The Up-Close-and-Personal Candidate? A Thing of the Past

Even in early-voting states, where voters have long taken pride in their ability to meet candidates in homes and cafes, presidential contenders are less likely to be seen this year.

Comments: 104

  1. Of course they're appearing on Fox interviews so much more - some of them were paid Fox "contributors" before their campaigns became "official," and once the nomination is wrapped up will go back to being paid Fox "analysts" or some such & maybe even get their own Fox shows like Mike Huckabee. Puppets & puppet-master.

    Of course, it's only mildly worse than the parade of ex-general paid to be network "military analysts" commenting on the wars they've just left or that their brass buddies are still fighting.

    And nothing is worse than the revolving door of politicians & staffers who go back & forth as lobbyists or "analysts" for big corporations, trade groups & the highly politicized so-called think tanks.

    The Founders are flipping in their graves more often than hamburgers on a 4th of July barbeque grill. Some "democracy" we've turned into.

  2. Considering Newt's red complexion, using a blue gel on the lights when he is being interviewed will give his face a very purplish tone.

    Are they trying to say something with this arrangement?

  3. How many of those candidates have been on Fox's payroll in the past 12 months? Every one except for Perry, Romney, and Huntsman?

    I don't care what your politics are...if you have ever accepted money in exchange for contributing to that fascist propaganda machine, you should be disqualified for national public office.

    By allowing broadcasting to pass for vetting, we are letting ideologues and charlatans slip ever closer to having true power.

    I want to see a ruthless panel of global economists rake every single one of these poseurs over the coals on national television, not the kid-glove "let's just all agree Obama's the devil" tripe they get away with on FOX. Anyone who survives that may have a fighting chance of taking on forces like China, minority party subterfuge, a global economic collapse, and trying to take down Obama in a debate.

    Obama's been hardened into a tireless, bat-wielding street fighter, as one unlucky GOP softie is going to find out soon.

  4. The most blatant hypocrisy of all for Faux News is refusing to take their own supporters to task for committing an act of treason to many Americans, by signing away their oaths of office to Grover Norquist. To think, this anti-America, greed merchants has the power to bring an entire Republican Congress under his wing by forcing them to sign an oath to HIM to never raise taxes, should incite riots in this country. Imagine if Obama asked the Democrats to sign an oath to him promising never to vote for _________(fill in the blanks). The GOPbaggers would go after him like they did Clinton. What is so surprising is that there is virtually no dissent from Repubican Americans about the power of Norquist.

  5. softball team, softball players.
    Bring on the clowns.

  6. Rupert Murdoch is like an evil villian on a bad 007 movie. Now he is trying to convince millions of american's to vote against their own interest and elect a reptile for president. Faux news is just unbelievable.

  7. Millions of Americans have voted against their own self interest for the past 30 years.
    Not likely to change any time soon.

  8. People love a show and that's why it's on TV. Fox specializes in the lowest common denominator--another crowd-pleaser. But the real show is behind the scenes--the Wall streeters, the Health Industry, Defense magnates, etc.-- These folks run the show and our politicians are mere puppets who strut and fret their hour upon the stage and are heard no more...

  9. Why would Republicans want to take a chance out in the real world and brush up against reality? The sterile safety of the Fox News echo chamber allows for the perpetuation of a universe of lies upon which Republicans have based their beliefs, including the delusion that most people agree with them. Healthcare kills! Deregulation is the only thing holding back the economy! Tax cuts for the rich will create jobs! Climate change isn't happening! The Republicans running for president are ALL qualified to be the leader of the free world!

  10. Out of all those interviews Cain and Gingrich have had, how many were NOT on Fox? I suspect very few.

  11. According to the article, the 63 Cain interviews and 52 Gingrich appearances were all on Fox. It still would be interesting to know how many televised interviews they have had elsewhere over the same period.

  12. Faux News is dispensing the Kool Aid?

  13. I have been puzzles as to why Jon Huntsman has lagged the republican field so badly. I guess the answer is that he hasn't appeared enough on Faux News. He is the most reasonable of all the unreasonables in this race.

  14. You are right Tom. Even though Huntsman has not mounted the savviest of campaigns the way the media has ignored him is troubling. He would have raised the bar a little. The same can be said of Paul though after a not so close read he is not the most reasonable of all the unreasonables, but he's got some entertaining lines. And has some positions that drive most republicans nuts, brings a smile.

