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What’s Next for GOP Candidates in Florida?

Jan 23, 2012, 12:21 pm EDT

On Saturday, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich capped off a tumultuous week of campaigning in South Carolina by pulling off a comeback for the ages. In the course of a week, Gingrich overcame double-digit deficits in polls at the beginning of the week to post a 12-point win in the South Carolina primary.

Gingrich’s win blows the race wide open and puts former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney scrambling. With the Florida GOP primary just eight days away, what do the remaining Republican candidates need to do to boost their chances of gaining the party’s nomination? Newt Gingrich

Keep up the momentum. Gingrich benefited from excellent debate performances in South Carolina, and shrewdly played his hand with regards to the tax return controversy that engulfed Romney. Tonight’s debate in Florida could not come at a better time for Gingrich, who undoubtedly will use the forum to showcase his conservative credentials, prove that he is electable, and assail Romney as the candidate of moderates and the very wealthy. Read 

5 Richest U.S. Presidential Candidates

Jan 23, 2012, 10:32 am EDT
5 Richest U.S. Presidential Candidates

Money may or may not make the world go around, but when it comes to running for President of the United States, it certainly makes things a lot easier. While having millions and millions of dollars is not a 100% guarantee you will get elected president, the richest candidates to have run for president since 1992 certainly had a leg up on the competition because of their wealth. Here’s a look at the top five: 5. Al Gore

Current estimated net worth: $100 million

The vice president of the United States from 1993-2001, Gore narrowly lost the 2000 presidential election to former Texas Gov. George W. Bush after the Florida vote recount controversy was settled in the Supreme Court. Gore decided against a 2004 election run and focused on environmental politics, writing a book about global warming titled An Inconvenient Truth that later became an Academy Award-winning documentary. Gore’s current wealth includes holdings in real estate, speaking fees and stock options from his time spent on the board of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL). Read 

SOPA Sponsor Pulls Bill From Consideration

Jan 20, 2012, 1:15 pm EDT

Score one for Silicon Valley.

Two days after prominent websites such as Wikipedia and Reddit shut down completely in protest of the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act bills being debated in the U.S. House and Senate, the Congressman responsible for introducing SOPA, Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, announced he was withdrawing the bill from consideration “until there is wider agreement on a solution.”

Along with news that Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid postponed a vote on PIPA — a bill similar to SOPA currently under debate in the Senate — it seems like the protests that spanned websites ranging from Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) to Facebook to even LOLcat haven ICanHazCheezBurger had their desired impact. Read 

Newt Gingrich’s Ex-Wife Alleges He Asked For Open Marriage

Jan 20, 2012, 12:22 pm EDT

It was the best of days and it was the worst of days for former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. Fresh off of Perry dropping out of the GOP race and endorsing Gingrich, ABC News ran an interview with Gingrich’s ex-wife, Marianne Gingrich, in which she claimed Newt asked for an open marriage between her, Newt and Gingrich’s then-mistress and now current wife Calista Gingrich.

While this isn’t exactly the freshest of news — Esquire magazine ran a story in 2010 profiling Newt in which similar allegations were brought up — this story came from a widely watched television news source on the eve of a crucial debate for the South Carolina primary, and included the “open marriage” bombshell. Gingrich’s marital record — he is twice divorced, and both divorces occurred while his ex-wives were suffering from serious diseases — has been more than ample fodder for evangelical and family-values voters.

Whether this matters, of course, depends on whether you think family values are an important issue in this campaign. His affair took place at the same time Congress was impeaching former President Bill Clinton for denying his affair with Monica Lewinsky. However, that affair — and the allegations brought up in this recent interview — occurred a long time ago. Read 

Gingrich Beats GOP Foes to Tax Return Punch

Jan 20, 2012, 9:47 am EDT
Gingrich Beats GOP Foes to Tax Return Punch

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has put additional pressure on former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and the other remaining GOP candidates by releasing his 2010 federal tax return on his website.

According to the form, Gingrich filed a joint return with his wife Calista, and the two paid a 31.45% tax rate on their income. They paid $994,708 on $3,162,424 in total income. Most of Gingrich’s income comes from businesses, the largest of which is Gingrich Productions, a multimedia production company that creates documentaries, books, newsletters, audio books, and photo essays, as well as handles Newt and Calista’s appearances on television, radio, and for speeches. At least some of Gingrich’s income was likely to have been taxed at the ordinary income tax rate of 35%.

Gingrich also has promised to release his 2011 tax return when it is completed in April, and thus far seems to be well on top of the tax return game. It might be a political ploy, but it is still refreshing to see a candidate implying, however indirectly it might be, that paying a fair share of taxes is a good thing, and not something to avoid. Read 

Topsy-Turvy South Carolina Primary Enters Final Stretch

Jan 20, 2012, 9:06 am EDT

On Monday of this week it looked as though Mitt Romney was cruising to victory in the Republican primaries. He had won in Iowa and New Hampshire and had a sizable lead in the polls in South Carolina. What a difference a day makes. Over the course of Thursday morning, Rick Perry dropped out of the race and endorsed Newt Gingrich and Iowa announced that, upon recount, Rick Santorum, not Romney, actually won the caucus. Later in the day, a slew of polls were released that showed Gingrich leading Romney in South Carolina, building on what was considered a strong debate performance two days ago.

Gingrich entered the final debate with a considerable amount of momentum and capitalized on it. The Romney campaign suddenly seems to be wobbling. The former House Speaker is now poised to win the South Carolina primary on Saturday.

What are the takeaways from tonight’s debate and what does it mean for the race going forward? Read 

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