Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Americans Elect--Ron Paul?

Ron Paul has ceased "active campaigning" while still using his get-the-delegates strategy to run the score up. The going theory is that he's angling for a strong presence at the RNC convention even if he's not the nominee or, like, the VP. This is reasonable: he wasn't invited last time--but this time he should be able to make a go of it.

But what if he wants more--or, similarly, what if someone wants more for him?

In this case that someone would be American's Elect--a very well funded web-organized 3rd party engine which had big ideas about having a bi-partisan ticket that would rival the GOP and the Democrats.This plan fizzled when they failed to select a candidate:
The current highest vote-getter among declared candidates in the online draft process is former Louisiana governor Buddy Roemer, with just over 5,900 delegates supporting his efforts, followed by Rocky Anderson, a former mayor of Salt Lake City. To look at it another way, more than 95 percent of the people who signed up to be a delegate to Americans Elect have declined to select a candidate among the relatively slim pickings. This is not a vote of confidence—either in the candidates or the process.
This is true--but the highest Draft Candidate (that is: candidate AE voters like but who has not thrown in with AE ... yet) is Ron Paul. Compared to Roemer's now 6200 delegates Paul has, well, see for yourself:
OVER 9000!!! 

So what if he said: "Yeah, you know what? Okay--I'm AE's candidate."

What NOW, Suckers?
If that were to happen the math gets tricky. The going theory is that it would strongly hurt the Republicans but there is some evidence that a 3-way run might actually hurt the Democrats more. I think this is wishful thinking:

And, from the same article: For libertarians
say they're politically independent, yet 


say they'll vote for a Republican in 2012.

It's not solid--but I think there are more Ron Paul voters in the Republican camp than the Democrats. Additionally, a strong Ron Paul 3rd Party Bid (which the well funded Americans Elect engine would give him) would draw fiscal-hawk hopefuls from the Republicans who might not otherwise be Paul voters.

Would it happen?

What Do I Think?
Unlikely. Paul has his son's legacy to worry about and a 3rd Party run would almost certainly taint the Paul legacy if it led to 4 more years of Obama. On the other hand, his strategy of teaming with White Supremacists could certainly be thought to tarnish his legacy and there's evidence he did that. So who knows?

The warning signs, however, would certainly be clear: If AE makes a hard push for Ron and the RNC tries to disenfranchise his voters it would be a perfect storm of conditions. Maybe something like this?

Ron Paul and Mitt Romney supporters in a brawl at the Oklahoma GOP convention

WASHINGTON, May 14, 2012 — Chaos erupted at the Oklahoma GOP convention on Saturday when supporters of Ron Paul and Mitt Romney came to blows, necessitating the intervention of the police.
If the Oklahoma state convention is any indication, mainstream Republicans have plenty to worry about come this summer at their convention in Tampa. What happened in Oklahoma made the brouhaha at the Arizona convention also held this weekend look tame, even though Mitt Romney’s son Josh was booed off the stage by Paul enthusiasts. Outside the convention hall at Grand Canyon University, Paul supporters could be heard chanting, “Romney is the white Obama.”
Apparently punches were thrown. Whatever Ron may think of the GOP as a whole, his legacy is not going to be preserved by letting his supporters get beat up.

Ron Paul Alert Level Raised to HIGH!
See also: the Stages of Ron Paul Supporter Grief.

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