How difficult should it be for Ron Paul to win votes in states where John McCain doesn’t campaign in a primary the Senator has already won? Not very, and yet Paul has only collected single-digit results throughout most of March, April, and May. The Boston Globe points out that Paul won his biggest percentage yet yesterday — but still barely registers on the meter in a state that should have provided him with a huge boost:
John McCain has the Republican nomination wrapped up, but Ron Paul isn’t going anywhere.
In fact, in Tuesday’s little-noticed Republican primary in Idaho, the iconoclastic Texas congressman had his best showing so far, grabbing 24 percent of the vote, nearly 30,000 votes in all.
McCain won with 70 percent, while the other 6 percent went to uncommitted.
Little-noticed? I’d say for good reason, too. The primary race is over, and McCain won it almost three months ago. Ron Paul still has only 35 delegates, compared to 255 for Mike Huckabee. In Idaho, not only did McCain win by 46 points, he won every single county as well.
The Globe and other news outlets want to make this into a news story when it just doesn’t fit. They want to play up any sign of dissension in the Republican ranks to gin up a matching narrative for the Democratic primaries. It’s interesting to compare the races in one aspect; the media wants to push Hillary Clinton out of the primaries even though neither candidate can get to a winning number of delegates before the convention (since superdelegates can change their minds right up to the balloting in Denver), but somehow want to infer that the GOP has a problem because Ron Paul has less than 2% of the total delegate count for the Republican convention.
McCain’s supporters and mainstream Republican primary voters have little reason to turn out to vote in these primaries. Even with that advantage, the best Paul can take is 24% in Idaho, and single digits almost everywhere else. It’s confirmation of his status a minor-league, lunatic-fringe gadfly.