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The Gazette KCRG
Posted December 8, 2011
What’s Ahead Dec. 8: Meet the 2012 candidates — all 297 of them

Randall Terry addresses members of the media in front of the former federal courthouse in Cedar Rapids while on an RV tour across Eastern Iowa on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2011. Terry is running in the Democratic presidential primary against incumbent President Barack Obama. (Liz Martin/SourceMedia Group News)


From Adams to Zollinger, presidential hopefuls have the waterfront, or the alphabet, covered.

Oh, there are a few familiar names – Barack Obama, Newt Gingrich, Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Jon Huntsman and Rick Perry, for example, as well as Tim Pawlenty and Herman Cain. However, the vast majority of the names of the 297 people who have declared their candidacies for president are as unfamiliar as Yinka Abosede Adeshina, HRM Caesar St. Augustine De Buonaparte and President Emperor Caesar.

Clever name, “President,” if you’re running for president. I can’t help but think “Emperor” might be a turn-off for many Americans.

Rutherford B. Hayes might get votes from people looking for a president with experience.

And if you’re into dynasties, check out Savannah Jewel McCumber Bush and/or Tanner Cline McCumber Bush. The Bushes of South Lake Tahoe, California, claim to the “legal” daughter and son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

The nearly 300 candidates are overwhelmingly male and, surprise, mostly Republican.

It wouldn’t be fair to say that they are running on a whim. Well, at least not all of them. Bruce Allen Gidner of Charlotte, Michigan, filed his paperwork for the 2012 cycle more than a decade before Election Day, on Feb. 1, 2002.

Check out the list of candidates at http://www.fec.gov/press/press2011/presidential_form2nm.shtml.

Graphic novelty: Another one of those candidates, anti-abortion activist Randall Terry, is making good on the promise he made here this fall to air television ads showing graphic images of “babies murdered by abortion.”

Terry, who is challenging Obama for the Democratic nomination, is targeting Catholics and evangelicals who supported Obama four years ago.

The ads, which are running on nine Iowa television stations and one in southeastern Minnesota, make the argument “that to vote for Obama knowing that Obama supports the murder of babies is a betrayal of the Catholic faith.”

Newt Romney: As Newt Gingrich rises in the polls and Mitt Romney returns to the Iowa campaign trail, the Democratic Party is suggesting in a web video released this morning the Republicans are one and the same, or, at least, of one mind.

Romney, the Democrats say, has changed forms from liberal Republican, to a pragmatic governor to a social conservative and, this year, an economic Mr. Fix-It.

“Beginning this week, that pretense ended as he has morphed into some bizarre, Tea Party-infused version of Sarah Palin, Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich,” the party says. “Romney now assails the notion of providing a leg up to the middle class – decrying such a thing in the same language as Newt Gingrich – using the exact same phrases and words – referring to an “entitlement society” and railing against the horrors of “redistribution.”

Romney’s language is now so similar to Gingrich’s “it’s as if they are stuck in a Vulcan mind meld,” Democrats say.

Romney, according to the Democratic National Committee is trying to reinvent himself to revive a campaign that has been stuck at about 25 percent.

Hmm, is there any candidate in this race who wouldn’t like to be “stuck” at 25 percent – a level candidate Barack Obama had not achieved four years ago?

On the calendar:

Dec. 7

Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul and Rick Santorum, Republican Jewish Coalition, Washington

Dec. 8

Ron Paul, 1 p.m., employee meeting, Principal Financial Group, Des Moines; 4 p.m. , Boone Public Library; 7 p.m., Youth for Ron Paul, Great Hall, Iowa State Memorial Union, Ames

Michele Bachmann, 6 p.m., Five Seasons Republican Women, Cedar Rapids Country Club

Rick Santorum, 6:30 p.m., house party, Ron & Beck Herrig, Dubuque

Dec. 9

Rick Santorum, 8 a.m., town hall, Ferrari’s, Cedar Falls; 11 a.m., University of Northern Iowa forum “Addressing the Challenges and Opportunities in Education Today.” Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, Cedar Falls; 3 p.m., Uncle Nancy’s Coffee, Newton; 6 p.m., major announcement, Des Moines

Ron Paul, 9 a.m., Webster City Fire Station; 1 p.m., Mason City High; 4 p.m., Waverly Public Library; 7 p.m., Youth for Ron Paul, University of Northern Iowa Maucker Union, Slife Ballroom, Cedar Falls

Michele Bachmann, Nationwide Insurance, Des Moines

Dec. 10

Rick Santorum, town hall, Jefferson; noon, town hall, Waukee

Ron Paul, 10 a.m., Fisher Community Center, Marshalltown

Newt Gingrich, Michele Bachmann, and Rick Santorum, 2:30 p.m., Veterans for a Strong America, Drake University, Des Moines

Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul and Rick Santorum, 8 p.m., Des Moines Register/ABC News/Yahoo!/Republican Party of Iowa live presidential debate, Drake University

Dec. 11

Rick Perry, 12:30 p.m., Café Diem Coffee House, Ames

Rick Santorum, 11 a.m., Tabernacle Baptist Church, 2050 1st Ave., Coralville; 6:30 p.m., house party, Mitchell family, 570 Evergreen Ln., Robins

Dec. 12

Rick Santorum, 11:30 a.m., Principal Group, Des Moines; 3 p.m., Cornell College, Mount Vernon, Thomas Commons, Hedges Conference Room; 6:30 p.m., Linn County Republican Christmas Party, Longbranch Hotel and Convention Center, 90 Twixt Town Rd., Cedar Rapids

Dec. 13

Rick Santorum, town hall, Lincoln Café, Belle Plaine; 6:30 p.m., National Contract Management Association, Campbell Steele Gallery, 1064 7th Ave., Marion

Dec. 14

Newt Gingrich, Michele Bachmann, and Rick Santorum, 7 p.m., Mike Huckabee forum on abortion issues, Hoyt Sherman Place, Des Moines

Dec. 15

Fox News/ Republican Party of Iowa live presidential debate, Sioux City



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