-20 votes

Reality check

Many of you sound like nuts when it comes to primary election results. You don't understand how presidential primaries work so you jump to the conspiracy conclusion. Vote fraud! Vote flipping! It's not helpful.

Unfortunately, Ron Paul just wasn't popular enough to win a Republican primary this year. There were all kinds of real reasons for that: media propaganda, hostility from party elites, questionable campaign strategies (and not just Jesse Benton; RP's refusal to "pander" was part of the problem...I'd call it tailoring your message for your audience or putting your best foot forward; it goes against RP's nature to engage in this type of politicking and it hurt him), too-frequent money bombs that exhausted the faithful, ads that were clever but too macho to help close the gender gap, refusal to squarely address the foreign policy/Israel issues in advertising, too many closed primaries, too many winner-take-all or proportional primaries where the minimum bar was too high, and imperfect candidate attributes (ill-fitting suit for most debates, not always leading with the strongest answer, getting off-topic at times...of course, in some debates and interviews he hit it out of the ball park).

Finally, the role of momentum--or lack thereof--was crucial. Most Republicans will not vote for a candidate who they think cannot win the nomination. Why waste a vote? is their attitude. So the polls showing Paul running well against Obama--sometimes stronger than Romney--were rightly publicized by the campaign, but they couldn't overcome the perception that Paul had no chance to win the nomination itself. The campaign's clumsy public pulling of the plug on primary contests in May made this problem even worse in the remaining primary states

None of those things have anything to do with voting machine fraud. There's little or no evidence that such fraud has ever occurred. The fact that you don't "know anyone who supports Romney" just means you're not hanging out with typical Republican voters.

If Ron Paul could have won Iowa in January--there's no reason to think the straw poll results weren't accurately counted--and followed that victory up with a win in New Hampshire or even a stronger second-place finish, it might have been a different story. It's possible the grassroots Christians and populists might have deserted Santorum and Gingrich and joined the Paul effort. It didn't happen.

Even with back-to-back wins in Iowa and NH the odds of winning the nomination would have still been stiff. Look at what happened to Taft in 1952, Reagan in 1976, and Buchanan in 1996. It's important to know some history so you can put these contests in context. If you understand how exit polls work, you don't have to write things like "They've declared Romney the winner with 0% of the votes counted!" Nothing unusual or fraudulent about that. It's not because Paul is in the race. That's the way it's always done. If the exit polls show a 10 or 20% lead, the networks can confidently predict the outcome. The polls are accurate. If a poll shows Paul polling 15% on the eve of a primary and he receives 15% of the vote that suggests the votes were counted accurately. So, for example, to think "they" flipped Romney's votes in Texas with Paul's votes is absurd on the face of it. It discredits the accuser. It tarnishes the campaign because it sounds like whining and craziness.

Despite the wonderful improvement in campaign results between 2008 and 2012, the Paul '12 effort was never comparable to Goldwater '64 or Reagan '76. Or even Buchanan '96. The base was never broad enough. Broader than 2008, thankfully, but still not broad enough to win state contests outright when mass numbers were voting. Let's address that problem for the future rather than pretending the problem doesn't exist.

Ron Paul is clearly the best person to be president. Unfortunately, that fact was only clear to 8-25% of those voting in Republican contests. Not enough to win a nomination. I fully support the drive to continue picking up delegates at state conventions (I'm running for a delegate slot myself in an upcoming convention), but those delegates were never going to be enough to overcome the Romney lead in primary states with bound delegates. That's the reality of things. An unpleasant reality but still real. How does it help the campaign or the causes we believe in to live in an alternate fantasy world?

I know this isn't what many of you want to hear. Yes, I've been a DP member for only four or five months. No, I'm not a troll or a Romney supporter. I've been an admirer of Paul since he was first elected to Congress in 1976 and he was urging Republicans back then to support Gov. Reagan in his challenge to the liberal Rockefeller establishment of the GOP. I caucused for him in 2008 and 2012 and I've been giving money to his campaigns for many years. I'm not a Johnny-come-lately. I'm someone who understands how politics works and knows American political history. I get tired of well-meaning but deluded Paul supporters raising the hopes of fellow supporters with talk of winning the Texas primary or California primary or even the South Dakota primary. Or pretending that we "really did" win those primaries but the votes weren't counted accurately. That's all nonsense and in the end it's dispiriting nonsense.

Let's do what we can to win as many delegates as possible, to influence the platform and VP selection, to get RP a primetime speaking spot, to assure his name can be placed in nomination, to lay the groundwork for future campaigns, to change the direction of state and local parties, etc. Those are things that are part of the real world. The campaign was never in vain even though the chances of winning the nomination were always slim. Effort for a worthy cause is never wasted.

