7 Reasons Why Ron Paul Supporters should still Feel OptimisticSubmitted by bobbyw24 on Thu, 01/05/2012 - 15:42
The Bright Side of Ron Paul's Third-Place Finish
Seven reasons why those cheering on the Texas Republican should still feel optimistic
Matt Welch | January 4, 2012
For Ron Paul's most ardent supporters, last night's third-place finish in the Iowa caucus was an undeniable disappointment. The dream of boomeranging from an Iowa victory to a New Hampshire resurgence to an anything-is-possible Super Tuesday has now gone to re-write.
Mom and dad had a gay old time, but Rand was PISSED.Being exposed as a state front-runner for three tantalizing weeks proved about two weeks too long, as the media and Paul's competitors hammered away at his foreign policy views, his support among and alignment with non-Republicans, and his foul old newsletters. Exit polling showed clearly that late-breaking voters broke hard away from Ron Paul.
But Paul fans and supporters of limited government more broadly have many reasons to be cheered by last night's results. Here are seven:
1) Paul more than doubled his vote over 2008, while Mitt Romney's stayed exactly the same. Seriously, Romney got 30,000 votes (25 percent of the total) in 2008, then 30,000 votes (25 percent of the total) in 2012. Paul vaulted from 10 percent to 21, from 12,000 votes to 26,000. His message of freedom, limited government, attacking the Federal Reserve, and ending wars foreign and domestic is undeniably on the grow.
2) Paul's delegate- and caucus-focused strategy means that he will likely punch above his electoral weight. The campaign focused not just on doing well at the caucus, but making sure Paul-friendly humans get nominated as county delegates, so that when the 25-delegate pie is eventually divvied up Dr. No will get more than projected.
Paul has a nationwide focus on caucus states, which are more susceptible to concerted applications of supporter enthusiasm. As The Wall Street Journal observes, "If he is able to win a plurality of just five delegations from any of the 50 states, Washington, D.C., or the five territories, Mr. Paul can vie for the nomination at the Republican convention in Tampa, Fla. That would allow him a seat at the table when the party decides its platform, giving him leverage to push his antiwar and antitax message."