The Corner

Krauthammer’s Take

From Monday night’s Fox News All-Stars.

On President Obama attacking politicians for being “so focused on the next election” and ridiculing Rick Perry as “a governor whose state is on fire denying climate change”:

Well, it’s hard to know where to start. I’ll start with the global warming part. This is just an example of how much of a religion the climate change stuff has become. Whether or not you believe that global warming is real, the idea that there’s some direct connection between global warming … and the fires in Texas is the worst of pseudoscience, which is exactly what Democrats accuse Republicans of.

And this idea in the earlier clip you showed where he said – Obama’s complaining about people who are so focused on the next election. How can he say that with a straight face? He’s gone 3,000 miles to do a whole bunch of fundraisers. He’s focused entirely on the election. He gives a speech to a joint session of Congress proposing legislation that he knows doesn’t have a chance of being actually enacted into law – it’s only a premise for the upcoming election. And, a week later, he proposes a debt plan that he knows also is not going to be enacted.

He’s given up – he’s essentially announced that the governance phase of the Obama presidency is over. And he’s now fully campaigning, with a year and two months to go. That’s some kind of indoor record.

On Herman Cain’s straw poll victory in Florida:

Well Cain I thought did rather well [in the Orlando debate]. He had a lot of support in the audience, particularly his own personal story, overcoming cancer. And I think that helped him.

But let’s remember the story of straw polls. Michele Bachmann wins in Ames, Iowa. And the morning after, with the entry of Perry, her campaign starts to go down.

We’ve had five major straw polls in five states, five different winners: Romney in one, Cain in one, Michele Bachmann, Santorum, and, of course, Ron Paul. So it doesn’t tell you a lot.

What a straw poll can do is: It can winnow. Pawlenty was already in trouble in Iowa and when he did badly in the straw poll, it was over. So it accelerated and it ended his campaign.

But I’m not sure it [a straw poll] crowns anyone. And the reason is straw polls are not random samples. They are self-selected. And they measure intensity, which is important — intensity means people on the ground, donors, word of mouth, etc. But in the end, on primary day or on Election Day, intensity counts for nothing. If you cast a vote for a candidate you would die for, or, a candidate that you flipped a coin in deciding [to vote for at the last minute], they are of equal value.

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