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Is Mitt Romney Setting Up a Tea Party 'Sister Souljah' Moment?
US News and World Report ^ | January 22, 2011 | Robert Schlesinger, Opinion Editor

Posted on 01/22/2011 3:16:40 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

The Boston Globe has an interesting story pointing out that once-and-future GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney is not trying to suck up to the Tea Party movement, a fact which distinguishes Romney from virtually every other potential Republican presidential candidate. According to the Globe:

As the former Massachusetts governor lays the groundwork for a possible second presidential run, he has largely shunned Tea Party activists in key primary states, including the state he must win if he enters the race, New Hampshire. Thus far, Romney is on track to present himself as the establishment candidate--a responsible, mainstream Republican leader with the necessary financial resources and credentials to beat President Obama.

Off the top of my head, I can think of three good reasons for Romney to keep his distance from the Tea Party.

First, as mentioned, the rest of the field seems to be vying for Tea Party support. By standing apart, Romney stands a chance of having the party establishment coalesce behind him. And while the Tea Party may be ascendant in the GOP, and may wield outsized influence in the primaries, the movement has not always demonstrated an ability to coalesce around a single candidate. If, say, Sarah Palin, Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, Newt Gingrich, and Mike Pence fracture the Tea Party votes Romney alone as the establishment figure could triumph. This scenario is bolstered by the fact that, as the Globe notes:

Without a Democratic primary contest in the upcoming election, Romney supporters can count on a wave of independents casting ballots in New Hampshire and South Carolina — which allow nonparty voters to participate in the primary.

Second by using the Tea Party as a foil Romney can combat one of his own biggest negatives: his reputation for being a political weather vane (see his positions on abortion, gay marriage, and gun control for example). As one Tea Party activists tells the Globe, Romney is “a fraudulent conservative. I don’t trust the guy. Be it health care, be it social issues, he’s a chameleon."

But by refusing to kowtow to the Tea Party Romney could build a counter-narrative. “I don’t think you’re going to see a different persona than the persona that’s been there for 20 years. That would be jarring. That’s not going to happen,” Romney adviser Tom Rath tells the Globe.

Finally, Romney could be positioning the Tea Party for something of a Sister Souljah moment with an eye toward avoiding a Sharron Angle moment. The 2012 election will turn on the economy. If unemployment is down and voter confidence is up, Obama will be very hard to beat; if we’re still looking at a jobless rate north of 9 percent, the president will be highly vulnerable—unless a Tea Party-dominated GOP produces an Angle-like nominee (see Palin, Sarah, who is viewed positively by 17 percent of Americans and negatively by 49 percent according to the latest NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll). Indeed, while the Tea Party has huge influence in the GOP it remains unpopular nationally, with 29 percent viewing it very or somewhat favorably and 38 percent viewing it very or somewhat negatively—Pelosi-like numbers (26 very or somewhat positive and 40 very or somewhat negative) that the GOP nominee will want to avoid being tarred with. By steering clear of the fringe, Romney could position himself as the kind of acceptable Republican able to take advantage of a faltering Obama. If, that is, he can get the nomination.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Editorial; Philosophy; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 2012; bullshltter; carpetbaggerromney; dog0ncarroof; flipflopromney; huckabee; newhampshire; obama; palin; rinoromney; romney; romney4911mosque; romney4bigdig; romney4dnc; romney4illegals; romney4obama; romney4obamacare; romney4romney; romney4romneycare; romney4tarp; romneycare; sarahpalin; shapeshifterromney; teaparty; teapartyexpress; willardmchuckleberry
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What a pile of horse $#*+!! Did they make up those polls out of whole cloth or word the questions in such a way that they got the results they wanted? The "Tea Party" and Governor Sarah Palin just won the biggest mid-term upset in about 150 years!! Two months later no one likes them? Hahahahaha!
1 posted on 01/22/2011 3:16:41 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Bush 41 supports him that means he is part of the “New World Order”, I’l take a pass.


2 posted on 01/22/2011 3:19:05 PM PST by USSR Didnt Fall
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
“I don’t think you’re going to see a different persona than the persona that’s been there for 20 years. That would be jarring. That’s not going to happen,” Romney adviser Tom Rath tells the Globe.

You mean he'll continue to be the politically irrelevant flip-flopper he's always been...? Good to know.

3 posted on 01/22/2011 3:19:58 PM PST by edpc (It's Kräusened)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Mitt Romney is a mayonnaise sandwich on white bread.


4 posted on 01/22/2011 3:20:28 PM PST by Mortrey (Impeach President Soros)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
U.S. News and World Report is full of it, as usual. They're pimping for Romney and trying to kid themselves (and their 30 or 40 subscribers) that the Tea Party doesn't really matter. Wishful thinking on the part of the left - and total BS.
5 posted on 01/22/2011 3:21:27 PM PST by Jim Scott
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
“I don’t think you’re going to see a different persona than the persona that’s been there for 20 years. That would be jarring. That’s not going to happen,” Romney adviser Tom Rath tells the Globe.

