by Free Britney at . Comments

Is the fix in for Mitt Romney? Sarah Palin seems to think so, going on an epic Facebook rant against Republicans trying to smack down Newt Gingrich ... but is she even more full of it than the establishment she rails against?

It's true that Republican officials and mainstream media figures do seem to be forcing the argument that Romney is the inevitable GOP nominee, despite the widespread antipathy toward the former Massachusetts governor nationwide.

Palin and Romney

Palin's arguments may be thinner than her melting Alaskan ice caps, however, and her motives are highly questionable aside from making sure Sarah Palin remains a topic of discussion. In that respect, guess we fell for it. Sorry.

In a post this weekend, she attacks the Republican "establishment cannibals" for using "Alinsky" tactics against Newt Gingrich in the run up to the Florida primary.

It's undeniable that Newt's win in South Carolina triggered a backlash against the former House Speaker by Romney supporters bent on blunting his latest surge.

But is the motivation really Gingrich's lack of qualifications? Or simply a desire to stop any sort of uprising from those looking for an alternative to the status quo?

Palin's main objection appears to be that those who question Gingrich's ties to Ronald Reagan have done so inappropriately and are doing the work of the left.

Never mind that Gingrich has tied himself to Reagan and his accomplishments with every other breath he takes. And who is the GOP "establishment," anyway?

How do you rant against people without specifying who you are talking about? And why not just endorse Newt if you feel so strongly about it? It's all puzzling.

Palin's full Facebook post appears after the jump:

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by Free Britney at . Comments

Thursday's Republican presidential debate, the 19th in this election cycle, saw Mitt Romney tried to fend off Newt Gingrich, while Ron Paul and Rick Santorum shined.

Romney came out swinging fast and when Gingrich attacked, he hit back. Much more aggressive than in the past, he's going all-in to win Tuesday's Florida primary.

In that respect, he likely succeeded in blunting some of Newt's momentum in Florida, as Gingrich was flatter Thursday than in some of the past debates he's owned.

He had some nice zingers and applause-garnering policy proposals, but not a proverbial "knockout punch" like he delivered en route to winning in South Carolina.

Gingrich received praise for his harsh attack on debate moderator John King last week and tried to double down on his strategy of attacking the host to build support.

It backfired a bit last night. Wolf Blitzer stood his ground when Gingrich would not answer a question about his apparent truce over the issue of Romney's tax return.

He called the question "nonsense" and suggested they talk about "issues that relate to the governing of America," but Wolf - and later Mitt - got the better of him.

Rick Santorum, meanwhile, had probably his strongest debate performance in a year, pointedly criticizing both Gingrich and Romney on a variety of issues.

The fourth candidate running, Texas Congressman Ron Paul, would probably be called the winner of the debate if the mainstream media would take him seriously.

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by Free Britney at . Comments

The Florida Republican primary is less than a week away and the gloves are off.

Having been whomped in South Carolina, Mitt Romney came out firing in Monday night's Florida debate and has kept up the pressure on his GOP rival all week.

New pro-Romney ads are calling Gingrich a liar who's exaggerating loose ties to Ronald Reagan and drops names instead of touting his own policy credentials.

Newt lashed out at Mitt today for questioning his conservative values. Watch:

"This is the man who stood up the other night to question my credentials as a Reaganite? This is the kind of gall they have to think we are so stupid, and we are so timid," Gingrich said at an outdoor campaign event in Orlando, Florida.

Newt has slipped a bit in recent polls since his demonstrative win. Can he shift the momentum back his way when the candidates debate again tonight?

by Free Britney at . Comments

Restore Our Future, a Super PAC supporting Mitt Romney, slams rival Newt Gingrich in a new ad for (repeatedly) claiming a connection to Ronald Reagan.

"From debates, you'd think Newt Gingrich was Ronald Reagan's vice president," a narrator says. "Gingrich exaggerates, dropping Reagan's name 50 times."

"In his diaries, Reagan mentioned Gingrich only once. Reagan criticized Gingrich, saying Newt's ideas 'would cripple our defense program.' Reagan rejected Newt's ideas."

"On leadership and character, Gingrich is no Ronald Reagan."

The question: Is Mitt questioning Newt's claims and credentials going to be enough to overcome his own conservative shortcomings in the eyes of voters?

by Free Britney at . Comments

Jay Leno is facing more than criticism over his recent joke at Mitt Romney's expense. A Bakersfield, Calif., resident is suing him over the Sikh comedic bit.

The punchline of the joke was that Romney, the very wealthy businessman and GOP presidential candidate, spends his summers in a solid gold palace.

Jay pulled up a photo of India's Harmandir Sahib, the Golden Temple of Amritsar, an extremely sacred building in the eyes of the Sikh people.

There's been a lot of outrage among Sikhs, but one man, Dr. Randeep Dhillon took his religious fervor one step further, filing a libel lawsuit against Leno.

Dhillon claims Jay is responsible for encouraging hatred and ridicule of his religion and is suing for general and punitive damages. The rationale there?

According to Randeep, Leno's Mitt Romney joke "falsely portrays the holiest place in the religion instead as a vacation resort owned by a non-Sikh."

LOL. Not to encourage Randeep suing us as well, but come on dog.

by Free Britney at . Comments

Mitt Romney’s tax return was finally released today as his campaign bowed to political pressure and released hundreds of pages of tax documents. What did we learn?

That he's really rich and pays a really low rate on capital gains.

Basically, while the Republican presidential candidate's tax returns offers glimpses into his sprawling investments, both in the U.S. and abroad, they don't tell voters much we didn't already know or assume was true about the former Bain Capital CEO.

Mitt Romney Picture

Romney had an effective federal income tax rate in 2010 of 13.9 percent, paying about $3 million in taxes on an adjusted gross income of $21.6 million.

The vast majority came from stocks, mutual funds and other investments, typically taxed a rate of 15 percent - significantly lower than normal income.

Of course, this is the case because the money Romney invested was, theoretically, earned via his success and already taxed at higher rates once before.

Rather than making that defense, however, Romney has been evasive about his taxes for weeks, potentially reflected in Saturday's S.C. primary results.

Both rates are much lower than the rates paid by either President Obama or Newt Gingrich, Romney’s GOP rival who released his tax returns last week.

The President earned $1,728,096 in 2010 and paid $453,770 (26.3%) in taxes. Newt earned $3,142,066 that year and was taxed $994,708 (31.7%).

The figures certainly won't help Romney make the case that he understands and fights for the issues of ordinary Americans - not his strong suit as it is.

Nevertheless, he's better off being transparent going forward and trying to use his wealth as a positive, rather than a hindrance due to his own shiftiness.

That is, if he can answer anything without focus grouping it.

by Free Britney at . Comments

"Well, number one, I've raised a family," Mitt Romney said during Monday night's Florida GOP debate when asked what he'd done to further the conservative movement.

"And I've - I've, with my wife, we've raised five wonderful sons, and we have 16 wonderful grandkids," he awkwardly continued, before finally answering the question.

He went on to mention his private sector and gubernatorial experience, but the reference to his family stuck, highlighting his inability to connect to many voters.

Mitt, Newt

It's a problem evident in his defeat in South Carolina last week. He's skilled at detailing the X's and O's of policy, but falls short in efforts to prove he's authentic.

Newt, meanwhile, talked about helping Barry Goldwater's campaign in 1964 and later Ronald Reagan's successful 1980 bid, as well as his own efforts as Speaker.

The Gingrich campaign certainly reveled in Romney's non-answer. Minutes after the debate, it sent an e-mail titled "Mitt Romney's Top Conservative Achievements."

It was blank.

by Free Britney at . Comments

Florida played host to the latest Republican presidential debate Monday night, and Mitt Romney came out swinging against newly-anointed co-frontrunner Newt Gingrich.

After Gingrich routed him in South Carolina, Romney was forced to change course from his usual try-not-to-lose strategy of appearing competent, inoffensive and vanilla.

Mitt apparently got the memo that in order to stop Florida (which holds its primary January 31) from becoming South Carolina redux, he actually has to show some fight.

As such, he blasted  as an influence peddler and disgraced politician in the debate, which marked the GOP race's most heated and personal exchanges to date.

Gingrich, the grand master of the 18 debates to date, and who pulled off a stunning upset in S.C. in large part due to some debate highlights, was, for once, thrown off.

The most shocking moment of last night may have been when Newt said nothing at all, briefly falling into a frustrated silence at one point amid Romney's barrage.

The night epitomized the direction of the race. It's the insurgents vs. the establishment, with Newt hoping to mobilize the former and Mitt looking to swat him down.

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by Free Britney at . Comments

Mitt Romney's wealth and detachment - perceived or legitimate - from the common voter was certainly evident in Saturday's South Carolina primary results.

It also became fodder for late night comedians, or even Jay Leno for that matter. Sorry. Anyway, furing his monologue on Thursday, Jay got in on the act.

The Tonight Show host presented a clip from The Insider that included photos of the homes of presidential hopefuls Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul and Romney.

Only instead of revealing Romney's real summer home, the bit replaced the original shot with one of the Golden Temple of Amristar in India. Check it out:

The joke didn't go over very well with several Sikhs, who view the site as a sacred place. Overseas Indian Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi told reporters:

"[Leno's attempt] at humor is quite unfortunate and quite objectionable," pointing out that "freedom does not mean hurting the sentiments of others."

What's more, a petition organized by members of the U.S. Sikh community claims this isn't the first time Leno has made such derogatory remarks.

"Jay Leno's racist comments need to be stopped right here," reads the petition.

No word on whether Romney's actual house on Lake Winnipesaukee is also made of gold, or how it stacks up with his other 75 residences.

by Free Britney at . Comments

Mitt Romney was likely never as much of a lock as the mainstream media seems to believe, but Saturday's South Carolina primary results still came as a surprise.

Newt Gingrich rose from the political ashes for the second time with two strong debate performances this week and pulled off an unlikely win in the Palmetto State.

With 40 percent of the vote to Mitt's 27, and nearly all precincts reporting, Newt won big and turned the fluid Republican presidential race on its head once again.

Newt Gingrich Photo

Only a week ago, Romney seemed likely to win all three of the initial contests, a scenario that would have put him on a relatively clear path to the nomination.

But with Thursday’s announcement that Rick Santorum actually won Iowa, followed by today's results, Romney is now a front-runner who has lost two of three.

The result marked a swift, extraordinary turnaround in Gingrich’s fortunes, after he finished well out of the top three in both Iowa and New Hampshire.

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Mitt Romney Biography

Mitt Romney Picture Mitt Romney wants to be elected President in 2012. The former Governor of Massachuetts is challenging Barack Obama for that lofty... More »
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Willard Mitt Romney
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