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That's okay

I knew my thoughts wouldn't be popular here. That's okay. We disagree. I acknowledge the existence of some conspiracies. I'm not shying away from radical conclusions because they threaten my comfortable sense of reality. I just don't see the conspiracy here, in terms of rigged voting machines in every primary election state, under government (civil service) auspices. It's not believable and it contradicts the polling data and the real reasons for Paul's ceiling for support.

The problem with those who acknowledge the existence of conspiracies is that what begins as a virtue (skepticism toward official explanations) can become a vice (gullibility toward any explanation that contradicts an official explanation...no matter how incorrect or kooky).

I explain the difference between the huge crowds and the modest vote totals in this way: Obviously, Paul has the most enthusiastic supporters. That accounts for the big crowds. That doesn't always--or even usually--translate into votes. Many of the people who turn out for the big rallies, especially on campuses, are students. Young people are the LEAST LIKELY to vote. If the Republican primaries had been limited to the 18-30 year olds, Paul would be the nominee. Young people turn out but most don't vote. For students, it's even more complicated because they're not sure where they can vote. Some who attend the rallies drive across state lines because they're enthuasiastic. They're not eligible to vote in the upcoming primary. Others aren't registered. They're excited but they haven't jumped through the hoops so they can vote. Others are Democrats or Independents at the rallies and they can't participate in closed GOP primaries. Some are curious because Paul is famous. Or he's a "rock star" for college kids. They aren't necessarily planning to vote for him and they don't. When Paul was in our city, I sat next to couple who were curious but they had no intention of voting for him. Also, Ron Paul makes little effort to encourage voter turnout in his speeches. He doesn't close with a strong appeal or plea to vote for him. His campaign doesn't emphasize how important it is to vote. All of these factors are reasons he's had huge crowds but modest votes.

That's about all I can say on the subject. I know we won't change each other's minds on this subject so there's no use arguing too much. I do wonder, on a practical level, about the value of the "Voting machines are all rigged" posts. How does that encourage voting? What's to be done? If it's as crooked as you think, from top to bottom, why bother to vote? Taking pictures and questioning local polling place personnel isn't going to solve the problem. Really, there's no point in voting if the whole system is rigged. Also, if the system is that rigged, then why did "they" allow Rand Paul to win--twice--in Kentucky? Aren't there voting machines in Ron Paul's congressional district? Why was he allowed to win? Why was Buchanan allowed to win NH in 1996? Something to think about.

Bottom line: Hurray for Ron Paul and for Ron Paul's principles -- even when we don't agree on strategy.

Assumptions and more assumptions...

delivered as well thought out conclusions on fact. Bullcrap.

"I just don't see the conspiracy here"

Well then, shut your yap and open your eyes.

"...in terms of rigged voting machines in every primary election state, under government (civil service) auspices."

Ahhhh...the meme... Under who? What? Where'd you get that idea, that somehow the primaries were peopled and overseen by principled civil servants wanting to do nothing more than a good job? What evidence do you have for this...especially in the face of the evidence to the contrary? Who COUNTED the votes in your fantasy? Were there priests, kindergarden teachers and animal rescuers in charge or standing watch? Were there police there only to sell Bullroast tickets for their annual toy for tots drive and blow bubbles for any small children in need of entertainment.

You can't posssibly be this much of a dolt. You are too articulate for that. So who and what are you? Why do you come here and insult our intelligence with meme regurgitation that has no basis in fact and is only an echo from the media netherworld?

What polling data is it that is being "contradicted? Who carried out the poll? Who was contacted? Was is a push? What were the results? How do you know those were the results? How do you know if the poll actually took place? How do you know what the actual results were? Because it was "reported on the news"? Get real.

Conspiracty Theory and gullibility...the only one who is gullible here is you if you believe that statement you've made. In fact, you are so far off center with your Conspiracy Theorist definition that is quite easy to see wherein it was sourced. Find a room full of 911 Conspircy Theorists and you'll find that 90% have no freakin' idea who did it or why...just the there is still a need to find out who and why.

In fact, I've found that the people drawn towards, and into the rabbit holes are generally much more intelligent and independant thinkers than the next guy and typically have a much higher standard for their "smell test". This in direct contrast to the average dolt that sops up media spew like a runny yolk at Sunday breakfast.

