Conservative leader discounts Paul win
October 10th, 2011
09:44 AM ET
11 years ago

Conservative leader discounts Paul win

(CNN) - The president of the Family Research Council characterized Rep. Ron Paul's weekend win in the Values Voter Summit straw poll as "an outlier."

Tony Perkins, who heads the social conservative group, said the Republican presidential candidate influenced the results by busing supporters to the event, proving his 37% support is not reflective of social conservative backing nationally.

"I think Ron Paul, when you look at everything is an outlier in this poll," Perkins said Monday on CNN's "American Morning." "You see Herman Cain finishing a strong second, followed by Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry. Those are more reflective I think of actually the other polls and what's happening in the social conservative community."

Paul, the longtime Texas congressman who is making his third bid for the White House, led the field of GOP candidates including former Godfather's Pizza CEO Herman Cain with 23%, former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania with 16%, Texas Gov. Rick Perry with 8%, Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota with 8%, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney with 4% and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich with 3%.

Thanks to strong support from his followers, Paul has come out on top in many of the most prominent GOP presidential nomination straw polls over the past two years. He won the Conservative Political Action Conference contest in 2010 and 2011 and the straw poll at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference earlier this year.

Perkins also connected the sentiments of the Occupy Wall Street movement with those of Paul supporters, over 700 of whom voted in Saturday's survey.

"We should not discount there's a lot of discontent with big ineffective government that's taking place in this country, and I think the Ron Paul campaign reflects that," Perkins said. "The message of his campaign is sending is something other campaigns have to listen to as well."

Romney won the straw poll during his last bid for the White House in 2008 and Perkins attributed his drop to decreased attention over values issues, despite articulating "those values this year" during his speech.

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soundoff (240 Responses)
  1. Jason

    You and the media complex are the outliers, not Dr. Paul

    October 10, 2011 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  2. Victoria avgam54

    thats all the repubs do is discount each other thats why no one can rally around one candidate. Their views have become toooooooo conservative in an unpolitically correct world and the gop does not even know what is stands for anymore. The candidates flip flop on every issue because they have no real convictions they are saying what the particular audience may want to hear. They have no good ideas and contradict themselves everyday. Tired of them.

    October 10, 2011 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  3. Independent from NH

    Sorry dude, hate to break it to you, but Paul won straight up. Get over it. This independent from NH, and many people I know, are not influenced by the spin. You are trying your best to pretend that Ron Paul doesn't even exist. Ever heard of the Streisand effect?

    October 10, 2011 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  4. JB

    Are you kidding? If his supporters did do that, what prevented the other candidates from doing it? There were no reports about Bachmann pulling stunts to get more people to vote for her in the Iowa straw poll. Instead of trying to discredit the win, the mainstream media claimed her to be a potential front-runner for a long time. Whenever any other candidate wins a straw poll or comes close to winning the media accepts it as a sign of a strong campaign. When Ron Paul wins instead of the media accepting it they construe it as not being a real win every single time.

    October 10, 2011 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  5. Stop the Charade

    Is this the same Tony Perkins that ran the Bates Motel?

    October 10, 2011 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  6. bill johnson

    Ron Paul has two brothers who are Lutheran pastors. Ron Paul has attended church his entire life. He has been married for 50 years to the same wife. All his children are happily married. Ron Paul is family values.

    October 10, 2011 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  7. Cade Foster

    Well ..... let's hope this "outlier" can win since Ron Paul is the only non-war-mongering, philosophically-astute, non-flip-flopping presidential candidate.

    October 10, 2011 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  8. John

    are you serious? when he wins one poll, you say reference another poll, because that one is more "realistic"... wow.

    October 10, 2011 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  9. Sgt.Joe

    Why is it that when I hear the term, "social conservative" it makes me want to force one to watch an episode of South Park?

    October 10, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  10. GOP = Greed Over People

    To be fair that is exactly what manic Michele did for her Iowa win, bused 'em in, paid their way in and gave them free BBQ.

    Like most things Republican, these straw votes can be bought.

    October 10, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  11. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    Ron Paul keeps winning straw polls, but, oddly, such victories are always "outliers." How is that?

    The truth of the matter is that, while their emphasis is different, the neo-cons are every bit as much in favour of Big Government as are the Democrats. They're less concerned with the forced economic "fairness" (i.e., rob the "rich" to reward the "poor") obsession of the Democrats, and more concerned with snooping on your private affairs, but they still believe in government as a dominant, coercive, social force. Ron Paul rejects most of that making him fairly unpopular with the cram-Christianity-down-their-throats crowd like the FRC religious nuts.

    October 10, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  12. social conservative

    I've seen too many of these silly articles. They aren't true.

    Ron Paul 2012!

    October 10, 2011 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  13. Tammy

    Tony Perkins sure wasn't complaining with all the money the Ron Paul supporters gave him to attend the event on Saturday. It's a straw poll, your supporters come and vote, pretty simple. Sounds like the other candidates don't inspire the passion and and enthusiasm Ron Paul is able to bring to the party. Ron Paul is Mr. Conservative. Mr. Perkins needs to stop whining and act like a big boy, with behavior like this is does reflect poorly on Mr. Perkins but I realize we live in a time where men don't act like men anymore.

    October 10, 2011 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  14. 2dark

    I'm really sick of the extreme discredit given to any Ron Paul wins.

    show me pictures of the "busses of followers" that "flood the polls". go ahead and show me.

    he won.

    October 10, 2011 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  15. The Real Tom Paine

    Let's be honest abut Perkins and his ilk: they would not be happy until public stonings are brought back. His "values" are not in line with real Americans, who want to be left alone by their government AND religion, and certainly don't want to see a partnership between the two.

    October 10, 2011 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  16. OldRightRep


    The vote didn't follow the media's new dialog that Herman "The FED" Cain was the new front runner. Straw polls are only important when Ron Paul doesn't win them of course.

    Social conservatives couldn't possibly like someone as staunchly pro-life as an OB/GYN who has delivered 4,000 babies. They couldn't possibly want someone who has been married faithfully to the same woman for over 50 years. And they certianly wouldn't want someone who walks the walk, not just talks the talk of a christian.

    Don't let the media decide for you, do your own research Google Ron Paul, Youtube his speech from the Values Voters Conference...then decide.

    October 10, 2011 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  17. lynn

    LOL, Laughable. i didnt get bussed in. i voted for Ron Paul because he's the clear choice for a better America.

    October 10, 2011 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  18. Louis Nardozi

    He's right – obviously an outlier.

    Values Voters
    New Hampshire

    Wow! That's 5 outliers already. Seems like the the whole field is nothing but outliers. I tell you folks, it's amazing what Ron Paul can do.

    Vote Vertebrate – Ron Paul 2012!

    October 10, 2011 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  19. sector7

    So when Paul wins it doesn't count? Please. It's sad to think that CNN actually makes people believe such lies, controlling their minds for the cause of corporatism.

    October 10, 2011 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  20. Nothing new here

    Tony Perkins = whiner.
    So what if Ron Paul won the straw poll? Ron Paul was the one candidate that actually showed some class by not making an issue of Romney's faith. Ron Paul does have strong opinions on certain things, but that is it – OPINIONS!! Unlike the Family Research Council, which wants a theocracy in this country!!

    October 10, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  21. darko sleznic

    I've never heard of Tony Perkins. CNN is in denial.

    October 10, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  22. Will

    I am sure Dr. Paul is the only one who bused people out, right?
    The claim that because his "fervent" supporters "flock" to these things and 'stuff' or 'rig' or 'sway' the vote is absolutely ridiculous. That somehow his wins are not legitimate because his supporters show up to vote.
    Explain to me how we decide on a president in this country? Oh, that's right!
    People. Show. Up. To. Vote.
    See you at the polls!
    Ron Paul 2012

    October 10, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  23. todd

    Of course CNN and the MSM are going to conclude there was "ballot stuffing"! The sheeple have waken up MSM and CNN! We (American People) have picked our candidate for president and Ron Paul is the man! Romney or Perry are not going to finish strong no matter how much you "shove" them down our throats with your media blitzes. We see through your smoke and mirrors.

    Ron Paul 2012

    October 10, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  24. Jay

    “How dare those pesky Paul kids out organize every other campaign! Get off my lawn!”

    Tony Perkins sounds a wee bit vindictive.

    You could not just attend Paul’s speech, you had to register for the conference. There were electronic voting machines, not ballot boxes and you had to be registered to cast a ballot. Hat’s off to the Value Voters Summit for not stealing the vote when they could have.

    Ron Paul is a Christian, and he spoke a lot about issues that appeal to Christians and Christian conservatives. If the Value Voters Summit is as wise as I think they are, they might try to continue to accommodate the young people, energy and enthusiasm that Paul’s faction brought to the conference. His supporters filled two large rooms, standing room only: old people, young people, families, college students, black people and white people. I had never been to a Paul event before; I was quite surprised to see such a large and diverse group. All the reports I heard in the media were that he only attracts college students.

    The rest of the Republican candidates are all for one form or another of big government, pro-bail-outs, and pro-endless war. Please explain how that will be any different than Obama in November?

    America wants real change, and that’s why people came to see and hear Paul at the Summit.

    October 10, 2011 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  25. taflynt

    Ron Paul being "an outlier" is exactly what this country needs. There is no one in either party that has the real interest of America as thier number one priority; except for Ron Paul and Gary Johnson. They are honest people. Not many of those around in politics..!

    October 10, 2011 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
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