  15. Mr. Huntsman is way too Presidential and that is held against him by the RNC. He is wealthy so he doesn't succomb to threats by the RNC of cutting off his money supply for campaigning. He is authentically intelligent, worldly, gentlemanly, has only one wife whom he treats well, and is a know patriot who being a good citizen agreed to represent our nation as the Ambassador to China. This is something rightwingers cannot accept. Any cooperation with the leader of America is anathema to them and close to apocolytic.
    Mr. Huntsman is way too American for them.

  16. Gingrich is being interviewed by Hannity.
    Don't they both work for Faux (Fox) News?
    What a joke.

  17. What a foolish article. I would rather have millions of people watch all the candidates debate and call each other out, than 1 of them show up smiling at a coffee shop in Iowa for photo-ops.

  18. But networks are people, my friend.

  19. Obama needs a strong and viable opposition. If God really has chosen America as the promised land after the next election Bernie Sanders will be all that is left between the Democrats and unanimous consent.

  20. Bernie Sanders is great, isn't he?

  21. While I've always believed that far too much importance is placed on the New Hampshire primary and the Iowa caucuses - both with nowhere near the voting group size of more populous voting states, it seems inevitable, with the ubiquity of broadcast, cable, and internet channels that candidates will be forced to turn to these to discuss their beliefs and platforms.

    The most sickening part of this change in campaigns are the forums candidates are using. Fox News is biased, MSNBC is biased, and the majority of internet bloggers are increasing biased. Most people, it seems, use a single source for information.

    Shouldn't voters have a neutral (or at least balanced) source for information? And shouldn't those who have worked for a particular station or information source be barred from the soft-pitch questions from their co-staff?

    Following several news and editorial sources, I rarely believe I'm hearing about the same candidates...

  22. First of all, this is not debate. If it's on Fox, it's a dog and pony show and Sean Hannity is one of the slimiest dogs. This type of insulation from the people by the GOP candidates is a very big red flag that the Daddy Party doesn't want your input, doesn't want your opinion, definitely doesn't want your questions or criticisms. They just want you to do as your told and not as they do, none of which is anything new. I am truly astonished at the number of ordinary, hard-working, decent people who listen to the lies and believe what they are told even when it flies in the face of their own experiences. It's not What's the Matter With Kansas anymore; it's a national epidemic.

  23. Aw gee, he looks so cute. Oh wait. Isn't that the guy that went after Clinton for having an affair while he was having an affair?

  24. I think it is GREAT! Especially for FOX News, since they give a more BALANCED approach to the politics of today, and you can compare them to FDR's Fireside Chats via Radio in his day. Fox News reaches a far greater and more savvy audience than those days, and anything you can find in "Cafes".

  25. Even though the modern world lends itself to sound bites that allow candidates to duck issues and avoid substance, certain political realities still bleed through. The Republican primary debates are a good example. Know-nothings still come across as know-nothings, ambition without gravitas still sticks out like a sore thumb, and unsavory character is still a picture worth a thousand words as the debate camera zooms in on sweaty brows and darting eyes.

    Change is inevitable. The trick with keeping pace is to stay informed, and that’s the real problem. The low information voter, who only wants to expose him/herself to opinions and information that reaffirm an already codified worldview, has become the greatest danger to modern democracy. And who’s to say how much the media has molded the viewer and how much is the other way around. Good ratings require giving people what they want.

    The only answer is for citizens to display citizenship: to insist on the truth, even when it might be unpalatable. A good start might be to acknowledge that in a democracy, people get the government they deserve. The 99%ers have it right.

  26. "A good start might be to acknowledge that in a democracy, people get the government they deserve. "

    In todays US Democracy, we get the government the 1% can afford to buy!

  27. I just realized that the Republican field is just like the Kardashians. They are paid to say stupid things on television. They only care about posing and being rich. At least two of them are more famous for being promiscuous than they are for accomplishing anything. And they are imploding in public because of they're actions and their mouths.

