Ron Paul, Moving Up Out of Iowa

I've been on the road here in Iowa, covering the caucus and the aftermath of the close-number-three outcome in the Ron Paul world, for an upcoming feature article in the April print issue of Reason (subscribe right away!)

Herewith, a free-range gambol through some things I've learned or seen here, on the ground, in Iowa. (The ground here is cold, in case you were wondering the real truth about being on the ground in Iowa.)

The Paul campaign, as the media has noted, is pretty tight-lipped; I was told that "message discipline" in a campaign is of great importance to them, so the people officially authorized to speak on the campaign are limited in number and often hard to reach in a hurry. But I've gotten some on-the-record comment and a much larger store of background or not-for-attribution stuff from wandering around the speeches, caucuses, and parties of the Ron Paul world this week.

The most important thing for Paul fans to know is: coming in third with over 26,000 votes fully matched if not exceeded the campaign's hopes and expectations. Even if you are bummed that he didn't win, the campaign is not. Some in the Paul community are even pretty sure that not coming in first will be better for Paul for the long haul than coming in first would have been. (For general reasons of "less of a target for opponents and media.")

During the brief holiday period of Paul's frontrunner-hood last month, that attention didn't feel good to the campaign in many ways. But there is no objective sign that he was particularly damaged by any of that yesterday. Paul's 21.4 percent came in pretty much exactly as he'd been polling for the ten days prior. Paul didn't fail to win yesterday because his percentage shrank; he didn't win because his opponents' percentages grew.

Rick Santorum is one who grew, and grew, and grew, to everyone's surprise. There is some chance that part of that surprise Santorum growth can be credited to the Paul-centered brouhaha when Bachmann's state chair Kent Sorenson, a state senator who had long been in the Paul orbit (Paul had done a fundraiser for him back in 2009), quit Bachmann's team and endorsed Paul.

Bachmann accused Sorenson of having been paid off by the Paul campaign. She provided no proof, the Paul campaign and Paul himself denied it, and I didn't meet any Iowan who seemed to genuinely believe it. Another Bachmann aide denied it publicly and probably got fired for contradicting his boss. (More interesting unsubstantiated rumor, based on the Paul fundraiser in 2009: that Sorenson was a Paul mole all along!) More than one Iowa native (one of whom noted that, perhaps to their detriment, most of the people running the show for Paul here day-to-day were not Iowans) told me that that sort of thing just reads distastefully to many locals. One Paul precinct captain just told me, unbidden, that he didn't like that sort of thing; it just isn't done, and it was the only expression of distaste with anything surrounding Paul I heard from his lips.

Another Iowan said at the very least it might have been better if Sorenson's quitting Bachmann and endorsing Paul had a couple of days between them to avoid the old appearance of impropriety. I meet a lot of Paul fans, both here and around the country, who like to believe their guy is above purely political machinations; lots of people working for him understandably believe political machinations are one of the things that make political campaigns work.

Doubtless the specifics of this "staffer leaves one candidate and endorses another" story is a pretty in-the-weeds thing that most caucus-goers didn't obsess about much. Still, it added to the general aura of a deflating Bachmann and may well have led many people who would have been Bachmann voters to become Santorum ones. Had the split of that evangelical values voter audience been more even between Michele and Rick, Paul would likely have been a close second.

Everyone I talked to was impressed with what the Paul machine achieved in Iowa, working hard for what they got with likely over a million in ads over the campaign, dozens of paid staffers, many hundreds of out of state youthful troops working brutal 10 hour or more shifts everyday and stored away at a YMCA camp, doing advance work for Paul's many appearances, working the phones (ferociously; everyone in the Paul campaign's lists seemed to be getting multiple calls a day), doing some door-to-door stuff (and keeping their eyes on the local Occupiers to make sure they didn't come back to disrupt the office, as they did once.) 

The good old fashioned traveling Paul grassroots warriors, like "End the Fed" movement founder Steven Vincent from Los Angeles, hit the ground here to do the sort of public rallying--pub "crawls for Paul," sign waves--that the grassroots loves, even as the campaign would rather they all just be phone banking. The Paul energy is "different" this time around, Vincent says; "it's not as much stuff like sign waving and rallying and public outward activity. It seems more online and more phone calling and things like that, and fundraising. It is not as raucous." The days of the "Ron Paul Revolution" banners hanging everywhere, as another activist lamented, seem to be over.

