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Back from Iowa, Prof. Bruce Stinebrickner Weighs In on the GOP Presidential Hopefuls

January 9, 2012

"Candidate (Mitt) Romney has been and is the frontrunner for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, and his campaign appearances reflected that status," observes Bruce Stinebrickner, Leonard E. and Mary B. Howell Professor of Political Science at DePauw University, in today's Banner-Graphic. "He had bigger crowds, larger venues, and better orchestrated events." (at right: the professor with Texas Governor Rick Perry)

Dr. Stinebrickner was in Iowa from December 31 through January 4, observing the Republican presidential candidates in the run-up to last Tuesday's caucus, which Romney narrowly won.  Now back in Greencastle, he shares his first-hand observations of the candidates with the local newspaper.

Of Romney, the professor states, " I was impressed by Romney's speaking ability. I don't think he's in the class of Obama as an orator, but the man can give a speech and give it well. The Obama folks should not underestimate their probable Republican opponent." (at left: Stinebrickner and Newt Gingrich)

The professor also writes, "Why are young people attracted to the "movement" that Ron Paul represents? My hunch is that young people's embrace of this movement candidacy is the product of long years of anti-government and especially anti-BIG government rhetoric that Ronald Reagan popularized some three decades ago. The candidate Ron Paul has little to do with young people's support for him; they are attracted by the libertarian ideas that he represents."

Stinebrickner also asserts, "In the four (Rick) Santorum appearances I observed, he seemed authentic and sincere, but also a bit stiff and un-charismatic. His attempts to evoke cheers and enthusiasm from his audiences typically fell somewhat flat; by contrast, Ron Paul's libertarian supporters regularly broke into applause, cheers, and chanting while he spoke." (Left: the professor greets FOX News Channel anchor and 1992 DePauw graduate Bret Baier on the campaign trail)

You'll find the complete article at the Banner-Graphic's website.

Source: Greencastle Banner-Graphic

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