No ... we've seen about THREE different personae in the last eight. Roll tape from the MA Senate debates ...

And DON'T be so sure Obama won't draw a challenger. Someone's going to file. He's certainly weaker than LBJ was at this point. 2012 may have its own McCarthy.
6 posted on 01/22/2011 3:22:33 PM PST by Dr. Sivana (There is no salvation in politics.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

How does Romney win the general if as an establishment candidate he has PO’d the Tea Party? We aren’t playing the ‘vote for the RINO’ game any more.


7 posted on 01/22/2011 3:23:01 PM PST by DaxtonBrown (HARRY: Money Mob & Influence (See my Expose on Reid on amazon.com written by me!))
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To: FReepers
The Wolves Are At The Door!

Stop Them With The Truth

Donate To Free Republic

8 posted on 01/22/2011 3:23:42 PM PST by DJ MacWoW (America! The wolves are at your door! How will you answer the knock?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
GOLDMITT
9 posted on 01/22/2011 3:24:14 PM PST by FrankR (The Evil Are Powerless If The Good Are Unafraid! - R. Reagan)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
By standing apart, Romney stands a chance of having the party establishment coalesce behind him.

"Stands a chance"? He is the establishment candidate, period, full stop.

So, if the conservative vote is successfully divided enough to shoo Romney in as our candidate?

The chances are that the party itself will fracture. Especially, if Romney is the candidate, and loses the election the GOP will break. What rises out of it will be larger than the rump-GOP that remains and within a couple of years the GOP will be absorbed into the DNC or simply evaporate.

And if Romney wins?

Chances are, same thing. The conservatives are in no mood for more of the same. The GOP establishment may not like them, they mainly like to farm them for their votes and then ignore them, but just try winning any election without them. I'll say this; there are about three conservative candidates I'm watching, and if they were to break with the GOP I'm out too.

10 posted on 01/22/2011 3:24:23 PM PST by marron
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
If unemployment is down and voter confidence is up, Obama will be very hard to beat;

Yeah, and if the Zimbabwe rate of inflation falls below 10% Mugabe could win a legitimate popular election.

They have already CONCEDED that 8% is the new normal . . . the rate it wasn't supposed to hit if we passed the stimulus.
11 posted on 01/22/2011 3:24:40 PM PST by Dr. Sivana (There is no salvation in politics.)
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To: edpc; Mortrey

12 posted on 01/22/2011 3:24:40 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet (Please donate to FreeRepublic, sanity in a world gone mad!)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

And so the meme of ‘support Romney because your Tea Party pick doesn’t have a chance’ starts. Just like it did in the Nov. election. Just like Rove pushed.


13 posted on 01/22/2011 3:26:36 PM PST by rintense (The GOP elite & friends can pound sand.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
It's easy...when you poll, poll 50% rat, 35% GOP and 15% Ind. Works like a charm every time to make Sarah look bad.
14 posted on 01/22/2011 3:27:15 PM PST by JPG (There is hope for America and her name is Sarah Palin.)
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To: DaxtonBrown
How does Romney win the general if as an establishment candidate he has PO’d the Tea Party? We aren’t playing the ‘vote for the RINO’ game any more.

Yeah we would rather have 4 more years of Obama. There is no way he could make the Tea party happy except by dropping of the face of the earth. Why should he try?

15 posted on 01/22/2011 3:27:42 PM PST by kbennkc (For those who have fought for it freedom has a flavor the protected will never know .F Trp 8th Cav)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Why Angle is mentoned is beyond me. An unknown came very, very close to unseating Majority Leader, and might well have if the REALLY suspicious votes were cast out.

Like all the people filling in the Senate bubble and not others on the ticket.


16 posted on 01/22/2011 3:29:19 PM PST by txhurl
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
The Left really has a hard on for McCain Romney while Palin scares them sick.

Makes it pretty easy to choose don't it?

17 posted on 01/22/2011 3:31:53 PM PST by Happy Rain ("Homosexuality was the first diagnosed mental illness cured by political correctness.")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
This comes from the second year in J-school, when they take a class in "Constructing Alternate Realities."
18 posted on 01/22/2011 3:31:55 PM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: USSR Didnt Fall

And then there’s his health care thing of his.

That alone would sour me on him.


19 posted on 01/22/2011 3:33:53 PM PST by TribalPrincess2U (demonicRATS= Obama's Mosque, taxes, painful death. Is this what you want?)
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To: txhurl
Why Angle is mentioned is beyond me

Simple. This screed is not about Romney, it is about Palin. Angle lost-- close doesn't count-- and they want to associate Palin as a loser in the reader's mind.