Still, Vincent is sure that the Paul energy remains deep and spreading; he's a yoga coach himself and wandered into an Iowa yoga class out of the blue, and ran into three random Paul voters there when he explained what brought him to Iowa. "One man, 68 years old, told me that he understands it is time for real, real change, serious change, and this Ron Paul seems like the guy who's gonna do it," Vincent says.

Could more have been done to get Paul closer to number one? I heard a few bits of Wednesday-morning-quarterbacking that seemed to have some merit. At the caucus itself, lots of people come in undecided, so a concerted effort at making sure good, sharp Paul spokespeople were at as many caucus locations as possible might have paid off. That speechifying effort was laid on local precinct captains (who were provided with suggested talking points) and may not, from some accounts, have been done very effectively across the over a thousand different caucus meetings.

One Iowan actually suggests that the phone banking--which was key to how Rand Paul, from whose winning campaign many Ron Paul higher-ups come, won in Kentucky in 2010, and thus considered pretty much the alpha and omega of how to win a campaign in the Paul operation--may have been overdone. He told me he knows of at least a handful of Iowans who found it annoyingly overbearing and led them to decide not to caucus for Paul, and from what he knows of the Iowan mentality he suspects there might have been others similarly discomfited. (Another un-Iowa touch I heard locals complain about: the official Ankeny HQ started locking its doors during office hours. Bad form for someone eagerly showing up, often after driving many hours, to pick up signs or volunteer to run into a locked door. "No one in Iowa locks doors," I was told, though I admit when I'm in a hotel here, I do lock my door. But I'm an out-of-towner.)

And never forget that no matter how good a job the campaign did at message-spreading and getting out their base, Paul has a problem with lots of voters (one I find Paul mavens surprisingly unwilling to admit): they just don't actually agree with most or all of his beliefs. In that regard, given that Paul's most vivid and forceful departure from conservative and Republican orthodoxy is in foreign policy, the noises round the globe hyping up possible war with Iran probably worked against Paul's interests here in Iowa. Ominous splashes from the Straits of Hormuz may have poured cold water on Paul's chances, to indulge a perfectly dreadful metaphor.

A.J. Spiker, a member of the Iowa Republican Party Central Committee, was state co-chair for the Paul campaign. He thinks having Paul on the ground in Iowa so often was key to their success. "Dr. Paul connects well with people when he gets the opportunity to speak to people and answer their questions in a town hall format," Spiker says. "People receive his answers a lot better than in 30 second debate rebuttals. When Dr. Paul has the opportunity to really answer questions, lots of Iowans recognize a good answer, especially on foreign policy." Spiker notes that Paul people are working the party apparatus more and more, seeking and gaining positions of influence in local parties and helping cement Paul as the leader for the constitutionalist conservative wing of the GOP. Paul forces did well in winning county delegate seats yesterday, Spiker thinks, though he doesn't have hard numbers. He also stresses, despite things you may read, that what happened yesterday has no necessary connection at all to how Iowa's delegates are eventually apportioned after they come out the wringer of county-to-state-to-national. 

But what's most important is that what happened yesterday has the Paul campaign coming out of Iowa where they needed to be: healthy, energized, still "top tier," clearly the candidate of the young; appealing more to the independents who might actually help the Republicans beat Obama than any of his opponents; copping earned media about what a beloved doctor their candidate is; getting public love from rock n' rollers very old (Joe Perry) and slightly less old (Jonny H. of Social Distortion; my band opened for them back in 1988, the year of Paul's first presidential run--coincidence? Assuredly so, especially given that H. wasn't even in the band yet then); and thinking ahead--for example, launching anti-abortion ads in South Carolina where the old evangelical values voters will likely be vital.

Most importantly and immediately, Paul's team is already focusing on that old ground game in New Hampshire, where a strong second place to Romney is being fought for with the same vigor that made Paul the only force in the GOP that more than doubled its apparent appeal since 2008 yesterday in Iowa. Whether fully thrilled about the Iowa operation or having some misgivings, all in the Paul campaign and volunteer camps seem to agree that his supporters and his ideas are more firmly entrenched in American politics today than they were two days ago.

You can, as always, learn more about Paul from Reason's Ron Paul archives and from my forthcoming book, Ron Paul's Revolution.

