Rand Paul wins CPAC straw poll – so what?
Senator Rand Paul won the CPAC presidential straw poll. The Washington Post reminds us,
The first-term senator’s win was widely expected, especially given his father’s past successes in the CPAC straw poll. Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) regularly attracted huge crowds of devoted supporters at CPAC and won the straw poll in 2010 and 2011.
Mitt Romney won it last year, when Ron Paul did not attend the conference.
Rand Paul attained a new level of celebrity in the conservative movement after launching a nearly 13-hour filibuster against President Obama’s drones program last week, and many speakers at the conference in suburban Washington held him up as an example of the future of the Republican Party.
But straw polls are being given less and less credence when it comes to determining Republicans’ next presidential candidate — specifically after Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) won the 2011 Iowa Straw Poll and proceeded to finish sixth in the state’s caucuses. Top Iowa Republicans are now suggesting the once-all-important straw poll be shut down.
What’s really surprising, and the real story, is that Paul was not able to get a bigger share of the vote at CPAC given his recent publicity and Senator Marco Rubio’s identification with making citizenship easier for illegal immigrants. Senator Paul’s dad used to win these things in a landslide.
Rand Paul — 25%
Marco Rubio – 23%
Rick Santorum – 8%
Chris Christie – 7%
Paul Ryan – 6%
Scott Walker – 5%
Ben Carson – 4%
Ted Cruz – 4%
Bobby Jindal – 3%
Sarah Palin – 3%
Other – 14%
Undecided – 1%