With the intense dislike that many people in the GOP have for Mitt Romney (a dislike that irrationally appears to transcend their dislike for Obama), and with the fact that anyone could register as a Republican on the spot for the caucuses, there was always a chance that Ron Paul would win in Iowa. The danger with this was never that Ron Paul would become president or even the nominee, but that with an Iowa win he could play the part of spoiler in this election cycle, sucking the air out of the campaigns of viable non-Romney alternatives, and further tarnishing the GOP brand with his special kind of insanity and inanity.
And, let’s face it, most non-Paul supporters have grown tired of him and everyone who supports him. Tired enough to desert the GOP for even allowing him to take part in the process. An Iowa win would have caused many people to simply give up on the Iowa Caucuses, if not the GOP.
Well, instead of winning the caucuses, as some polls predicted as little as three days ago, Paul finished third with 21.4% of the vote. Further, entrance polls (being a backward state, Iowa uses entrance instead of exit polls there) suggest that most of Ron Paul’s support came from independents and Democrats who registered as Republicans at the last moment. Does Ron Paul really represent the Tea Party or get much of their support, as the MSM has so widely reported? Not hardly. It seems that most of his real support comes from the Occupy Wall Street crowd instead.
It is comforting to think that the GOP has not gone bat guano crazy by supporting Ron Paul.
Ron Paul was able to more than double his vote in what effectively is an open primary (from 9.93% in 2008). However, the road ahead does not look good for him. Even if he gets double the support in New Hampshire that he got in 2008, he will still only get 15% of the vote. Historically, the winner of the South Carolina primary has gone on to win the nomination. If Paul doubles up there, he will get only about 7% of the vote. After that, there are closed primaries in states which are by and large not susceptible to foolishness (Florida excepted). While Paul may end the race with a string of third place finishes, as he did last time, it will only be because there are only three men left in the race–the same as last time. Indeed, even if Ron Paul’s support is ten times what it was in 2008, he will still be a non-factor in this race, as it would give him only 350 delegates, and 1,144 are needed to win.
In short, barring some last-minute miracle, the lunacy is over. Ron Paul did not walk away with a win in Iowa. He will not get the cash and publicity he above more than anything else craves. We will not hear people in the MSM reminding us day in and day out that the old fool represents the GOP and conservatives. The air has been sucked out of his campaign, and the viable non-Romney alternatives now have a better shot.
And we can thank the good Republicans in Iowa for that.
Now, if Huntsman will just take the hint …
- PPP Poll Finds Three-Way Statistical Tie In Iowa: Paul 20%, Romney 19%, Santorum 18% (politicons.net)
- Ron Paul Could Win Iowa, Based On His Facebook Reach (allfacebook.com)
- Iowa Governor: Ignore Ron Paul Victory (markamerica.com)
- Iowa “establishment” in a Ron Paul “panic”? (hotair.com)