20 posted on 01/22/2011 3:36:08 PM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

No more establishment candidates!!!!!


21 posted on 01/22/2011 3:37:53 PM PST by SandRat (Duty, Honor, Country! What else needs said?)
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To: Happy Rain

“Makes it pretty easy to choose don’t it? “

Maybe we’re being herded. Again. :)


22 posted on 01/22/2011 3:38:23 PM PST by dljordan ("His father's sword he hath girded on, And his wild harp slung behind him")
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To: FReepers; Everybody; everyone; Anybody; anyone; somebody; nobody; All; Me; myself; Mine; y'all

FREE REPUBLIC ALWAYS!
NO willard mitt romney EVER!


23 posted on 01/22/2011 3:40:57 PM PST by onyx (If you truly support Sarah Palin and want to be on her busy ping list, let me know!)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The LAST thing we need is a professional politician.

Eff You Mitt. Get lost.


24 posted on 01/22/2011 3:41:23 PM PST by mylife (Opinions: $1.00 ~ Halfbaked: 50c)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Can you believe it? a liberal media outlet used the word "KOWTOW"!

Photobucket

25 posted on 01/22/2011 3:41:58 PM PST by greyfoxx39 ("Journalists" see no problem with fueling a mass panic over our "political discourse.")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Romney wants the Tea Party to adore him; not respect him. Only problem Mitt, you just won’t do the right thing. Gee. someone might think you are an elitist since you appear to often think you know better than us.

That ain’t America , Buddy.


26 posted on 01/22/2011 3:43:34 PM PST by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote; then find me a real conservative to vote for)
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To: dljordan

If McCain didn’t teach us a lesson we deserve 4 more years of Lenin.

Funny but McCain was called the maverick—the one who eschews the herd—yet we were herded by him and the Marxist/RINO/MSM Axis of Mendacity.


27 posted on 01/22/2011 3:48:17 PM PST by Happy Rain ("Homosexuality was the first diagnosed mental illness cured by political correctness.")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Naturally USN&WR would want a RINO as Pubby candidate.


28 posted on 01/22/2011 3:50:58 PM PST by Seruzawa (If you agree with the French raise your hand - If you are French raise both hands.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney is not trying to suck up to the Tea Party movement


Right. He can kiss up all he wants; there is no love for him. He conveniently becomes pro-life when he wants to run for president. He set up Romneycare in his state. He's arrogant and wishy washy. The only thing he believes in is himself. He blows with the wind. If he ends up winning, o gets another 4 years; God help us.

29 posted on 01/22/2011 3:52:01 PM PST by Linda Frances
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To: Mortrey

What choo talkin ‘bout, Mortrey?


30 posted on 01/22/2011 3:54:47 PM PST by Whitebread
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Sharia IAG-supporting perennial backstabber, the RINO Romney:
Make all the promises you have to...


Alex Beam: “In truth, Ronald Reagan
and Mitt Romney have as much in common
as Cardinal O’Malley and Conan O’Brien.
Deservedly or not, Reagan earned a reputation for constancy.
Once he turned against communism, he opposed it big-time.
…. And our former governor? Inconstancy, thy name is Mitt!
A woman’s right to choose? Yes! No! Yes!
Are we in Massachusetts? Yes! Are we in Iowa? No!
Are we on TV? Whatever!”



MSM bias for Campaign Coverage in 2008


"Despite outspending his rivals by huge margins throughout the primaries,
(Mitt Romney, Carpetbagger UT,CA,MA,NH,Mexico) lost Iowa, South Carolina, Florida and California.
The only primaries he won were in Michigan, where Dad was governor; LDS states;
and a few states on Super Tuesday in which his California-obsessed rivals
couldn't spare the cash to advertise.
Only John Connolly in 1968 had a worse cash-to-delegates ratio.
And John McCain rightly did not like Romney's tactics during the primaries.
(W)hen (Romney's early leads) started slipping away, he resorted to unfair,
distorted, scorched-earth negative ads, betting that his opponents couldn't
afford to spend enough for the truth to catch up to his charges."

[Romney: A Mistake for McCain, 7/23/2008, Dick Morris]

31 posted on 01/22/2011 4:01:48 PM PST by Diogenesis (Si vis pacem, para bellum)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
US News & World Report reporting what the Boston Globe had written.

Yeah Right!

Sorry!

I Don't Believe The Liberal Media!

32 posted on 01/22/2011 4:02:20 PM PST by TexasCajun
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To: USSR Didnt Fall

Romney is another end justifies the means statist.


