Entries in Presidential Candidates (3)


Fourth of July Parades Popular with Presidential Candidates

Darren McCollester/Getty Images (File Photo)(AMHERST, N.H.) -- The Fourth of July is probably a presidential candidate's dream come true. With huge parades, community barbecues and a plethora of patriotism, Independence Day is the perfect opportunity to mix and mingle with constituents in early caucus states.
In 2011 GOP candidates are marching two by two through small towns in the first-in-the nation states of New Hampshire and Iowa. The average population of GOP candidates' Independence Day stops? About 10,000 people.

Both Jon Huntsman and Mitt Romney were in Amherst, New Hampshire, population 12,000, Monday morning attending the same parade. The two exchanged handshakes and pleasantries before the parade began.

The Romney team marched at the front of the parade while the Huntsman crew brought up the rear. Asked about Romney being ahead in the parade, Huntsman, a former U.S. Ambassador to China, replied, "I guess we have more hands to shake."

And shake hands he did. Huntsman at times had to run to catch up to his supporters because he took so many detours to shake every hand offered to him.

A group of Ron Paul supporters held down a spot in the center of the parade, although the candidate himself did not attend.

Huntsman arrived at the parade with his wife, Mary Kaye, and two youngest daughters, Gracie Mei and Asha. The family was greeted by about dozen supporters chanting "Jon 2012." Romney was surrounded by about two dozen supporters on the parade route. The former Massachusetts Governor made an afternoon stop in Andover village green, and rounds out America's birthday with another parade in Laconia, New Hampshire.

Huntsman had four stops scheduled in New Hampshire Monday, more than any other candidate. After the morning parade, Huntsman lunched at a barbecue in Belmont before going on to Moultonborough and then Plymouth.

Michele Bachmann and Newt Gingrich were also parade twins, marching in Clear Lake, Iowa's Fourth of July parade.
Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum scheduled appearances at no fewer than three Independence Day parades in Iowa. Santorum started the morning in Urbandale at 10 a.m., headed over to Pella at 2:30 p.m. and rushed to Iowa Falls by 5:30.

Herman Cain is the only GOP presidential candidate who stuck to the big city for July Fourth. Cain, the former CEO of Godfather's Pizza, spoke to the Independence Hall Tea Party in Philadelphia.

Ron Paul and Tim Pawlenty did not have any public events scheduled for Independence Day.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


GOP Presidential Candidate Debate Postponed for Lack of Candidates

Comstock Images/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- What if they held a debate for Republican presidential hopefuls, and nobody showed up?

Faced with that distinct possibility, the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation has pushed back its much ballyhooed debate scheduled for May 2 to Sept. 14.

By that time, the Reagan Foundation says there should be a "full slate of candidates to participate."  Executive director John Heubusch admitted "too few have made the commitment thus far for a debate to be worthwhile in early May."

At the moment, only former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty has announced he's forming an exploratory committee, which doesn't necessarily mean he'll seek the 2012 GOP presidential nomination.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann have only talked about forming exploratory committees, while other possible candidates, such as former governors Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin remain coy about their plans for next year.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Potential GOP Presidential Candidates Kick Off Iowa Caucus Season

Comstock Images/Thinkstock(DES MOINES, Iowa) -- At an event billed by Iowa’s Republican Gov. Terry Branstad as the “first significant event of the caucus season,” five 2012 GOP presidential hopefuls offered sweeping criticism of President Obama and delivered pitches for their own candidacies.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who began the exploratory phase of his campaign for the Republican nomination last week, wasted no time painting a picture of his first day in office. Among his top priorities if elected, Gingrich said he would “abolish every single czar in the White House and their offices” and reinstate President Ronald Reagan’s Mexico City policy to ensure, as Gingrich put it, that “no American tax money will go to abortions anywhere outside the U.S., period.”

More broadly, Gingrich complained that Republicans did not do enough to limit the power of the political left when they controlled the White House and that the country was in need of “deep” and “profound” political change. He accused President Obama of sharing the views of the “secular socialist left” and called on Republicans to unite in their efforts to defeat him in 2012.

“There should be no distinction, between economic, national security and social conservatives,” Gingrich said.

At the gathering outside Des Moines, organized by the Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition, another potential candidate, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, focused on religious values and social issues.

“We need to be a country that turns toward God, not a country that turns away from God,” Pawlenty said. “The constitution was designed to protect people of faith from government, not to protect government from people of faith.”

Pawlenty called the national debt “immoral,” said the unborn should have a “right to life” and defended traditional marriage. He also touted his record as governor of Minnesota where he said he fought back against entrenched Democratic interests to usher in conservative policies.

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum told the audience of several hundred Iowans who gathered Monday night at the Point of Grace Church in Waukee, Iowa that he had been “out fighting the war” on moral issues as an elected official and in the years since he left Washington. Santorum said he fought so hard that his children used to think his first name was “ultra” -- as in “ultra conservative” -- as a result of the reputation he gained in the press.

“Once you stick your head out on the social issues, once you fight for the moral fabric of our country” he said, “you’re labeled.”

Former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer, who started a presidential exploratory committee last week, called himself  “a seasoned warrior against special interest money,” touting his promise not take money from political action committees and cap all donations at $100.

“I’ve always been a church-going Methodist boy from a cotton field in north Louisiana,” Roemer said. “I’m a pro-life, traditional values man. I’m the only person thinking of running for president who was elected as a congressman and as a governor.”

Herman Cain, a Georgia businessman and the former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, said he decided to launch a presidential exploratory committee because he was “compelled into a position of leadership.” If elected, Cain said, he would focus on changing the nation “from an entitlement society to an empowerment society,” adding that only businesses not government could create jobs.

“Let me ask you a rhetorical question: When was the last time anything was micromanaged from Washington, D.C. and it worked?” Cain asked. “Time’s up.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio 

ABC News Radio