s supporters know the man is not a racist, because he espouses the same principle.

    RP said, “Libertarianism is the enemy of all racism, because racism is a collectivist idea. You don’t have rights because you’re gay, woman or minority. You have rights because you’re an individual.”

    Austin NAACP President Nelson Linder, who has known Ron Paul for 20 years, unequivocally dismissed charges that the Congressman was a racist in light of recent smear attempts, and said the reason for him being attacked was that he was a threat to the establishment.!

    did ron paul call MLK a pedophile. the accuser debunks his own accusations:

    actually, maybe you’re right-

    • bill dawers
      December 20, 2011 at 5:29 pm

      I agree with many of Ron Paul’s policy positions, and I admire his stand against our involvement in Iraq from the outset. I’m just saying that he has not adequately explained how 1) someone working for him could publish such statements for so long and without his knowledge or 2) who this writer was. Do you know? Has he said? If he’s going to be a serious contender, he’s going to have to address these answers to a nationwide audience in the coming weeks.

      These newsletters may be old news to you and to other core supporters, but they’re not old news to the vast majority of Americans. I had heard vaguely of his newsletters off and on for a year or so, but I never looked at any of the PDFs of them until the past week.

      Happy holidays.

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