Ron Paul focusing on MN caucus, buys "substantial" airtime in state

Categories: Politics
Ron Paul.jpg
Ron Paul: focusing on Minnesota while Romney and co. slug it out in Florida.
Ron Paul, for one, isn't overlooking the Minnesota GOP presidential caucus, coming up on February 7.

Paul's campaign recently announced that it has purchased "substantial" airtime in Minnesota in advance of the oft-inconsequential event, which has added significance this year as Republicans continue to struggle to coalesce around a candidate.

The ad buy is reportedly part of Paul's strategy to quietly accumulate delegates in caucus states like Nevada and Minnesota while his opponents slug it out elsewhere, with the goal being to have maximum leverage this August at the RNC in Tampa.

One campaign spot Paul is running here is the Texas congressman's "Big Dog" ad. "Big Dog" has all the testosterone-fueled trappings of a monster truck rally commercial, complete with exploding government agencies and barking dogs.

Here it is, followed by a transcript:
What's up with these sorry politicians? Lots of bark! But when it's show time? Whimpering like little Shih-Tzus. You want big cuts? Ron Paul's been screaming it for years. Budget crisis? No problem. Cut a trillion bucks year one. That's trillion with a T. Department of Education? Gone! Interior? Energy? HUD? Commerce? Gone! Later, bureaucrats. That's how Ron Paul rolls. Want to drain the swamp? Ron Paul. Do it!
The MNGOP could not confirm that any other candidate is running TV ads in the state. With Romney, Gingrich, and Santorum preoccupied with the January 31 Florida primary, Paul has a nice opening to make his mark here in Minnesota, and he's employing a similar strategy in Nevada in advance of the silver state's February 4 caucus. 

A Daily Beast analysis suggests that Paul's caucus-and-delegate-focused strategy actually takes a play out of Barack Obama's playbook.
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Daily Beast: Ron Paul's preoccupation with delegates is a page from Obama's 2008 playbook
Although Hillary Clinton edged out Obama in high-turnout primaries in traditional Democratic strongholds like Massachusetts and California, she was trounced in the delegate count in low-turnout caucuses like Minnesota and Idaho. At the end of the contest, Obama and Clinton were nearly deadlocked in the total national popular vote, but Obama had eked out a narrow but decisive lead in the delegate count.

Taking the Obama tack this year are the two insurgent candidates, Ron Paul and now Santorum. Paul has long maintained that his focus is on caucus states and collecting delegates. "It's all about the delegates," he's fond of saying, and he means it. He's effectively skipping the winner-takes-all-delegates contest in Florida, a very expensive state to campaign in (and which lost half its delegates as a penalty for moving its primary day up without the party's permission). The Texas congressman won't even be in Florida on the night of its Jan. 31 primary.
The analysis makes the case that caucuses are perfect venues for candidates like Paul, who have intense supporters. Those supporters, however small in number, have the fervor to gain the support of undecided Republicans on caucus night.

During the 2008 Minnesota GOP presidential caucus, fourth-place Paul (16 percent of state delegates) was trounced by winner Mitt Romney (41 percent of state delegates -- eventually national GOP nominee John McCain came in second with 22 percent of state delegates). Will spots like "Big Dog" propel him to better results this time around? Perhaps -- especially if seen by Republicans who are susceptible to manly, high-energy truck commercials.

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16 comments
Mike Pattersom
Mike Pattersom

What Fox Thinks of You?The Sheeple!GoogleFox News Christmas Card

None but an armed nation can dispense with a standing army. To keep ours armed and disciplined is therefore at all times important. Thomas Jefferson

I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them. Thomas Jefferson

Please Minne!!!! These other guys are bought and paid for! Look into Dr. Ron Paul I did . The lies the media says are shameful in a free society!!!

pizza
pizza

"Will spots like "Big Dog" propel him to better results this time around? Perhaps -- especially if seen by Republicans who are susceptible to manly, high-energy truck commercials."

According to polls, he does better than any candidate among independents, and dems prefer him over any other repub candidate. You don't have to agree with him on everything (I don't), but if you can't see he is the best option for the change we need you are so stupid you shouldn't be voting in the first place.   

green23
green23

If Paul is trying to rack up delegates, then MN is a poor choice. The Republican caucus here is *non-binding*

Basically, the "Party elites" decide who gets the delegates, regardless of the voting results.

In 2008, Romney won MN with 41% of the caucus vote. Yet, all the delegates went to McCain - who only got 22% of the caucus vote.

The exception were 6 delegates who insisted on voting for Paul. Their votes were counted as abstentions and Pawlenty cut off the mic to halt any discussion. So Paul actually got no delegates at all.

Given this history, it makes no sense for Paul to try to win the MN caucus. The MN GOP has never pretended to be a democracy. The votes for him will be ignored.

