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What now for Ron Paul?

Ron Paul‘s Presidential campaign bumped up against a ceiling of limited support in Iowa Tuesday — a wall that usually sinks fringe attempts at national elected office. Campaign aides tried to put on a confident public face but the Texas Congressman’s third place finish is not what they wanted or predicted in the days leading up to the first Presidential primary of 2012. They point to John McCain‘s third place finish in Iowa in 2008 and draw comparisons to McCain’s surge to the front and the nomination. They note that Paul — with 21 percent compared with 25 percent for
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Bitter Gingrich attacks Romney, Paul before fleeing Iowa

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich left Iowa a bitter man after a dismal fourth place finish in the Iowa GOP primary caucuses. He clearly blames frontrunner Mitt Romney for his loss, telling anyone who will listen that Romney is a liar behind a barrage of brutal negative ads that portrayed the one-time GOP star as a money-grubbing, wife-cheating philanderer. Fewer than 100 showed up to hear Gingrich’s final speech before he fled Iowa. “The Speaker is down but he’s not out,” a campaign aide told Capitol Hill Blue. But before he exited, stage right, Gingrich attacked Iowa winner
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Romney edges Santorum by just eight votes in Iowa

Iowa’s caucus system often provides surprises and delivered another in spades Tuesday with a close Republican primary contest that wasn’t decided until the last votes were counted in the wee hours of Wednesday morning. Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum surged at exactly the right time for his struggling campaign, coming within eight votes of knocking off former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney. Romney’s win sends him to next week’s New Hampshire primary as the candidate to beat but Santroum’s emergence as the choice for GOP conservatives sets up a possible crucial showdown in South Carolina later this month. “Santorum’s showing reshapes
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Perry ready to quit but Bachmann may prolong the misery

Texas Governor Rick Perry left Iowa after a disappointing fifth place finish in the GOP caucuses Tuesday night and headed not to the next primary contest in New Hampshire but home to Texas to “assess” his failing campaign for President. Perry told his dwindling cadre of followers that he needs to “determine whether there is a path forward.” “There is no path forward,” a disheartened strategist for Perry told Capitol Hill Blue. “It’s over.” With just 10 percent of the Iowa vote, the former frontrunner faces a dearth of contributions as donors look for winners. “With a little prayer and
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Truth is a stranger to Ron Paul, Rick Santorum

Both Ron Paul and Rick Santorum took a vacation from the truth during news talk shows over the weekend heading into the Iowa caucuses. FactCheck.Org, which looks at statements by political candidates and materials published on web sites, says both candidates strayed from the truth when talking about Iran. Said FactCheck:   On CNN’s “State of the Union,” Rep. Ron Paul falsely claimed the International Atomic Energy Agency “did not find any evidence” that Iran is “on the verge of a [nuclear] weapon.” However, the IAEA reported on Nov. 8 that Iran has carried out activities “relevant to the development
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With one day left, Iowa contest is wide open

With a day to go before the Iowa caucuses, the only thing that anyone can say for sure that will happen is that anything can happen. Mitt Romney, never considered strong in Iowa, is leading the latest polls by a slight margin over  Ron Paul but Rick Santorum is surging and threatening to capture at least second if not an upset win. Paul, under constant attack for his foreign policy views and unanswered questions about his role in the racist-tinged newsletters that bore his name in the 1980s and 1990s, appears to be fading in the stretch. “The increased media scrutiny
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Ron Paul changes his newsletter story again

Texas Congressman and perennial Presidential contender Ron Paul changed his story again on his involvement with the controversial newsletters bearing his name published in the 1980s and 90s, telling a radio caller Thursday that, yes, he did write a “certain portion” of the material. After claiming he “didn’t write them” and “didn’t see them” before walking off a CNN interview a week ago, Paul took another turn in his history of changing stories and told a caller on WHO-AM radio in Iowa: Well, the newsletters were written, you know, a long time ago. And I wrote a certain portion of
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For Ron Paul, everything old is new again

Ron Paul got a free pass from the media as long as he was a backbencher with a fringe following but when he surged in the Iowa polls, the press woke up and took a closer look at the history of the Texas Congressman. And the Fourth Estate didn’t like what it found. The problem, Howard Kurtz at The Daily Beast reports, is that the story was there all along.  All it took was somebody to take more than a cursory look at Paul’s background. Writes Kurtz: The explosive material that is fueling the negative coverage of Ron Paul, from
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Romney takes slim lead over Paul in new Iowa poll; Santorum surges

A new CNN/Time poll for Iowa is good news for Mitt Romney, great news for Rick Santorum, fair news for Ron Paul and a disaster for the plummeting Newt Gingrich. Romney has moved into a three point lead over Paul — 25 to 22 percent — which is a statistical tie when the margin of error is factored.  Santorum jumps to third with 16 percent and Gingrich continues his free-fall to 14 percent. An early December poll showed Gingrich leading Romney 33 to 20 percent, Paul in third at 17 percent and Santorum well off the political radar at 5
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Obama to sneak debt limit hike through while Congress is gone

Using a loophole in the budget agreement reached back in August, President Barack Obama hopes to sneak an increase in the debt ceiling through while Congress is out on recess and can’t vote to stop it. The deal reached back in August to avert a government shutdown allows the President to automatically raise the debt limit cap unless Congress votes to to block it within 15 days of the hike. White House sources tell Capitol Hill Blue that Obama will set a hike by the end of the week and with Congress not due back from the holiday recess until
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