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  • Bingo||

    Herewith, a free-range gambol through some things I've learned or seen here

    Goddamnit. Boilerplate warning not to respond to you-know-who in this thread.

  • ||

    White Indian has contributed to the vernacular, I see. :)

  • Bingo||

    Uh huh thanks rather.

  • rather||

    Bingo, you might be the last to find out but everyone knows who WI is but you -apparently

  • Bingo||

    Uh, yeah, everyone knows it's you. Good luck on your internet troll goals in 2012!

  • rather||

    Bingo, Google Jason Godesky on this site.

    Good luck with catching up on 2011

  • Bingo||

    Googled it, if this is all you've got then you're really not that interesting to talk to.

    Good luck on your troll goals etc.

  • rather||

    Lol, he admits it

  • rather||

    Lol, he admits it

  • rather||

    just incif me :-)

  • Bingo||

    You do know you're a worthless piece of shit? :-) :-) :-)

    Fuck off.

  • joe||

    That should do the trick.

  • Brian Doherty||

    It's late and I couldn't resist. Sorry, guys.

  • Dick Hertz||

    I didn't know you were in a band. What was the name?

  • Brian Doherty||

    The band I was in in 1988 that opened for Social D. (at a high school gym in Gainesville, Fla.) was called Target Practice. Most of our songs were about heroin. I have been waiting for a chance to do that namedrop in a public context that seemed to make sense for decades, so thank you Dr. Paul!

  • ¢||

    Reading that made me realize that I think of '88 Social Distortion as late Social Distortion, and that made me feel incredibly old.

    Then I realized that the only mentionably famous band my band ever played with was At The Drive-In, and I felt less old but still just as out-of-it as an incredibly old person.

    THANKS, MAN

  • *||

    Which heroines? Amelia Earhart? Susan B. Anthony? Eleanor Roosevelt?

  • Slap the Enlightened!||

    the Paul machine

    The Paul Machine... for a band name, that's got potential!

  • Bingo||

    No worries, good article. Nice to hear anecdotal evidence that a large number Iowans are Victorian-era prudes when it comes to manners with the blood-thirstyness of a Kipling-era savage when it comes to war.

    Explains Santorum's massive bubble there.

  • Bingo||

    Also a lot of things to be optimistic about but hell if I feel like that right now. Santorum and Romney are the GOP's answer to Obama? Goddamn we are fucked.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I know, right? After reading this article, I just want to punch in the face every Iowan I will ever meet.

  • ||

    No, no, no, many Iowans worked very hard for Ron Paul. You'll end up punching a friend who froze in the cold or spent countless hours in a phone bank to get Ron Paul on the road to the nomination. We've got as many delegates as anyone else: 6-6-6. RP 2012!

  • Rob||

    Wow! Who knew that Brian Doherty was really WI all along? That's what they call "an inside job".

  • CalebT||

    RoboPaul

    Starring:

    Peter Weller, PhD - Ron Paul/RoboPaul
    Nancy Allen - Gary Johnson
    Ronny Cox - Mitt Romney
    Kurtwood Smith - Rick Santorum
    Miguel Ferrer - Rick Perry

  • Rick Santorum||

    Can you fly, Bobby Jindal?

  • Rick Santorum||

    BITCHES. LEAVE!

  • Rick Santorum||

    http://www.ratemyprofessors.co.....tid=688885

    Apparently, Weller is a pretty cool professor.

  • Monkeyshines||

    Hmm, I always suspected Kurtwood Smith (based on his assholian film roles) was of the Vic-era prude, blood-thirsty Kiplingite, variety.

  • Lewis H||

    WHAT ABOUT MITT

  • rather||

    A win for Paul would have been a publicity disaster. He's in a place to clarify his positions while letting the Iowa alphas play. I'm loving the proxy fight with Newt vs Mitt

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Dear rather,

    I have noticed lately that your medication seems to be working. Please continue taking it.

    Love,

    Heroic Mulatto

  • rather||

    Dear Heroic Mulatto,

    You do realize 90% of the posts were never mine? And, including the 'don't spoof me' comments?
    BTW, I don't smoke, drink or use drugs; It helps me pick out the spoofs on this site;-)

    Regards, rather

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Don't tell me you're straight edge, are you?

  • rather||

    no, just into good habits.