  28. It would be helpful if serious news outlets put quotation marks around "Fox News", which exists for the sole purpose of duping gullible, "low information" voters to vote against their own economic interests. Fox offers only pure, undiluted far right propaganda, a tool very successfully used by those, like Murdoch and Ailes,who have spent decades rigging the economy on behalf of the plutocrats and oligarchs hiding behind today's Republican Party. A recent survey found Fox viewers had less actual knowledge of current events than those who watch no news at all. Yet the Times, and other actual news sources, continues to treat Fox as if it were a legitimate news source. It isn't, and you debase those doing actual journalism by pretending it is.
    This unabashed hucksterism is exactly why Republican candidates have gone to using Fox as a megaphone to present their ideas, which are the same discredited "ideas" which have been wrecking the middle class for thirty years, and crashed the economy in 2008. They realize their distortions and misrepresentations will not be challenged, no matter how brazen or ridiculous the lie. The result is a dangerously misinformed public which now constitutes almost half of the US electorate- the same people who don't believe in science, evolution, global warming, a progressive tax system, or a sane health care system. The majority couldn'ty find Iraq on a map or name the three branches of government, but they do "know" that President Obama is a socialist, that Fanny & Freddie caused the real estate bubble, that Social Security is contributing to the deficit, and that the defense budget must be protected because we aren't spending enough on our 350,000 consultants who now outnumber those actually serving. We are in very dangerous territory, and things will only get worse unless the media starts calling out the charlatans and crooks.

  29. That is a great comment Ron. You have all my fingers and thumbs up for your truth against those who deceive.

  30. Fox News is an oxymoron.

  31. Newt Gingrich and his vacuous, blank-eyed trophy wife is universally despised by women. He would be a disaster for the Republicans!

  32. That's why I'm backing the (Democratic) dream ticket: Gingrich and Cain in 2012

    Close behind: Romney/Bachmann

  33. As someone who has never lived in Iowa or New Hampshire, though it is a lovely place, or any other part of this nonsense of a few sample states determining who becomes president, I find the end of this process dubious. From his, we got President Carter and all the rest after him. These people incredibly believe they are great leaders.

    I have no idea how to replace this process, but we elect people who learn only slowly on the job and who act stupidly in such ways as taking us out of the Olympics or invading Iraq.

  34. I am a native of New Hampshire. I know that lots of people think we are too small and too white to be of any relevance in presidential primary politics. But I want to point out that the people here have always taken our "first in the nation" role very very seriously. We tend to be a well-informed and independent electorate. Our small size has always meant that candidates could get up close and personal with a lot of voters in a fairly short time. It's been a privilege to be in relatively small venues exchanging questions and answers with people who want to be our country's leader.

  35. You have been lucky to get to see the candidates and talk to them, but that does not mean republican voters in Iowa have any intelligence of their own. As the article states too many republicans disregard all news and information as liberal if not the words of right wing propaganda on Fox.

  36. Of course FOX (Murdoch) is a so-called "fair" messenger of news? It's nothing but a slimy network only to brainwash us to vote for far rightwing politicians. Politicians who have never come up with any idea how to get our country out of the mess they have created themselves to begin with.
    I hope people will see through this misleading news and vote for those who are not polarizing this Congress.
    Maybe we should have the FBI investigate if Murdoch did or still is "hacking" into private lives of anyone who does not agree with them. They had to stop publishing the "News of the World" in the UK where the Government took appropriate action against the extensive "hacking" Murdoch performed there. The same scandal as happened there could be going on in the US as well.
    Murdoch owns radio, TV and many newspapers (i.e. the Wall Street Journal) in the US and influence our citizens through these media.
    Dirty oh so dirty!

  37. Tiffany's, a new Catholic wife, a cruise, Fox New York, well you got to get out and pretend you are an every day guy who takes a bath, has a job, and wants to meet with the locals as long as they washed their hands before entering the "Town Hall" meeting.

  38. Considering that Newt is a love cheat and a liar who obfuscates, it certainly will be interesting as to how will the American people deal with his candidacy if and when he gets the nomination. Will the bad economy trumps an angry twister of the truth, we will see.

