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Rep. Bachmann Wins Iowa Straw Poll

Rep. Michele Bachmann won the Iowa Straw Poll Saturday, affirming her status as a top-tier candidate in the Republican race to challenge President Obama in 2012.

Bachmann received 28 percent of the nearly 17,000 votes cast. Texas Rep. Ron Paul was close behind her with 27 percent. Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty came in a distant third with 13 percent of the vote, followed by former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum with 9 percent and businessman Herman Cain with 8 percent.

“We just sent a message that Obama will be a one-term president,” Bachmann told her cheering supporters outside of her bus. Bachmann cast her victory as a “down payment on taking our country back.”

“We just crossed a very important hurdle, but it’s the first one,” she said to Mike Huckabee. “This is a wonderful result today and we couldn’t be more grateful to the people of Iowa.”

The daylong political festival was the first indication of how these Republicans are faring with the GOP base. Nine candidates were on the ballot, and voting ran for six hours on the campus of Iowa State University.

Most of the buzz had revolved around Bachmann, whose supporters were a huge presence at the outdoor circus before the votes were cast.

But Pawlenty arguably had the most on the line as his aides had said that if he didn’t finish at least second or third, they would have to evaluate whether he can move forward.

It remains to be seen how the third-place finish would affect Pawlenty’s campaign. Poor showings usually force some candidates, mostly those who are not well-known and are struggling to raise money, to abandon their bids, and that could happen this year, too.

But Pawlenty, whose heated exchanges with Bachmann was the highlight of Thursday’s debate in Iowa, immediately congratulated his Minnesota rival.

“We made progress in moving from the back of the pack into a competitive position for the caucuses, but we have a lot more work to do,” he said in a statement. “This is a long process to restore America — we are just beginning and I’m looking forward to a great campaign.”

Paul, who has had the most devout and loyal following at the event this year, got the surprise showing he was looking for in hopes that it would convince Republicans that he was more mainstream than not in his second shot at the GOP nomination.


10 Responses

  1. The fact that Ron Paul, the ultra-libertarian, racist Texas Representative, who has no problem with legalizing gay marriage, and who is a reliable nay vote on pro-Israel resolutions, got 27% is quite disturbing.

    That Rick Santorum managed a 4th-place finish is somewhat heartening.

  2. 1. I wouldn’t support Ron Paul in a primary either but to be slightly fair to him, he isn’t interested in giving financial assistance to ANY country no matter who it is.

    Also, I have heard him interviewed & I don’t know where you get the racist junk from. its a word to toss out which is almost impossible to defend against.

  3. The race is primarily between Perry and Romney, regardless of the straw poll in Iowa. Bachmann has an awfully thin resume to be president – and who wants a Republican Obama (who has proved to be disasterously underqualified to be president).

  4. Paul is a libertarian and an isolationist, and he is the only candidate among either parties who is either. Most conservatives believe the government should take stands in favor of things such as morality, so in many ways it isn’t clear if Paul is a conservative – feeling everyone should be allowed to “do their own thing” no matter how weird as long as it doesn’t hurt other, is a liberal position. Jews tend to have a global perspective, and never have been sympathetic to isolationists.

    Sen. Rand Paul is less fanatic than his father, and might pick up the support from libertarians in the future. The isolationists will probably shift towards the Democrats since Obama is slowly moving in that direction (undermining foreign alliances, weaking the military).

  5. mark levin:

    See the vote on H. Res. 268, which has nothing to do with aid to Israel.

    And I’ve heard from friends that he is no fan of blacks.

  6. Ron Paul is by far the worst “republican” candidate in the race.I rally hope he won’t be the republican presidential nominee.

  7. Count on every Jewish vote doing for the poor Democrat, we Jews are priceless and just never learn, it’s ok Obama will TEACH us in the next term the cost of being slaves to King O.

  8. #8 Maish,

    If you don’t get over here I’ll give Ron Paul your number.

    Although I didn’t know you were such an astute political commentator.

    Rick Santorum 2012!

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