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Posts published in “Day: February 21, 2012”

Santorum in Washington?

A good deal may ride on how the Wednesday night Republican presidential debate goes. But at the moment, Washington state seems poised to support Rick Santorum over Mitt Romney.

From Public Policy Polling:

Rick Santorum leads Mitt Romney by double digits in advance of the March 3rd Republican caucuses, a new poll from Public Policy Polling finds. Santorum leads Romney 38%-27%, with Ron Paul taking 15% and Newt Gingrich placing 4th with
12%. Santorum benefits from very high favorability numbers, with 69% of caucusgoers holding a favorable opinion of him and just 18% unfavorable. Mitt Romney also has a net
positive favorability rating, but voters opinion of him is more lukewarm at 47% - 42%. Ron Paul (38/49) and Newt Gingrich (39/46) had net unfavorable opinion ratings. ...

Santorum leads Romney among Evangelical Christians (50-18), Tea Party members (50-20), “somewhat conservative” voters (36-33), and “very conservative” voters (50-19). Romney leads Santorum among non-Evangelicals (36-26), non-Tea Party members (32-30), and voters who describe themselves as “moderate” (29-27. All that being said, only 50% of voters say that they are strongly committed to their candidate, and 50% say they might end up supporting someone else.

Washington, are you ready for a TV ad carpetbombing?

Second question: Is Idaho, next door and with similar exposure to the candidates (and actually more to Romney than Washington had), positioned to do likewise?

Trail to the right

Tom Trail

An indicator that the Idaho House Republican caucus next term may lean, astounding though it may seem, yet a little further to the right.

That is because of an email sent today by Representative Tom Trail, R-Moscow, announcing that he would not run for re-election to the House this year, but instead for the Latah County Commission. The realities of redistricting, which made his path to re-election a lot more difficult, may have played a part in that.

But there's more to the story. Trail has been for some years the most moderate Republican in the Idaho House, by a fairly long shot. He noted in his e-mail that in 2011 he "broke party lines on several votes, including education reform, closing the Republican primaries, and the tobacco tax. At the end of the 2011 session, House Speaker, Lawerence Denney stripped Trail of his agricultural committee chairmanship, though Trail indicated that move didn’t factor into his decision to seek re-election to the house."

Trail may wind up replaced by a Democrat. But the Idaho House Republican caucus will now lose the closest thing to an alternative point of view in its midst.