Think about that. Dude, you suck as a psychologist, and as a sociologist, and I'm now sure as a historian. They're just not your thing...neither is agent provocatuer. If your just deluded...I apologise.

So, good try at obfuscation...shitty result huh? Not many buyers.

Wha? .....hey....who stole my country?

uncle

Alright, I'll leave you in peace. I can see it wasn't worth my time, or your's, to express my opinion on this.

Thank you...

I will put the switchblade back in my pocket...

Wha? .....hey....who stole my country?

media comment

Ron Paul people show up, but it doesn't translate into vote's, So who do they have us(Paul people) voting for?

diebold

anywhere it's not a caucus state. posted by guitarshred on 5/30 AlsoLike to raise a question:

Is it my imagination or are most if not all the states holding primaries at the end of the election cycle using voting machines?
If this is the case, seems like a perfect way to counter a rising candidate they don't want to let win.

I have another question:
How long did it take to tally up the votes? did it take as long as if they were counting a paper ballot? Because counting paper ballots is very time consuming whereas machines just give you a final total so arguably all results should be there when the voting times close, did this occur?

================================================================

1. all Final states to vote = electronic. That can't be an accident. 2. Electronic voting.. seems that results would be real time, up to the nano second. But no, they're delayed. For what reason... Well, hey.. maybe it's so Karl Rove and the 2 "front runners" can discuss it and decide on a number they both can agree with.

You lost me in your 1st Paragraph

...awful sure of your powers of discernment...aren't you? Why is it that you espouse a rather iron clad asssumption that the most painful scenario, no matter the weight of the evidence, is too taboo to consider?

I'll bet you think Bldg. 7 fell from fire...as the alternative is too painful and rocks the belief system so well entrenched in your personae...and if I'm wrong...and given what you have witnessed out in the open...what in God's name has you lead off your opinion piece with that NLP type bullshit? You remind me of a salesman asking yes/no closing question and indicating the desired (and therefore correct) response by the shake of his head.

I get the twisted belief system. I assume like me you are older given your interest in Dr. paul in 1976. I'm 55, the son of a West Pointer and I had it too...in spades.

What I don't get is the doltish, head in the sand cowardice in facing a belief system that is being shaken to its core and demands revision.

Honest discourse - Priceless

This post - Worthless

Wha? .....hey....who stole my country?

I say YOU are the conspiracy theorist.

You're coming up with this wild conspiracy that millions of people are lying. Your conspiracy ignores facts that are right in front of you. It ignores the world record-breaking political crowds. It ignores the easily tracked online activity that PROVES he has an ENORMOUS support base FAR exceeding the number of votes he gets. It ignores the fact that it is EXTREMELY DIFFICULT to track down a Mitt Romney voter, EVEN IN UTAH, THE MOST MITT STATE THERE IS.

It ignores mathematical data that proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that Ron Paul won primaries: http://www.dailypaul.com/220841/proof-of-election-fraud-algo...

It ignores the accounts of those who actually went to vote, and saw a great majority of Ron Paul supporters.

It ignores the fact that Mitt Romney already ran and lost, failing miserably, and nearly every state somehow had INCREASED voter turnout this time around... You're coming to the illogical conclusion that these new voters are somehow psyched about Mitt Romney even though they weren't last time?

It ignores ALL of this evidence, and with NO new evidence of its own, it simply presupposes that the media wouldn't lie or that people would never try to cover anything up. Which in itself is a ludicrous theory, you will never meet a person who hasn't covered something they did up.

If you have two sides of the story, you should examine EVIDENCE. Actual, proven things that have HAPPENED. You shouldn't just believe one side because it's more popular, has more guns, money, power, whatever. There is no logical reason to believe the media on this.

Vote fraud AND election fraud

Just look at the GOp's tactics: Lie, cheat, hide votes, don't count votes, count votes in secret, invent more caucuses, cancel caucuses, throw out whole precincts, throw out whole counties, TELL the precincts what their totals are, change voting times, change voting places, change the rules on primary day, let dead people vote, add "digits" for favored candidates, stop counting votes when they're ahead, cancel conventions, shut down conventions when they're not going their way, target delegates for removal, replace delegates that have gone 1/2 way through the process with hacks, form combined slates to erase a plurality, create slates of fake Ron Paul delegates, break Roberts Rules of Order, arrest those using Roberts Rules correctly, give phony vote totals and delegate totals to the media, take money from Goldman Sachs, take money from billionaires with hidden agendas, ignore candidates they don't like, lie about candidates they don't like, and yes, use vote flipping machines......the list goes on and on and on....

Don't defend them and chalk it up to other things.