WASHINGTON – Frankly, I wouldn’t even be writing this piece if it wasn’t for Tim Pawlenty falling off the grid, because early polls aren’t very illustrative. It’s just that even after “Meet the Press,” debates and pimping the press, he still can’t get any respect.
I don’t know how it gets any worse for TPaw, someone I said from the start wouldn’t pass muster and didn’t have a prayer to beat Obama, who’s in a different political league. But elite politicos and many cable talking heads proclaimed him golden.
For Pawlenty to come back, Bachmann’s surge would have to prove to be fleeting, which certainly can happen considering the scandal building around her crackpot husband, though the latest debt ceiling collision between establishment Republicans and the Tea Party faction doesn’t foreshadow that happening anytime soon.
That is, unless and until Rick Perry enters the race. Because let’s face it, the Republican Party is a big old boys’ club at heart. From Jonathan Martin yesterday:
The Texas governor and his top advisers are feeling out early-state Republican activists on the phone. He met for lunch in Austin Tuesday with former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf. Next week, he’ll join a group of top national Republican donors for dinner in the state capital, POLITICO has learned. […] Dave Carney, Perry’s chief strategist, said they had no “hard deadline,” but called Labor Day the outer end of when Perry will have to make up his mind. “I have always expected him to make a decision by the end of the summer,” the strategist said.
I guess Perry is going the Palin route to foreign policy credibility. And ICYMI, Salon has a piece about Perry’s reported ties to the neo-Confederate movement. What’s with Republicans and groups like this? Could Perry turn out to be another George Allen?
From Quinnipiac, the bad news for TPaw, who once was seen as the conservative contender:
Minnesota U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, a relative newcomer in the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, is surging and now trails former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney 25 – 14 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has 12 percent, followed by Texas Gov. Rick Perry with 10 percent. No other contender is over 6 percent.
You notice that Tim Pawlenty isn’t even in the opening paragraph?
That’s because he’s slid to 3%. That’s right, 3.
Rounding out the possible Republican presidential field are entrepreneur Herman Cain at 6 percent, Texas U.S. Rep. Ron Paul at 5 percent, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich at 5 percent, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty at 3 percent, and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman and U.S. Rep. Thaddeus McCotter of Michigan each at 1 percent or less.
Huntsman down with Thaddeus McCotter is as close to underachieving as it can get.
Here’s the match-up as things stand today:
President Barack Obama tops all leading GOP White House hopefuls, hitting the all- important 50-percent mark against every candidate but Romney:
47 – 41 percent over Romney, unchanged from June 8;
50 – 38 percent over Bachmann, who was not matched against Obama June 8;
53 – 34 percent over Sarah Palin, compared to 53 – 36 percent June 8;
50 – 37 percent over Perry, who was not matched against Obama June 8.
Pres. Obama bests them all, though against Romney, at this point, the President can’t get above 50 percent, which you can bet will get David Plouffe’s attention.
Taylor Marsh is a Washington based political analyst, writer and commentator on national politics, foreign policy, and women in power. A veteran national politics writer, Taylor’s been writing on the web since 1996. She has reported from the White House, been profiled in the Washington Post, The New Republic, and has been seen on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, CNN, MSNBC, Al Jazeera English and Al Jazeera Arabic, as well as on radio across the dial and on satellite, including the BBC. Marsh lives in the Washington, D.C. area. This column is cross posted from her blog.