Here is a new ad put out by the Rick Santorum Campaign today which touts his success in the Iowa Straw Poll. Santorum came in a strong 4th place, beating expectations that many people had for him.

The ad is entirely made up of written quotes from pundits and media about how Santorum exceeded expectations and now has momentum.

Nationally, a new Rasmusen Poll just out today has Santorum at only 1% support. But Santorum very well may have momentum in Iowa. He will just about have to pull the upset and win the Iowa Caucuses to continue beyond the opening contest.

New Rick Santorum Ad Touts His Success in the Iowa Straw Poll; Says “Game On” – Video 8/16/11

Here is video of Gov. Tim Pawlenty on with ABC News’ Jake Tapper this morning to explain his decision to end his Presidential Campaign. Pawlenty finished a distant third in yesterday’s Iowa Straw Poll.

Pawlenty explained he just did not get the “lift” he needed coming out of the Straw Poll to keep his campaign going.

When asked about endorsing someone in the race, Pawlenty said he “probably will – but not anytime soon.” He indicated he is not interested in being a Vice-Presidential pick (no one ever says they are).

On Michele Bachmann, he said she is “qualified,” but that time will tell if she can make the case to the American people that she is the candidate to beat Barack Obama.

Pawlenty Explains Decision to End His Presidential Campaign; Will likely Endorse Someone – “But Not Anytime Soon” – Video 8/14/11

In the wake of Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s weak third place showing yesterday in the Iowa Straw Poll, GOP Strategist Alex Castellanos said Pawlenty’s Campaign “now goes through the stages of death in the next 24 hours.”

CNN: Privately, though, his team was rooting for a first- or strong second-place finish at Ames to reassure supporters and donors, as well as the media, that his campaign was not stalled.

Immediately after the results were announced by Iowa GOP Chairman Matthew Strawn, there were murmurs among top Republicans that Pawlenty should consider leaving the presidential race.

“Pawlenty now goes through the stages of death in the next 24 hours,” said Republican strategist Alex Castellanos. “Denial. Can he stay in the race like John McCain? Anger. Pawlenty people start throwing people under the bus and start pointing fingers. And then reality. Can they raise the money to stay in this thing? And the answer is probably no. So what is left for Pawlenty? A graceful exit.” . . . Read More

GOP Strategist Says Pawlenty Campaign “Now Goes Through the Stages of Death” in Wake of Poor Iowa Straw Poll Showing

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Here is video tonight of Gov. Sarah Palin reacting to the results of the Iowa Straw Poll – and she gave it a big yawn!

Palin was in Illinois, and when told the results, she said she was “not surprised” that Bachmann won and Ron Paul came in second. Palin said the two had spent a lot of money and done a lot of organizing to get their votes.

Sarah Palin Reacts to Bachmann Victory in Iowa Straw Poll: “Not Surprised” – Video 8/13/11

The results of the Iowa Straw Poll have been announced, and GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann is the winner. She received 4823 votes, followed by Rep. Ron Paul with 4671 votes. Tim Pawlenty came in a distant third, with Rick Santorum fourth.

Amazingly, Texas Gov. Rick Perry got more write-in votes that Mitt Romney. Romney did not participate in the poll by organizing, but his name was on the ballot.

Tim Pawlenty will likely now have to drop out of the race. He spent over $1 Million to win this poll, and finished a distant third. By his own admission, he had to do well here or “reassess” his future.

Here are the numbers:

28.55% Michele Bachmann – 4,823

27.65% Ron Paul – 4,671

13.57% Tim Pawlenty – 2,293

9.81% Rick Santorum – 1,657

8.62% Herman Cain – 1,456

3.62% Rick Perry – 718 (write-in)

3.36% Mitt Romney – 567

2.28% Newt Gingrich – 385

0.41% Jon Huntsman – 69

0.21% Thad McCotter – 35

BREAKING: Michele Bachmann Wins the Iowa Straw Poll; Ron Paul Second; Pawlenty a Distant Third; Rick Perry Gets More Votes than Mitt Romney as a Write-In – 8/13/11 VIDEO ADDED

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Via HotAirPundit

Here is video of GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann speaking at the Iowa Straw Poll today in Ames, Iowa. Bachmann called on those attending to join her and go vote for her if they had not already voted. Straw Poll results are expected to be announced at around 5:00 PM CT.

GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann Speaks at the Iowa Straw Poll – Complete Video 8/13/11

Here’s an interesting video clip from today in Ames, Iowa, where a group of people attending the Iowa Straw Poll took time to watch via television Texas Gov. Rick Perry announce his candidacy for President in South Carolina.

People Attending the Iowa Straw Poll Watch Gov. Rick Perry Announce His Candidacy for President in South Carolina – Video 8/13/11

First, Tim Pawlenty. Now, Rick Santorum is signaling he may have to end his 2012 Presidential Campaign if he does not do well in today’s Iowa Straw Poll.

For Santorum, doing well means finishing “in the top five”:

CNN Political Ticker: On Friday, Rick Santorum suggested he could become the first political casualty of the 2012 presidential race.

Just over two months after his official presidential campaign began, the Republican candidate intimated it could soon end – if he’s not “in the top five” in Saturday’s Ames Straw Poll.

The Republican presidential candidate spoke with CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines.

“I think we have to be in the top five. I mean if we’re eight or ninth – if we’re not in the top five – this tells me that we don’t have the organizational ability to get this thing done,” Santorum told Crowley.

“This is a marathon. We got to show that we’re building a team and so I’m kind of drawing the line there.”

The Ames contest is seen as a test of a candidate’s organization and popularity in Iowa. . . . Read More

Santorum did very well in Thursday night’s debate. It would not surprise me to see him meet his “line in the sand” and finish in the top five today.

Via Outside the Beltway

Rick Santorum Says He Must Finish “in the Top Five” at the Iowa Straw Poll – 8/13/11


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Here is the live video stream for today’s Iowa Straw Poll in Ames, Iowa. The program will begin at 12 Noon CT, with the schedule of speakers listed below (via The Corner):

All times Central Time

Noon- Program Begins

12:15- Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn delivers remarks

12:20- Governor Terry Branstad delivers remarks

12:30- Chairman Strawn welcomes all candidates on stage (press shot)

12:40- Senator Rick Santorum delivers remarks

1:00- Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds delivers remarks

1:15- Congressman Ron Paul delivers remarks

1:40- Congressman Steve King delivers remarks

1:50- Governor Tim Pawlenty delivers remarks

2:10- Senator Chuck Grassley delivers remarks,/p>

2:20- Congresswoman Michele Bachmann delivers remarks

2:40- Congressman Tom Latham delivers remarks

2:50- Congressman Thaddeus McCotter delivers remarks

3:15- Herman Cain delivers remarks

4:00- Straw Poll voting closes. Chairman Matt Strawn will deliver the Straw Poll results on stage immediately after they’ve been tabulated.

Watch the GOP Iowa Straw Poll Today Beginning at 12 Noon CT – Live Video Feed 8/13/11

Nothing like confidence.

Reports indicate that Gov. Tim Pawlenty is now admitting that if he does not do well in the Iowa Straw Poll tomorrow, he may have to “reassess” the future of his Presidential Campaign:

DAILY CALLER: As Republican presidential contender Tim Pawlenty and eight other GOP hopefuls prepare for Saturday’s Ames Straw Poll in Iowa, the former Minnesota Governor may be showing the first signs of pessimism. Asked during a Friday morning breakfast event whether he might scale back his campaign infrastructure if the straw poll went badly, Pawlenty acknowledged that would be considered.

“We may not have any choice if it went that way,” Pawlenty said. “Would we have to retrench in some fashion? Probably, but I don’t think that’s going to happen.”

