Palin, Perry left off Ames straw poll ballot
July 23rd, 2011
03:58 PM ET
3 years ago

Palin, Perry left off Ames straw poll ballot

(CNN)-Former governors Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman announced they wouldn’t compete at the Ames straw poll in Iowa, but the state GOP added them to the ballot anyway, along with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

But former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and Texas Gov. Rick Perry – who haven’t yet decided on a presidential bid – were left off.

The Iowa GOP state central committee named nine candidates to the final straw poll ballot announced Saturday.

Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, businessman Herman Cain, Texas Rep. Ron Paul, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, and then-unannounced Michigan Rep. Thaddeus McCotter secured a spot on the ballot in June by reserving space at the straw poll. Each paid a minimum of $15,000 to rent space outside the arena where the August 13 straw poll will take place.

The Ames straw poll is an early test of candidate strength in the first-in-the-nation caucus state, with the ability to elevate, solidify, or break a candidate’s rank in the GOP field. It is also considered an indicator of who may win the first significant presidential contest.

Critical members of Gingrich’s Iowa campaign resigned shortly before the bidding process for straw poll lots, hampering an already financially-strapped effort to win big in Iowa. Gingrich did not reserve space with other candidates in June.

Huntsman announced he would not compete in Iowa, choosing to focus instead on the first-in-the-nation primary state of New Hampshire

Romney, who also sought the GOP nomination in 2008, also stated he'd sit out the straw poll in Ames. Though he won the contest in 2007, Romney fell short of winning the Iowa caucus, which went to former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Romney’s straw poll runner-up.

Palin stated she would announce her intention to run–or stay out of the race–in late August or early September. Perry said Friday that he'll make his decision known in the next three to four weeks.

Americans for Rick Perry, an independent group supporting the Texas governor, told CNN that its efforts to get Perry onto the Ames ballot failed. The group's leader,Bob Schuman, told CNN,"The other candidates sure seem to fear Gov. Perry."

Palin and Perry may have been left off the ballot, but straw poll voters will be able to write in their pick for president.

The addition of Romney, Huntsman, and Gingrich to the straw poll ballot is no special practice. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson and Arizona Sen. John McCain all chose to skip the contest in 2007, but were added to the ballot.

And though he placed 10th, McCain went on to win the 2008 GOP nomination for president, proving that results of the straw poll may not necessarily predict who ends up on top.

Related: Six GOP campaigns land spots for Ames Straw Poll

Related: Romney to sit out Ames Straw Poll


Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Rick Perry • Sarah Palin
soundoff (173 Responses)
  1. Proud member of "Global Zero"

    Not sure how this works but, maybe because neither have declared they are running?!?

    July 23, 2011 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  2. Bill

    Worst embarrassment for the tea party, Perry and Palin lose to Obama in 2012. Not too far fetched.

    July 23, 2011 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  3. thomas

    Perry/Palin 2012
    One can re lode , the other can shoot !
    Governors for God and Guns !

    July 23, 2011 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  4. works4me

    "but straw poll voters will be able to write in their pick for president." Most of the Palenites don't know how to write, so that should effectively keep the Quitter off the ballot.

    July 23, 2011 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  5. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Don't look for Palin until all the debt/deficit talks are over, she's limited and "retreats" while others do all the heavy lifting, then she will reappear just to talk about Obama and nothing more. And to compare herself to our military men and women who die on the battlefied because they don't retreat is a dishonor to all of them.

    July 23, 2011 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  6. GI Joe

    Two secessionists left out of the wingnut religious straw poll? Poor little babies.

    July 23, 2011 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  7. vic , nashville ,tn

    Can GOP and media follow the foot step of Iowa GOP ignore Palin and Perry

    July 23, 2011 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  8. rhumba

    Why should either of them get any attention whatsoever until they have the guts to declare their candidacies? As far as I'm concerned, they're not candidates until they say they are.

    July 23, 2011 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  9. greyhackles

    And we care – why, exactly?

    July 23, 2011 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  10. Patty - Illinois

    Boohoo – crybaby Palin is bound to cry foul when she was ignored.

    July 23, 2011 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  11. Patrick from Minnesota

    And one, ONLY ONE, will have the honor of placing second in the Presidential Election of 2012!

    July 23, 2011 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  12. once upon a horse

    what a waste of valuable hay!

    July 23, 2011 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  13. Tam

    If they haven't declared, they don't count (in more ways than one).

    July 23, 2011 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  14. madcow

    Palin left off the ballot? Oh no! Please, Sarah, please announce your candidacy! I have been so anxious to see another Tina Fey skit!

    July 23, 2011 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  15. Seattle Sue

    Sarah and Elmer Gantry won't be happy about being left out.

    July 23, 2011 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  16. DENNA

    Bwahhaaa! 'nough said. Now if old 'migraine" Bachmann drops out, that would be even better.

    July 23, 2011 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  17. AntiFringe

    Have the political parties pick their candidates. That eliminates the voters from choosing the best "one liner" candidate. It would also allow other "candidates" to run as independents if they chose. The parties would also think long and hard about which potential candidate represents what the American people want. Until then, this is what we get.

    July 23, 2011 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  18. GOP = Greed Over People

    Who gives a flying coitus!

    July 23, 2011 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  19. Tad Pole

    Left off? If they aren't running, why should they be put on it?

    July 23, 2011 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  20. Sam I Am

    Obviously the people of Iowa are pragmatic. Why put someone on the poll who will not be a contender? Reading farther down in the article it says that McCain finished 10th in a straw poll before the 2008 election, which shows that the poll doesn't mean much. The reality there was that the Republicans knew they were in very deep trouble after 8 years of Bush's complete disregard for the American people or the rule of law, and knew that anyone who ran Republican would get stomped in the actual election. McCain ran for president with a second-rate poitician as his running mate, because no Republican with any real juice wanted to take the beating. Had the Republicans had anything more than a policy of "no" the last four years, they might be in position to win this time around. They have not demonstrated any flexibility or strategy, and as such this time around they will get stomped again. Watch for the truly viable candidates to drop aside one by one, until some second stringer like McCain once again pretends to run.

    July 23, 2011 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  21. logic in LA

    Not announced- no polling. Good for Iowa. Here that all you pollsters!

    July 23, 2011 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  22. Republicans Are The American Taliban

    If God had wanted them to be on the ballot...he would have miracled it to be so....

    July 23, 2011 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  23. barbara

    Gee – at least this story got the photo of Bristol off this page after two days!

    July 23, 2011 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  24. Strawbarry

    9 scraggly strawsters, the cream of the dried up crock, oh, did I say say 'crock", I meant dried up crop competing for the attention of , ehmmm , no one! And Sarah failin' Palin stretching it out til September? Oh the tension, the suspense.
    What will be next? Ronald Reagan rising from the dead and rescuing his people? well, Noah with his arc would be better suited.

    July 23, 2011 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  25. Chipster

    Perry is a religious zealot, as certain that he is as right. "American Taliban." Zealots like him want to establish the religious intolerance and fear that our founding fathers fled and were so careful to prevent with our Constitution. He and his followers can only succeed if we fail to defend our religious freedom from their doctrines. The Constitution is only words on a page if we fail to defend and apply them. We have to stand against such tyranny.

    July 23, 2011 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
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