  • Bill||

    Don't drink, don't smoke. What do you do? Don't drink, don't smoke. You gotta to be into somethin'

    Adam ANt, don't ya know.

  • rather||

    Nope. I eat and run to keep fit

  • SIV||

    tl;dr

    I'll buy the fucking book, because unlike other Reason Editors, Doherty delivers on the content.

  • Brian Doherty||

    Siv---I love your support, but must sadly inform you the book will be even longer than this blog post...

  • ||

    I work in the tech biz, have for a long time, so by some sick joke I am now working with people usually younger than me as I ossify - thank God for C never going out of style. Who's down for Z80 Assembly trivia? Ugh. I think that was before invention of controlled fire. Anyways...

    One thing like C (and its diluted, derivative flavors) that doesn't go out of style with the kids is Ron Paul. I work in Santa Monica these days, with a showbizzy hip cliq in Dear Leader Waxman's district and so far I've seen the only politically agitated youth are Ron Paul groupies.

    Its funny, they're totally Occupier Down With The 1-percenters (with the critical exonerating caveat they have real skills and jobs).

    Today I got in discussion with someone about Russell Simmon's self-gratification in trying to resurrect MLK's march for...public finance of political campaigns. Yuck. The kid loved the idea, and yet he's a Ron Paul supporter.

    When I told him Ron Paul would probably frown on such schemes, this kid's face contorted in wonder, and yet he's a Ron Paul supporter. Then he hit the Wiki for some school. Hilarious.

    End Rant.

  • ryan||

    Coerced public finance or voluntary public finance?

  • ||

    We had a talk about that. He was enthusiastic for Russ P Simmon's scheme, which I without checking would wager to be 'coerced.'

    I asked him who decides who gets the public lucre for their political ambitions. He replied with typical buzzwords of such schemes such as 'Congress' and 'Commissions' which suggested the usual rigged schemes seemed appropriate to him.

    But he was also easily agitated as the politically emotional are, so when I proposed hypotheticals his response was the usual 'You don't understand what I'm saying' and when the usual caveats - we all know them around here - were brought up his reply was 'That's not what I'm saying.' When I hear such responses, that suggests to me positions not completely thought out. Its easy to tell someone that's not what you meant, but much harder rhetorically to actually describe what your saying. Twenty questions in reverse.

    So, by the measure of the crew in these parts, I would say coerced.

    I brought up some alternatives, like 'vouchers' one could give away etc. but that means only people who actually file taxes 'vote' in such ways, which of course invited passions of suffrage.

    I then turned the conversation to injustice of drug wars which I've found for anyone under 30 is a great coming together on issues in these parts. And left it at that. I've got to work with the guy...and for all I know two months hence he'll be my boss, lol.

  • rsi||

    I've still got a Cromemco Z-2 (Z80) out in the garage. Love that sucker but its out of date kind of. I've forgotten most of C.

  • ||

    Strategist and commentator Dee Dee Benkie told Breitbart TV that she had spoken with Iowa GOP officials and that she was convinced that the State party was not going to allow Ron Paul to win the Iowa caucuses.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VYhvh_HD3Nw&fea;...

  • Peter Parker Shunts Elderly ||

    public outraged

  • rather||

  • ||

    That is good news, yet not. For tomorrow's MSM Ron Paul-centric headlines will be 'Ron Paul is the candidate for pimps.'

  • rather||

    Not all bad news for cheap libertarians

    During January, he said he was offering a special -- two bunnies for the price of one, the Web site said. All a client has to do is come by and say "I'm pimping for Paul."

    http://dalje.com/en-world/neva.....aul/406591

  • Gojira||

    You had me at "gambol".

  • ||

    On Fox News they put up a screen with the number of delegates each candidate will have go to the Republican Convention:

    Total Iowa Delegates: 25
    Romney: 11
    Santorum: 11
    Ron Paul: 3

    How does that add up proportionally? At the very least it should be 10, 10, 5. Paul was not THAT far away! Who decides these things? Where's the math? It seems the people who choose the delegate distribution are just as mathematically / economically illiterate as the Dems.

  • ||

  • Xenocles||

    CNN had it 7, 7, 7. I think the difference has something to do with the vote counts not actually mattering.

  • #||

    We arent going to know for certain until June when they are actually picked. Everyone is just guessing at this point.