  39. I dunno. So much venom with little substance. Should I be upset Newtie took a job while out of politics as an analyst on Fox news or as a quasi-lobbyist? Hmmmmmm.... no. He buys jewels for his wife and takes her on cruises in the Greek Islands.... all men should be so good to their wives. At least he never lied under oath to a federal grand jury or lied while pointing at me in the Rose garden... or...or dis barred from practicing law in the state of Arkanasas like president dirtbag. I wonder why nobody writes about Barry O's close, close friend Anthony Rezko getting sentenced to 11 years in the federal clink? Truth hurts ... don't it? You people are pathetic... whiners that can sense you're gonna see Barry get his butt stomped in the presidential debates if Newtie gets the nomination. No president looking overmatched and outclassed. Amateur hour is over after 4 years! Time for Newt to take back the keys to the White House and clean up the mess from the previous tenant. Newt, WE STILL LUVYA IN NORTH GEORGIA !! Go Baby Go!!

  40. Did you forget that Newt was fined $300k by Congress and had to resign?

  41. I'll bet you also wonder why Clinton is loved the world over and Bush and Cheney cannot step foot in Europe for fear of being arrested as war criminals and taken before the World Court. I'll bet you wonder why in spite of everything the Republicans tried to do to throw him out of office, he still became the best leader we've seen since Eisenhower. He did what no Repubican has done, he BALANCED his budget. It says a lot about your own lack of morality that you would vote for Newt. I hope his latest helmet headed wife doesn't get sick like the first two, because you know where she'll land, on her keister at Newt's curb. Besides, Newt is just about the meanest most self involved jerk we've seen. Worse than even Palin.

  42. Why would anyone want to get "up close and personal" with that ilk running for the Republican nomination?

  43. Yes, I would agree that the emphasis on television of course distracts potential voters from close scrutiny of the candidates' actual policy proposals. Television makes the race for president into somewhat of a popularity contest and a beauty pageant at the same time. How do candidates like Ron Paul, who write eloquently and with concrete policy proposals in mind, continue to command such little media attention? Why is he, for example, not even mentioned in this article, nor present in any of the current articles in the Times even though he is basically tied for first place with Gingrich, Romney and Cain (the last of whom is waning of late)? Is it because his "suit doesn't fit right" and he has wrinkles?

    A discerning voter should learn to look beyond the superficialilty of looks, and even party affiliation, to get down to the substance of policy. Ron Paul's policies are the only ones backed up by years of studying market economics, and thus his ideas are the only ones that really solve the deeper structural problems we face. Yet he is ignored.

  44. So Faux (Fox) News is determining our next Republican candidate. In a swarm of wannabe's should Newt or a Mormon be a candidate, it's the nation's loss.

  45. Not all Mormons are alike. Huntsman has embraced traditions from several religions. Miitens was a bishop or something.

  46. Gene, #18, I swear milk shot out of my nose when I read your comment. Whether you actually came up with that comment or just relayed what a Fox PR flack submitted to you is irrelevant. What's relevant is how Fox thinks people will actually believe this drivel. Newt Gingrich/Sean Hannity and FDR. Yeah, just about the same. Right.

  47. Primaries in this day and age with the media preponderance, have become the reality entertainment shows du jour. The current line up consists of fools and phonies, with an occasional talent thrown in all highlighted by prime time debates and pundits who put even Simon Cowell to shame.

    The distractions and revelations are just perfect for a disaffected and economically struggling audience who do not want to probe any deeper than an unchallenging television hour every so often. Ignorance of the facts is aided and abetted by ranting radio commentators and big business supported SuperPACS which flourish in creating fiction for big "ratings" with their uneducated viewers.

    The charade of the best Republican winning is myth. It's the candidate who purports to be the purest, the fiercest, the smartest, and the "most talented" who'll win the "American Idol-atry" prize!

  48. How about a nice happy, soft , and cuddly interview by NPR for the Liberals?

  49. How about staying on topic?

  50. No problem with that. NPR has all kinds of rightwingers on their program and I've listened to them. Perhaps you should too. Or is your comment a put down because NPR does what Faux Propaganda refuses to do, present something that is honest?

  51. Hard to imagine that more exposure to Gingrich, Cain, Perry & the realities of their hypocritical lives would help their candidacies; and when will national TV aggressively quiz Romney about his Mormon beliefs and practices--are Americans ready to elect someone who believes in golden plates, holy underwear, browbeating life-threatened pregnant mothers against abortion, Jesus as the physical son of God, politically expedient "revelations" vs polygamy when Utah wanted to become a state and in favor of blacks' potential salvation when BYU needed players of color to compete nationally, etc., etc.?

