Ron Paul people kept telling us that the apparent results of the straw polls in caucus states where some or all of the delegates are not bound by the results of those votes were meaningless, and Paul's likely victories (that is, capturing a majority of the actual delegate votes in Tampa) in Iowa and Minnesota were early signs of this.
The New Orleans Times Picayune reports over the weekend on great Paul progress moving up the chain of delegate selection in Louisiana, where Paul dominated in picking delegates to go to the state convention (which will select who goes to the national one):
Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, dominated the Louisiana Republican caucuses held Saturday. The results guarantee he will have a strong presence in the state's delegation to the Republican National Convention in August...
While the presidential preferences of the delegates were not identified on the caucus ballots, delegates who back the libertarian congressman, who is now the only one of Mitt Romney's adversaries still standing, won the lion's share of the contests, carrying the 1st, 2nd, 5th and 6th Congressional Districts.
As a result, under party rules, Paul is guaranteed at least 17 of the 46 delegates to the convention....
The delegates elected Saturday will go to a state convention June 2 in Shreveport, where they will choose the delegates who will go to the national gathering in Tampa.
Based on his victory in the state's March 24 primary, Santorum is guaranteed 10 pledged delegates, and Romney, who finished second, is guaranteed five.
The balance of the 46-member delegation will include at least 17 Ron Paul delegates; at least one other Romney delegate in the person of National Committeewoman Ruth Ulrich, who just endorsed him; and the rest uncommitted.....
A look at the Paul fan strategies, and how much it annoys the GOP establishment:
Ron Paul supporters distributed "voter guides" at caucus sites that steered voters to choose one of six virtually identical slates of Paul supporters that the guide variously characterized as the right choice for backers of Paul, Romney, Santorum, Newt Gingrich, the Tea Party, "Citizens Against Traffic Cameras" and defenders of faith, family and freedom.....
While congratulating the Paul campaign "for apparently capturing their first state delegation in this presidential election cycle through an excellent get-out-the-vote effort today," Sarah Roy, chairwoman of the Greater New Orleans Republicans, characterized it as an "odd and undemocratic result" that would embarrass and distract both Romney and Gov. Bobby Jindal.
"The result of this ill-conceived and confusing caucus clearly does not represent the will of the vast majority of Louisiana Republican voters, as Ron Paul recently received only 6 percent of the vote in the Louisiana presidential primary," said Roy, who on behalf of her organization called for the state party's leaders to resign for designing Saturday's "debacle."
The Paul campaign's own press release on the Louisiana results so far:
Preliminary results from the Louisiana Republican Party indicate that Ron Paul supporters won majorities in Congressional Districts 1, 2, 5, and 6, with a narrow decision having occurred in District 4. This means Ron Paul supporters won about four and a half of the six Congressional District caucus conventions held yesterday.
In each CD the top 25 delegates will go to the state convention on June 2nd in Shreveport. Yesterday, 111 out of 150 or 74 percent of delegates elected today were in fact Ron Paul delegates. The Louisiana state GOP soon will award 30 additional delegates.
A “conservative slate” ran a partially combined slate with establishment-moderate Mitt Romney in CDs 1, 2 and 4. In each of those districts Ron Paul supporters required more votes than all of their opponents combined. Remarkably, supporters of the 12-term Congressman from Texas accomplished this in CDs 1 and 2, but fell just short of this in CD 4, which is why the decision was split.
Taken together, victories across four and half CDs mean that Ron Paul supporters are likely to control the outcome of the state convention in June....
The Ron Paul campaign’s Louisiana State Director Pete Chamberlain said of the victory, “Yesterday’s result shows the changing dynamic among grassroots conservative activists dedicated to promoting a Republican platform that adheres to the Constitutional values Dr. Paul represents. Back-room dealing and insider politics are no match for the grassroots enthusiasm that is the hallmark of the Ron Paul campaign. Yesterday, Ron Paul’s dedicated Louisiana supporters showed what passionate, persistent activism can achieve when centered around a consistent message of freedom and prosperity.”
The long Paul game isn't just about racking up delegates in 2012; it's about shaping the ethos of the Republican Party moving forward. Along those lines, the Alaska Dispatch on Paulite success in winning state party positions in that state:
This weekend, it was the young, sometimes bedraggled but always idealstic and not always so polite, supporters of presidential candidate Ron Paul who were certain that if they were in charge of the party, Alaska and the country would be a better place.
And now they’ll get their chance to prove it.
After at least 12 years of the Alaska GOP being run by what those party newcomers call “establishment Republicans,” a new force is taking over: Alaska Republicans voted Russ Millette as the party’s new chairman and Debbie Holland-Brown as co-chair. They are both supporters of presidential candidate Ron Paul.....
after the party delegates’ votes were tallied Saturday evening, a cheer erupted from Paul supporters on the second floor of the Hilton. Others looked crestfallen. Some blamed failed senatorial candidate Joe Miller and his wife, Kathleen, who spent much of their time Saturday huddled with Paul supporters. Miller was largely expected to jockey for a party leadership position, but it was Kathleen who, sporting a Ron Paul sticker, won a seat on Alaska’s GOP Electoral College.
The Millers were nowhere to be found at the party afterwards at Ron Paul’s Alaska campaign headquarters in downtown Anchorage, where both Millette and Brown spoke to supporters.
“They tried every maneuver they could, but God prevailed,” Millette told the crowd, many who were half his age or younger.
To be sure, not all Paul supporters believe in God, but a certain alliance between the tea party and Paulites was necessary for an upset in GOP politics on the Last Frontier, as evidenced by Joe Miller backers aligning with Paul supporters at this weekend’s convention. And so, regardless of religious beliefs, they cheered for Millette.
My soon-forthcoming book, Ron Paul's Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired.