Semi-libertarian and full-time curmudgeon Ron Paul won the straw poll at the GOP “Value Voters Summit” in Washington. Paul has won several previous GOP straw polls, which doesn’t keep the Republican party and the news media from treating him like a political joke.
Paul’s 37% win amongst “Value Voters” isn’t quite as impressive as his other wins, however, since “Value Votes” are discounted at 50% off. This still doesn’t explain how Paul got 732 votes at an event with only 600 registered attendees.
Pizza magnate Herman Cain upset the entire GOP presidential race Saturday by winning the straw poll at the Florida 5 convention held by the state Republican party. Cain took a massive 37% of the vote, more than doubling Texas Governor Rick Perry’s 15.4%, and Mitt Romney’s 14%.
Perry is currently leading national polls, with Romney running second and Cain a distant also-ran. However, because of Florida’s traditional disproportionate effect on national politics, and the state’s traditional electoral incompetence, it is difficult to judge how Cain’s win in the unofficial and non-binding straw poll may affect the race. Perry may actually die as a result, and Romney may lose the ability to feed and dress himself.
Other candidates divided-up the spare change: former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum (10.9%), Texas Rep. Ron Paul (10.4%), former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (8.4%), Guy From Utah (2.26%) and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann (1.5%). Numbers that are essentially statistically insignificant.
Actually the entire thing is insignificant, considering only 2,657 votes were cast, and those by drunks who were farting corndogs.
Ron Paul, hyper-active Republican presidential candidate and Tigger look-alike, took 44.9% of the vote in the California straw poll. Texas Governor Rick Perry was a distant second with 29.3% of the votes. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was third with 8.8% of the votes. The other GOP candidates split the remaining paltry 12%.
Of course, considering there were only 833 ballots cast, you could kind of call the entire thing “paltry”.
This is not a joke: Michele Bachmann paid for 6,000 tickets to the Iowa Straw Poll that she then gave away to supporters and other attendees. And 4,823 of those people returned the favor by casting their ballots for her.
In contrast Ron Paul gave away very few tickets yet came-in second by only 152 votes. Yet the media is strangely mute about Paul’s very existence let alone his performance in Iowa. That’s because the media want a three-way between Bachmann, Romney, and Perry – it will be good for ratings.
Paying for votes at the Straw Poll is as old as the poll itself – the first was held in 1979 when George “Daddy” Bush bought the win – only to later lose the nomination to Straw Poll loser Ronald Reagan.
Statistically the Straw Poll is not a good predictor of anything, because it has only been held six times. Based on that small sample it seems to be a good predictor of the outcome of the Iowa caucuses, but also a good predictor of who won’t win the presidency. But all this is up for grabs as the numbers are actually insignificant.
So what is the Iowa Straw Poll actually about? It’s about PR – it’s a way to buy media attention. Or if you’re Tim Pawlenty it’s a good way to discover you don’t have the stomach for national politics.
Former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty announced he is quitting the race for the Republican presidential nomination after losing to both Michele Bachmann and Ron Paul in the unofficial and non-binding Iowa Straw Poll.
Based on the votes of around 7,000 attendees at the Ames, Iowa fair, where voters paid $30 each to cast a ballot in the fundraising polling event, Pawlenty was a distant third with less than half the votes of either Bachmann or Paul.
When asked if dropping out of the race based on such a minor contest was really warranted, Pawlenty told reporters “I ate one of those deep-fried butter things, and now I have a terrible belly ache – ulp! Excuse me – must get to the restroom! Out of the way!”
Michele Bachmann has won the first of the nation’s unofficial, non-binding, wholly trivial campaign contests by taking the Iowa Straw Poll with 4,823 votes, just edging-out Ron Paul’s 4,671 votes. Tim Pawlenty came in third with 2,293 votes, making him an unbelievable loser when you consider who beat him.
Pizza magnate Herman Cain ran fourth with 1,456 votes, while Mitt Romney placed sixth with 567 votes, coming-in behind Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s 718 votes as a write-in candidate who wasn’t even on the ballot. Newt Gingrich placed a disappointing eighth, getting slightly fewer votes than a pile of petrified ox dung that managed to beat him despite doing no active campaigning.
The Guy From Utah didn’t take part in the Straw Poll. Rick Santorum received a single vote, reportedly from the pile of ox dung.