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Monday, January 2, 2012

Daily Political Wire

George Wenschhof

Iowa Showdown Nears -
finally, the Iowa polls will end and the votes will be counted tomorrow. The last Iowa poll by Public Policy Polling has Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) in first with 20%, Mitt Romney in second with 19% and Rick Santorum third with 18%; a three way statistical tie. Newt Gingrich, after receiving the negative ad blitz from the other Republican candidate campaigns received 14% and Texas Governor Rick Perry had 10%. Public Policy Polling has more here.

Tea Party favorite Minnesota Michele Bachmann, at 8%, might as well drop out after the Iowa caucuses if she does not finish in the top three. Jon Huntsman, at 4% will also fare poorly. He is hoping for a good showing next week in New Hampshire to bolster his weak campaign effort - he will be the next to drop out following the New Hampshire primary.

Anything, can happen in the Iowa caucuses as voters can change their votes prior to certification. Look to see a surprise win by Mitt Romney, followed by a win in New Hampshire, setting up a quick end to the Republican primary.


Gallup Compares GOP Primary to 2003-2004 Democratic Primary - reports there has been seven lead changes in the Republican presidential primary to date. A similar result to the the 2003-2004 Democratic primary ultimately won by Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.), would would lose to Republican George W. Bush. Howard Dean, Tom Daschle, General Wes Clark, Dick Gephardt, and Joe Lieberman all led the Democratic presidential primary at one point. has more here.


Obama Faces Keystone Pipeline Decision -
the two month payroll tax extension compromise included the need to make a decision on the construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline. One, the president had hoped to avoid until after the election. Union officials support the construction due to the jobs it will create, which environmental groups oppose. Support from both groups is needed by Obama in the election. has more here.


Effects of Voting Rights Act on Redistricting in Southern States Questioned -
an interesting development illustrating how Republican dominated state legislatures are using the Voting Rights Act to their advantage. As of January 2013, not a single white Democrat from a deep south state may be a member of Congress.

By lumping African American voters into a single district, five southern states are poised to have just one Democratic Representative in 2013. has more here.


Egypt Military Speeds Up Parliamentary Elections -
in the wake of continued demonstrations by protesters who feel the military is avoiding turning over control to a civilian government.

Final elections to the upper chamber of the assembly will be held on February 22, instead of March 12. has more here.


Jordan Hosts Israel-Palestine Meeting -
in an effort to restart the stalled peace talks. The talks broke off over a year ago over Israel continuing to issue building permits in controversial and disputed areas. has more here.


Iran Courts Latin America -
an interesting development and one which should concern the United States. In search of needed raw materials, Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will visit South American countries this month. The Washington Post has more here.


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