He nevertheless conceded, “If we do really bad, we’ll have to reassess.” . . . . Read More

Pawlenty must be seeing the handwriting on the wall to have made this kind of admission on the eve of the Straw Poll! Even if you think that, why would you say it just hours before you are asking people to show up and vote for you? Pawlenty’s entire campaign has been an incredible disappointment. He has gotten a lot of press. Many pundits tried to put him in the top-tier of candidates from the outset. But his polling has never been good, and is now at 2% nationally in three recent polls.

Tim Pawlenty on Eve of Iowa Straw Poll Admits He Will have to “Reassess” Campaign Future if He Does Not Do Well – 8/12/11

Hmmmmm.

Word is out tonight that Sarah Palin is going to make a surprise visit to Iowa this coming weekend, just in time to get part of the media spotlight surrounding the Iowa Straw Poll:

POLITICO: Sarah Palin is making a surprise trip to Iowa this weekend, just in time to catch the political spotlight trained on the Ames straw poll.

In an email to supporters Wednesday, Palin said she’s accepted an invitation “to meet folks at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines this week.” . . . . Naturally, Palin’s email about the trip to the fair includes a dig at President Obama. She writes, “I’m also excited to try some of that famous fried butter-on-a-stick, fried cheesecake-on-a-stick, fried Twinkies, etc. I’ll enjoy them in honor of those who’d rather make us just ‘eat our peas’!” . . . Read More

Sarah Palin to Make Surprise Visit to Iowa Surrounding the Iowa Straw Poll

Word is out tonight that Gov. Tim Pawlenty has decided to pull his radio and TV ads in Iowa for the three days leading up to the Ames Iowa Straw Poll on August 13. They claim it has nothing to do with a shorfall in funds, but is rather a focus on turnout for the Straw Poll. But if they are not strapped for cash, you would think they would want to do both. Pawlenty is banking on doing well in this Straw Poll. If his finish were to mirror most of the national polls, he will be in big trouble. Pawlenty must do well in Iowa:

POLITICO: Tim Pawlenty will be pulling his radio and television ads off the air in the 72 hours before next Saturday’s straw poll in Ames.

The former Minnesota governor’s presidential campaign says it’s not short on cash, but simply planning to divert money into turning out supporters at the Aug. 13 event that’s a traditional test of campaign strength. They’re hoping Pawlenty’s already attracted enough voters through the time he’s spent in Iowa in recent months, especially in the last few weeks, when he’s been in the state nearly full-time. But the calculated shift in resources is also a recognition that Pawlenty needs to organize his fans into a political machine capable of beating expectations — and his better-known 2012 rivals.

“It’s such a small universe of people, we really want to focus on people we know are supporting us — focus on turnout mode instead of name ID and recruitment,” Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who is advising Pawlenty on the straw poll, told POLITICO. . . . Read More

Gov. Tim Pawlenty to Pull Radio and TV Ads in Iowa Three Days Before Iowa Straw Poll, August 13

Here is a new Michele Bachmann ad running in Iowa in which Bachmann trumpets her recent vote against raising the Debt Limit.

“I voted against raising the Debt Limit,” Bachmann says, because she wants to balance the Federal Budget and get spending under control. Bachmann urges voters to join her in Ames, Iowa later this month for the Iowa Straw Polls to help her “send a message” to Washington and the nation.

Michele Bachmann Trumpets Her Vote Against Raising the Debt Limit in New Iowa Ad – Video 8/3/11

The lineup of names is set for the 2011 Iowa Straw Poll in Ames on August 13. Nine names will appear on the ballot. Both Rick Perry and Sarah Palin’s names are NOT on the ballot:

WASHINGTON POST – THE FIX: Nine candidates’ names will appear on the Ames Straw poll ballot in Aug. 13, the Iowa Republican State Central Committee announced today.

Six of the nine — Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.), former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, businessman Herman Cain, Rep. Ron Paul (Texas), former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum and Rep. Thad McCottter (Mich.) — are aggressively campaigning in the straw vote.

