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Bud’s Beat

Who will survive the presidential hopeful merry-go-round?
By: Bud Pisarek, Loomis News Correspondent
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Way back in the early days of radio, there was a very popular program titled “The Major Bowes Amateur Hour.” You can call it a forerunner of today’s “American Idol.” The theme song’s lyrics included “Round and round she goes, and where she stops nobody knows.” It referred to the fortunes of the contenders hoping to reach stardom. The performers had all hitched their ride on the merry-go-round of public opinion. It reminds me of today’s Republican Party and the process of picking a winner to represent the party in the 2012 presidential race. Round and round she goes, and where she stops nobody knows. Every day there are new announcements of someone speculating a run for the brass ring. If not an outright “Yes,” some wannabes say “Maybe.” So, the whirlwind keeps on going, with at least a dozen aspirants to the White House hanging in there. Some – like Mike Huckabee, Donald Trump and Haley Barbour – have jumped off the carousel. Trump threatens to hop back onboard. At present, there are at least a dozen possible candidates. Among them is Tim Pawlenty, former governor of Minnesota. Close behind is another ex-governor, Mitt Romney, of Massachusetts. A newcomer to the field is Jon Huntsman, former ambassador to China. Next in line is “half-governor” Sarah Palin, who is playing coy about whether she will or won’t run. This pack is considered the frontrunners, closely followed by Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani, then a host of long shots: Gary Johnson, Rick Santorum and Ron Paul. Bringing up the rear are Michele Bachmann, the Minnesota congresswoman who is the darling of the Tea Party, and Herman Cain, a successful businessman and former CEO of Godfather Pizza. There you have it. Are you ready to make a choice? You’d better hurry before your favorite falls off the merry go round.