  • iowalurker||

    The thing is, it all depends on who goes to the county and state conventions. In my small precinct (33 people), Santorum recieved almost half of the votes, I believe Paul recieved 7 or 8. Our precinct could send 9 delegates to the county convention. However, there were only 6 volunteers. I know for sure that 2 of the 6 of us that are going to the county are Paul voters, and I am pretty sure there are is at least 1 more, if not 2. So Ron got less than a quarter of the popular vote in my precinct, but will probably have half of the delegates.

  • joe||

    In other words, the Iowa caucuses are a useful scam.

  • iowalurker||

    Not sure if I would call it a scam, but you can work the system if the "right" people step up. It really is grassroots and it is all about getting people involved who care enough to work a little harder than your neighbor.

  • ||

    Sounds like the delegates from Iowa will be heavily influenced by the motivation of the caucusoids to show up at later meetings. Which in turn will turn on how the candidates are doing later.

    When Santorum flames out, he will start leaking Iowa delegates.

  • Brian Doherty||

    yeah, as the post points out caucus presidential poll has NOTHING necessarily to do with the delegates and who they vote for. I don't know why others are reporting otherwise; they are, kindly, "guessing" and less kindly just don't know of which they speak.

  • ||

    2012 Is About Abolishing Slavery In America

    We're on the verge of abolishing slavery in America.

    Ron Paul's aim is to abolish the debt slavery & tax bondage of the FED/IRS Complex.

    Over the last 100 years of slavery we have gradually lost most of what America set out to be, do and have.

    We are not free. We are slaves.

    Put aside all of the non-essential issues and focus on abolishing slavery.

    Let's start there.

    Our first priority is to regain our liberty, peace and prosperity.

    This is the narrative, the context for all of my campaign communications with others. It shuts down all of the nattering and competitiveness over the flavor-of-the-month candidates.

    No other candidate is cognizant of, or focused on abolishing the crushing debt slavery and tax bondage as a social issue.

    Without our liberty, nothing else matters.

    None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.
    - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

  • smartass||

    Well. At least the Chinese aren't slaves.

    http://news.yahoo.com/china-ai.....45597.html

    For once I had to say "Go China! Go go go!"

  • np||

    In that regard, given that Paul's most vivid and forceful departure from conservative and Republican orthodoxy is in foreign policy, the noises round the globe hyping up possible war with Iran probably worked against Paul's interests here in Iowa.

    http://www.theamericanconserva.....-long-war/

    VIPS has just sent a letter to White House titled "Avoiding Another Long War" and concludes:


    We are currently winding down what you labeled a “dumb war;” we should not undertake another dumb war against a country almost three times larger than Iraq, that would set off a major regional war and create generations of jihadis. Such a war, contrary to what some argue, would not make Israel or the U.S. safer.


    Steering Group, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)

    Phil Giraldi, US Army Intelligence Officer, Directorate of Operations, CIA

    Ray McGovern, US Army Intelligence Officer, Directorate of Intelligence, CIA

    Coleen Rowley, Special Agent and Minneapolis Division Counsel, FBI

    Ann Wright, Col., US Army Reserve (ret.), Foreign Service Officer,
    Department of State

    Tom Maertens, Foreign Service Officer and NSC Director for Non-Proliferation
    under two presidents

    Elizabeth Murray, former Deputy National Intelligence Officer for the Near
    East in the National Intelligence Council

    David MacMichael, former history professor and CIA and National Intelligence
    Council analyst

    Even the Pentagon agrees Iran is not a threat. Why does the media and Team RED not learn from Iraq?

  • Team RED||

    Nothing to learn here, move along boy.

  • L13||

    "If it bleeds, it leads". Stir up another fucking war, and the ratings go back up.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    More interesting unsubstantiated rumor, based on the Paul fundraiser in 2009: that Sorenson was a Paul mole all along!

    File photo: Kent Sorenson

  • johnl||

    Hahaha!

  • ||

    What if it emerges in the very near future that Romney used to be a crack addict and a wife-beater, and that Santorum's promiscuous, or some such shit? DOES RON PAUL WIN THE PRESIDENCY??????

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    In that case, they'll probably wheel out Christie or Rubio or any NOTPAUL neocon hypocrite and most of the rubes will fall for it because of the MOOSSSSSLLLLIIIIIMMMS.