The other three — former governors Mitt Romney (Mass.) and Jon Huntsman (Utah) as well as former House Speaker Newt Gingrich — are not expected to even appear at the quadrennial event on the campus of Iowa State University.

Both Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, who are each considering the race, won’t appear on the Ames ballot. A group of Perry supporters had attempted to have his name added to the ballot although he has not decided whether or not to run.

The Ames straw vote is regarded as the first major organizational test of the 2012 presidential race.

The favorite going into the balloting is Bachmann who, polling suggests, is in a dead heat with Romney in the state. Romney, who won the 2007 Ames Straw Poll, is not competing in the voting this time around. . . . Read More

Lineup for 2011 Iowa Straw Poll Ballot Set with Nine Names; Sarah Palin and Rick Perry NOT on the Ballot – 7/23/11

Scott Conroy has an article out at RealClearPolitics that sets forth what he says GOP leaders in Iowa quietly call the “Doomsday Scenario” for the upcoming Iowa Straw Poll, to be held in Ames on August 13. Essentially, it is a fear that because of the scorching heat, many Republicans just won’t turn out to vote in the Straw Poll, leaving it to GOP Rep. Ron Paul’s devoted followers:

REALCLEARPOLITICS: Republican establishment types in the nation’s first voting state quietly refer to it as The Doomsday Scenario. And it goes something like this:

On a scorching, triple-digit Saturday in central Iowa next month, many of the casually attuned GOP caucus-goers who had planned to attend the Ames Straw Poll instead decide to stay home or make a beeline for the nearest air-conditioned movie theater.

Meanwhile, throngs of the famously devoted supporters of Texas Rep. Ron Paul wipe the sweat off their brows without batting an eye and descend on the campus of Iowa State University to propel the libertarian-leaning icon to yet another straw-poll victory — but one that might actually be significant for once. . . . Read More

Meanwhile, Conroy also reprts that a pro-Rick Perry group has been denied opportunity to purchase space for the Iowa Straw Poll:

. . . . In a recent incident that highlighted the tension between state officials who want to preserve the Ames Straw Poll’s quirky traditions and those who fault the state party fundraiser for its archaic rules (which come across as silly to outsiders), the Iowa branch of Americans for Rick Perry — a 527 advocacy group designed to generate interest for his potential candidacy — earlier this week was unexpectedly denied the opportunity to purchase space for the August event.

A state party spokesman said that the ruling was a clear-cut case of the group having missed the deadline to reserve space, but the pro-Perry organization had a different take.

“In effect, the decision was made to prohibit our participation,” Craig Schoenfeld, the group’s Iowa executive director, told RCP. . . .

Report: GOP Leaders Fear “Doomsday Scenario” at Iowa Straw Poll: Only Devoted Ron Paul Followers Show Up in Scorching Heat

A group seeking to get Texas Gov. Rick Perry to run for President is actively trying to help get organized for him in Iowa. Americans for Rick Perry have now actually hired a veteran Iowa Strategist – Craig Schoenfeld – to lead an effort to help Perry leading up to the Iowa Straw Poll in Ames in August:

POLITICO: The group “Americans for Rick Perry,” which made headlines in the last two days for trying to light a fire for the Texas governor in the form of support at the Ames Straw Poll in Iowa next month, is making hires – including a top former Newt Gingrich staffer, sources told POLITICO.

Craig Schoenfeld, a veteran Iowa strategist, has been brought on board and has started nascent discussions with others about six-week contracts – meaning the duration of the lead-up to the Ames poll, the sources said.

Schoenfeld ran Gingrich’s Iowa effort until the massive Newtiny that saw nearly 20 staffers quit last month, in part because the candidate wouldn’t commit to the retail politics and fundraising involved in winning the state.

His presence gives the group instant heft. . . . . Read More

The signs are certainly growing that Rick Perry is going to get into the 2012 race.

“Americans for Rick Perry” Getting Organized for the Iowa Straw Poll; Hire Key Iowa Strategist

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