Originally published on Mon January 30, 2012 8:10 am
We still don't know who'll win the Florida primary Tuesday, but after the past two debates it seems far likelier to be Mitt Romney.
Why? Because Newt Gingrich had vaulted from the margins to the forefront of the Republican presidential race in South Carolina on the strength of two debate performances. And that weapon has ceased to work in his favor.
The NBC and CNN debates this week in Tampa and Jacksonville went a long way toward neutralizing the impression created by debates the previous week in Myrtle Beach and Charleston.
The transport minister in Australia denounced a political opponent. He said the opponent wasn't interested in fixing a problem, only in making people "afraid of it" and telling them "who's to blame for it." Critics note Michael Douglas used that line in Aaron Sorkin's movie The American President.
Egyptian authorities are preventing six Americans, including the son of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, from leaving the country. They work for non-governmental agencies that were raided by Egyptian security forces last month.