  • Cabeza de Vaca||

    The Ron Paul campaign phone calls were very annoying in Iowa. It was way over done & I know of a couple of people who were turned off by them. They called me 8 times the day before the caucus.

  • Name Nomad||

    Got 'em in NH, too. You'd think someone would tell them that robo-calls are a no-no.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Named Nomad,

    Got 'em in NH, too. You'd think someone would tell them that robo-calls are a no-no.


    They weren't robo-calls. There were hundreds of volunteers making personal calls for Ron Paul.

  • ||

    That's why they were annoying.

  • ||

    I think everyone got the same lists and no one bothered to cross off those who had been called.

    I suspect Iowa native Aaron Aardvark, being first in the list, got called several thousand times.

  • ||

    As a Ron Paul volunteer in Iowa, I can agree that he has connected strongly with young and independent voters. Iowa was not a loss in my eyes. Ron Paul is more of a force now, for the air time he was finally given. Also, young people can see the national debt will be their inheritance and they tend to be for equality, civil liberties and peace. Those are Ron Paul's strong issues. Even some Democrats(including myself) have joined the Paul camp because of those points, as Obama has failed us.

  • jj||

    +1

  • Spoonman.||

    In other news, they're using the same YMCA camp in Boone to house volunteers that I stayed in in 2008. Pretty nice place, but cold as hell to get from the dorms to the eating/socializing areas.

  • Spoonman.||

    2007, actually, but for Ron Paul for the 2008 caucuses.

  • دردشة العراق||

    Thank you

  • ||

    I think Judge Napolitano said it best last night. Ron Paul didn't come in third, he came in second behind two big-government Republicans who tied for first, one of whom will probably be out after South Carolina.

  • ||

    And the 50% who voted for said big government Republicans are going to go vote for Paul why? I don't see how Santorum goes out after South Carolina. Santorum has got the SOCON vote, which is going to be a solid 20% in every primary. And Romney has more money and a bigger organization than anyone. Paul's continued presence will keep Santorum and Romney from knocking each other out.

    If Paul were going to be the any one but Romney candidate, he would have won Iowa.

  • 0x90||

    Oh really? I might suggest you're being nearsighted, being caught up in the Iowa media maelstrom. Basically, here's the problem: people are framing this as the Not-Romney race, but really, it is the Not-Paul race. It doesn't matter whether you're talking Romney, Gingrich, or whomever. Where support for these others is pragmatic and generic (i.e. to republicans, this is simply about anybody but Obama), a certain not-inconsequential percentage of Paul's base is a known quantity, and will follow him, whether he is nominated or not, and if not, whether he runs 3rd-party or not. So however the media tries to spin things, this race is Paul vs. whomever, and socon/warmonger wing has only one important choice to make:

    a) Reject Paul, and lose Paul votes.
    b) Nominate Paul.

    They may make lots of different noises, but no right-winger would actually vote Obama over Paul. Many Paul voters, on the other hand, are a known not-republican vote, if he's not the nominee.

    If Paul could have been showing Huntsman-level (or Santorum, for that matter) numbers for these past months, none of this would be the case; you could afford to lose 23 Paul votes. But that's not the way things are; Paul has enough real support in the Paulian and independent camps to ensure a republicans loss to Obama if Paul does not get the nomination.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: 0x90,

    And they would reject Paul only at their own peril. Besides, if the worry is that a president Paul would not commit troops to war on his own, the simple solution is to have Congress debate and commit the troops to war with a declaration, just as the Constitution dictates. I just don't see why SOCONs insist so much on voting in a military dictator.

  • ||

    The establishment would run a third party if Paul one. They would sabotage his campaign. Paul will never be President.

  • 0x90||

    Which is another way of stating my point: the establishment finds that, in a manner of speaking, it has become a third party. It will not recognize this, of course, preferring to stamp its feet and scream about how the Paul-ish contingent is being uppity, and should just get in line. But they won't do that, and Obama will be the president.

  • ||

    If the SOCONS had any sense they would back Ron Paul. Paul believes abortion and other social issues should be state and local matters, not federal. If it were this way abortion and gay marriage would be illegal in at least have the states and they can go live there.

  • ||

    I really think it is going to be a brokered convention. I don't see how Romney gets 50% with Santorum and Paul going all the way to the wire. The nominee may not even be running right now.

  • joe||

    Who is going to win the Super Bowl?

  • ||

    I vote for Not-New England.

