I've entertained the notion of updating the LP race standings every week until the convention, the way that multiple media orgs and blogs did when covering the Democratic and Republican races. But there doesn't seem to be a lot of fluidity in the race: Bob Barr, Wayne Allyn Root, and Mary Ruwart are bunched up at the top of the field, with delegates telling me they're swapping between Root and Barr but no one telling me they'd trade Ruwart for one of them.
So, a brief update on the frontrunners. Barr's fundraising has ticked up since he announced his run and got an unprecendented (for an LP candidate) flurry of coverage. Outright Libertarians, a gay rights group within in the party, quickly blasted him for his record on their issue. This is a signal of Barr's punching power at this point in the race: He engenders ire from his enemies like no one else running in the LP. William Hawkins accuses him of "turning against his country."
Wayne Allyn Root is ignoring the Barr media blitz and calling up delegates. Right before John McCain issued a TV ad predicting what the world would be like in 2013, Root did sort of the same thing, e-mailing supporters a future history of the Root campaign and the LP.
The blizzard of media attention after the LP convention is over. Thank you Congressman Bob Barr and Jesse "The Body" Ventura. Media from across the country came to Denver because of you. But what they witnessed was Wayne Allyn Root pulling off the political upset (at least as far as the Washington D.C. press corp. is concerned). A star is born. Now the media will be more interested in the new face of the LP because of who he is…not who he was.
The important thing about media isn't getting it- it's what you do with it after you get it. Wayne is a dynamic media personality. He has proven he knows how to get media, and how to use it. He wins over even skeptical and cynical hosts. He gets them to say, "Wow, I could actually vote for you." If Wayne Allyn Root gets the LP Presidential nomination, we'll have a future. With Wayne there is a huge (and long-term) upside.
It ends on an up note:
On election night 2008, Wayne Allyn Root outperforms the expectations of the political pundits and Beltway insiders, including a very close third place finish in his home state of Nevada… Wayne will build on his close third place finish in Nevada in 2008 to win Nevada as a Libertarian Presidential candidate in 2012.
Giving off the impression that she's back on her heels, Mary Ruwart rolled out a YouTube message to her supporters claiming she's been "smeared, libeled and misquoted" by other candidates.
Some people think being tough is a matter of pointing fingers, getting angry, and in some cases, smearing your opponents… a truly tough person takes responsibility for his or her actions and would never smear an opponent. I think that's why my staff calls me the Velvet Hammer: Soft on the outside, tough on the inside.
On a side note: Alan Keyes has responded to his landslide defeat at the Constitution Party convention by humbly returning to a life of quiet scholarship and intellectual activism. Hah! No, seriously, he's founded his own third (fifth? sixth?) party. His organizers failed to get on the Texas ballot, but the California branch of the Constitution Party is trying to shove him onto that state's ballot.