After two weeks in Nicaragua, I return to find the presidential race about where it was when I left.
In the meantime, Mitt Romney picked Paul Ryan as his running mate. Such a bold, polarizing move would surely give Mitt a bump in the polls.
But, it really hasn't.
The national polls still show the race as dead even.
Of course, such polls don't matter much.
Nate Silver's site still shows President Obama's chances of winning re-election at about 70 percent.
Since, much of the country is split between less-populated red states and more-populous blue states, only a handful of states matter in this election -- Florida, Virginia and Ohio or about a dozen counties actually -- and they have a boatload of electoral votes (EVs) to put Obama over the top.
Most polling websites show Obama with close to 300 EVs.
Only 270 EVs are needed for victory.
It seems that Mitt's pick of Ryan is not enticing the handful of undecided voters out there.
Ryan's budget plan to re-arrange Medicare so that seniors have far less than before while the very richest have much more than they do now is not playing well in heavy retirement states like Florida and Virginia.
And, it doesn't help when Republicans open their mouths and stick both their feet and hands in them.
Rep. Todd Akin's comment about "legitimate rape" turned his slim lead in the Missouri senate race into a 9-point deficit.
While the GOP insiders wanted Akin to drop from the race because of the negative effect it could have on Romney, not only in Missouri but nationally, other Republicans have doubled down on Akin's comments making them look absolutely nuts.
This puts the abortion issue on the front burner, while Mitt's preferred topic of the economy simmers on a back burner.
The Republican platform adopted this week in Tampa, Fla., seeks to end abortion in all cases.
This is another reason why right-wingers would love Nicaragua, which outlawed all abortions, even for 11-year-old victims of incest.
Naturally, it is Republican men making all the idiotic statements about abortion and contraception, which only shines a klieg light on the GOP's "war on women."
Afterall, Republicans love war. They just don't want to talk about Iraq or Afghanistan at their love-fest in Tampa.
Meanwhile, the Mitt-wit can't get out of his own way. Apparently, the Romney campaign in Tampa toasted its biggest donors on a yacht flying the flag of the Cayman Islands, where Mitt and his rich buddies have stashed untold millions.
This represents their true allegiance, and it's not to the Stars and Stripes.
These people aren't real Americans. They're frauds.