  52. Do you really think that many mainstream judeo/christian beliefs are not as strange as some Mormon beliefs. Gold plates v stone tablets,
    walking on water, turning water into wine, seven fishes & loaves of bread, polygamy in the OT, virgin birth, burning bush that talks. Should I go on?

  53. Tell us about the magic underpants? What is that? Can we all get some?

  54. Of course the GOP candidates don't want to make personal appearances; they're so...personal. They'd like to stay as far away from the American public as they can, both literally and figuratively.

  55. I'll take this moment to say Newt is emblematic of a dysfunctional congress.....he's a career politician which, by definition is a lobbyist. He's the original obstructionist, and proud co-architect of chiseled-in-stone, bitter to the bone partisanship. As such, he is complete disservice to the governed people. Mentioning the fact that he tops it all off with ditching his wife in the midst of her cancer illness is not on topic, but does bespeak his lack of moral character.

  56. If you get "Up-Close-and-Personal" with at least ONE of the candidates, you just might get felt up!

  57. Oh you kid! Beautiful!

  58. I am disturbed that any of the Republican candidates, would believe that any Amerifcan with a sense of respect for the office of the Presidency would want to vote for any of these candidates. None of us have led perfect lives, but these individuals have proved time and time again with their continued scandals, horendous flubs, lack of integrity, and seemingly lack of understanding of international affairs, the capability to hold this office. I shudder at the thought of any of them representing the United States as our leader. What kind of respect would we receive and how would we be perceived as a country? Are they the best the Republican party can come up with? And why do they think that the voters should just accept them simply because they want to be President ?

  59. Jon Huntsman is the only sane one in the bunch.He has the best record as Governor, Worked for 4 presidents. Ambassador 2X. Trade ambassador, Good grasp of foreign policy. His economic policy was endorsed by the WSJ. He's too conservative for me in several areas, but he's not off the wall.

  60. Regardless of how much spin FOX puts on the GOP stable, all these candidates are flawed and none presidential. Just "preaching to the choir."

  61. The Republicans fear facing the voters' anger.

  62. Remember this was the tactic that got George W. Bush such applause. None of his campaign fud raisers were open to the public; few - if any - of his speeches were in the public domain - mostly recorded with a pack of cheerleaders in the audience.

  63. ask the evangelical right how they can support a known, flaunting adulterer? and keep asking. why not? or is it not fair game? is it character assassination to talk about what actually happened? get a grip, america. the republicans have scraped the bottom of the barrel and are trying to sell it to you, after making sure the nation was dysfunctional. lovely group of fellow, all of them.

  64. At the risk of being politically incorrect, Gingrich is currently the tallest midget in the room only because he is standing on all the other carcases.

  65. What a sad, sad day when Fox News is the arbiter of presidential candidates.

  66. What Newt did to his ex, is worse than what Cain is said to have done.! Newt is E-V-I-L..

  67. It's a sensible safety net to keep candidates physically separate from the hoi-poi.

    When our current Republican presidential candidates are "up close and personal", well, the resulting encounters tend to be really embarassing.

  68. The article noted that "[t]he contenders, even here in the early-voting states, are far more likely to make their visits on television than to ever drop by in person. "

    Well, that's sound advice. If I was up-close-and personal with any of the incredibly weak, flawed, laughable and looney 2012 Republican/Tea/Evangelical Party presidential candidates, my sanity, mental well-being and intelligence would be severely compromised.


  69. These debates are like watching America go down the tubes on the tube.
    These guys have undermined my atheism to the point of where I'm saying God help us.

  70. Ah, the "Sean Hannity & Newt Gingrich Show". A fake "news" show starring a phony, dumb-as-dirt, no-nothing blowhard and a guy stupid people think sounds smart. When will Fox News be hiring a Kardashian to anchor it's 2012 election coverage, anyway?

  71. Gingrich is a Cliff Notes historian, a hillbilly Army brat who has found that being a conservative Republican pays big. He's in the business of being a Republican. No more than that.

  72. You all are so critical of the Republicans and think you are so much wiser than the candidates. I would bet you all voted for Obama, now be truthful, do you think that was a wise think to do? Has he given you a wonderful two years and eleven months of leadership? Has he been great for our country? You really made DUMB*** choices last year didn't you. OUR country is in more debt than it has ever been, because of the president you put in with all you so called wisdom. So I think I would take the log out of your own eyes before you try getting the splinter out of someone elses. By the way FOX is the only media source that tells it straight and truthful.

  73. No, I didn't vote for Obama.
    And I won't vote for him in 12 either.
    But you, Vic, have a serious problem with processing information if you lay this rotten economy at the feet of Democrats and liberals.
    For the past 30 years, both parties have done all they could to get us where we are.
    Corporations and the extremely wealthy have stolen your birhtright as an American and you won't open your eyes to see it.
    Worse, you defend them.
    Sad, sad, sad.

  74. "By the way FOX is the only media source that tells it straight and truthful."

    That statement says it all.

  75. Yes, I voted for Obama. And I will again.
    To pretend that republicans haven't had a major hand in the country's situation, is fooling oneself (and believing Fox news far too much). The simple fact that there were record amounts of fillibusters during Obama's time in office is a testement to the obstructionism that has been occuring. When Republicans openly say that their "#1 priority" is to make Obama a one term president (instead of it being to serve their constituants) indicates that they are willing to harm the country just so Obama isn't allowed to succeed.

  76. I am loving how these comments are blasting Newt and his marital issues, what were all of these same people saying about Bill Clinton?

  77. Conversely, how many of the people who were trashing Clinton are now saying Newt's private life is not an issue?

  78. Clinton is still married to the same woman. Newt is what, on wife number 3?

  79. Newt was enforcing the rule of law. Clinton, while in office, lied to federal investigators about his Oval Office transgressions. Apples to oranges analogy. Newt broke no laws, unlike Clinton.

    Newt's laundry has been out there for years. And, as we learned from the last election, the American electorate cares less about a candidate's private life.

  80. When Newt goes down as he surely will in the wake of the other 'candidates' who have risen and fallen in the polls, will Jon Hunstman then get his day in the sun or do the Republicans live in such a darkened world that there's no possibility for light and reason?

  81. Only if he dyes his hair red and paints on a big MGM Lucille Ball mouth.
    He just ain't crazy enough for the current Republican party.

  82. Mr. Huntsman is the only one who has exhibited any dignity which we should all aspire to in our Presidential candidates. He has a proven record of accomplishments, knowledge of the world around him, experience at the ambassadorial level, speaks a foreign language for God's sakes, while most of these fools cannot even conquer English. He is cosmopolitan, unabrasive, not given to blaming Obama for what the Republicans have done to this country, was a very successful two term governor, and apparently doesn't need a Faux News spin doctor to form his opinions. He even went so far as to display his absolute patriotism by agreeing to serve as a foreign ambassador because the leader of his country asked him to. I know that is anathema to the rightwing, since patriotism is their weak suit.

  83. The republicans are getting so bitter about their current crop of candidates they're making comments here on the NYT essentially blaming the democrats for these loonies.

    Instead of getting mad at the liberals, just look into the mirror. We liberals are not responsible for fakes, wackos, and luddites, and philanderers.

    I guess blaming everybody else is just being true to form.

  84. This GOP primary has been the phoniest exercise in dishonest no content politicking in modern times. My dog and cat would have done a better job as moderators. They at least would have asked real questions and insisted on an answer. Though even Republicans noticed the evasions, so the no nothings were exposed.

  85. According to some, Obama is not good at all in a one-on-one. Hence, big speeches in front of large audiences, preferably college students who must vote to get him back for four more years of the same. Of course, he saved us. It could have been worse. Does not work for me.

  86. Apparently Fox ' News ' asserts its role as GOP propaganda arm.

  87. Yes Sir and thank God for them! If it wasn't for Fox the entire nation would likely be indoctrinated to the nanny state politics of the Democrats by now.

  88. Ron Paul is not even mentioned, yet he has put a lot of retail time in Iowa and polls well there. Why does MSM continue to ignore this viable candidate?

  89. Because Ron Paul is not viable. He polls well with a tiny segment of the right wing. He has zero mainstream appeal.

  90. When will the corporate media report on Gingrich's bit of truth-telling the other day, when he said "One of the real changes that comes when you start running for President -- as opposed to being an analyst on Fox -- is I have to actually know what I'm talking about" as documented on YouTube? Better yet, when will some enterprising investigative reporter for a prominent media voice like NYT or WaPo go in depth on the Fox lies and distortions? Not like it would be hard...just go to MediaMatters, where they've done most of the work for you.

