Surge, Crash & Burn: Tracking the 2012 Republican Race

As we approach the end of 2011, the race for the Republican candidacy for President in 2012 has become quite jumbled as no clear-cut candidate retains large leadership margins in the polls. With two events approaching that clearly begin to lay out the popular feelings of the Republican voters, candidates have been rushing to campaign in key states and tighten up their hold on key demographics and age groups.

Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney begin to duke it out as polls suggest they are the frontrunners. Image and photo credit taken from: CNN.com

These two events, being the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primary, are two events covered widely by the media and could be crucial for a streaking candidate. Initial polls in Iowa and New Hampshire have begun to surface all-the-while pushing the work of the campaign staffs of the GOP candidates into overtime.
To break down the race more specifically, a few names may be important to know and how their campaigns have been trending. Herman Cain, amid more allegations and the claim of a 14 year extra-marital affair is “re-assessing” the validity of his campaign, and sources say, may be close to calling it quits. The one time leader of local and national polls, Cain tanked quickly as the sexual harassment charges began to spread. Jumping on the opportunity of a possible Cain exit, former Utah governor Jon Huntsman was quick to attack the Cain campaign, telling the Boston Globe, “You’ve got to be re-considering [the effectiveness of the campaign] just based on how we have lost focus on the issues that really do matter.”
Newt Gingrich, the well spoken former Speaker of the House, has really been surging in the past few weeks, and the latest campaign news comes from his quest to campaign hard in South Carolina, a state he sees as pivotal in the 2012 race. After making it clear that no one has won the GOP nomination in the last 30 years without taking South Carolina, Gingrich noted that with the good turnout, things are looking bright for him there, and throughout the South. National polls even suggest that Gingrich is beating Mitt Romney in a majority of the recent polls. Meanwhile, fellow Republican colleagues have been aggressively attacking his stance on immigration and idea of “amnesty” to illegal immigrants in attempts to obtain that top Republican spot. Knowing that the attacks come with the territory of being the leader, Gingrich downplayed all the comments and has continued to look forward to his hopeful debates with President Obama in 2012. Some suggest that Gingrich would be suited to fair well against the President in one-on-one debate, but the bigger question mark would come from the disparity between the candidates in campaign finance, as the President is noted as having a billion dollars ready to invest in the 2012 race.
Amongst the Republican polling, the surging Gingrich, the falling Cain and desperate Huntsman and Bachmann, Ron Paul still hangs tough in the race. Paul followers continue to claim that there is a serious media bias set against the Texas Congressman, not giving him ample attention in the race when some polls have placed him in a comfortable second place. In the Iowa poll, Paul only trailed Gingrich in the race and even beat the longtime hopeful Mitt Romney. Having won or placed nicely in a number of straw polls and independent polls lately, Ron Paul cannot be forgotten about. Radical in what he wants changed in the government, the 76 year old continues to be more appealing to the American youth. Ron Paul Holiday Campaign Programs have hundreds of youths campaigning door-to-door for the Congressman, and as the primaries approach, its evident we’ll see Paul with a nice following.
As we sit in a waiting game until heavy primary season, only speculation can suggest which candidate will take a demanding lead before the Republican National Convention. But key flaws in the Cain campaign surely spell doom for the former pizza CEO and small following may soon spell doom for Jon Huntsman, Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann. The Minnesota Congresswoman continues to claim to be the most conservative candidate in the race but she has been a mere side-note in many of the recent polls. An apparent media blackout of Ron Paul news has led many to be unaware that the candidate still sits strong in the race and Newt Gingrich is still riding his upward surge that started a few weeks ago. All things equal, it’s safe to assume a Romney versus Gingrich primary may come down to a hair and cut close, but in mid 2012, Obama versus Gingrich debates will shake the American political world as the former Speaker takes the nomination and begins to campaign for his seat in the White House.
Image taken from: CNN.com

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