Breaking: Romney wins CPAC straw poll

posted at 4:34 pm on February 11, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Are you as severely surprised as I am?  Mitt Romney won the last time that Ron Paul didn’t win, and he managed to do it again:

Mitt Romney won The Washington Times/CPAC Presidential Straw Poll on Saturday, and also nipped Rick Santorum as the top choice of conservatives nationwide, according to a new version of the poll conducted for the first time this year that suggests Mr. Romney retains strong support among self-identified conservatives.

Mr. Romney won 38 percent of the straw poll, which counted the votes of 3,408 activists gathered for the Conservative Political Action Conference, which ran from Thursday through Saturday at a hotel in Washington.

Mr. Santorum was second with 31 percent, Newt Gingrich was third with 15 percent and Rep. Ron Paul was fourth with 12 percent — far below his showing the last two years, when he won with 31 in 2010 and 30 percent in 2011.

The results for Paul doesn’t come as much of a shock.  Paul didn’t speak at CPAC, and his faithful contingent was mostly absent from the conference this year. Still, it’s a bit of a shock to see him fall all the way to the bottom.

Romney brought a lot of supporters with him to CPAC, which is exactly what this straw poll measures. In that sense, it’s a bit surprising to see Rick Santorum come as close as he did in second place.  We saw a lot of Santorum posters and signs at CPAC this year, so perhaps the Santorum campaign managed to get that kind of organization in place.  As low on resources they have been, though, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to buy a bunch of tickets for Santorum supporters to attend a three-day conference.  I’d chalk that up to more organic support than organization.

The big surprise, though, was Gingrich’s poor showing.  He also has resource issues now, but CPAC is his crowd.  Normally one would expect Gingrich to score better at this particular conference, especially after a very good speech yesterday.  A distant third was not the result the Gingrich team would have wanted for the story line out of CPAC.  Gingrich does a little better in the Washington Times’ national poll at 20%, but still trails both Romney (27%) and Santorum (25%).


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 5 6 7

How many of us have ever said we are “severely conservative.” NONE. Or: “I am not concerned about the very poor.” … “I am severely conservative.”
It’s almost as if he’s severely something else. The clumsy idiocy of Romney could sink us in the general.

anotherJoe on February 12, 2012 at 3:56 PM

There’s another possibility, and I don’t know if this any better. That he views conservatism as an affliction: severely conservative.

anotherJoe on February 12, 2012 at 4:15 PM

I don’t think we should hang the man for an adjective. We’re not Democrats.

jan3 on February 12, 2012 at 6:00 PM

How many of us have ever said we are “severely conservative.” NONE. Or: “I am not concerned about the very poor.” … “I am severely conservative.”
It’s almost as if he’s severely something else. The clumsy idiocy of Romney could sink us in the general.

anotherJoe on February 12, 2012 at 3:56 PM

.
Once you get past the gotcha mentality – For Rombo to come out so strong for the middle class- if believable- in that manner- he will connect. Unless of course we feel the poor need more food stamps and government dependency.

FlaMurph on February 12, 2012 at 10:44 PM

You’de think that ALL of the Republicans would rally behind the candidate that might actually win the general election. The one that is more universally supported than the other guys. Isn’t it all about ousting Obama? No?

BettyRuth on February 11, 2012 at 7:24 PM

Now it’s time for you to think…and reflect…why is that?
Why is one of the most conservative and popular blogs on the internet not behind Mitt…not supporting him in his minor victories…step back and think about that, we are all wrong.
There is no doubt Mitt has rabid fans, but rabid, vocal, money wielding fans do not a candidate make.

right2bright on February 13, 2012 at 7:49 AM

Since when the fuck do straw polls matter? Ron Paul wins them all the time. Mittens Rombama wins one and you neocons spew it all over the net.

MoreLiberty on February 13, 2012 at 9:00 AM

It’s easy to pack straw polls when you have the funds to bus people in, etc. The difference is, we want the best candidate, not the best “money can buy”. That’s why Romney is flailing. Oh yes, they’re rigging the primaries for him and he’s spending like crazy to buy his way to the top. I agree with Santorum, btw. It was also reported that the CPAC audience was packed with Romney supporters. So no surprise there since that’s also been Paul’s tactic in the past. Plus, you can’t turn on Fox News nowadays without the odious Donald Trump popping up everywhere and shilling for Mutt. Who knows how much they’re shelling out for that exposure.

mozalf on February 13, 2012 at 9:55 AM

Comment pages: 1 5 6 7