Nothing much happened at the Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans over the weekend. Ron Paul won yet another straw poll (he's totally going to win the nomination this time, you guys!), and a bunch of candidates said a bunch of candidate-y stuff.
The big news was Rick Perry's speech, which sure sounded like a presidential campaign speech to me. Perry hit all the notes: Small government, Obamacare will ruin the economy even further, how's all that hopey-changey blah blah blah. In fact, it felt to me like a Sarah Palin speech in that it was delivered well and it was a lavish ode to hyperconservative ideals. I don't believe I've heard a better summation of teabagger thinking. If Perry gets into the race—at this point, I think it's safe to say when he gets in the race—Romney might have to start pandering directly to the right of his party. Here's the whole speech: