Latest S.C. straw poll win goes to Ron Paul
April 16th, 2011
04:12 PM ET
4 years ago

Latest S.C. straw poll win goes to Ron Paul

Bluffton, South Carolina (CNN) - Texas Rep. Ron Paul won the latest in a string of presidential straw polls being conducted in key South Carolina counties this month ahead of the state Republican Party convention in May.

Paul won the vote at the Lexington County Republican Party convention on Saturday, taking 16 percent of the 139 ballots cast. Lexington is considered a bellwether county in Republican primaries and is home to South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, but the party organization there has seen an uptick in libertarian-leaning Paul supporters in recent years.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who has done almost no presidential spadework in the crucial early primary state, had another respectable straw poll showing and finished in a tie for second place with business mogul Donald Trump, taking 12 percent of the vote.

Romney finished fourth in a Greenville County straw poll last weekend and second in a Friday night vote at the Charleston County convention.

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, who won the Charleston straw poll and attended Saturday's Lexington event in person, finished with 10 percent and tied for fifth with former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

Lexington GOP Chairman Rich Bolen also asked party members to pick their second choice for the Republican nomination. Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann won that poll with 18 percent of the vote.

In the grand scheme of presidential campaigns, of course, straw polls are only informal surveys conducted by a relative handful of party activists. But they can be helpful in providing an early read on how the GOP's most dedicated voters in key primary and caucus states view the 2012 field.

Some straw polls are more informative than others, however.

Heavily Democratic Orangeburg County hosted its GOP convention on Saturday and ran a straw poll with 30 names on the ballot, including several noncandidates such as former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, Michigan Rep. Thaddeus McCotter and House Speaker John Boehner.

But only 25 Republicans attended the convention.


Filed under: 2012 • Ron Paul • South Carolina
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. C. Howe Yulikit

    Gotta love how relevant this is. 22 people in SC want Paul as President. And from another ticker item, 34 people in another county straw poll want Barbour. Willing to be I could show up at these straw polls, work the room for 30 minutes and get 40 people to want me to be President as well. And yet this is national news.

    April 16, 2011 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  2. Dan

    I'm voting for Ron Paul in 2012 if he decides to run. Maybe we'll finally get the change we really wanted. It's time to bring the troops home, end the wars, and realistically address the debt so that future generations are not crippled by the mistakes our generation has made.

    April 16, 2011 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  3. james

    Ron Paul is the most intelligent and well-reasoned person in Washington. Some of his ideals are a bit too radical, but I think most of the country would agree with his views. Unfortunately, he is not as "slick" and well polished as most professional politicians and will never be a real contender.

    April 16, 2011 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  4. Martha in CF

    I thought the straw poll winner was Barbour!!!!!! Make up your mind........

    April 16, 2011 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  5. Rick McDaniel

    This is so NOT of any significance, any more than the Barbour win reported this morning.

    April 16, 2011 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  6. bobby

    These guys have,nt Won anything? S.C. is all Republican? Dah. Sara could win down there? As long as they can tell a women what to do with her health,and say their babtist, "They,ll vote for them? "Nothing News Here"

    April 16, 2011 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  7. u kidding me

    another old white headed man that has NO Fruiting chance. Neither does Palin, Huckabee, Paul, Cantor, Boehner, Graham, Mccain, Rubio, Newt. Trump on an INDEPENDENT TICKET. REPULICANS BOW TO OBAMA AND WORRY ABOUT GETTING RE ELECTED. TRUMP BREWER TICKET FOR 2012

    April 16, 2011 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  8. Lisa

    If Ron Paul doesn't run I will write his name in. He is the only politician I trust who doesn't lie through his teeth and pander to special interests like a prostitute. He is brave enough to stand up to the banks and the bomb makers, and never backs down on his positions – even when they are unpopular. I don't care what anyone says about him, for me it is Ron Paul or nothing.

    April 16, 2011 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  9. John Ceballos

    Dr. Ron Paul is all about limiting the role of the government in our lives and a fundamental constitutionalist. He is the only republican to vote against the pointless Iraq war that has senselessly killed off many US soldiers and innocent Iraqi women and children. Dr. Ron Paul is THE ONLY candidate with real integrity. Bar-none. Anyone who debates this is a grade a idiot. Ron Paul 2012! Lets kill this crooked government and vote in the only man who can give us our country back the way we like it and the way it's supposed to be. Ron Paul 2012 or our country shall perish! your choice.

    April 16, 2011 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  10. Kenny

    Ron Paul vs obama republicans in the gop primary! If the gop doesn't nominate Ron Paul 2012 aka Paul/Johnson 2012 . Then the gop will be electing obama themselves!!!

    April 16, 2011 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  11. rusty155

    I don't think South Carolina know who they want, It don't matter because If they pick some back by the TEA PARTY they won't win. There Isn't that many American People out that dumb to vote for someone back by the TEA PARTY. The TEA PARTY ISN'T nothing but Corporate drones Own and Pay for by the KOCH'S BROTHER. They are even worst than the Republican.

    April 16, 2011 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  12. Freedom4America

    Straw polls may be irrelevant but Ron Paul's support is far from being minimal. People from every party are coming aboard the RON PAUL RƎVO˩UTION.

    This country is going to HELL and none of these Warmongering Neocons stand a chance to beat Obomba and end this catastrophe that we are headed to.

    Dr. Ron Paul/Dr. Rand Paul 2012

    "Choose Paul For The Long Haul"

    April 16, 2011 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  13. The Greedy Old Pigs straw votes are getting far more coverage from CNN than they deserve!

    Wow, so one GOBPbagger wins a straw poll with about 20 votes and another wins a second straw poll with around 34 votes. This IS breaking news! (NOT). CNN certainly has misplaced priorities covering this kind of extremist garbage. And the birthbaggers have no hope in the big elections if this is the type of voter and vote count they are counting on to win.

    April 16, 2011 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  14. David Roe

    Our nation must have some serious self-evaluation. What do we stand for? I think most will agree with me when I say the majority of the American people want to see world peace, more human rights, and prosperity for others as well as ourselves. I dare the American people to research Ron Paul's stances on foreign policy, trade, etc. and compare them to our current foreign and trade policies.

    April 16, 2011 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  15. peace

    when you get finished with all of these polls president OBAMA will still be president.

    April 16, 2011 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  16. isaac Miller

    I would agree. This doesn't mean much...yet. Ron Paul's position on the debt, etc, sounds reasonable at first, but honestly its based on not understanding the governments multi faceted and complex role within the economy. I agree with him on the war, but their are other things about him which I find very disturbing. But more then that if you actually looks into his background one finds some very disturbing things. In the 80's he ran a publication which put out some pretty racist nutty stuff, which he claimed to have know knowledge of. That seems to be totally unlikely since it was his publication! The lib movement can be all over the place, and I think Paul's background may come out of some of the crazier elements (though of course he wont talk about that now). I don't want anyone like that near the white house.

    April 16, 2011 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  17. isaac Miller

    Sorry. Correction. Some of it came out in the 1990's.

    April 16, 2011 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  18. Bob

    I love people love Ron Paul (or Sarah Palin or some Joe who owns a truck) as a candidate. They like the idea of the unknown, plain, simple man running for office. Frank Capra even did a movie about the phenomenon called Meet John Doe. The problem of course was (and still is) that John Doe is usually a fake. Ron Paul is not an average Joe. He's a politician and is only unconventional in the sense that he's a bit of a nutjob and has "traditional" Southern values (i.e. he thinks businesses should be able to refuse to serve Black or Jewish people if that's their preference). Go to his website and you'll see links to articles about how the WTC was brought down not by terrorists in a plane but by controlled demolitions and other urban about how all the Jews were absent work that day, etc. The guy wears a tin foil hat and his son is only slightly less crazy (if you consider thinking the Tea Party was a genuine, spontaneous political movement sane).

    April 16, 2011 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  19. 12on Paul

    SC straw poll today. White House tomorrow.

    America loves Dr Paul.

    April 16, 2011 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  20. Liberty

    Ron Paul is the most honest man in washington and if the people open there eyes an see illegal wars, illegal taxes, illegal printing of money, an illegal intrusion on peoples rights isn't going to save our country but destroy it. RON PAUL 2012

    April 16, 2011 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  21. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Bachmann assails President Obama over Libya but she's got it wrong. Bachmann should be assailing Sarah Palin for disappearing on her during the budget talks because it was too far over her head, she's limited.

    April 16, 2011 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  22. MIke in Texas

    Did she win the bending straw poll? Barbour must of won the silly loop straw poll. Who won the straw hat poll?

    April 16, 2011 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  23. SharkMan2

    Ron Paul is probably the only person in Congress with a bulletproof reputation. He doesn't meet with lobbyists or special interest groups, any left over money in his Congressional budget at the end of the year is returned, he's the only one with real ideas about how to solve the problems our country is facing, and (most importantly) he's the only politician with big enough manparts to openly admit that, in our current state, things are going to get worse before they get better. Ron Paul 2012!!

    April 16, 2011 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  24. Robert

    If the Republican Party does not become educated enough to realize that Ron Paul is the only candidate that has any knowledge of the Constitution then President Obama deserves another 4 years hands down.

    April 16, 2011 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  25. Pappaw3574

    I really, really hope that Ron Paul runs for President as an Indepedent. He will pull the Tea Party votes away from the Republican caNDIDATE AND GUARANTEE AN oBAMA LANDSLIDE.

    April 16, 2011 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
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