James
James

Remember that whole debt ceiling crisis last summer with Obama? Mitt, Newt, and Santorum will be just like Obama asking for the ceiling to be raised over and over. Come on Minnesota! The country is counting on you and Nevada to save us from total economic collapse! Ron Paul or bust......literally!

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

Ron Paul published racist newsletters back in the 1980s.  He made a ton of money from them.   When he first ran for Congress the racist newsletters were an issue and he defended them.    Now he lies and refuses to answer questions about them just like every other scumbag politician.   A racist shouldn't be President. Nor should a fool who let racists print racist garbage is his name.  There is no other plausible explanation for his actions, he is either a racist or a fool.   Ron Paul is terrible and no sensible person can look past those newsletters no matter how right he might be about foriegn policy sometimes. 

Jl
Jl

Try communicating a little better if you want people to listen to you.

green23
green23

Not sure which polls you are talking about. PPP (1/17) shows Paul breaking 28/54 (fav/unfavorable) nationally with Independents. Romney does better than Paul, breaking 38/54 with Independents.

And Obama wins Independent voters 47/38 in a match-up with Paul. And Paul wins 7% of Democrats in that same match-up - not much more than the 5% the others get. Not even within the margin of error.

As I've said before, Paul can't win the Republican nomination. Unless he runs third-party, he won't get on the ballot. No matter how great you think he is, he can't get votes if he's not on the ballot.

Obama also wins the 18-29 age group 54/36 in a match-up with Paul. I think you are looking at primary polls or misinterpreting what you are seeing.

atrupar
atrupar

These are good points. To the best of my knowledge, none of the results from caucus states are binding, but perhaps Paul's line of thinking is that his delegates wouldn't be willing to play nice and support whoever plays the role of McCain this time around.

CharlieF
CharlieF

I'll do my best to get as many people as I can to vote for Ron Paul her in MN.

pizza
pizza

...Or a guy who believes in free speech. Do you deny the Black Panther party the right to exist as well? How about your golden god's minister? Same premise, just opposing side.  

pizza
pizza

I can't find the numbers you speak of anywhere.

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

He's just pulling it out of his ass like all Republicans and Ron Paul supporters. 

green23
green23

The Party controls the credentials, the agenda, and the microphone. Paul supporters screamed like hell in 2008 when Pawlenty invalidated their votes. They even appealed to Steele, and he just shrugged.

Primaries and caucuses are *party affairs*, not general elections. The party can pretty much do whatever it wants, as long as it abides by its own bylaws - which the party writes and enforces. If someone doesn't like it, then they don't have to belong to that party.

Why Paul insists on fighting the Party in a hopelessly one-sided battle is a mystery. The Republican Party is Paul's biggest obstacle, but Paul supporters seem obsessed with screaming at Democrats who have no ability to influence the Republican Party in any way whatsoever.

The primaries/caucuses are really the only major function that the Republican Party organization serves anymore. Most campaign money bypasses the Party and goes to candidates directly or comes from PACs. This is the only chance that the Party officials have to flex their muscles, and they won't be swayed by the relative few Paul supporters who pass the district convention gauntlet and howl at the State Convention.

The Democratic caucus is binding, but it's complex. There are different kinds of delegates (e.g. "superdelegates"), but the "pledged delegates" are bound by caucus results. In 2008, Obama got about twice as many votes as Clinton, and that's how the pledged delegates broke down.

It's a bit ironic that Paul could have got more delegates in Minnesota if he had run as a Democrat - provided that he would break 15% of the vote.

green23
green23

www. publicpolicypolling. com/pdf/2011/PPP_Release_US_0117925.pdf

remove the spaces, obviously.

I did a Google search for "ppp 1/17 poll" and the poll I referenced was the first result. Yet you couldn't find the poll anywhere. Weird. It's almost like you searched for "ron Paul wins".

pizza
pizza

So what you're saying is your vote goes to the same ineffective, broke-ass system because you're smart... Makes sense.

Why are you so hung up on my name and not issues? Small minds immediately pre-judge without digesting content. What does it matter if I've used 4-5 different handles over the course of a year?

"Psychadelic hermit"? Awesomness 

green23
green23

 Yeah. You know that "pizza" is tweek / yo banana boy / etc, right?

"if you can't see he is the best option for the change we need you are so stupid you shouldn't be voting in the first place."

IOW, vote for Paul or some anonymous psychedelic hermit will call you stupid.

Vote in a caucus where the results are non-binding and meaningless, or you're stupid.

Vote for a guy whose agenda will never, ever be passed by Congress, or you're stupid.

Vote for the guy who came in fourth out of four in the last primary, or you're stupid.

Vote for the guy who will lose his own State's primary, or you're stupid.

Vote for the guy trying to accrue delegates in a non-binding caucus state, where his delegates were taken away last time, or you're stupid.

Less than persuasive, IMHO.

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