LOS ANGELES, May 9, 2012 — The GOP presidential race is over, but several important states held primaries on May 8th. On this anniversary of VE-Day, congratulations to American war heroes and veterans everywhere.
Before getting to the race for the White House, the Indiana Senate race saw Richard Mourdock knock off thirty-six year incumbent Richard Lugar. The vote was not close, with Mr. Mourdock triumphing 60% to 40%.
Liberals are already gleefully and dishonestly writing columns about ideological extremists, Tea Party zealots, and other cliches about how the defeat of Mr. Lugar means the extreme right has taken over the Republican Party. Those same columnists swooned when Ned Lamont took down Joseph Lieberman in a Democratic Primary. Anyone getting advice about Republican politics from the Democratic Party apparatus in the media needs to discount it. Mr. Mourdock won because he ran a better campaign and the voters chose him.
As for the presidential vote, in percentages it was as decisive as it was uneventful.
Indiana: Romney 64, Paul 15, Santorum 14, Gingrich 7
North Carolina: Romney 66, Paul 11, Santorum 10, Gingrich 8
West Virginia: Romney 70, Santorum 12, Paul 11, Gingrich 6
VE-Day for Governor Mitt Romney unofficially occurred a couple of weeks earlier. Since then, Senator Rick Santorum and Speaker Newt Gingrich have dropped out. Mr. Santorum endorsed Mr. Romney, as have past opponents Herman Cain, Rick Perry, Tim Pawlenty, and Michele Bachmann.
Yet one man presses on, with supporters determined to hijack the nomination. Whenever writing about Ron Paul supporters, warnings have to be issued. They may dislike preemptive actions, but this is not their column.
Warning: All off-topic and irrelevant comments will be deleted, along with those containing bigotry, profanity, or personal attacks. Those who specifically address the issue in the column should do so. Those who just want to astroturf the words “Ron Paul 2012” should save their typing fingers for other useless pursuits. That is as useless a slogan as “Forward,” “Yes we can,” “Winning,” and “Girl Power.” It means nothing, and will be removed.
As for why he should get any attention, observing his supporters is similar to observing laboratory rats. No, this does not mean they are rats. It does mean they make for a great behavioral case study.
Ron Paul has been soundly rejected by the electorate, with about 90% of GOP voters supporting other candidates. Yet the Paulbots (not all Paul supporters are Paulbots, just the automatons on college campuses), despite being anti-war protesters in sync with Code Pink and Occupy Wall Street, are perfectly willing to carpet-bomb an entire electoral village to extract a tiny sliver of support.
The results of Indiana, West Virginia, and North Carolina reaffirmed what has been known since the beginning. The GOP accepts Mitt Romney and rejects Ron Paul. Dr. Paul finished behind one candidate who has already dropped out and squeaked ahead of another one. In essence, he lost to the political equivalent of dead people. The Paulbots will scream about lack of media coverage, but this does not explain their poor showing related to the other exited candidates. The people simply do not want him.
Paulbots have insisted from the very beginning that this is all about delegates. The “delegate strategy” means hijacking GOP conventions and seizing delegates despite massive primary and caucus losses. Before the Paulbots start protesting (they tend to do this), this strategy is completely legal. If the Romney campaign gets caught napping, the Paul campaign has every right to take advantage. This is called organization. This is process.
Yet at some point the Paulbots will be confronted with their own bullying. They can hijack (again, legally) a nomination, but they cannot force people into supporting their movement unless they take the munitions strategy utilized by Bashar Assad in Syria. Their powers of persuasion simply do not work. Many people at this point have pretended to support Ron Paul in front of them just to shut them up and end the conversation.
For a brief moment, let’s indulge their delusional fantasies. Let’s assume that Ron Paul successfully pilfers the nomination from Mitt Romney with the uninspiring and ethically bankrupt “you snooze, you lose” approach. Ron Paul is now the GOP nominee. So what happens next?
The GOP is finished. The Paulbots have threatened to walk if they do not get their way. Well now the 90% anti-Paul vote, much of it every bit as hardcore and passionate as the pro-Paul vote, will walk. Romney would run an Independent campaign as the candidate of the Conservative Party. Ron Paul would have an entertaining convention where his supporters would show up. Then the Conservatives would simply have another convention, or skip it altogether and just get down to business. Ron Paul would turn the GOP into the Libertarian Party.
The non-partisan Commission on Presidential Debates requires that a candidate have 15% support to participate in the debates. This is to prevent fringe candidates from stealing the stage. The Paulbots would scream bloody murder, but that would be hypocrisy. Their entire delegate strategy is about rules. Asking for debate rules to be waived would not happen.
The Paulbots would then turn to the Obama people for help, and the Obama people would be eager to help. This would involve some vote-trading scheme that was cooked up between supporters of Al Gore and Ralph Nader in 2000. This is illegal, and the Romney campaign would be quick to pounce on the corruption. Mr. Obama would be boxed into a corner, and Ron Paul would still be excluded from the debates. His supporters will complain about a lack of media oxygen, but they will find little sympathy from those they bullied.
So Ron Paul will have won the battle and lost the war. This is because elections can only be won in America with support from the people. The Paul movement is a mile deep but an inch wide. To say it is bigger than 2008 is fair. It still is not a winning coalition. By definition alone, coalitions involve various groups working together. Paulbots do not work with anybody. They abuse them and demand purity. Compromise is rejected.
The Paul movement is not the first movement to claim itself as the one true faith while all others are heretics. At some point reality will set in.
If the Paulbots would ever enter adulthood, they would congratulate Mr. Romney, and try to position Dr. Paul for a cabinet position. He would make a good Treasury Secretary or head of Office of Management and Budget. The Paul movement could be a very useful and productive force for their sensible economic ideas.
The other option is to demand 100% purity, including their foreign policy ideas. If the demand is all or nothing, they will get nothing. They can pilfer a nomination through a complicated election process. They have every right to do this. They cannot and will not win the hearts and minds of people who have had it with the verbally abusive nature of the Paul movement.
The Paul movement wanted it both ways. They wanted to be revolutionaries and be mainstream. They succeeded (not really) at the former and completely failed at the latter. That is why they can win a few delegates in smaller states long after people lost interest and the race was over. Mr. Romney wins by two touchdowns instead of three. Mr. Romney has the popular support of the GOP. Dr. Paul lost to a political corpse. The corpse was more likable.
Likability is the key. Everything comes down to likability. Dr. Paul is a likable guy. His supporters are not. Deep down, they know it. Their approach is uncivil, and unlikable.
On May 15th the people will reject the Paulbots in Nebraska and Oregon. On the 22nd the people will reject them in Arkansas and Kentucky. They will claim “to hell with the people, this is abut delegates.” The people will have the last word, as they always do.
That is why one can observe Paulbots in the lab, but come to the same conclusion as many scientists doing hypothesis tests. The Paulbots are not statistically significant. They still don’t matter.
Brooklyn born, Long Island raised, and now living in Los Angeles, Eric Golub is a politically conservative columnist, blogger, author, public speaker, satirist and comedian.
Eric is the author of the book trilogy “Ideological Bigotry, “Ideological Violence,” and “Ideological Idiocy.” Eric is 100% alcohol, tobacco, drug, and liberalism free. After years of dating liberals, he has finally seen the light and now only dates Republican Jewish women. His family is pleased over this. Republican, Jewish women, you may contact Eric above.
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Eric Golub is an independent writer for the Communities. Read more from Eric at his TYGRRRR EXPRESS blog.
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