Perry's plan includes an optional 20% flat income tax rate for individuals and corporations…private retirement accounts for Social Security…and Medicare reforms.

Perry's proposal is more far-reaching than Mitt Romney's.

"The best representation of my plan is this postcard,” Perry said. “This is the size of what we're talking about. Taxpayers will be able to fill this out and file their taxes on that"

The power of tax plans is obvious: Herman Cain has ridden his 9-9-9 to the 1-1-1 spot in national polls…despite intense criticism his proposal would hurt the poor:

"I'm sorry,” Cain said. “It's just simply not correct. I cannot allow people to make statements like that and haven't done the math."

Music: “I am America”

And an unusual campaign ad today from the frontrunner, featuring a smiling Cain…and his chief of staff, Mark Block, with a cigarette. But, as Block says: “We've run a campaign like America's never seen, but then America's never seen a candidate like Herman Cain."

The GOP campaign is in a bit of a lull, between the deluge of debates and the first votes, now just about two months away.

That's not much time for the candidates to change their positions…to catch up to Cain and Romney, or fall farther behind.

(Copyright (c) 2011 Sunbeam Television Corp. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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