Iowa Overload–Tales from the Trail

Today will be the epitome of a short shrift Friday.

Last night was the GOP debate. It is much easier to liveblog these debates when I am not sitting in the theatre watching it live. I scribbled until my hand nearly fell off, and will recap the debate soon enough when people stop caring.

Pawlenty and Gingrich were fiery, Romney and Bachmann were polished, Cain was funny, Santorum was passionate and heartfelt, Huntsman was there, and Ron Paul was even more nuts than usual. Paul supporters are now officially the barbarians at the gate. Savage animals, they totally disrupted the debate and yelled out while other candidates were speaking. They do Dr. Paul a disservice with their behavior.

Tomorrow is the straw poll. I am ready. This is like the Super Bowl of politics.

In the last few days I have spoken in front of Herman Cain and Tim Pawlenty, and got to see Michele Bachmann as well. I got invited to a dinner with Mitt Romney but could not go. There are so many events throughout the state and doing a fraction of them is possible.

At the debate I met RNC Chair Reince Priebus and later that night Sean Hannity.

A group called Strong America Now is making a big splash this weekend.

Friday is my day to visit the Iowa State Fair. I will be eating fried everything on a stick and recovering when I get home to Los Angeles.

Anyway, I am on Iowa Overload, so until I can recap the debate and straw poll, here is a quick tail from the campaign trail.

I spoke Tuesday evening in Webster County. After I spoke came Herman Cain and then Tim Pawlenty to wrap it up.

Governor Pawlenty showed up and stayed in the back by the door while Cain was still speaking. Pawlenty was his usual friendly self, and greeted me graciously (I spoke in front of him three weeks ago in Iowa in Story County). Pawlenty ordered his staff to stay quiet so as not to disrupt Mr. Cain.

(I wish Ron Paul would learn from this.)

Cain was equally polite. He saw Pawlenty and then told the audience he would take one last question and then wrap it up so as not to delay Pawlenty. Pawlenty playfully raised his hand, and Cain jokingly said, “I’m not going to call on you!”

The room laughed, and when Cain came to the door to exit, he and Pawlenty greeted each other very kindly. They both laughed as Cain said he could not call on Pawlenty. Pawlenty said, “I had a great question. I wanted to know when you were done because it was my turn to speak.”

They both laughed heartily and shared vigorous handshakes and a sincere hug.

The media made it out to be a conflict, but Cain quickly dispelled that notion by stating that they were joking with each other.

Cain and Pawlenty are not in direct conflict. So other candidates might not be so warm with each other.

Nevertheless, it was good to see that in the rough and tumble world of politics, mutual admiration and respect can develop between two men who each know that they are both working very hard around the state.

Ironically, Cain speaks loudly and passionately. The media calls him bombastic. Pawlenty is calm and low key, so the media labels him boring.

This is nonsense on both counts. The media simply hates conservatives who speak at all.

What I saw was two incredibly likable men with respect for the process of running for president.

So to Cain and Pawlenty, it was a classy display by a pair of good men.

That is this Friday’s tail from the trail.

eric

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