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Talking Points

Bill O'Reilly: Less Than Five Weeks Until the Iowa Vote

By Bill O'Reilly

As the Republican Party consolidates and absorbs a new frontrunner Newt Gingrich, it is worth looking back four years ago from tonight.

On November 30th, 2007, Rudy Giuliani was leading the Republican pack, Fred Thompson second, John McCain third and Mitt Romney fourth. Obviously Senator McCain secured the nomination.

Right now here is the Republican score card and this is a compilation of all of the polls. Newt Gingrich and Mitt neck and neck, Herman Cain and Rick Perry and Ron Paul roundup the top five.

In a Rasmussen poll today Mr. Gingrich actually beats Barack Obama; 45, 43 although that's a statistical dead heat. It's good news for the Speaker. So there's no question that the former Speaker of the House is a legitimate contender for the Republican nomination. That means Governor Romney will have to go after Mr. Gingrich as he did last night on "Special Report" when he called the Speaker a career politician.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MITT ROMNEY, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think to get President Obama out of office you're going to have to bring something to the race that's different than what he brings. He is a lifelong politician. I think you have to have the credibility of understanding how the economy works, and I do. And that's one reason I'm in this race.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

O'REILLY: It is clear Governor Romney is running as America's CEO as a Washington outsider who will clean up the federal mess. But Romney still has to deal with conservative Republicans, some of whom are suspicious of him.

So last night Bret Baier went back to RomneyCare.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BRET BAIER, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: Do you believe that that was the right thing for Massachusetts. Do you think a mandate... mandating people to buy insurance is the right tool?

ROMNEY: Bret, I don't know how many hundred times I have said this, too. This is an unusual interview.

All right. Let's do it again. Absolutely what we did in Massachusetts was right for Massachusetts. I have said that time and time again. The people of the state continue to support it by about three to one. But it's also designed for Massachusetts, not for the nation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

O'REILLY: All right. It's obvious Governor Romney doesn't want to keep revisiting that question. It's also obvious that his answer RomneyCare was right for Massachusetts but government health care is not right for the nation is not going to change.

"Talking Points" believes that unless there is another seismic event the race will come down to Newt Gingrich against Mitt Romney. The difference now as opposed to four years ago is that there have been already 12 Republican debates.

Reporters have gotten... reporters and voters have gotten a good look at the contenders and the primaries are coming on fast. It's always a possibility that someone might surprise in Iowa, even in New Hampshire. So nothing is settled. But the trend line is in.

And that's "The Memo."

PINHEADS AND PATRIOTS

As you know, Brian Williams is the anchor of the "NBC Nightly News," and this is what happened yesterday.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BRIAN WILLIAMS, NBC NEWS ANCHOR: For all the bankruptcies we've covered...

(LOUD RINGING)

WILLIAMS: ... in this grim U.S. economy, this one gets your attention.

You'll forgive us. We have a fire alarm announcement going on here in the studio. Tom Costello, we should advise our viewers there's no danger to us. We'd love to make this stop. Why don't you take it from our Washington bureau?

Michael Jackson's former Dr. Conrad Murray was given the maximum sentence.

Mexican drug traffickers have crossed deeply into this country...

We are still dealing with this fire alarm problem in New York.

Thank you for being here with us and for those of you who stayed here with us. I'm Brian Williams, and we hope to get the all-quiet and see you right back here tomorrow evening. Good night.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

O'REILLY: I didn't do it. I had nothing to do with it. They're right across the street over there. I think Williams handled that with aplomb. So in this case he's a patriot.