33 posted on 01/22/2011 4:03:36 PM PST by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, A Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Second by using the Tea Party as a foil Romney can combat one of his own biggest negatives: his reputation for being a political weather vane (see his positions on abortion, gay marriage, and gun control for example). As one Tea Party activists tells the Globe, Romney is “a fraudulent conservative. I don’t trust the guy. Be it health care, be it social issues, he’s a chameleon."

Romney can't win the primary. Even as the establishment candidate. If he does it means the establishment WANTS Obama to have a second term and it guarantees there will be no establishment come the 2016 elections.

34 posted on 01/22/2011 4:14:02 PM PST by McGavin999 ("I was there when we had the numbers, but didn't have the principles"-Jim DeMint)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Blah blah blah ... Translation: You idiot right wing nuts should nominate Myth so our Big Eared Socialist will win again.

Thanx but no thanx. We don’t take advice from the enemy.


35 posted on 01/22/2011 4:19:26 PM PST by Babu
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To: 2ndDivisionVet; All

Mitt Romney will be blown out by the early primaries. Without Tea Party support, he is unelectable....both primary and general election. If he is the GOP nominee the GOP is dead as a party....Obama will crush him


36 posted on 01/22/2011 4:27:15 PM PST by UCFRoadWarrior (NAFTA, WTO, UN, IMF are all Statist organizations)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

You know the Republicans have nearly TWO YEARS to close off Primary voting to non-Republicans, at least in the states that they control. If they can do that, then, maybe, we won’t get another McCain.


37 posted on 01/22/2011 4:36:47 PM PST by BobL (PLEASE READ: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2657811/posts)
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To: Mortrey
Mitt Romney is a mayonnaise sandwich on white bread. <<

Yup.... but with no mayonnaise

38 posted on 01/22/2011 4:38:34 PM PST by M-cubed
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

But...but...Mittens is Mr. Conservative. Really. Double dare you. Honest. Cross my heart.

/s


39 posted on 01/22/2011 4:40:48 PM PST by Leisler (They always lie, and have for so much and for so long, that they no longer know what about.http://ma)
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To: Jim Scott
their 30 or 40 subscribers

30-40 dentists are still subscribing? Hard to believe.
40 posted on 01/22/2011 5:02:45 PM PST by TheLawyerFormerlyKnownAsAl
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

agreed


41 posted on 01/22/2011 5:08:55 PM PST by USSR Didnt Fall
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Stay away from the Tea Party Romney. We don’t want it contaminated with GOP lackeys.


42 posted on 01/22/2011 5:29:26 PM PST by taxesareforever (Release Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich and let him and his family get on with their lives.)
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To: USSR Didnt Fall

Romney is a putz!


43 posted on 01/22/2011 5:36:55 PM PST by Roklok
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
while the Tea Party may be ascendant in the GOP, and may wield outsized influence in the primaries, the movement has not always demonstrated an ability to coalesce around a single candidate. If, say, Sarah Palin, Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, Newt Gingrich, and Mike Pence fracture the Tea Party votes Romney alone as the establishment figure could triumph.
That's why I suggest rallying around Sarah early. This is the very scenario we had in '08, and I fear it will happen again if we don't refuse to let "better" be the enemy of good enough.
Draft Palin

44 posted on 01/22/2011 5:37:13 PM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (DRAFT PALIN)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

>> “If, say, Sarah Palin, Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, Newt Gingrich, and Mike Pence fracture the Tea Party votes...” <<

.
Since when did establishment elitists like Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, Newt Gingrich, and Mike Pence qualify as TEA party candidates?

Those guys will take votes from Romney, not Palin.
.


45 posted on 01/22/2011 5:40:45 PM PST by editor-surveyor (NOBAMA - 2012)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Let’s get this straight from the git-go.... Mitt is a Morman (LDS for the Rio Vista crowd)... No way... No How... that is my stance as a voter in these United States!


46 posted on 01/22/2011 6:11:16 PM PST by pointsal
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Let’s get this straight from the git-go.... Mitt is a Morman (LDS for the Rio Vista crowd)... No way... No How... that is my stance as a voter in these United States!


47 posted on 01/22/2011 6:11:28 PM PST by pointsal
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To: Mortrey

LOL...perfect description.


48 posted on 01/22/2011 6:52:03 PM PST by I got the rope
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To: USSR Didnt Fall

You have to consider the source. No more party establishment coalesce. No more Progressive Republicans.


49 posted on 01/22/2011 6:54:00 PM PST by lqcincinnatus (Silence in the face of evil is itself evil.)
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To: pointsal

Yes the media is trying to pick our “McCain” so conservatives will stay home and Obama can have his second term.

A Romney nomination would kill the Republican party.

We need a hard conservative...more conservative than Palin can ever be. She compromised too much to be a McCainiac.

NO MORE RINOs.


50 posted on 01/22/2011 6:55:05 PM PST by I got the rope
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