N2K: Romney’s on Top … For Now

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March 23, 2011, 5:55 p.m.

Voters wait­ing to see wheth­er IN Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) will run for WH ‘12 “could be kept guess­ing for a few more months.”

WX­IN in In­di­ana­pol­is re­ports Daniels won’t make his de­cision “un­til the next le­gis­lat­ive ses­sion ad­journs in April.”

Daniels, fre­quently men­tioned as a pos­sible can­did­ate, “has hos­ted about a dozen din­ners with top GOP fun­draisers and busi­ness and policy lead­ers.” He in­sists he is fo­cused on IN and does not see him­self as pres. “but has agreed to keep the door open” (AP, 10/12).

As the Re­pub­lic­an can­did­ates for pres­id­ent go from one de­bate in New Hamp­shire to an­oth­er in Las Ve­gas, and along the way con­tin­ue to bash Pres­id­ent Obama’s health care re­form, it’s a good time to do a can­did­ate health dia­gnos­is and see where things are.

Let’s take a look at some of the can­did­ates run­ning for pres­id­ent and do a health as­sess­ment on where their cam­paigns and can­did­a­cies stand, and in what shape they are in, and what their pro­spects for con­tin­ued health are. We have enough data points from tests and pro­ced­ures done in this cam­paign, in­clud­ing de­bates, per­form­ance on the trail, and fun­drais­ing.

Rick Perry

His can­did­acy is in ser­i­ous jeop­ardy even though he can af­ford to pay for the best doc­tors and check him­self in­to the most pres­ti­gi­ous clin­ics in the coun­try. He seemed when he first got in to be in per­fect health and his his­tory seemed to show he had the best abil­ity to rise to the oc­ca­sion in this race. But the de­bates showed him to be a flawed can­did­ate, and he in­flic­ted wounds upon him­self by poor per­form­ances that will be tough to re­cov­er from. The ques­tion re­mains wheth­er his de­fect was con­gen­it­al and wheth­er it happened to sur­face un­der the stress of a pres­id­en­tial race.

Her­man Cain

He is a very un­likely lead­ing can­did­ate for pres­id­ent at this point who has tre­mend­ous mo­mentum and move­ment upon the polit­ic­al land­scape. He seems to me to be some­body who was wan­der­ing through the emer­gency ward and was mis­taken for a ser­i­ous play­er, and a doc­tor gave him a tre­mend­ous ad­ren­al­in shot. Will he burn out and will the body of his can­did­acy and cam­paign struc­ture sur­vive this jolt? This ques­tion will be answered soon enough.

Mitt Rom­ney

His can­did­acy seems to be in de­cent shape, has passed all its tests, and con­tin­ues to per­form well through the elec­tion cycle, but for some reas­on doesn’t get the love of the doc­tors, nurses, and staff of this pro­cess. They seem re­luct­ant to give him a clean bill of health and al­low him to enter the big gen­er­al elec­tion game be­cause they are wor­ried that his “gut” may be com­prom­ised. In the end, if the oth­er can­did­ates fall away, he will be giv­en the go des­pite those doubts.

Michele Bach­mann

Her cam­paign seems to be on its last legs. Early on, it seemed she was in it for the long haul, and had great pos­sib­il­ity, but she just didn’t have all the ele­ments needed to sur­vive. Her last chance is a hope and pray­er that by spend­ing all her time in a re­gion­al clin­ic in Iowa she will get the go-ahead and be able to move on to be judged healthy by oth­er parts of the coun­try. It just may be the dia­gnos­is is ter­min­al for her and we may have to wait for that Iowa clin­ic to give the fi­nal say on what many already be­lieve.

Newt Gin­grich

His can­did­acy was giv­en up for dead months ago, but he has got­ten some trans­fu­sions and be­nefited from the failed health of oth­er can­did­ates to give him­self an out­side pos­sib­il­ity of sur­viv­ing. He doesn’t have the re­sources oth­er cam­paigns have, but he per­forms well at the high-level events of this cam­paign. He just may be the next can­did­ate to rise and claim the large free f-oat­ing anti-Rom­ney vote that has moved from can­did­ate to can­did­ate if Cain doesn’t sur­vive his ad­ren­al­in shot.

Ron Paul

He is a doc­tor him­self and doesn’t seem to care if the oth­er health pro­fes­sion­als in the pro­cess judge him un­fit. He will con­tin­ue to be a play­er in this pro­cess, but the health pro­spects of his can­did­acy are that while he will likely give him­self a clean bill of health, the voters will not. He is in it for the long haul, but will not make it to the big game next Novem­ber.

Jon Hunts­man and Rick San­tor­um

These two are Bruce Wil­lis in the Sixth Sense. They are dead; they just don’t know it yet. Hunts­man seems more cog­niz­ant that something is off and looks to be real­ist­ic, but San­tor­um, I think, still sees dead people.

On to Ve­gas, with hope and ex­pect­a­tions one of these can­did­ates will rise to the oc­ca­sion and fi­nally take con­trol in this race, but my guess is that many Re­pub­lic­ans will again leave feel­ing only fear and loath­ing.

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