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CPAC 2010 Straw Poll RESULTS: Ron Paul Wins Big

Huff Po– Sam Stein

First Posted: 02-20-10 05:40 PM   |   Updated: 02-20-10 06:00 PM

In a strong reflection of just how strong his standing remains within the die-hard conservative community, Texas Republican and 2008 presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul won the Conservative Political Action Conference straw poll on Saturday, earning nearly one-third (31 percent) of the entire vote. The crowd, however, booed heavily when the results were announced.

Paul was far and away the most widely anticipated speaker at the three-day conference, with his base of “Paulites” streaming into the main auditorium to hear him rail against government overreach and neoconservativism on Friday afternoon. In many respects, his win in the CPAC poll seemed pre-ordained — his band of followers having a well-earned reputation for flooding polls and forums like these.

What it portends for a possible 2012 presidential run is anyone’s guess. Paul had a similar cult-like following during the 2008 election, only to garner a relatively small chunk of the actual vote.

The other potential candidates who scored well and are more “mainstream” picks for the Republican nomination include former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who earned 22 percent of the vote, and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin who came in third with seven percent. Romney had won the last three CPAC polls. Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, another talked about 2012 aspirant, tied “undecided” for fourth place at six percent.

The results provide an interesting reflection as to where conservative hearts lie nearly three years before the next presidential elections take place. But with so much time before formal campaigning begins – and with no White House aspirant even officially announcing a bid- its best to resist the temptation to read too deeply into the numbers. For example, last year, disgraced South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford polled at four percent, while Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal — no longer even on the straw poll — came in second at 14 percent.

Nevertheless, the CPAC poll can provide a nice boost (or, at the very least, attention) to prospective candidates. In 2007, Romney etched out a win over former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani by a margin of 21 percent to 17 percent. Sen. John McCain, who wound up winning the nomination, came in fifth with 12 percent of the vote.

Several of the candidates polled attended CPAC in the days, and even hours, ahead of the results being released. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich was a keynote speaker on Saturday, preceded by former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum (Penn.). Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty spoke on Friday followed by Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) and Paul. Romney addressed the audience on Thursday. All others were not in attendance during the three-day affair.

Here are the official results:

Texas Rep. Ron Paul – 31 percent
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney — 22 percent
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin — 7 percent
Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty – 6 percent
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich – 4 percent
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee — 4 percent
Indiana Rep. Mike Pence – 5 percent
South Dakota Sen. John Thune — 2 percent
Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels — 2 percent
Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum — 2 percent
Mississippi Gov. Hailey Barbour – 1 percent
Other – 5 percent
Undecided – 6 percent

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Rush’s costume is actually “The Surviva Ball” which is designed by “The Yes Men to protect Haliburton executives from Mother Nature’s anguish about global warming, but, of course, this corporate media spokesman will never approach the pranks of the real Yes Men, who have been exposing the real enemy for years.

Operation Chaos

On April 23, 2008 Rush Limbaugh made the statement that he is dreaming/hoping for riots after the Dems convention if they choose Hillary over Obama. He even sang his statment to the “I’m Dreaming of a “WHITE” Christmas” tune. It appears to me that he is hoping African-Americans will revolt if Obama doesn’t win and in his dreams we would riot and wipe each other out so that he can indeed have a “white” Christmas/country.

Another notable statement by this filthy fat man was made on September 26, 2007, was about what he called “phony soldiers”and concerned our troops in Iraq. The Phony soldiers controversy refers to the controversy surrounding a statement by Rush Limbaugh in which he allegedly referred to Iraq war veterans critical of the war as “phony soldiers”. In response to Limbaugh’s comments, United States Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid sent a letter to Mark P. Mays, CEO of Clear Channel Communications. The letter of complaint requested that Mays “publicly repudiate these comments and ask Mr. Limbaugh to apologize” for the remarks. The Reid letter was signed by 41 Democratic senators.

Limbaugh, who argued that the comment was not in reference to Iraq War veterans but to persons falsely claiming to be such veterans, obtained the letter and sold it on eBay for $2,100,100, the record for a charitable auction on that site. He donated the funds to the Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation with a matching donation of his own.

This might appear to be generosity, but Limbaugh was using money and influence to buy himself out of a sticky situation. According to a 2001 article in U.S. News & World Report, Limbaugh had an eight-year contract, at the rate of $31.25 million a year. On July 2, 2008, Matt Drudge reported that Limbaugh signed a contract extension through 2016 that is worth over $400 million, breaking records for any broadcast medium — television or radio.

Limbaugh’s personal “phony soldier moment” is damning to say the least. His birthdate was ranked as 175 in the Vietnam War draft lottery, but no one was drafted above 125. He was classified as “1-Y” (later reclassified “4-F”) due to either a football knee injury or a diagnosis of Pilonidal disease, probably the latter, which shows that he is a real pain in the arse.

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Limbaugh Misquotes Constitution During CPAC Speech

HuffPo- Sam Stein

March 2, 2009 10:09 AM

During his much-discussed keynote address at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Saturday, Rush Limbaugh accused Barack Obama of pursuing the “bastardization of the U.S. Constitution.”

It was one of the more politically acidic notes in a speech defined by rambling political assaults. But the conservative talk show host wasn’t exactly standing on firm footing. Just a few moments earlier he himself had actually — not theoretically — “bastardized” the Constitution by confusing it with the Declaration of Independence.

From Limbaugh’s speech:

We want every American to be the best he or she chooses to be. We recognize that we are all individuals. We love and revere our founding documents, the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. [Applause] We believe that the preamble to the Constitution contains an inarguable truth that we are all endowed by our creator with certain inalienable rights, among them life. [Applause] Liberty, Freedom. [Applause] And the pursuit of happiness. [Applause] Those of you watching at home may wonder why this is being applauded. We conservatives think all three are under assault. [Applause] Thank you. Thank you.

Limbaugh, it seems, meant to say “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness,” which, of course, is in the Declaration of Independence. Just to be sure, however, the Constitutional Accountability Center compared his remarks to the Constitution’s preamble, and didn’t find a match.

Here is the Constitution’s Preamble: “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

In the end, of course, Limbaugh’s gaffe was just that: a rhetorical hiccup in an otherwise long (the speech went on for 90 minutes) and brash address. Still, in the process of accusing Obama for a lack of reverence of the Constitution, it would have undoubtedly served him better to have properly recognized the Constitution himself.

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