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The E.J. Dionne Vote in South Carolina

The liberal Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne Jr. ends his column this way:

Which leads to this observation from Gingrich: “I think there’s a real difference,” he said, “between people who believed in the free market and people who go around, take financial advantage, loot companies, leave behind broken families, broken towns, people on unemployment.” Yes, there are different kinds of capitalism.

Romney’s victory speech suggested that he hopes that the campaign will be about whether President Obama wants to turn the United States into Europe. A more relevant discussion would be over what American capitalism is — and should be. Thanks to Gingrich and Perry, this debate is now unavoidable.

So it appears as if Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry have done a masterful job of securing what most political strategists consider to be the key demographic in South Carolina’s Republican Party: E.J. Dionne voters.

When Dionne, who is about as reliable a liberal and as passionate a supporter of Barack Obama as you’ll find, is praising Republican politicians for their comments on capitalism, it tells you almost everything you need to know.

Well done, gentlemen. Well done.