Saturday, February 20, 2010

Ron Paul Wins CPAC Straw Poll

One of the biggest parts of the CPAC conference is the presidential straw poll. Although straw polls are unscientific and don’t always give a very accurate reading of the general electorate (especially this far out from the election), they can be momentum builder and can give a reading of where the most loyal activists stand. At the end of the CPAC conference, one of the biggest conferences for conservative activists, it appears as though Ron Paul has a following among the conservative activist crowd as he received 31% of the vote.

Rep. Paul tried to get the Republican nomination in 2008 and did have a very loyal following, but his poor performance in the primaries and the fact that most people outside of the Republican base think he’s crazy suggests that he probably doesn’t have much of a chance of actually winning the presidency. It is very interesting, however, to see that the candidates who attract the attention of the conservative base are fringe candidates who don’t really have a chance of becoming president.

Looking at the other people who did reasonably well, however, some of the people considered potential Republican frontrunners also received a large portion of the vote. Mitt Romney, who won the straw poll at the conference for the last three years, for instance, was the only other candidate who received a double-digit percentage when he came in at 22 percent.

The full results of the straw poll are as follows:
Ron Paul 31%

Mitt Romney 22%

Sarah Palin 7%

Tim Pawlenty 6%

Mike Pence 5%

Newt Gingrich 4%

Mike Huckabee 4%

Mitch Daniels 2%

John Thune 2%

Rick Santorum 2%

Haley Barbour 1%

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