  91. This is not a "profound change in American politics" as the article suggests. It is a profound change in the Republican Party.

    Their race and their candidates have been "shaped" by Fox news into caricatures.

    As such, they cannot stand up to close inspection. Keeping them at a shouting distance has become a political necessity for all of them. This new process has winnowed out all but the fringe zealots, the moneyed, and Mitt (and who knows what Mitt stands for in this race).

  92. Another glib Fox showcase moment for Gingrich !!!!!! He is such a used car,the high mileage is showing !!!!!!!

  93. If Gingrich is a used car to you, I imagine you have a pretty good idea what Obama is to most of the country.

  94. I was a staffer on three Presidential campaigns in the 70's and 80's and the early weeks of the campaigns were always the most fun. In places like New Hampshire the voters could actually meet and talk to the candidates and have an experience of Senator so and so as a human being. This kind of personal experience is disappearing from national politics, a very sad and disturbing trend in the politics of our democracy.

  95. What's with all the bickering? Cain or Huntsman or Santorum or Bachmann or Romney or Gingrich or Perry or even Ron Paul trump OBAMA. I don't care what their character flaws are. OBAMA MUST GO NOW before he further damages this country...

  96. Yeah, I want to choose one of the absurd members of the Republican primary comedy team to run the whole ship aground--because I don't like the captain.

  97. It's hard to do any more damage than the Rebulican Administration which held the office for the previous eight years. And please be specific just what has Obama "Damaged" that cannot be traced back to GOP/Republican policy or obstructionism!

  98. Be careful. Sometimes you get what you wish for and then buyers remorse cannot undo the damage.
    That list of wanna -be's make Bush2 look like a worldly scholar. It will take generations to undo the damage that he and Rove did to this Nation.

  99. I'm old enough to remember when JFK's candidacy was questioned because of his Catholicism, people arguing that he'd be obligated to take direction from the Pope.
    Jefferson wrote that, "It does me no injury if my neighbor believes that there are 20 gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg." That was over 200 years ago. I don't care if Huntsman or Romney - or any of the other candidates for that matter - believe in the Easter Bunny or Santa Claus. What our country needs is someone with vision who can lead, and for too many of those in the present political arena, their compass seems to be set by polls and sound-bites.
    In the early 70's there was a musical, "The Selling of the President", in which the candidate spent his entire campaign locked in the TV station that he happened to own. The whole campaign was run as one big, entertaining variety show. No substance, but nobody cared. And - of course - the guy won, without a clue in the world about how to govern. Are we headed the same way?

  100. If the people, especially the working class, look at the "why" when considering the economy, then Obama should win easily.  Not because he has done so well with the economy but because the causes of the problems can easily be traced back to before him and the cause for the continuation of the problems can be totally identified with the Republicans putting their political ambitions above all else as they stubbornly fault and arrogantly block all efforts and just protect the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy (1%).  It would be very hard to see any conscience or responsible consideration of the majority (99%) from the Republican / Tea Party or to expect anything other than “more of the same”, Bush-Cheney style, from them - that is simply the absolute reality; now we only need to see if the voters will even consider reality (the Republicans and their influential, powerful and extremely wealthy supporters are working very hard to see that they don't).

  101. The big question is who is next in the Fox Derby as THE ONE!
    Eventually, they will be down to Mittens or The Hunter.
    Can't wait for the compelling Q A with Hannity and either of the followers of Brother Smith.
    The last gasp will be drafting The Alaskan Grifter - then they will have to give Gretta a full time job at Fox to have somebody that Palin can trust to interview her "fairly"(no trick questions having to do with hostory, geography, science, economics, etc.

  102. No candidate should need a big war chest if, in addition to using social media, the FCC would put into practice something another democracy uses - - free ads on TV. Yes, Great Britain, at least when I was there last, has free ads for candidates on the BBC. Of course, they also have a 6-week campaign cycle (something we could also do).If the FCC acted in the interests of our nation, they could enforce something like this by making our broadcasters earn their spectrum by doing what they do in the UK.