  • ||

    I don't think santorum will be able to sustain a viable candidacy as long as Gingrich and perry stay in. Perry has slot of money to burn and Gingrich has alot of time on his hands. I think santorum will have a hard time and not be in anymposition to win. Brokered convention it may be, but Romney will win with probably the least support of any republican nominee. Romney = Kerry.

  • ||

    The young dude standing to Doc Pauls right in the photo appears to be Clark Kent.

    Just thought I'd mention it.

  • 0x90||

    Hmm... you know, Ron does bear an uncanny resemblance to a cross between Professor X and Magneto (Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian McKellen, I mean).

  • Doug||

    Good post Brian. Thanks.

  • ||

    I was watching the Fox "expert" panel yesterday evening. They talked about the primaries for probably 15 - 20 minutes, and I don't believe they mentioned Ron Paul once.

  • Brett L||

    I watched the caucus coverage and they only said "Ron Paul" when they were talking about the current standings. Media bias is real.

  • Max||

    So are are right-wing libertarian delusions. Real, mean. You halfwits continue believe that it's the media, not the racist baggage and fake eyebrows, that is holding Ron Paul back.

  • ||

    "You halfwits continue believe that" ...Max

    Should read: you halfwits continue to believe...

    Simple grammar, Max.

    What do you have against halfwits, Max? I have many friends who are halfwits and most of them are smart enough to use proper grammar. Most of my halfwit friends can also spell "moron".

    Max|5.16.11 @ 6:13PM|#
    PLUS HE'S A RACIST BIRCH SOCIETY SCUM
    ANYONE HO VOTES FOR RP IS A MOROM

  • Dieter of Sprockets||

    I simply adore Ron Paul's quite bizarre muppet eyebrows. I have the strange urge to throw velcro ping-pong balls at them to see if they will stick.

  • ||

    Fox really has pissed me off over this. There used to be a real libertarian flavor to their op-ed writers (Balko, McElroy, Milloy) but they all seem to be gone now too. And the complete blackout of all things Paul or Johnson has been as blatant as anything from MSNBC.

  • Max||

    Two questions:

    Will Ron Paul use the old racist strategy in SC?

    Will Brian Doherty ever pull his head out of his ass?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Maxipad,
    Two questions,

    Will you stop masturbating at the image of Paul fucking you from behind?

    Will you use a Kleenex next time, so your mommy doesn't have to clean your disgusting stains?

    By the way, put a towel over your seat - ass juice is yucky.

  • Dr. Gregory Josef Mengele Peck||

    Quiet, damn you.

  • Jackson Baer||

    Ron Paul is just getting started and will have another strong finish in New Hampshire. His ads are great and have been really effective. Even if you don't agree with Dr. Paul, at least you know he's honest and will cut the budget and bring back sound money. What is more important to this country right now than a leader who is fiscally responsible?

    RON PAUL 2012

    http://www.whatthehellbook.com/the-book/

  • cynical||

    Wait, if Paul is The Doctor, does that mean he'll have a young female VP? And who are the Daleks in this equation?

  • cynical||

    Wait, Obama has the support of a media network (that for a time made Paul nearly invisible), kills his enemies with drones, and basically came out of nowhere to start a meteoric political rise, with attendant questions lurking about his background. So, he's obviously The Master. But who is Martha Jones?

  • ||

    What is the fucking fascination with this website and this racist, anti-Semitic fuckstain?

  • ||

    About the political views of the grown-up babies he delivered: isn't that consistent with what he stands for? He delivers you into the world, and you can then grow up to think for yourself.

  • CE||

    I think Ron Paul nailed it in his post-caucus speech (seen live on MSNBC). There are traditionally 3 tickets out of Iowa, and one of the top 3 this week doesn't have a national campaign organization, much money, or much appeal to independents.

    It hasn't been surprising that the media have ignored this analysis, unwilling to admit that social conservatives like Santorum don't usually fare very well in New Hampshire, or that Santorum's surge was not the result of "retail politics", but a propaganda-led national move to shore up conservative support behind someone other than Ron Paul.

  • CE||

    Most amusing was that Bachmann earned fewer caucus votes than she did Ames straw poll votes. Has that ever happened before?

    Then again, it's hard to get Randy Travis to draw people in at a thousand different caucus locations, unlike the Ames straw poll.

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